We look at the best 4G phones that money can buy. (UPDATED)
Three of the UK's major mobile operators are now offering 4G in the UK, and there is already a wide range of 4G phones to choose from. In this article we've picked out some of the best 4G phones available to buy in the UK right now.
Everyone has a different budget, favourite operating system or a preferred smartphone design. Therefore, we've divided our best 4G phones into helpful categories making it even easier for our readers to find the 4G phone that best suits their demands.
Those who've owned an Apple device tend to exhibit incredible loyalty to Apple's iPhone range. That's in no small part due to Apple's iOS platform, which recently got a huge facelift with the release of iOS 7. So what is the best Apple 4G phone currently available to buy in the UK?
Winner: Apple iPhone 5S
Apple's iPhone 5 is a 4G-ready smartphone, but it's only compatible with EE's 4G network. Therefore, it's an easy decision to declare Apple's iPhone 5S the best 4G phone for those looking for an Apple device.
Apple's iPhone 5S is the best iPhone of all time because it comes pre-loaded with iOS 7 and features Apple's innovative iTouch Fingerprint Sensor. Enabling you to unlock your smartphone by touching the mobiles home-button, as well as authorising App Store payments using your fingerprint.
It's also the fastest ever iPhone with benchmarks showing that its 64 bit processor blows away the competition. You still get the same stunning Retina display, an improved iSight camera and it's available in 3 all-new colours (Gold, Silver and Space Grey) - with prices starting at £549.
Runner Up: Apple iPhone 5C
Those not interested in the iPhone 5S's fingerprint sensor might want to checkout Apple's iPhone 5C. It's slightly more affordable - with prices starting at £469 - and comes in a more varied and vibrant colour range (White, Pink, Yellow, Blue and Green).
Google Android is the most popular mobile operating system in the world, and many users have become accustomed to its design and functionality. There are a plethora of 4G-ready Android smartphones on the market, but which is a cut above the rest?
Winner: Sony Xperia Z2
The Sony Xperia Z2 improves on the superb Xperia Z1 , and in our eyes it's the best 4G Android phone in the world right now. Sony's smartphone has a stunning all-glass design, a gorgeous 5.2 inch display, an amazing 20.7 mega-pixel snapper and is one of the most powerful mobile phones in the world.
Oh.. did we forget to mention that it's waterproof and dust-proof. Our review of the smartphone concluded that 'The Sony Xperia Z2 is a top-notch smartphone with a list of specs that beats the likes of the HTC and Samsung’s flagship devices.'.
Sony's Xperia Z2 is available in Black, White or Purple and is priced at £599 (SIM-free).
Runner Up: HTC One M8
The HTC One M8 has attracted widespread praise, and improves on the excellent HTC One which was declared 'Best Phone' and 'Best Gadget' at T3's Gadget Awards 2013. It's stunning combination of high-end specs and a premium metal unibody design make it one of the most desirable smartphones released this year.
Windows Phone is - arguably - the most accessible of all the mobile operating systems making it the perfect choice for those with little smartphone experience. There are a few 4G-ready smartphones on the market running Windows Phone 8, but which should you choose ?
Winner: Nokia Lumia 1020
The Nokia Lumia 1020 has attracted a lot of media attention due to its 'market leading' 41 mega-pixel Pureview Camera. The camera is unbelievably good, but the Lumia 1020 isn't a one trick pony - because it's also got a 4.5 inch 720p display and is a powerful smartphone in its own right.
Our Lumia 1020 review concluded that 'The Nokia’s Lumia 1020 is a greatly improved incarnation of the 808 Pureview, thanks to its slim chassis and impressive 41-megapixel snapper'. Nokia's smartphone comes pre-loaded with Windows Phone 8, is available in Yellow, White and Black and is priced at £599.99.
Runner Up: Nokia Lumia 925
Those who arn't looking for a cutting-edge camera, might want to consider Nokia's Lumia 925 - which is a slimmer, lighter and more powerful version of the Nokia Lumia 1020. Overall its specification is very similar to the Lumia 1020, and it still has an 8.7 mega-pixel camera - not too shabby at all. It's also £200 cheaper than it's Pureview brother with prices starting at £399.99.
