Best unlocked smartphones don't tie you down

LG Nexus 4 | CNet Rating 3.5 out

LG Nexus 4 | CNet Rating 3.5 out of 5 stars (very good)

The Good: A pure and polished experience with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean; a snappy quad-core processor; lots of photo-editing and camera features
The Bad: Low call volume; it lacks 4G LTE.
The Cost: $332.50 to $549.99
Bottom Line: Anyone shopping for an unlocked phone should consider a comparable LTE handset first.

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Whether you're a globe-trotter or just don't like to be tied down, unlocked smartphones offer a sense of freedom. Because they aren't limited to working on a specific carrier, you can buy a SIM card, stick it in your device and be on your way. Here are some of CNET's favorite handsets that you can purchase and use wherever you go. ©2014 CBS Interactive Inc., a CBS Company. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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