Best Phones on Telstra Plans

Summary: Telstra has some fantastic phones on its plans, here's a list of the best ones and what makes them so good.

By at WhistleOut |

Telstra's a great option if you want reliable, wide-spread coverage with a range of devices. The problem now is, which one do you choose? We've compiled a list of our favourite handsets available right now on Telstra plans.

Samsung Galaxy S6

Samsung Galaxy S6

Pros: Cons:
  • Beautiful screen
  • New, premium design
  • Fantastic camera
  • Not water resistant
  • Expensive
  • Glass design can be fragile

Samsung released two Galaxy S6 phones in 2015: the 'regular' or 'flat' model, and the Edge. Our pick of the two is definitely the flat option. While the Edge is beautiful to behold, it comes with a significantly raised price-tag for no real added benefit.

Other than their screens and dollar cost, both phones are identical in almost every way. They are very powerful, boast one of the best cameras on the market, and represent a new direction for smartphone design from Samsung.

The displays in both phones measure 5.1 inches diagonally, which is the same size as last year's Galaxy S5, but now with a significantly improved resolution of 2560 x 1440 (that's alot of pixels). There's also a fingerprint sensor under the Home button, making it easier log in to a much more secure device.

Instead of its traditional plastic designs, Samsung has gone with an entirely glass and metal build. This does mean that you'll have to take more care of it, as the back panel is now prone to shattering just like the front. However, thanks to new hardened glass technologies (specifically Gorilla Glass 4) it's harder than ever to damage these glass areas.

Galaxy S6
$55 Telstra Plan
Galaxy S6
$70 Telstra Plan
Galaxy S6
$95 Telstra Plan
Galaxy S6
$130 Telstra Plan

LG G4

LG G4

The LG G4 is proof that last year's G3 was not a one-time fluke. This is a fantastic phone, the equal of the Samsung Galaxy S6 in almost every way, and even superior in some.

While it doesn't boast the shiny metal rim of its top competitor, the G4 has the option to come with a genuine leather rear panel. This is not a case; it's part of the phone itself. Even better, if you opt for the leather model you also get a plastic case in the box, in case you ever feel the need to swap them out.

The 5.5 inch display is much bigger than that of the S6, yet the phone itself is about the same size. LG's ability to cram a huge screen in to a standard-sized phone continues to impress. This display boasts the new 2560 x 1440 flagship standard resolution, as well as improved colours and brightness over last year.

The camera, too, is outstanding. This is easily one of the best on the market with great night shots and the choice between a totally automated experience for the general user, or a fully manual mode for the more-advance among us.

LG G4
$55 Telstra Plan
LG G4
$70 Telstra Plan
LG G4
$95 Telstra Plan
LG G4
$130 Telstra Plan

iPhone 6

Apple iPhone 6

Pros: Cons:
  • Bright, colourful display
  • Touch ID button
  • Fantastic camera
  • Not water resistant
  • Expensive

The iPhone 6 is quite a bit bigger than its predecessors. The 4.7 inch display represents a roughly 17% increase in size over the 5s with more pixels to make up for the size increase. The new 750 x 1334 resolution gives you 326 pixels per inch, which is precisely what the Retina display on the iPhone 5 and 5s gave you. Bigger screen, same old visual experience.

Everything else has been improved, too. The most notable addition is Apple Pay. While it's not available Down Under just yet, Apple Pay is an NFC-powered payment system, whereby you can tap your phone just like you would a pay-wave credit card. Not only is this easy to use, but it's actually more-secure than a card because you have to have your finger on the Touch ID button in order to use it. Anyone without fingerprint access to your phone will be unable to make any payments.

The big draw card is the camera. This is easily one of the best shooters on the market, sitting alongside the iPhone 6 Plus, Samsung Galaxy S6, and LG G4. If you're a photo enthusiast, this phone is going to make you very, very happy.

iPhone 6
$55 Telstra Plan
iPhone 6
$70 Telstra Plan
iPhone 6
$95 Telstra Plan
iPhone 6
$130 Telstra Plan

Samsung Galaxy Note 4

Samsung Galaxy Note 4

Pros: Cons:
  • Big, beautiful screen
  • Partially metal design
  • Great camera
  • Expensive
  • Touchwiz UI is a little bulky
  • Large size can be unwieldy

Samsung's 'big' contender from Telstra right now is the Galaxy Note 4. It's the current front-running flagship for Samsung's 'phablet' line, complete with a 5.7 inch display and the same crazy resolution of the Galaxy S6. All up, that's around 75% more pixels than the iPhone 6 Plus - the other 'big' competition on Telstra right now.

