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Apple iPhone 4 vs... the rest

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Taking an app

Apple’s App Store got a head start on the market and is still way out in front in terms of sheer numbers. Then again, a great many of those apps are either a) rubbish, or b) the kind you’ll only use once. Most of the apps you’ll come back to for business or practical purposes, including social networking, are well catered for on Android.

HTC HD7

HTC's HD 7

Blackberry’s App World tends to focus on the business side though there’s also a growing number of fun apps there too. The latest Symbian phones are catching up thanks to Nokia’s Ovi Store and while the newly launched Windows Phone 7 is lagging well behind at the moment, it’s likely to grow very quickly if WinPho 7 catches on, which it really should do.

There’s really very little wrong with the iPhone’s 3.5in capacitive LCD touchscreen. It’s clear and sharp - especially with its as-yet-unmatched 960 x 640 resolution "retina display" - and nicely sensitive in use. There are a few with bigger screens - much bigger in the case of Dell’s Android-powered Streak: five (count em!) inches - or indeed the Samsung Galaxy Tab, though at 7in, the jury’s still out as to whether this is really a giant iPhone rival, or a midget iPad botherer.

Nokia N8

Nokia N8

Some have slightly sharper screens too, notably Samsung’s Galaxy S and Wave, or Nokia’s N8 with their AMOLED displays. For functionality though, no one has yet really improved on it, though the better ones are equalling it for sensitivity and multi-touch usability.

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