Samsung Galaxy S4
The big 5-inch screen and multi-mode 13-megapixel camera are the highlights of the Galaxy S4. Samsung also piles on the extras with infrared control for home electronics, NFC capabilities and many software extras running on Android 4.4..


Apple iPhone 5S
Available in three colours — white, grey and champagne — the 5S is an incremental update to the existing iPhone 5, with a faster A7 processor and an improved camera. But the most intriguing change is to the home button, which now doubles as a fingerprint scanner.


Google Nexus 5
Built by LG Electronics, the Google Nexus 5’s 4.95-inch, 1080p high-def LCD hides a blazingly fast quad-core 2.26 GHz Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, dual-band Wi-Fi and wireless charging. And the dialer will look up numbers for you, too; it doesn’t just search your conacts, but the Web as well.


Nokia Lumia 620
The Nokia-Microsoft tie-up bears fruit with the multicoloured Lumia 620, available in five colours and running Windows Phone 8. Its unique polarizing screen filter features a sunlight readability setting and automatic screen brightness control for usability under any lighting conditions.


LG Optimus G Pro
If you like your phones big, LG’s Optimus G Pro “phablet” is for you. Despite its 5.5-inch screen size, its quarter-inch-thick profile keeps it light.The 1.7 GHz quadcore Snapdragon processor renders video-intensive games without shuddering, and the battery can stand up to a full day of extensive use.


Did you know that many people in Canada are still using feature phones? Yes, feature phones. There maybe someone in your life who hasn’t joined the smart phone revolution. Save them from their continuing embarrassment this holiday season with a gift that will drag them into the 21st Century. They’ll thank you for it when they realize they can’t live without one.

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Dave Webb
Dave Webb is a freelance editor and writer. A veteran journalist of more than 20 years' experience (15 of them in technology), he has held senior editorial positions with a number of technology publications. He was honoured with an Andersen Consulting Award for Excellence in Business Journalism in 2000, and several Canadian Online Publishing Awards as part of the ComputerWorld Canada team.