If you're looking to upgrade your smartphone in 2018, look no further than this guide. Long gone are the days when phones were just used to call or send a text. Today, our smartphones are constantly by our sides. We use them to check our email, post on social media, get the news, get directions, deposit checks, and record memories in photo and video formats. We want something stylish but super functional with lots of fun features. It can be a little anxiety-inducing to drop a lot of money on a new phone, so we've reviewed the options for you. We've compared smartphones for screen size, camera function, design, storage, price, and more. The best smartphones unfortunately don't come cheap. You may want to consider a refurbished phone from an authorized dealer to save some money. There are also some decent cheaper smartphones out there but without all the bells and whistles.
One of the major considerations you have to make is whether you prefer an iOS or Android operating system. In terms of price, Apple has always been expensive. This factor alone can make people choose an Android over an iPhone. Android users are able to choose among 2.8 million apps, while 2.2 million apps are available for iOS. If there is an app that you just have to have and is only available on one of these operating systems, that could make a difference to you. iOS has typically been very on top of fixing bugs and sending out software updates to their users. With FaceTime and iMessage, it's easy to connect to other iOS users, and if you're connected over WiFi, you can use these features without going into your cellular data. In the end, however, it's up to your personal preference. Some people are diehard Apple fans while others prefer Android. If you are thinking of branching out and choosing a different operating system, it may feel a little uncomfortable at first but either way, you will likely get the hang of it pretty quickly. Now onto the phones themselves!
Google Pixel 2
The Google Pixel 2 measures 5.7 inches tall, 2.7 inches wide, and 0.3 inches in depth, with a 5-inch screen. It weighs 5 ounces, so it is very lightweight. The screen is FHD (Full High Definition) with 1920 x 1080 resolution. There is free, unlimited storage available so you don't have to worry about deleting photos or videos to make room for more. The phone has stereo front-firing speakers, though no headphone jack so you would have to use a headphone adapter (included) or connect it to wireless headphones. You get up to 7 hours of battery life with only 15 minutes of charging time. It comes with 4GB RAM and you can choose betwen 64 or 128 GB internal storage.
Samsung Galaxy Note8
The Samsung Galaxy Note8 measures 6.4 inches tall by 2.94 inches wide, and 0.34 inches deep. It weighs 6.88 ounces. It's important to note that some people may feel like this phone is too big in their hands, but the screen is so clear and powerful that you may not mind. This phone is dust and water resistant, so no need to panic if you accidentally spill a glass of water on this phone. For security, this phone has the typical lock type (PIN, pattern, password) as well as iris scanner, fingerprint scanner, and face recognition. The fingerprint scanner is on the rear of the phone, which some testers found annoying as they often ended up touching the camera accidentally instead of the scanner. Battery life is very good overall, though of course varies with use, with 3300 mAh batter capacity and up to 22 hours battery life for talk time or 14 hours for internet use via Wi-Fi. Wireless charging is available.
The OnePlus 5T measures 6.1 inches high by 3 inches wide by 0.28 inches deep. It weighs 5.7 ounces. The display size measures 6 inches with a 1080 x 2160-pixel resolution. Both the rear and front cameras are 16 megapixels, and it can record 4K video. The OnePlus 5T is available with 6 or 8 GB RAM, and 64 or 128 GB storage. There is no micro SD slot. Battery life lasted roughly 11 hours through normal use, with close to 100% charge in one hour. Keep in mind, of course, that the battery life can vary depending on how you're using the phone and on which network you're connected to. You can feel secure with Face Unlock.This phone is splash resistant, though not water resistant as the other phones we reviewed. You can purchase on Amazon for $617.
The LG V30 is another great smartphone option. It measures 5.97 inches tall, 2.97 inches wide, and 0.29 inches in depth. It weighs 5.57 ounces. The screen is 6 inches with 2880 x 1440-pixel resolution. Unfortunately, the screen display does not look as good as the other phone models that we compared in terms of color and viewing angles. It has a 16-megapixel (or 13 megapixels for the plus version) rear camera, with a 5-megapixel front camera, and it can record 4K video. The camera function itself, however, wasn't as good as what iPhone and some other Androids we reviewed have to offer. The V30 is water and dust resistant.
There are a lot of great smartphones out there today, and it was very difficult to choose just five to review! It used to be that Apple was the go-to pick for a smartphone that was beyond compare, but now there are many Android phones available that are giving Apple some tough competition. We compared the Google Pixel 2, LG V30, OnePlus 5T, Samsung Galaxy Note8, and iPhone X to help make your decision a little easier. We reviewed these phones in terms of style and design, storage capacity, camera, overall function, battery life, price, and more, and given you all of the details. The Samsung Galaxy Note8 and the Google Pixel 2 were our top picks overall. We loved the Apple iPhone X but it's price tag of over $1,000 pushed it down on the rankings for us. That being said, you very well may spend more time on your smartphone than your personal computer these days, in which case consider splurging for the iPhone and choosing a more budget-friendly personal computer.