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There were some brilliant new smartphones released in 2014, including plenty of new Androids, a couple of new iPhones Apple's Big Event: iPhone 6, Watch & New Wireless Payment System Apple's Big Event: iPhone 6, Watch & New Wireless Payment System Finally, the rumours are confirmed: two new larger iPhones and a smart timepiece known simply as the Apple Watch are on the way. Read More , several new Windows Phone handsets, and even a BlackBerry or two BlackBerry Passport Reviews, iOS 8.0.1 Update Bricks iPhones, And More... [Tech News Digest] BlackBerry Passport Reviews, iOS 8.0.1 Update Bricks iPhones, And More... [Tech News Digest] Also, Amazon Wishlist, Chrome's endless runner, Sunset Overdrive trailer, and testing the bendiness of smartphones. Read More as well. But which, dear reader, is the best smartphone launched in the past year? Welcome to this week’s MakeUseOf Poll.

Unexpected Explorer Upset

To answer this week’s question please scroll down the page until you see the poll staring back at you. But first, we need to look at the results from last week, when we asked, “What Web Browser Do You Use, & Why?

Out of a total of 1,549 votes, 36% chose Internet Explorer, 27.9% chose Firefox, 27% chose Chrome, 3.2% chose Opera, 3% chose Safari, and 3.2% chose Other.

This has to count as something of an upset. Google Chrome is now the most popular Web browser across the whole of the Internet population, and I for one thought our geeky readers 10 Incredibly Geeky Things You Could Be Doing Right Now 10 Incredibly Geeky Things You Could Be Doing Right Now Today, we're applauding geeks who have surpassed the achievements of us ordinary, run-of-the-mill geeks, journeying to the geeky underworld and living to tell the tale. Bow down to your geek superiors. Read More would trend towards more obscure options rather than the standard, default Internet Explorer. But no, Microsoft’s browser won… perhaps everybody took our advice to give IE11 a chance Why You Should Upgrade To Internet Explorer 11 Now Why You Should Upgrade To Internet Explorer 11 Now Restoring Internet Explorer to a browser that people actually wanted to use was always going to be a hard road, but it's just possible that with Internet Explorer 11 this stage has been reached. Read More .

This result also stands out against the previous occasions on which we have asked about browser usage, with Firefox or Chrome usually winning Which Is the Best Desktop Browser? 2014 Edition [MakeUseOf Poll] Which Is the Best Desktop Browser? 2014 Edition [MakeUseOf Poll] Another year has gone by, what has changed in the browser scene? Have your loyalties changed? Let's find out! Read More . Perhaps asking what browser people are using rather than what browser they consider to be the best made all the difference.

web-browser-use-poll-results

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Comment Of The Week

We received a lot of great comments, including those from Doc What Web Browser Do You Use, & Why? [MakeUseOf Poll] What Web Browser Do You Use, & Why? [MakeUseOf Poll] The Web browser is an essential tool, allowing us to access the wealth of information contained on the Internet. But what Web browser do you use? And why? Read More , Xoandre What Web Browser Do You Use, & Why? [MakeUseOf Poll] What Web Browser Do You Use, & Why? [MakeUseOf Poll] The Web browser is an essential tool, allowing us to access the wealth of information contained on the Internet. But what Web browser do you use? And why? Read More , and likefunbutnot What Web Browser Do You Use, & Why? [MakeUseOf Poll] What Web Browser Do You Use, & Why? [MakeUseOf Poll] The Web browser is an essential tool, allowing us to access the wealth of information contained on the Internet. But what Web browser do you use? And why? Read More . Comment Of The Week goes to Eileen Souza, who earns our admiration and affection for this comment What Web Browser Do You Use, & Why? [MakeUseOf Poll] What Web Browser Do You Use, & Why? [MakeUseOf Poll] The Web browser is an essential tool, allowing us to access the wealth of information contained on the Internet. But what Web browser do you use? And why? Read More :

I have used Internet Explorer since its inception (my first PC was DOS) and have never had a problem. I tried Chrome. On install, I told it that I did not want it to be my default browser but it did not listen to me and took over my links. I used it a bit but had trouble getting to some sites I use (which I could reach with IE). Finally, I uninstalled it and that was not pretty either. It took me a while to fix all the broken links in the registry.

I tried Firefox since several of the add-ons available appealed to me. I have to admit it is definitely not bad to use. I liked the way it worked and did not have any problems reaching any of my sites. For a while, I used it as my second browser. But… I discovered something I really did not like. It was always updating and breaking the add-ons I was using so I always had to update it and each of the add-ons. It became annoying and I finally uninstalled it.

I have noticed that some software developers appear to be releasing new software and updates without testing them on IE. I think this is shortsighted since MS still owns the largest market share. I am not talking about just us geeks but the whole commercial market. I have never not been able to get on a site that I want to use. I have never gotten an update that I have to install or that broke the add-ons. That is why I am sticking. If things change, well, we’ll see what the future brings.

