By Dan Gookin

When buying an Android phone, first look at a cellular provider, and then determine which phones are available and suit your purpose. With Androids, you can choose from multiple options and tailor your choice to what suits you best.

Finding a cellular provider is all about coverage: Can you get a signal everywhere you need one? Despite the boasts, not every cellular provider offers full data coverage. The true test is to ask people who frequent your same locations which services they use and whether they’re happy with the coverage.

All Android phones offer similar features and a vast array of apps. Start looking for a phone by finding something that feels good in your hands. Some people like smaller, compact phones that fit easily in a pocket or purse. Others prefer the large-format (phablet) phones, which offer larger screens.

Check the phone’s display, not by reviewing the fancy technical jargon but by looking at it with your own eyes. View some photos on the phone to see how good they look.

If you need more storage, look for a phone that offers a removable MicroSD card. This feature is becoming rather rare, so if you want it, you may have to look for it.

Camera resolution isn’t vital, but if your Android phone is your only digital camera, getting a high-resolution rear camera is a plus.

Beyond these basic items, most Android phones are drearily similar. Ensure that your phone uses the Android operating system and can access and use the Google Play Store. Some low-price, bargain phones restrict your purchases to the manufacturer’s own app store. That’s not a good thing.