Best Telstra phone: 5 we recommend

Here's the cream of the crop

Telstra

Telstra has been making some big changes to its network. From massively improving the bundled data on its plans to killing off excess data fees with automatic top-ups, Telstra has drastically improved its offerings.

And it's not just on the value front either. There's also the launch of its 4GX network last year, and the promise of LTE-A speeds of up to 450Mbps in the future.

Now with family data plans and the ability to upgrade your smartphone every 12 months when you're on a 24-month plan, 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 S6

Samsung Galaxy S6

Pound for pound, the Samsung Galaxy S6 is probably the best phone you can buy right now.

Samsung has taken on board a lot of the criticisms the world had with the Galaxy S5, from build quality to bloated, useless features, and streamlined them for the Galaxy S6.

Available in three different capacities, the Galaxy S6 is a powerhouse of a phone with a great camera, amazing screen and a feature list that makes previous Galaxy phones blush from embarrassment.

Telstra's plans for the Samsung Galaxy S6 range from $81 per month for $550 worth of talk and 1GB of data with a 32GB handset to $143 per month for unlimited talk and 10GB of data with a 128GB handset.

LG G4

LG G4

The LG G4's leather back isn't for everyone, but if you're looking for a phone that stands out amongst the herd of glass, metal and plastic then this could be the phone for you.

It certainly has the goods elsewhere. The G4's screen is one of the best on the market, and it's perfect for showing off the results of the phone's camera, which takes some unbelievably good shots (and offers some excellent manual shooting options).

The G4 has a nicely subtle curve that helps it sit comfortably in the hand – and prevents it from slipping out – while the buttons situated on the back are more conveniently accessible than some of the other large handsets' side-mounted options.

Telstra's options for the LG G4 range from $75 per month for $550 worth of talk and 1GB of data to $135 per month with unlimited talk and 10GB of data.

Apple iPhone 6

iPhone 6

Few "best phone" lists would be complete without the iPhone, so while we anxiously await the launch of the 6S, the iPhone 6 still holds its own.

Apple's handset may be getting long in the tooth, but it's impossible to argue it's not a good phone, and iOS fans will not find a more tempting option on this list.

Sporting a far more powerful processor than its predecessor (the iPhone 5S), an excellent camera, and improved battery life, the iPhone 6 (or the iPhone 6 Plus if you're into scale) is still a force to be reckoned with.

As always, that Apple branding doesn't come cheap. Telstra plans start at $87 for 1GB of data and $500 worth of talk with a 32GB handset, and ramp all the way up to $156 for 10GB of data and unlimited talk with a 128GB handset.

Samsung Galaxy Note 5

Samsung Galaxy Note 5

Samsung's latest S Pen-equipped handset takes styling tips from the Galaxy S6, with some mixed results.

On one hand, the Note 5 is by far the best-looking Note handset Samsung has ever produced. But Note devotees may find themselves missing the expandable memory and removable battery.

Still, the Note 5's 5.7-inch screen is gorgeous, and its record-breaking processor and 4GB of RAM completely outpace Apple's current offering, as does its 16MP camera.

Telstra currently only offers the 32GB handset, with plans ranging from $83 for 1GB of data and $500 of talk to $145 for 10GB of data and unlimited talk.

HTC One M9

HTC One M9

This year saw Samsung overtake HTC, claiming the Android throne with its stunning S6 handset.

But Samsung's particular take on Android isn't for everyone, and for those put off by the South Korean firm's fondness for bloatware, HTC has delivered another excellent handset.

The One M9 takes everything One M8 fans loved and polishes it even further, adding one of the most premium-looking chassis into the mix for kicks.

For Telstra customers, the HTC One M9 is a reasonably priced option, available on plans starting from $73 per month with 1GB of data and $500 worth of talk. More generous allowances are available up to $135 for 10GB of data and unlimited talk.