I don’t know about you, but I’m always excited to hear about the release of a new Android phone that I may be able to purchase and test. Sure, we’ve got the high end Google Pixels, which aren’t very affordable, but we’ve also gotten access to a broad array of high quality, inexpensive Android phones.
Just try to buy an iPhone with a large screen and a decent set of features for $300 or so – you simply can’t do that! So let’s see what type of Android flavor you can get for your hard earned money this year.
Let’s start with the expensive Google Pixel; believe it or not, the second version will hit the stores before the end of the year. Yes, you won’t be able to buy it too soon, but if you’ve got the money, it may be worth the wait. If Google plans to release a new version every 12 months, the new phone should be available in October.
So far, we know that Pixel 2 will run using the new Android O operating system; we will find out more about it at Google’s I/O conference in May.
Pixel 2 will be waterproof – a very welcome addition – and it will sport a better camera. The current Pixel and Pixel XL phones are already dustproof, so having a new Pixel that’s also submersible should increase its appeal. Also, some sources say that Google is also secretly working at a less expensive Pixel 2B model.
But let’s see why Pixel’s maker asks $700 (or so) for it in the first place. The screen has a standard 1080×1920 resolution, but the colors are very bright and vibrant.
Google Pixel runs Android 7.1 Nougat. You get an OS that feels as its manufacturer intended, and it shows! As an added bonus, its camera is one of the best out there. Probably the best smartphone camera in the world until now!
Battery life isn’t impressive, though. Google Assistant is clever, but not clever enough. Still, I don’t see this as a real problem; future software iterations will certainly fix most of the annoyances.
Can I get myself convinced that $700 is a fair price for this phone? Probably not; there are several smartphones which offer better value for the money. The one below, for example.
Many people simply LOVE the OnePlus 3T, and its $400 price tag doesn’t disappoint either. It’s got a great 5.5-inch screen and 6GB or RAM. Storage capacity starts at 64GB, an example that many phone manufacturers could learn from.
The 3T looks great, and the display stands out. And the big 3,400mAh battery offers more than enough juice to get you through a busy day.
Still, the camera isn’t stellar. I mean, it’s OK, but Google Pixel has a much better one. Other people may not like the absence of a microSD slot, but the 128GB version should have enough storage space for most needs.
HTC has always been a serious contender for the Best Android Phone crown. It is the first smartphone on this list to offer an improved 1440 x 2560 pixels resolution, and it shows! HTC 10 makes use of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 CPU, which is aided by 4GB or RAM.
The phone feels snappy, looks great and – most of all – sounds fantastic! It’s hands-down the best smartphone for music aficionados.
Just like with the OnePlus model, the camera isn’t the best out there, though. And the $600 price is a bit too big for my liking. I love HTC’s design, but for an extra $100 you are getting the Pixel, after all. Still, if your life is centered around music, this phone has got a special vibe.
I can still remember the days when LG, named “Lucky Goldstar” back then, was just a TV manufacturer. These days, LG makes lots of great products, including a series of Android-based smartphones which are feature-packed and quite affordable.
I’m telling you, LG is onto something that may change the smartphone world forever. LG G5 is a modular phone, with parts that can be swapped depending on your needs. Want a better camera or an audio board that offers professional features? Just pull out the module at the bottom of the phone and replace it with what you need. The only problem is… LG hasn’t provided any modules yet. I am sure that things will change in the very near future, though.
The G5 has a great looking 1440 x 2560 pixels display, the same Snapdragon 820 CPU and 4GB or RAM. You’d say it’s the standard recipe for success, if it weren’t for the small 32GB of storage and a smaller, 2,800mAh battery.
Still, at $400 you are getting a lot of phone for your money. It may be wise to wait a bit more, though; some insiders think that the G6 is right around the corner.
You knew that Galaxy S7 won’t miss from this list, right? Samsung has always created great phones at competitive prices.
It looks like with the S7, Samsung has hit all the right notes: a 1440 x 2560 pixels screen, Snapdragon 820, 4GB of RAM, 32 or 64 MB of storage and a 3,000mAh battery.
The camera is almost as good as the one on the Pixel. Still, the 32 MB version may put off some people. The good news is that you can upgrade storage to 256MB by making use of the existing microSD card slot. Samsung has priced the S7 at a fair $550.