The holiday season is fast approaching and the gift shopping deadline is one you don't really want to miss. Just the right time to pick then and hopefully this guide will help you spot a good deal among the most deserving smartphones.
As usual we're working bottom-up, starting at the sub-100 bracket and going all the way. Each phone gets a short description and a summary of pros and cons. This time we're throwing in some test results from our reviews to make it even more informative.
Note that we've based the price on how much a phone costs without any carrier (or other) subsidies and with VAT and shipping added. Off-contract phones are picking up even in the US, the land of the free $200 iPhone.
Another consideration is availability. There are some excellent devices that target just India or just China, but we couldn't include those, since they mean little to our international readership. You can import phones, but sometimes it's too much of a hassle and there are good alternatives.
Speaking of alternatives, on each page you'll find a "What didn't make the cut" chapter. There we explain why certain phones are not on the recommendation list. Some of those are region-limited, others are niche products (e.g. a rugged phone), so don't skip them - you may find just the phone for you, if you have more specific needs.
Before we start, we'll give a few pointers on the next page - what's the difference between "IPS" and "AMOLED" and other info if you don't know the slang.
Here go the links to take you straight to the price bracket you're interested in. Make sure to check the price below and above, maybe you'll find a cheaper phone that works for you or a slightly pricier device that you like better.
Where is the up-to-date guide? :)