It is important to have an idea of what each of these important components means to your device. Since the majority of sales reps in T&T use specs to sell their devices, we thought it would be a good idea to give you a breakdown. This Glossary will be updated to add new components to keep your knowledge of a smartphone’s internals up to date.
Cpu – The Central Processing Unit, is the brain of the device. There is a wide range of processors with different capabilities that power every mobile device. They control the speed of the device, power and power management, data capabilities. Examples of high-end processors are the Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 line, Tegra k1, Samsung EXYNOS Octa-core, to Apples A7 chip. Some examples of budget CPUS are Qualcomm snapdragon 200, Mediatek 6572. Every CPU has different features and characteristics that give every phone unique abilities.
RAM – Rapid Access Memory, to put it simply this is the memory where your phone loads your applications to allow it to access them quickly, rather than loading it from the hard drive. It also allows your phone to multitask between applications, and allows your phone to operate at a fluid pace. The more RAM the better.
Display Type or Display Technology – Refers to the type of mobile screen your device is using. There are various types that are used. The 2 most popular screens are IPS LCD and Super AMOLED. Super AMOLEDS are known for great color reproduction, color saturation, power efficiency, deep blacks, and great color contrast. They are susceptible to screen burn-in. Super LCDS are known for their zero gap technology which allows images to have a great level of realism. They are great under sunlight and have wide viewing angles. Since IPS LCD uses a backlight to show images, it cannot show true blacks as the backlight is always on and the screen blocks out the light to show blacks.
Camera – Megapixels: Megapixels refers to a number of pixels it can capture, which relates to an images resolution. A high megapixel count does not define your cameras capability nor does it mean you are going to get a good quality photo. It is arguable that the megapixel count is the least important factor for image quality. Depending on the image sensor your phone uses, it is possible to have a noisy or grainy picture with a higher megapixel count. If your phone has a very small sensor and a high megapixel count, it means your phone is taking in more pixels it can handle and the result is a very noisy picture. For this reason, it is wise to get a phone around 8mp and a great sensor, for the best image quality.
Image Sensor: This is the most important feature of a camera, and plays the most important role in image quality. The size of the sensor is what determines image quality. The size of the sensor affects what is known as dynamic range, which is the range of tones the sensor can capture, as well as control noise. A larger sensor means larger pixels are used and they capture more light for a better picture quality. This also helps when capturing pictures in low light conditions. The sensors used in phones are usually the least marketed and visible on spec sheets, but manufacturers such as Sony and HTC are leading the charge to create more visibility to the sensors they use in their respective devices.
Internal Memory : The amount of memory is usually referred to in GB (8Gb, 16Gb), which is a measurement of how much data and apps you’re able to save to the device hard drive.
SD Card: Sd card or memory card, is an external memory drive you are able to add to your phone. Every phone has a limit of what size memory card your able to add, so it is important you know what is the highest amount of external memory your phone can handle.
O/s (Operating System) – Operating systems are how we interact with the phone. It manages the way different programs use its hardware. Examples of O/S are Android (Lolipop, Kitkat, JellyBean, Ice Cream Sandwich), iOs, Windows mobile. Each O/S provide a different platform and interact with customers in a completely different way. The version of O/S is important to know because as Apps get upgraded, they lose the ability to run on older operating systems. It is important that the manufacturer you buy your phone from shows a history of updating your operating system.
NFC (Near Field Communication) – Is a short range wireless technology that uses electromagnetic radio fields instead of typical radio transmissions used by technologies such as Bluetooth. It is meant for applications that use a physical touch or close range to maintain security. It is used for data transfer, mobile payments, checking in for flights at airports, and will be used in much more ways in the future.