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Find the Right Operating System
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For a lot of people, picking the right smartphone is a matter of picking the right operating system. The smartphone's operating system is the platform it uses to run various programs. While they can all pretty much connect you to the Web, e-mail, phone calls and texts, each has its own strengths and weaknesses.

Four of the most common operating systems for smartphones today are Apple's iOS, which runs iPhones, Google's Android system, Microsoft's Windows Mobile and Research in Motion's Blackberry OS. Unless you're a technophile, you may not notice differences in how each of these systems operate. What you will notice, however, is the availability of different programs and apps across various platforms.

If you plan on using a lot of apps on your smartphone, you might want to avoid getting a Blackberry. The Blackberry OS is great for using e-mail and Web browsing, but it doesn't have as many apps as other browsers. If you want a lot of apps, an iPhone is your best bet. The Apple app store is the largest in the world. The downside of Apple OS is that it's only available on Apple's iPhones. Android-powered phones are quickly making up ground against Apple where apps are concerned, and the Android operating system is available on a range of phones, making it easier to find one that fits your life exactly. A Windows mobile phone is good to get if you plan on doing a lot of work on your phone. Since it runs a mobile version of Windows, which you may already have running on your computer, it can easily let you see and work on spreadsheets and documents right on your phone.

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