Motorola Project Ara: One Phone For Life?

Isn’t buying a new smartphone every couple of years a little silly? Yes it is. Motorola’s Project Ara, an open-source initiative for modular smartphones, aims to take the current “new every two” mentality and kinda flip it on its consumerist head. Motorola is envisioning a future where your phone’s endoskeleton, or basic layout, would never change. Of course the phone’s components could be upgraded at any time; like say, you could get a new processor or even a new display. Whaddya think? Do you have that kinda willpower?

LG G Flex: The Wolverine Of Phones?

No, the LG G Flex doesn’t feature metal claws that pop out when a telemarketer calls. So what’s up with the Wolverine reference? Well LG says the G Flex uses “self-healing” technology, much like the X-Men super hero does (in make believe, not real life). Apparently, a protective film on the back cover will get rid of scratches on within minutes. Awesome. Oh, and it’s also curved! Yes, we almost forgot, the G Flex uses a flexible OLED screen which lets the phone bend its 6-inch 720p display horizontally. Not even sure if Wolverine can do that.

HTC One Max: Bigger Screen, Bigger Speakers, More Fingerprinty

Take the HTC One, juice it up to a big 5.9-inch screen, and add fingerprint scanning security technology and you have the HTC One Max. The device itself is 6.5 inches tall and 3.3 inches wide, so put down that issue of Cat Fancy because you’re certainly gonna need both hands to swipe quickly and accurately through the menus. Of course one perk with a phone this size is the ability for bigger and better speakers, and the One Max delivers there with BoomSound audio delivering loud audio through the front grille.

Apple iPhone 5S: Finally, A Phone For Your Fingerprints

Fingerprint smudges on your smartphone, a necessary evil. Fingerprint smudges on your mom’s personal massager, whoa. But fingerprints on the iPhone 5S ($199 for the 16GB model, $299/32GB, $399/64GB) are downright vital. Apple’s newest top-of-the-line iPhone features a zippy 64-bit A7 processor, bigger sensor in the camera, and rapper-worthy color schemes. But it’s the fingerprint recognition feature (“Touch ID”) that’s building buzz here. It’s built right into the home button and can be used for security or even to buy stuff on iTunes. Get your paws on one September 20.

Apple iPhone 5C: Breaking The Color Barrier

Some guy somewhere has probably been saying for the last 7 years, “I don’t care! I’m not buying an iPhone until they offer it in pink!” Well stand-your-ground guy, Apple’s ready for you now. The iPhone 5C is the step-down version of the flagship iPhone 5S. It’ll come in white, green, blue, pink, and yellow, with the 16GB model running just $99. The front-facing FaceTime camera has been improved, the battery is a little bigger, and again, pink is an option.

Samsung Galaxy Note 3: The Handwriting’s On The Phone

Sure no one under the age of 19 even knows what the term “cursive” means, but to the rest of the country, handwriting is still a skill to be maintained. The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 pays homage to ye old pen and pad with the S Pen and its big 5.7 inch full HD Super AMOLED display. With the phone’s “Action Memo” feature you can whip out the pen, jot down the phone number of a hot girl or guy, and the Note will somehow recognize that chicken scratch and dial them up when you circle the digits. This Note has a bigger screen than the last one, and yet it’s thinner and lighter with a stronger battery too.

Sony Xperia Z1: Totally Not Afraid Of Toilets

My Uncle Charles had a lifelong fear of toilets. Maybe it was due to that unfortunate incident with a water moccasin and his “dangling plums” as he called them. I’m not sure. These days most people fear toilets for their magnetic pull on smartphones—one of the worst ways to end a call. But the Xperia Z1 laughs in the face of fecal water, as Sony’s forthcoming device is waterproof up to nearly 5 feet. The other noteworthy thing about this phone, aside from its slick, 5-inch Full HD screen, is the 20..7 megapixel camera. Just think of the clarity in those um, underwater shots!

Moto X: Specs Shmecs

The smartphone battlefield is filled with combatants engaged in a war of the specs. But is the winner of the ‘my processor/screen/battery is bigger than yours’ contest really the best device? Motorola says no. The Moto X ($200) consciously stays out of the specs fray and instead focuses on customization and other perks. You can design your own phone, choosing everything from the color to the texture, with some 504 combinations possible. Touchless Control lets you control the phone with voice commands.  There’s a 4.7-inch AMOLED screen, Snapdragon S4 Pro 1.7 GHz processor, and 10 MP Clear Pixel camera, and while none of those numbers are class-leading, it’s somewhat refreshing to see a phone that doesn’t pretend it’s carrying a bazooka when it’s armed with a trusty rifle.