As screen sizes creep up, the battle to mix innovative materials to deliver both style and function has intensified in the past 12 months. Best Design celebrates the handsets that blend usability with – of course – off-the-chart good looks.
Massive plaudits have to go to HTC’s designers, as the One is a masterpiece. It’s clearly an HTC phone, not just from the thankfully-subtle branding, but the smooth rounded corners and tiny details. Yet the One is also the company’s most gorgeous mobile to date. The sleek, all-metal body screams ‘premium’, with white edging to break up the brushed silver, making this the most desirable handset this year.
LG Nexus 4
Simplicity is the key to LG’s design. The Nexus 4 is decked out with an all-glass front panel flanked with black borders at the top and bottom, delivering a premium look despite its no-nonsense style. The screen seems incredibly thin thanks to LG’s ‘Zerogap Touch’ technology, which helps the Nexus 4 dodge the sunken feel of some smartphones. A lack of physical back, home and menu buttons also adds to its clean appearance.
Apple iPhone 5
The iPhone 5 is the black sheep of the Apple family. Its slick new ‘stretched’ style is a break from previous handsets and it has the look of an iPhone 4S that’s been lovingly crushed by a steamroller. Longer, thinner and noticeably lighter at just 112g, this slender iPhone makes older models feel decidedly chunky and heavy. We love the revamped aluminium back too, with thin strips of glass at the top and bottom.
The Q10 is more of a ‘true’ BlackBerry device than the company’s underwhelming Z10, and it’s a better phone for it. The solid build and good looks make it desirable, but what you’re getting here is an excellent keyboard. The Q10’s buttons are as good as we’d hoped and each key has a curved ridge to help stop fingers straying onto other keys. Short, wide and solid, this is a phone that can take care of business with the minimum of fuss.
Nokia Lumia 925
On a basic level, the Nokia Lumia 925 is a more slimline version of the 920. At 139g it’s far from lightweight, but we were impressed at how much heft this fresh design shaved off – from bulky brick to a slender handset in just a few months. The 4.5-inch screen stretches across most of the surface and where the glass ends, a metallic silver band wraps around. The result is a device that feels great in the hand and has serious visual appeal.
Sony Xperia Z
We were instantly taken with the long, glossy body and beautiful five-inch Full HD display of the Sony Xperia Z. Lovingly constructed using front and rear panels made entirely of glass, its rectangular, straight edges add just the tiniest hint of curvature in each corner. The build might be considered hefty by some but a slender 7.9mm thickness keeps it light. The ports have also been cleverly covered up to make it watertight, only adding to its premium finish.
Congratulations to all of the winners. You can find all of the incriminating photos on our official MCAwards 2013 website, and a full list of the 2013 Mobile Choice Award winners can be found here!