September 27, 2022


The world of Android phones is vast, and various manufacturers are trying to woo you with top-of-the-line features like 5G, fast charging, and a powerful multi-camera system.Samsung remains one of the biggest powerhouses in the mobile industry, offering cutting-edge technology — even innovative folding phones like Galaxy Z Fold 3. Google’s own pixel 6 The series uses a custom processor, stock Android 12, and has a solid camera system on the back.

But all of these options can also make the shopping experience overwhelming and confusing, which is why I’ve rounded up my favorite options.These Telephone All generally have great cameras, screens, battery life or all of the above. I also considered features like 5G and wireless charging.Read on to see my top picks for the best Android phones and see the best tips How to buy a new phone, also. The team at CNET regularly updates this list as we review new products.

Lisa Edithiko/CNET

like:
• The phone comes with the S Pen and has a slot for it
• Excellent low light photography
• Closer zoom than most competing phones
• unique design

do not like:
• expensive
• The camera is mostly the same as on the Galaxy S21 Ultra
• Not as good battery life as the S21 Ultra

The $1,200 Galaxy S22 Ultra is one of the most expensive Android phones out there, but for good reason. It has a huge 6.8-inch display, an S Pen stylus that can be stowed inside the phone (just like the Galaxy Note), and a quad-lens camera with unrivaled zoom range. Samsung has also improved the way all new Galaxy phones take pictures in low light, which is especially important for photography-oriented phones like the Ultra.

The only downside? The sky-high price and relatively short battery life of the S22 Ultra. Still, the Galaxy S22 Ultra is the best phone for anyone who wants the biggest screen and one of the best cameras in a smartphone. You just have to be willing to pay more for these benefits.

Read our Galaxy S22 Ultra review.

Lisa Edithiko/CNET

like:
• Bright screen
• Good balance of screen size and comfort
• A better camera with better color and contrast
• Attractive design

do not like:
• $1,000 phones are still expensive
• Not as good battery life as the iPhone 13 Pro
• No new built-in camera mode
• Fast charging requires a special $50 adapter

The $1,000 Galaxy S22 Plus strikes a balance of size, performance, and camera performance that’s right for most people. The 6.6-inch screen offers plenty of room for those who prefer a large phone but feel that the Ultra might be too bulky (and expensive). The upgrade to the 50-megapixel camera also makes a big difference compared to last year’s Galaxy S21 series, especially when it comes to color and contrast in photos.

My biggest complaint is that the battery life is just mediocre, although it did outlast the regular Galaxy S22 and Galaxy S22 Ultra in CNET’s battery test. It’s also nice to see new features that take advantage of the S22’s improved camera, especially since the S22 Plus is more expensive than several phones on this list. Still, the Galaxy S22 Plus has everything most people need in a new phone.

Read our Galaxy S22 Plus review.

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

like:
• Excellent camera
• Solid overall performance
• Clean Android 12 interface
• Attractive design

do not like:
• Good battery, but not great
• Fast charging is not that fast
• No face unlock

Google hasn’t moved into flagship territory for several years, spending its time making its own chips specifically for machine learning and artificial intelligence. The Pixel 6 Pro has unparalleled photography capabilities.

Google’s $899 high-end phone is still priced below the competition while packing so much value. It’s a big phone, with a 6.7-inch screen and a 3,120×1,440-pixel resolution that’s pretty sharp. It has an adaptive refresh rate that can hit 120Hz when you’re playing fast-paced games, but it also slows down to just 10Hz when the phone is basically idle. The 5,003 mAh battery should be good for a full day of mixed use.

Patrick Holland/CNET

like:
• Two-tone design
• Value for money
• The main camera is Google’s best

do not like:
• Under-display fingerprint reader can be frustrating
• Battery life is good, but it’s hard to get past a day
• The ultra-wide camera is good, but not on the same level as the main camera

If you want a big screen, flagship performance, some of the best cameras on the market, and a look that sets it apart from the competition, Google’s Pixel 6 is a smartphone. Google is extending its three-year operating system and security updates to five years, so it’s here to stay. In the US, the Pixel 6 is available through Google and all major carriers.

The Pixel 6 has a 6.4-inch, 1080p screen. It can be set to automatically switch from 60Hz to 90Hz based on what’s on the screen. However, the fingerprint sensor is slower. It comes with two rear cameras: a main camera with a wide-angle lens and a second camera with an ultra-wide-angle lens.

If you have $599 and are looking for a new phone, we recommend the Pixel 6.

Lisa Edithiko/CNET

like:
• Improved camera for better low-light photography
• Elegant design
• For those who like small phones

do not like:
• Battery life could be better

Finding a smaller Android phone is not easy these days. Most phones come with at least a 6.4-inch screen or larger, leaving those who prefer small phones with few options. The $800 Galaxy S22 ticks that box. It has everything we love about the Galaxy S22 Plus — an eye-catching design, a great camera system, a 50-megapixel primary lens, and a sharp screen — but in a more portable size.

Still, the Galaxy S22 falls short in the same area as its pricier sibling: battery life. With the S22’s refresh rate set to adaptive, I was able to get through the day, bumping it up to 120Hz for smoother scrolling, but just barely. That said, the S22’s battery life may be more than enough for some people, especially those who spend most of their time at home or in the office with a charger nearby. The Galaxy S22 is a great option for any Android user, especially those looking for a smaller phone.

Read our Galaxy S22 review.

like:
• nice screen
• Fast performance
• IP67 waterproof
• acceptable price

do not like:
• No wireless charging
• US 5G support unclear

While the next-gen Pixel 6 is available now, the Pixel 5A 5G is still a great option if you want cheap 5G. With good battery life and a great rear camera, this Pixel phone, at $449, is one of the best and cheapest ways to get 5G.

Read our Google Pixel 5A review.

Andrew Lankerson/CNET

like:
• Elegant design
• Powerful performance
• All day battery life
• Vibrant screen

do not like:
• Disappointing camera
• Water resistance rating limited to T-Mobile proprietary models
• Lack of 80W fast charging in the US

The OnePlus 10 Pro earned a decent score in our review, thanks to its sleek design, strong performance, and price tag that undercut its main rivals. It needs some refinement – most notably the camera, which is good, but not great – but this flagship offers a great overall experience. If you want a high-end 5G phone that’s a little different from your friends’ iPhones and Galaxy phones, this is a great option.

Patrick Holland/CNET

At $2,500, the Sony Xperia Pro isn’t for everyone. But if you’re a photographer or videographer looking for pro-level camera phone capabilities, you can’t go wrong. The Xperia Pro is essentially a four-in-one product: a phone, a camera monitor, a high-speed photo file transfer device, and a 5G machine suitable for broadcasting and live streaming.

Read our Sony Xperia Pro review.

Sarah Tu/CNET

like:
• 120Hz overlay screen
• Waterproof
• Great tablet experience
• The S Pen is great to use
• Software improvements for multitasking and Flex mode

do not like:
• About a day of battery life
• Phone is strange and heavy when turned off
• $1,800 is still expensive

Foldable phones didn’t really go mainstream, but only existed within the reach of those willing to spend top dollar on the latest mobile innovation. Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 3 is the best folding phone yet, offering top-notch performance, a great camera setup, and various tweaks to folding technology that make this Android smartphone more popular than its predecessor.

Read our Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 review.

More phone and Android recommendations


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