This year we went through many technology changes. The smartphone industry has been thriving in the past decade. We’ve seen numerous ups and downs and we’ve all witnessed pretty interesting phone models especially this year.
Here are the best flagship smartphones which were launched or we have witnessed them in the year 2018.
We’re not scoring or ranking them but mainly our choice is based on how the phone made an impression.
Huawei P20 Pro
The Huawei P20 Pro is an obvious favorite because of the camera setup. The top Chinese OEM has started another trend after the highly successful dual cameras that other companies have already followed. At the moment and still undefeated since March, the Huawei P20 Pro is still the No. 1 phone on DxOMark Mobile ranking with an average score of 109. All these are made possible by the Leica triple lens system which has been a total game-changer.
Samsung Galaxy S9+
The Samsung Galaxy S9+ was introduced in the first quarter of the year. It is definitely an improved version of the Galaxy S8–newer software, enhanced camera, and better overall performance. We like the fast wireless charging and the fact it still has an audio headphone jack. There’s also the expandable storage and a high price tag. Some people aren’t happy with the battery life but good thing there is now a more efficient battery saving mode.
Google Pixel 3 XL
The Google Pixel 3 XL is the best big-screened camera phone you can buy today, one that’s able to capture stunning photos that your friends won’t believe came from a smartphone. You’ll have to be okay with its prominent notch cut out at the top of the 6.3-inch display and the higher price, familiar trade-offs for a little extra screen space in 2018. Its battery life is bigger, too, and the main reason to choose this phone over the otherwise similar 5.5-inch Google Pixel 3.
The OnePlus 6T is undeniably the most advanced and accomplished phone from the company till now. The OnePlus 6 is still good, but the 6T gives it a boost in the battery department and a fancy way to unlock at a perfect price.
Apple iPhone Xs
Yes, the iPhone XS is the best phone Apple’s ever created, but that’s not really a surprise – it’s the new one. The bigger question is: what’s actually changed, given the design is so similar to last year? Well, the speakers are more powerful and ‘wider’ in sound, the camera has been enhanced with Smart HDR, the battery management is better and the chipset is far more powerful inside. These are all just tweaks though, and it’s smart from Apple to remove the iPhone X from the sale, as that would be a far more attractive option this year.
Xiaomi Mi Mix 3
The Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 earned a nice spot on DxoMark mobile ranking with a score of 103, ranking third and tied with the HTC U12+ and the Samsung Galaxy Note 9. The device surprised the market by hiding the dual selfie cameras and being ready with 10GB RAM. We thought it would have 5G support but it isn’t ready yet. The unit came after the Black Shark was revealed so we were in awe that Xiaomi had a lot of great phones to offer.
While we thoroughly applaud HTC for trying to be innovative with this handset, in a smartphone world that sorely needs differentiation, it doesn’t mean that we have to like what’s on a show. In the same way that we don’t need our phones to be able to also churn butter, the non-mechanical volume buttons are a pointless change. That said, this is a powerful phone with amazing audio and a half-decent camera… it’s just not the best to use.
Samsung Galaxy Note 9
We tagged the Galaxy Note 9 as Samsung’s second chance. The phone boasted record-setting display on DisplayMate. It outperforms the iPhone XS Max in a battery test. It’s still the No. 1 phone according to Consumer Reports. It may have low repairability but the phone is definitely premium, water-resistant, and powerful.
LG V35 ThinQ
The premium smartphone launched as an Amazon Prime Exclusive edition. It made our choice for an LG phone more difficult. Compared to the LG G7, it offers a better and smart camera–the AI CAM. It boasts of 19 shooting modes, Live Photo, Stickers for fun overlay, and Portrait mode with bokeh effects.
If you’re a gamer and you want value for money, the Pocophone F1 from Xiaomi can be a great choice. The phone is very affordable at around $350. We’re still scratching our heads though as to how Xiaomi can still offer it at that price when there’s already Snapdragon 845 processor and other powerful components. We were wondering how the phone was made affordable with all the premium specs.