We chose this comment for being one of the few which supports the voting pattern. Internet Explorer won by a comfortable margin, but the comments do not reflect that. For Eileen, IE just works Make Internet Explorer 11 Work for You With These Tips Make Internet Explorer 11 Work for You With These Tips Internet Explorer 11 isn't terrible! In fact, if you've got a Windows tablet and have bought into the whole Metro -- sorry, "Modern" -- interface, it's probably the best touch-based browser out there. Read More , and that’s clearly as good a reason as any to stick with it.

The Best Smartphones Of 2014

It feels like there’s a new smartphone released every single week of the year. And to be fair, that isn’t too far away from being the truth. However, many of these new smartphones aren’t worth considering, and so we’re all left with a handful to choose from.

We have looked at the runners and riders, and compiled a list of some of the best smartphones released in 2014. In the spirit of fairness, we have included some outsiders which are unlikely to appear on any other best-of list. We are trusting you to sort the wheat from the chaff.

Please vote in the poll above, and then explain in the comments why you voted that way.

We would love to know your thoughts on the smartphones released into the wild in 2014. Which, if any, did you buy? Why did you choose that particular phone over the competition? What makes it the best available from the full range of smartphones launched over the past 12 months?

The best Comment Of The Week will win our everlasting admiration and affection. Well, at least until we meet back here again this time next week.

Image Credit: Quinn Dombrowski via Flickr

  1. VITONLINE
    January 23, 2015 at 12:32 am

    I voted “other” : Oneplus One

  2. zoroz
    January 13, 2015 at 9:02 am

    OnePlus One

  3. effimote
    January 6, 2015 at 8:50 am

    i voted other ,cuz this brand models are a little expensive ,plus i am a regular cellphone
    changer ,bought expensive cellphones will be wasted for me ,so i prefer to buy some cheap android cellphones with cost-effective price and well enough quality .like this onehttp://www.kingsbuying.com/landvo-l200-smartphone-android-4-4-mtk6582-5-0-inch-qhd-screen-3g-smart-wake-up.html i just bought ,even cheap but good enough to do anything .

  4. d2
    January 6, 2015 at 2:12 am

    What is it with the sudden burst of votes for Nokia Lumia 930? Interesting.

    Microsoft's Internet Explorer also just won the browser voting. Is there a guy creating multiple votes for Microsoft products or what?

  5. Niklas
    December 30, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    Nokia Lumia 930!

  6. BGPhilbin
    December 30, 2014 at 4:16 pm

    I chose the Google Nexus, because it runs the way a phone should run - without crapware.

  7. Robert
    December 29, 2014 at 11:20 pm

    I voted Other, because they should all be called "Dumb Phones"! I've used Motorola Droids, and i still have a working original. Used Samsung and battery life was terrible. New Droid Turbo Nylon 64GB was terrible! Returned. Came with a cracked screen... Talk about headaches returning that with a crack. I only used it ta few times and couldn't get Verizon Cloud backups to complete without errors. Ordered a Nexus 6 verizon compatible. waited a month and a half for them to be in stock. One arrived from (CHINA) NOT verizon compatible, but they did say sorry. Lmao They blamed Verizon, and Verizon said all the EID, etc say its not compatible, so then motorola gives some number (out of the air) and told me to give that to Verizon, and they said, even if it was a correct number you just can't attach it to the uh-Hem Smart phone. Its been a 1 week since motorola received the returned nexus6, yet they still billed me over $700, and said, it will come off in a couple weeks. Lets go back to those monster Handsets with the rubber antenna... Anyone remember them?

  8. Victor
    December 29, 2014 at 7:06 pm

    I'll say the OnePlus One. Awesome phone, great price, no carrier, clean and customizable OS. Overall, the most "innovative" phone this year, in my opinion.

  9. KT
    December 29, 2014 at 6:43 pm

    My wife refurbs cell phones for a living so she knows her stuff on this topic. She picked the HTC, with the LG as a close 2nd and the Sony as 3rd. She used the formula of durability+hardware+ease of use and that's what she came up with.

  10. Edgardo Gonzalez
    December 29, 2014 at 3:05 pm

    The best phone for many reasons is the Samsung Galaxy Note 4,why?
    Fastest processor, 4k res screen! Battery life, the front camera for selfies and allandroid platform!
    Phase is the future, who uses a phone anymore?
    Phablet

  11. likefunbutnot
    December 29, 2014 at 2:57 pm

    The LG G3 wins for the most forward-looking specs and no missing deal breaker features. It has a card slot and a removable battery plus a lovely 2160x1440 display, 3GB RAM and a fast CPU. LG's Android implementation isn't as obnoxious as Samsung's or HTC's.
    Google's newest phones are disappointing compromise devices and Samsung's 2014 models were merely iterative improvements over the 2013 versions. The OnePlusOne is nearly impossible to obtain and remains an unknown quantity in terms of support.

