It’s 2018, and there are simply too many great smartphones to choose from.
Smartphones have been around for a full decade now, with the first iPhone kicking things off back in 2007. But over the past few years, smartphone makers have really upped their game. The gulf in quality between the most expensive smartphones you can buy, and the least expensive ones, is shrinking all the time.
So if you’re looking to buy a brand-new smartphone that was made in 2018, here are your 10 best options:
1. OnePlus 6
OnePlus unveiled the OnePlus 6 back in May, and it’s still one of the best smartphones you can buy. In general, there’s no better Android phone at its price tag: $US530.
The OnePlus 6 doesn’t have some of the features you’d find on more premium smartphones, like wireless charging, an OLED screen, or a killer camera, but it doesn’t need those things. The OnePlus 6 features a very good camera, but more importantly it offers plenty of power, with a fast Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor and a whopping 6 GB of RAM, which is ideal for multitasking. It also features a great fast-charging system. It also runs a clean, near-stock version of Android, called Oxygen OS.
OnePlus does have a new phone coming at the end of the year – the OnePlus 6T – but the OnePlus 6 is still an excellent phone worth your consideration.
2. Samsung Galaxy Note 9
The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is the latest smartphone from Samsung. It has a gorgeous 6.4-inch OLED display, a massive battery, a great camera, tons of storage (128 GB to start!), a fingerprint scanner and facial recognition, and the S Pen, which lets you take notes or control the Note 9’s camera remotely, among other things.
The Galaxy Note 9 also has some high-end features, like wireless charging, water resistance, and even a headphone jack – whoa! – and Samsung includes a fast-charger with the phone, which is a nice touch.
Of course, all of these premium features demand a premium cost: The Galaxy Note 9 starts at $US1,000. Still, you’re getting a whole lot of phone for that price.
3. Samsung Galaxy S9
Samsung’s flagship phone of 2018, the Galaxy S9, has it all.
The phone features a large OLED display, a great camera, a built-in heart rate monitor, a fingerprint scanner and facial recognition, fast charging and wireless charging, and yes, even a headphone jack.
The phone’s design is very similar to its predecessor, the Galaxy S8, but that’s not a bad thing. The Galaxy S9 is one of the best-looking smartphones you can buy, and it starts at just $US720.
4. LG G7 Thinq
The LG G7 ThinQ looks like an Android version of the iPhone X, but is several hundred dollars cheaper at just $US750.
The LG G7 features a 6.1-inch display, high-quality audio, and a great camera system that includes an ultra-wide lens that can capture more details in your shots. It also features the speedy Snapdragon 845 processor from Qualcomm, wireless charging, and water resistance.
5. Moto G6
The Moto G6 is the cheapest smartphone on this list. It starts at just $US250.
But I’m not including this phone just because it’s so cheap; you’re actually getting a really good deal for that price.
The Moto G6 features a nice big 5.7-inch display, great battery life, fast charging, and a surprisingly decent camera, especially in well-lit conditions. And despite running on a Snapdragon 450 chip, which isn’t as snappy as the chips powering the Galaxy S9 and LG G7, it still gets the job done.
6, 7, and 8. Apple iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR
Apple launched three new iPhones this year: the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XS. And they’re all excellent smartphones.
The iPhone XS and XS Max are the true successor’s to last year’s iPhone X, the “tenth-anniversary” iPhone model that debuted an edge-to-edge display and the so-called “notch” that houses the TrueDepth camera system needed for Face ID, which is main way you unlock the phone.
The iPhone XR has a similar design to the iPhone XS and XS Max, but is sized between those two phones – it has a 6.1-inch LCD display, compared to the 5.8-inch and 6.5-inch OLED displays in the iPhone XS and XS Max, respectively. The iPhone XR is also $US150 less than the iPhone XS to start.
9 and 10. Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL
After months of leaks, Google unveiled its newest smartphones, the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, at an event in October.
Based on our early time with the new Pixel phones, it looks like Google has once again produced the very best Android phone you can buy. It comes with the latest software built-in – Android 9.0 Pie – the Snapdragon 845 processor from Qualcomm, and of course, a top-of-the-line camera system. The Pixel 2 had the best cameras in any smartphone last year, but it looks like the Pixel 3 has one-upped its predecessor in almost every way.
WAIT FOR IT: The OnePlus 6T
OnePlus will announce its latest smartphone, the OnePlus 6T, at an event in New York City on October 29.
OnePlus makes some of the very best Android phones you can buy, at very accessible price points – the OnePlus 6 started at just $US530 – and we expect the OnePlus 6T to continue this tradition.
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