Despite having a larger screen, the Note 4 is the same height as the 6 Plus and is similar in its other dimensions. Samsung has done well to cut back on size wherever it could.

The Note 4 is rimmed with actual metal; this was a first for a Samsung flagship, and one that gives it the premium feel and build quality that you'd expect from a top-end device. A word of warning, however: this is not a water-resistant handset. Don't go dropping it in the sink like you would the Samsung Galaxy S5.

It also sports a fantastic camera. It has since been surpasses by the likes of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, the Galaxy S6 and the LG G4, but it's still going to wow anyone coming off a 2 year plan.

Galaxy Note 4
$55 Telstra Plan
Galaxy Note 4
$70 Telstra Plan
Galaxy Note 4
$95 Telstra Plan
Galaxy Note 4
$130 Telstra Plan

iPhone 6 Plus

Apple iPhone 6 Plus

Pros: Cons:
  • First iPhone with 1080p HD
  • Big, 5.5 inch screen
  • GREAT camera, even in low light
  • Long-lasting battery
  • Not water resistant
  • Expensive
  • Large size can be unwieldy

The iPhone 6 Plus has a 5.5 inch display, but the phone itself is about 1.2cm taller and 0.3cm wider than the LG G3 with the same-sized screen. Still, if you want the biggest iPhone experience available it's your go-to gadget.

Unlike the standard iPhone 6, the iPhone 6 Plus has an increased pixel density, from 326 pixels per inch (ppi) to 400ppi. Apple might have told you that Retina display is the best resolution for the human eye, but non-iPhone devices have demonstrated time and again that cramming in more pixels can be a very good thing. Get ready for the sharpest iPhone yet.

Also, the camera is improved over the iPhone 6 with optical image stablisation (OIS). OIS means that the lens within the camera actually moves around to counter any shakiness on your part, giving you a clearer, better-defined image, especially at night.

iPhone 6 Plus
$55 Telstra Plan
iPhone 6 Plus
$70 Telstra Plan
iPhone 6 Plus
$95 Telstra Plan
iPhone 6 Plus
$130 Telstra Plan

HTC One M9

HTC One M9

Pros: Cons:
  • Beautiful design
  • Minimalist user interface
  • Very fast and smooth
  • Expensive
  • Lacklustre rear camera
  • Can get warm during use

HTC isn't too far off when it talks about the M9 being like a piece of jewellery. It, more than anything, stands out for its physical qualities. The M9 is beautiful, is made primarily from brushed aluminium, and in the hand feels like the most solid phone on the market.

As a phone it's fast, smooth and sports a relaxing minimalist user interface (UI). This, combined with the visual aesthetics, makes for a phone that makes you feel special every time you pick it up.

One downside is the rear camera. It's probably fine for the average user, but it's the best of the shooters on this list. Camera-lovers will want to look elsewhere, but if photos aren't a huge concern for you then there's little reason to pass up the market's most-stylish device.

HTC One M9
$55 Telstra Plan
HTC One M9
$70 Telstra Plan
HTC One M9
$95 Telstra Plan
HTC One M9
$130 Telstra Plan

Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

Pros: Cons:
  • Small & light-weight
  • Heavy water resistance
  • 20.7MP camera
  • Spartan UI aesthetic
  • Camera suffers in low light
  • 720p resolution

The 4.6 inch Xperia Z3 Compact is the 'mini' version of Sony's Xperia Z3. Unlike other shrunken 'mini' handsets, the Z3 Compact doesn't make huge sacrifices on hardware in order to accommodate its smaller size and reduced price. As such it's more expensive than a Galaxy S5 mini or HTC One mini 2, but that's fine when you consider that this is the only high end Android phone that caters to folks who want a smaller handset with premium features.

The only area where the Z3 Compact may fall short for you is in its screen resolution. At 720p, this isn't a screen that will turn heads nowadays. However, that still gives it around the same pixel density as an iPhone 6. None too shabby.

Like the bigger Z3, the Z3 Compact rocks a 20.7 megapixel camera, heavy water resistance and a powerful quad-core 2.5GHz CPU.

Xperia Z3 Compact
$55 Telstra Plan
Xperia Z3 Compact
$70 Telstra Plan
Xperia Z3 Compact
$95 Telstra Plan
Xperia Z3 Compact
$130 Telstra Plan

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