The Best Android Phones

Android phones can vary widely in both price and quality—from just a couple hundred dollars to well over a thousand, and from unbelievably frustrating to unbelievably impressive. I spand lots of hours testing the latest Android mobiles, and i think the Google Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL are the best Android phones for most people. They have class-leading software and cameras, but they cost much less than high-end phones. They also receive guaranteed software updates for a longer period than any non-Pixel phone

The OnePlus 8 is an inexpensive option if you want a big screen and decent software support. The Samsung Galaxy S20+ and OnePlus 8 Pro mobiles aren’t picks, but they might be good choices for some people.

Best Android smartphone

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Google Pixel 3a
Display 5.60-inch
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 670
Front Camera 8-megapixel
Rear Camera 12.2-megapixel
RAM 4GB
Storage 64GB
Battery Capacity 3000mAh
OS Android 9 Pie
Resolution 1080x2220 pixels
More details +
$369.00
Design
8
Display
8
Software
10
Performance
8
Battery Life
8
Camera
9
Value for Money
7
PROS:
  • Very good cameras
  • Good software features
  • Guaranteed updates for three years
  • Stereo speakers
CONS:
  • Expensive
  • Weak processor and low storage for the price

Best big Android smartphone

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Google Pixel 3a XL
Display 6.00-inch
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 670
Front Camera 8-megapixel
Rear Camera 12.2-megapixel
RAM 4GB
Storage 64GB
Battery Capacity 3700mAh
OS Android 9 Pie
Resolution 1080x2220 pixels
More details +
$385.00
Design
8
Display
8
Software
10
Performance
8
Battery Life
9
Camera
9
Value for Money
7
PROS:
  • Very good cameras
  • Good software features
  • Guaranteed updates for three years
  • Stereo speakers
CONS:
  • Expensive
  • Weak processor and low storage for the price

Google’s Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL are budget versions of 2018’s Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, respectively, but they retain almost all of what makes those phones good. They have Google’s clean, fast version of Android 10 with three years of guaranteed updates. They also offer camera performance that’s better than everything other than what you can get from the Pixel 4, which costs twice as much. However, the Pixel 3a and 3a XL aren’t quite as fast as the more expensive Pixel models, they don’t offer wireless charging, and their plastic bodies aren’t water resistant. They do, however, have headphone jacks.

A better, more expensive Pixel

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Google Pixel 4
Display 5.70-inch
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 855
Front Camera 8MP
Rear Camera 16MP + 12.2M
RAM 6GB
Storage 64GB
Battery Capacity 2800mAh
OS Android 10
Resolution 1080x2280 pixels
More details +
$450.00
PROS:
  • Excellent camera
  • The screen has a dynamic 90-Hz refresh rate
  • Real-time Live Caption and recording transcription
CONS:
  • The screen is a bit dim
  • No more unlimited photo storage at original quality

A better, more expensive big Pixel

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Google Pixel 4 XL
Display 6.30-inch
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 855
Front Camera 8MP
Rear Camera 16MP + 12.2MP
RAM 6GB
Storage 64GB
Battery Capacity 3700mAh
OSAndroid Android 10
Resolution 1440x3040 pixels
More details +
$798.00
PROS:
  • Excellent camera
  • The screen has a dynamic 90-Hz refresh rate
  • Real-time Live Caption and recording transcription
CONS:
  • The screen is a bit dim
  • No more unlimited photo storage at original quality

The Google Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL usually cost twice as much as the Pixel 3a and 3a XL, but they’re much better phones overall. They have better displays, and their camera performance is even more impressive. The build quality is also an improvement over that of the cheaper Pixel phones, with a matte-glass back, wireless charging, and water resistance (but no headphone jack). Like the 3a and 3a XL, these phones receive guaranteed monthly updates—in this case, until October 2022.

The biggest good Android phone

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OnePlus 8
Display 6.55-inch
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 865
Front Camera 16MP
Rear Camera 48MP + 16MP + 2MP
RAM 12GB
Storage 256GB
Battery Capacity 4300mAh
OSAndroid Android 10
Resolution 1080x2400 pixels
More details +
$779.00
Design
9
Display
9
Software
10
Performance
10
Battery Life
10
Camera
8
Value for Money
7
PROS:
  • Very good build quality
  • Vivid display
  • Excellent performance and software
  • Solid battery life
  • Decent camera performance
CONS:
  • No IP rating or wireless charging
  • Low-light video could be better
  • 12GB variant isn’t great value

If you need a bigger screen than on any of the Pixel models but don’t want to spend over $1,000 on a phone like the Samsung Galaxy S20+, buy the OnePlus 8. It has a spacious, 6.55-inch 1080p display that refreshes 90 times per second (90 Hz), which makes scrolling and navigating through apps look impressively smooth. This phone ships with the latest Android 10 OS without any troublesome add-ons, and OnePlus promises two years of Android updates and a third year of security updates. The OnePlus 8 has a triple-camera setup that’s better than the cameras of many phones we’ve tested, though the features and photo quality aren’t as good as what you can get on the current cameras from Google, Huawei, or Samsung. The OnePlus 8 also omits high-end features such as wireless charging and water resistance, both of which are present on the more expensive OnePlus 8 Pro, Galaxy S20, and Pixel 4.

Everything we recommend

How we picked and tested

I’ve tested dozens of The Best Android Phones over the past few moths, and most have poor software, sluggish performance, terrible design choices, or some combination of all three. Here are the criteria we use to decide which phones are worth buying:

  • Performance: A great Android phone should feel snappy whether you’re playing a game or just swiping through the interface. Most flagship Android phones use similar processors, so performance differences are largely due to software.
  • Software: A clunky version of Android can ruin the experience, and even the most powerful hardware won’t matter if the maker didn’t optimize the software well. Phones that have fewer manufacturer and carrier modifications run better and are easier to use. Your smartphone will also end up containing a lot of personal data, so security is important—a phone that ships with outdated software, doesn’t get security patches, or has a documented history of security flaws is not a good purchase, no matter the price.
  • Display: Most people spend several hours every day looking at their smartphone screen. It’s important that the screen remain sharp and easy to read, even outdoors.
  • Camera: The best camera is the one you have with you. Having a good smartphone camera means you can take fantastic photos at a moment’s notice, but the difference between a top-tier phone camera and an average one can be huge. To get our recommendation, a smartphone needs to take better photos than other devices in its price range.
  • Battery life: If a phone can’t last through a full day of heavy use, it’s not worth buying. Some phones offer multiday battery life, but that’s not a requirement for most people. If the phone lasts until bedtime, its battery life is good enough.
  • Build quality: Android smartphones can cost $1,000 or more. A poorly constructed phone or one made with subpar materials could break before you even finish paying it off through a carrier. Phones should use high-quality materials such as aluminum, ceramic, and Gorilla Glass, and the device shouldn’t bend or creak under stress.

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      Gk Rviews is a list of the best gear and gadgets for people who want to save the time and stress of figuring out what to buy. Whatever sort of thing you need—tableware or TV or air purifier—we make shopping for it easy by telling you the best one to get.

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