Best Telstra phone: 5 we recommend

Here's the cream of the crop


Telstra is currently dominating the Australian telco space and shoring up future tech, with announcements including LTE-A trials testing speeds of 450Mbps and a national Wi-Fi network.

Now with the ability to upgrade your smartphone every 12 months when you're on a 24-month, it's time we took a look at which handset you should choose when you wander into the Telstra shop.

Compared with its competitors, Telstra's range is quite small. Traditionally, Telstra has been very selective with which OEM partners it works with and it tends only to take on the big name products. Though in our list, you'll also see an exclusive that you won't find on any other network.

Samsung Galaxy S5

Samsung Galaxy S4

The phone that would be king. The Galaxy S5 had big shoes to fill after the success of the Galaxy S4, while still going up against HTC and Sony's newest entries.

For a Samsung flagship upgrade, you get a Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 CPU processor that helps improve battery life and a stunning 5.1 inch display. The newest and greatest feature would of course be it's waterproof and dust proof form, designed to survive being caught out in a winter storm or a trip to the beach.

It's also packed to the gills with Samsung's UI, and along with the improved hardware and camera, you get a fingerprint scanner and heart rate monitor. These may not be features you'll end up using, but they certainly don't detract from the phone in a major way.

Though it feels better in the hand than the S4, it still has a plastic-feeling construction, so if you prefer your phones to feel sturdier, we'd suggest looking at the HTC One M8 or an iPhone 5S.

Apple iPhone 5S

Apple iPhone 5

Few "best phone" lists would be complete without the iPhone, and compared with the available offering at Telstra, the iPhone 5S definitely deserves to be here.

Last year's hardware refresh gave fans iOS 7, a better processor and camera and the Touch ID fingerprint scanner. If you were a fan of the older iPhone 5, you'll love the 5S, but also remember that an iPhone 6 is due out in a few months.

Still, even if you don't wait, the iPhone 5S is still stellar of a device for the expert user and one of the best for smartphone newbies, too. It's simple, clean layout is easy to navigate, and even people who don't feel comfortable using computers tend to take to the iPhone like ducks to water.

Then there's also the iPhone 5C to consider, if you're after something cheaper, more colourful, but do keep in mind that it is not as powerful.

HTC One M8


The HTC One was the big hit of last year, making everyone sit up and take notice of HTC. It also made everyone curious as to whether HTC could follow it up with another winner this year.

Well, our fears were laid to rest, with our own Gareth Beavis saying that, with the One M8, "HTC has done it again: created a stunning phone with very few flaws."

While the design and the Sense UI is still worth talking about, a new Snapdragon 801 processor helps boosts battery life dramatically, eliminating one of the worries of the old HTC One. The addition of a microSD slot will make many media-happy people jump for joy.

If we are to be finicky, the camera does disappoints in that we don't see a major upgrade (be wary of bright light situations), but it's still a snapper that you can rely on day to day for all your Instagram shots.

Other than that, we dare you to hold the One M8 and not want to take it home with you. It's just one of those devices.

Nexus 5

Nexus 5

Google's Nexus range isn't perhaps as well known as Apple's iPhone range or Samsung's Galaxy range in Australia, but it's nothing to be sniffed at, especially as the spec list compared against the price tag will impress.

Only available through Telstra, the Nexus 5 has improved enough on its predecessors to make it one of the best phones on the market right now.

The battery is improved, the camera performs well, and it still has its low-cost price tag. It also touts a high power CPU, a quality display and a solid build.

With its pure Android experience, many will love the Google phone, and while it doesn't have any fancy bells or whistles like the iPhone 5S, it is still a powerful phone for the budget user.

Sony Xperia Z2

Nokia Lumia 920

Now in it's third iteration, the Sony Xperia series is truly hitting its stride with the Xperia Z2.

Despite its rather clunky, industrial design is a little chunky but oozes premium quality in a way that Samsung's plastic shell doesn't, and with it's IP58 rating, it's little more robust than the HTC One - or at least would be able to take a dip in the pool without everything just dying.

Improvements to the Z1 include front facing speakers, a new screen with better colour reproduction, 4K video recording and inbuilt noise cancellation.

Another top range smartphone, you get great battery life, strong power and a wonderful camera. Sony's latest entry is simply a great all-rounder.