    The Fire Phone and Nokia 930 deserve a lot more credit than they get as smartphone devices for less sophisticated users.

    iphones, in spite of the improvement of allowing users to pick a better keyboard and recognition that screens can in fact be manufactured in more than one size, remain saddled with an unusable operating system and are therefore unworthy of consideration for any greater purpose than paperweight.

  12. Oliv Oil
    December 29, 2014 at 1:46 pm

    Other: Oneplus One
    (quality/price)

  13. saad
    December 29, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    i vote other huawei mate 7

  14. Mayu
    December 29, 2014 at 12:10 pm

    My vote goes for Other - Huawei Honor 6

  15. Sharad
    December 29, 2014 at 10:08 am

    Xiaomi MI 3

  16. jamieg
    December 29, 2014 at 3:25 am

    Note 4 in a landslide.

  17. Brandon R.
    December 29, 2014 at 2:13 am

    Why is the Note 4 not on this list????????????????
    The Note 4 is the best out there, and may as well overtake the S5 as the Flagship for Samsung.

  18. Slartibartfast
    December 29, 2014 at 12:59 am

    The Passport is the only truly innovative device of the year. Everything else is just incremental improvement.

  19. Hildy J
    December 28, 2014 at 11:20 pm

    How could you not even include the Moto X 2014 edition as a choice?

    It is the only phone whose additional OS features make it better than stock Android (as opposed to, say, Samsung's bloat). There is a minimal lag between Nexus updates and Moto updates. Its SOC is innovative. And its the only phone of 2014 that can be termed beautiful (although you can customize it to be ugly if you want).

    • Freddy
      December 30, 2014 at 12:26 pm

      Because in most countries (yes, there are other countries than the US) it isn't even sold.

  20. Doc
    December 28, 2014 at 8:02 pm

    I chose the HTC One M8 - great speakers, SD card slot (up to 128GB! Nexus phones are good, but *give me an SD slot, Google!*), lots of RAM, Android 5.0 update available...pretty much everything I want in a phone.

  21. Sam
    December 28, 2014 at 6:57 pm

    Other - OnePlus One

  22. Wayne Gruen
    December 28, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    I voted other because I use the One Plus. Great power and performance for an unbelievable price.

  23. Brad Merrill
    December 28, 2014 at 6:09 pm

    The iPhone 6 Plus can be a little unwieldy one-handed (depending on the size of your hands) but it's really a beautiful device.

  24. pete
    December 28, 2014 at 4:39 pm

    am currently in the market for a new phone and have previously looked into most of the phones mentioned above.

    Each phone has it's merits and Through the second half of this year I have kept an eager eye on news for the Nexus 6.

    When it was announced I was sorely disappointed and specs/price ratio. So underwhelmed that I for a very short while I thought about spending the same kind of money on an i-phone.

    As it stands I still have my trusty Nexus 4 and with the upgrade to Lollipop - it's like a brand new phone. (I only took the clear plastic protection peel off in November!!! - boy that felt satisfying- haha).

    So, although it wasn't released in 2014 - the best in 2014 for me was the good ol' Nexus 4!

    I know it's answer the question asked, but I'm a rebel like that!

    • Simen
      December 28, 2014 at 4:53 pm

      I feel like that as well. After my old S3 mini died, I was forced to buy a new phone, and the only one I really liked was last year's Nexus 5.

  25. kure
    December 28, 2014 at 4:26 pm

    Blackbrry q5. My firs bb. Magnificent battery life + keyboard

  26. Charlie
    December 28, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    Samsung Galaxy Note 4 is the best phone I've had so far.

  27. G
    December 28, 2014 at 3:38 pm

    I also voted Other->OnePlus One. That should have made the list, don't ya think? Custom OS, annoying invite system, but a killer phone. I have never been so satisfied with a smartphone.

  28. Marek Lukas
    December 28, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    Other -> OnePlus One

    • Noel
      December 29, 2014 at 6:42 pm

      Definitely oneplusone

    • Noel
      December 29, 2014 at 6:45 pm

      Other: oneplusone

  29. Shawn
    December 28, 2014 at 3:26 pm

    Samsung Note 4 - If you want a big phone, it's big. If you want good battery life, you get a couple days.

  30. Koshy George
    December 28, 2014 at 3:25 pm

    I have never even heard of that phone.

  31. Erin
    December 28, 2014 at 3:22 pm

    other: Samsung Galaxy Note Edge

  32. Vyom
    December 28, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    Moto X 2 isn't even in the list -_-
    Or is it so awesome that it doesn't need a poll. xD ?

    • IanG
      December 29, 2014 at 1:53 am

      Agree. I love mine.

  33. Benoit
    December 28, 2014 at 2:51 pm

    I voted "other" : Oneplus One

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