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Smartphones with stock Android (photos)

Android smartphones that are free of fancy skins are scarcer than you may think.

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jessicadolcourt.jpg

Jessica Dolcourt

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1 of 8 Josh Miller/CNET

Samsung Nexus S (Sprint, T-Mobile, AT&T)

Almost from the moment Google released its Android operating system, carriers and manufacturers began cooking up ways to add their own identifying touches to the free, open operating system. Smartphones that feature the "pure" Android experience are relatively few and far between compared with the volume of phones decked out with custom interfaces, but we rustled up some for you here.

The Samsung Nexus S (originally for Sprint, but now also for T-Mobile and AT&T through Best Buy) is Google's flagship Android Gingerbread phone, so there's no surprise here that the zippy smartphone bears a straightforward Android interface.

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2 of 8 Josh Miller/CNET

Motorola Triumph (Virgin Mobile)

Morotola, which has gradually dialed down its once-aggressive MotoBlur interface over time, shocked us by leaving it off of the Triumph altogether. With its 4-inch screen, 5-megpixel camera, dual cameras, HD video capture, and HDMI-out support, the Triumph earns the crown as the carrier's most advanced phone.

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3 of 8 Josh Miller/CNET

Huawei M835 (MetroPCS)

Its small, 2.8-inch screen does it no favors, which is one practical reason why the Huawei M835 thankfully comes with a wisely uncluttered Froyo interface.

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4 of 8 Josh Miller/CNET

Sony Ericsson Xperia Play (Verizon Wireless)

Perhaps to drive home the message that the gamer's Sony Ericsson Xperia Play is also an Android smartphone, really and truly, its version of Android 2.3 Gingerbread is pure "vanilla."
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5 of 8 Josh Miller/CNET

Blu Tango (unlocked)

We'd probably never endorse buying it, but we'd just like to point out that the unlocked Blu Tango is one Android phone we'd expect to see without skins. Since Google offers the OS free to device makers, it's a ready-made option for those branching out into the smartphone business.

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6 of 8 Josh Miller/CNET

T-Mobile G2X

Since LG has its own custom interface, it's a little surprising that the Editors' Choice Award-winning T-Mobile G2X modestly runs Android without any additional layers. Originally released globally as the LG Optimus 2X, it's one of the fastest phones on the market, with both a dual-core processor and support for T-Mobile's HSPA+ 4G network.

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7 of 8 Josh Miller/CNET

Samsung Galaxy Prevail (Boost Mobile)

Boost Mobile's Samsung Galaxy Prevail isn't just a looker, with its metallic accents and soft-touch cover. For the price point, it also delivers on performance and user experience.

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8 of 8 Josh Miller/CNET

Samsung Gem (U.S. Cellular)

The Samsung Gem's debut with a simple Android 2.2 Froyo interface was one of our favorite things about this all-around basic-but-solid smartphone.

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