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Phones

Four upcoming iPhone 6S alternatives to get excited about

Not sure if you want the iPhone 6S or 6S Plus, but you're ready for a new phone? Fear not. There are plenty of other big-name handsets launching in the next few weeks.

Not everyone who considers an iPhone 6S or 6S Plus is a diehard fan.

In fact, we know plenty of on-again, off-again iPhone users who comfortably switch from Android to iOS and back again, and maybe some new Windows 10 fans who may even want to take the plunge on Microsoft's new mobile operating system.

This group of on-the-fencers cares more about hardware and software capability than brand name. If that's you, you're in luck -- there are no fewer than four smartphones preparing to make their splashy entrance and attempt to win you over.

These are rumored details so far, and even though most of these phones will launch in the next two weeks, they might not actually appear on shelves for a few days or weeks later. Also, we're not sure in which countries they'll be available, or for how much.

Apple's iPhone 6S isn't the only phone in town. James Martin/CNET

1. Google Nexus phones

When: September 29 launch event (San Francisco)

What: Two Google Nexus phones (one large, one smaller) that debut the latest Android software, version 6.0 Marshmallow . Rumored to be made by LG and Huawei, Nexus phones are typically fairly high-end, terrific monetary value and the first to upgrade with the most recent Google Android software enhancements as they come along.

2. New LG flagship

When: October 1 launch event (New York)

What: LG is sure to show off its Nexus device, but we're also expecting another phone, rumored to be called the LG V10, that could include a second display that acts like a ticker for alerts.

3. Microsoft Lumia 950, 950 XL

When: October 6 launch event (New York)

What: Two Microsoft Lumia handsets, which we think will be called the Lumia 950 and 950 XL, these will be the first phones in the world to debut Windows 10, which promises some nice pick-up-where-you-left-off continuity with Windows 10 on the laptop and Surface.

4. HTC A9

When: Launch date TBA

What: The HTC A9 is all rumor and speculation right now. Currently, leaks range from calling it a flagship phone to midrange handset. HTC is known for excellent design; this phone is said to include a fingerprint scanner.


Still debating?

If you need a little more time to decide if the iPhone 6S or 6S Plus are for you, go hands-on with us , and read my colleague Maggie Reardon's excellent cost breakdown of Apple's new iPhone Upgrade Program FAQ.