yARN: How high-end Android is set to win the market this Christmas

Android is stepping up its game across the board

Apple may have the best selling iPhone of all time on its hands in the shape of the 4S, but this Christmas, Android manufacturers are stepping up to launch an army of hugely impressive handsets in an attempt to bring Apple’s reign to an end.

HTC, the first company to join Google in the Android adventure, is pulling out all the stops. With the mantra of bigger is better, the Taiwanese company has a bag full of smartphones for Australia. Leading the charge is the 1.5GHz single-core Sensation XL, a monster of a phone with a 4.7-inch screen. Its partner in crime is the Sensation XE, a 4.3-inch handset with a dual-core 1.5GHz processor.

Both of these Vodafone exclusive handsets benefit from the HTC partnership with Dr Dre’s Beats Audio, and come with a pair of Beats headphones in the box. Similarly, the Optus-exclusive HTC Rhyme comes bundled with a pair of tangle-free headphones and a dedicated docking station in the box. The 3.7-inch Rhyme features a single-core 1GHz processor and the latest version of HTC Sense running on the Gingerbread version of Android.

Motorola has decided to go back to its glory days this Christmas, resurrecting the iconic RAZR brand in a smartphone body. Gone are the crappy operating system and flip phone design, replaced by a 4.5-inch touchscreen and Gingerbread Android OS. It’s also treated with Kevlar, which will protect the 1.2GHz dual-core processor from splashes, alongside the Gorilla Glass front.

Complementing the new RAZR is the upgraded Motorola Defy+ on Telstra, which manages to squeeze a series of improved specifications into the Defy’s IP67 rated dustproof, waterproof and shockproof body. A 1GHz processor and 3.7-inch touchscreen are more than enough for most Android users requiring a ruggedised handset.

Sony Ericsson has decided to make the most of its final days as a joint venture by unleashing the Xperia Arc S onto the NextG network. With a 1.4GHz processor, 4.2-inch screen and support for HD Voice technology, it’s a perfect fit for Telstra’s network.

For Vodafone, Sony Ericsson is pushing the Xperia Ray, a 3.3-inch Gingerbread handset with an impressive 8.1MP camera, 1GHz processor and lightweight design.

On top of these top of the line handsets, there are also a number of cheaper phones from a range of manufacturers, while companies like Samsung are also still pushing the impressive Galaxy S II.

How Apple handles the onslaught from this army of impressive devices is yet to be seen, but make no mistake that Android is stepping up its game across the board.