When you can’t, or don’t want to afford an iPhone, what phone do you get?

I’ve had a couple of people come to me recently asking what the next phone is that they should get. I’m not usually one for making recommendations outside my family, simply because I feel that if I make a bad recommendation or recommend something that isn’t quite appropriate then they might hate me. At least with my family I can tweak and educate them through the teething process of owning new technology. Plus they’re not allowed to hate me – we’re family after all!

These people have been coming to me not really knowing what they want, but knowing that they want something good. A good phone means different things to different people, but it’s accepted these days that if you want a phone, you want a smart phone that’s capable of doing all that new stuff. So, I think about it for a couple of minutes… Windows Phone usually is the first phone that comes to mind – cheap, fast, easy and use and gives good battery life for a smartphone. However, when it lacks essential apps like Instagram and Temple Run I think that after a while you’d only be disappointed.

If your choosing Windows Phone 8, you’re basically choosing to compromise. – Dieter Bohn, The Verge

Then I’m left thinking about what other options there are, and it’s pretty much only Android. Cheap, fast and highly supported.

Primarily in terms of value for money, I see the Nexus 4 as unchallenged. The latest Android version and features on a speedy high-res device with good industrial design…

What else even comes close?