Editors' note: This list is current as of April 26, 2011. Some handsets that CNET has reviewed in the past may have lower ratings, but we've removed them from this list if they've been discontinued.
The specific absorption rate (SAR) listed here represents the highest SAR measured with the phone next to the ear as tested by the FCC. For a phone to pass FCC certification in the United States, it must have an SAR of 1.6 watts per kilogram (w/kg) or lower. Handsets are listed from lowest to highest SAR, with the last phone on the list having the highest SAR.
By publishing these lists we are in no way implying that cell phones are dangerous. Also, we are not implying that a cell phone with a lower SAR is inherently safer. Rather, we are giving you the tools to make a choice based on your own concerns. For more information and for links to the handset reviews, check out CNET's cell phone radiation charts or this recent On Call column.
The bottom line: The HTC Surround features the high-quality design that we've come to expect from HTC, but the only thing its built-in speakers really add to the phone is weight. Unless you're set on the speakers, the Samsung Focus is a sleeker Windows Phone 7 device for AT&T with slightly better performance and options.
The bottom line: The Motorola Devour is built to last, and it delivers on features and performance. We'd make a few usability changes, and we were hoping for more than Android 1.6, but Motorola makes another good Android move.
The bottom line: Despite its uninspired look and feel, the Motorola Flipside has a well-rounded feature set that balances a socializing agenda with corporate e-mail. That is, if you can look past the troublesome call quality.