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I've never had a smartphone before, but since I started Android development I thought it would be beneficial to have a physical device -- the emulator has some limitations.

I do plan to make this phone my daily driver, but I am not really a heavy phone user.

What I am looking for:

  1. Is developer friendly
  2. A nice camera
  3. A mid-sized display - I don't want anything so big that it's tough to carry
  4. Front-facing stereo speakers would be nice but it's not a requirement - I know many HTC phones have these but I have heard that the more recent models tend to get hot
  5. Screen does not get very hot - a phone that runs warm bothers me
  6. Relatively low SAR rating - It can't hurt to have a lower rating phone
  7. Can easily turn off the data plan and use wifi
  8. Fits in my $300-$400 budget

I don't have a ton of knowledge about phone models and I would really appreciate some recommendations.

3

For development it is a good idea to get a high-end phone. The nexus 5x is a high-end phone for a great price. It has a front facing speaker, 5.2 inch display with a 1920x1080 resolution. The CPU is a Snapdragon 808 and has 2GB of RAM. The phone is running android 6.0 and will continue to get updates for the next 2 years. A good reason to get a nexus for development is because of a "skinless (stock android UI)" android meaning less power is used to just have the phone turned on. Originally the nexus line was created for developers. The phone is also in your price range at 349 USD on Amazon.

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well, assuming the fact that you want a good phone for development you might be interested in the moto g3 which has a very good battery, almost no bloat-ware and runs near stock android. The moto g3 also has front facing speakers and a 5-inch screen which looks stunning even-though it has a 720p display (294ppi). The phone currently is running android 6.0 and might recieve update for another android version.

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