The majority of 4G phones put a huge dent in your wallet, but not everyone has the resources - or willingness - to invest in a costly flagship smartphone. Thankfully a number of more affordable cheaper 4G phones have now entered the market , but which is the best 4G phone for those on a budget?
Winner: Nokia Lumia 625
The Nokia Lumia 625 is available to buy SIM-free for just £239.99 and we think it's the best value 4G smartphone that money can buy. It's a Windows Phone 8 smartphone that has a 4.7 inch display, is powered by a 1.2 GHz dual-core processor and has a 5 mega-pixel camera.
Our review of the Lumia 625 concluded that 'The Nokia Lumia 625 offers good value for a 4G handset, and is the cheapest device on offer if you want to have the benefits of 4G. Its bright design and wealth of Nokia features make it appealing whatever your age.'
Runner Up: Sony Xperia SP
The Sony Xperia SP is a slightly older device than a lot of the mobiles featured in our guide, but that's meant that its price has been coming down all the time (it can now be picked up for £289). That makes it a bit more expensive than the Lumia 625, but you do get a much better display, a slightly better specification and a better looking smartphone.
Smartphones keep on getting bigger and bigger, with 5 inches quickly becoming the new standard size for flagship devices. However, there are still a number of us who prefer a more portable device, so what is the best compact 4G smartphone available today?
Winner: Sony Xperia Z1 Compact
The Sony Xperia Z1 Compact is our favourite compact handset on the market today. Unlike a lot of other mini smartphone it doesn't comprimise when it comes to specification delivering a stunning display, amazing camera and a premium design.
Like all of Sony's current smartphone it's also both waterproof and dust-resistant. Our review of the Xperia Z1 Compact concluded "Sony has raised their game once again with the Xperia Z1 Compact. It’s easily the best compact Android smartphone on the market and one of the most powerful, feature-packed smartphones in the world today."
Runner Up: Apple iPhone 5S
Apple's iPhone 5S classifies as a compact smartphone thanks to its 4 inch Retina display, and the latest iPhone is lighter and thinner than previous models. It's also a lot more powerful than the HTC's One Mini, but we felt that it's higher price (starting at £549) gave HTC's smartphone the edge in this category.
Phablets are a newer type of device sitting somewhere between a smartphone and tablet. There larger displays brings improved multimedia playback and web-browsing, while they remain more portable than fully-fledged tablets. So what is the best 4G phablet that's currently on the market?
Winner: Samsung Galaxy Note 3
When Samsung introduced the original Galaxy Note they changed the world of mobile forever - effectively introducing the world to the phablet. They then improved on the original design with the even larger Galaxy Note 2, and now they've released the Galaxy Note 3.
Samsung's Galaxy Note 3 improves on Samsung's acclaimed S-Pen interface and has a mammoth 5.7 inch 1080p display. It's also one of the most powerful mobile devices in the world thanks to it's 2.3 GHz quad-core processor and 3GB of RAM. Improvement and tweaks have been made across the board making it - in our eyes at least - the best phablet in the world.
Our review of the Galaxy Note 3 concluded that ' its sharp 5.7in HD display, 13MP snapper and great performance all appeal – and the S-Pen and creativity options make it stand out from the crowd." Samsung's Galaxy Note 3 is available to SIM-free for £590.
Runner Up: Sony Xperia Z Ultra
Choosing between Samsung's Galaxy Note 3 and Sony's Xperia Z Ultra was probably the hardest choice we faced. On one hand we've got Samsung's stunning S-Pen phablet, and on the other we've got Sony's waterproof, slim-line, stunning Xperia Z Ultra.
Sony's Xperia Z Ultra has a staggering 6.4 inch 1080p display, a 2.2 GHz quad-core processor and an 8 mega-pixel camera. Those looking for a high-end 4G ready tablet won't be disappointed with Sony's stunning Xperia Z Ultra, which you can pick up for £549.
That's it folks - the Best 4G Phones Available To Buy Right Now from 3G.