If you want to be a part of the iOS ecosystem, the iPhone (check here to utilize your iPhone 14 Satellite Connectivity) is your only option when it comes to smartphones. But with Andriod, that’s not the case. The variety in the Android phone industry is one of its best features. Various gadgets and manufacturers, including the best Android phones in 2023, are available for selection. That being said, if you’re looking to update or try Android for the first time, choosing which device is suitable for you may be challenging.
The newest Android handsets include foldables like the Pixel Fold, flip phones like the most recent Motorola Razr+, and flagship slabs like those in Samsung’s Galaxy series.
What a New Android Phone Should Include
The primary criteria for choosing a top Android phone are simple:
- Robust design
- Excellent computing and AI performance
- A good display
- Crisp cameras
- Extended battery life, and
- A sizable commitment
Nobody likes a device that seems slow, whether they are using it for gaming, texting, reading, or browsing social media.
Though many of the best mid-range and high-end phones can reach 1,000 nits or more, OLED panels that generate rich, vivid colors with at least 600 nits of brightness are often favored. Additionally, as of late, most of the preferred gadgets may now handle panels with quick refresh rates of 90Hz or 120Hz, enhancing the fluidity and smoothness even further.
While we acknowledge that there is some subjectivity involved in selecting the best-looking phones, other design elements, such as water and dust resistance or screen durability, can significantly impact long-term viability. It’s also crucial to consider features that may affect how your phone communicates with other devices, including UWB connection, power sharing (reverse wireless charging), and support for wireless charging.
You search for clear, vibrant images in bright and dim lighting. You also desire seamless picture stabilization, rich audio, and excellent dynamic range in the video clips. Additional cameras for telephoto and ultra-wide angles are advantageous. The best cameras should also have extra photo modes like timelapse, slow motion, and more, as well as dedicated night modes and support for several video recording resolutions.
Battery and Software
Over the past several years, wireless charging has become practically universal, and most of the best options come with this added benefit. Certain Android phones can also fast-charge phones. Lastly, it is preferable to see firms commit to at least three years of software support, upgrades, and frequent security updates, mainly because users hold onto their phones longer than ever.
The Top Android Phones Available Now
Google Pixel 8 Pro
Overall, the best Android phone
- Processor: Google Tensor G3
- Display: 6.7-inch Super Actua with 120Hz refresh rate
- Cameras: 10.5 MP front camera, 12 MP ultrawide, 48 MP telephoto
- Rear array: 50 MP wide, 12 MP ultrawide
- Battery: 5,050 mAh
Google has added a new Tensor G3 chip, brighter displays, more robust cameras, and longer battery life to its Pixel smartphone portfolio, which has helped it rise to the top of our list.
The upgraded sensors of the Tensor G3 CPU and a slew of additional AI-powered features give the Google Pixel 8 and 8 Pro even more daily usage and photography capabilities. With the help of the new Magic Editor on Pixel phones, you can quickly eliminate unwanted elements from your photos, and the Audio Magic Eraser reduces annoying background noise in recordings. Additionally, Best Take guarantees that everyone looks their best in group shots, even if they weren’t grinning in the original picture.
Additionally, Google’s Call Screen has become more intelligent. Assistant capabilities like reading aloud from accurate articles or summarizing them make it simple to remain updated on the news in any way you choose. Google’s most recent flagship phones may be the most feature-rich Android phones with a more sophisticated design, brighter screens, longer battery life, and enhanced performance.
Best mid-range Android phone
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor
- 6.7-inch QHD+ display with up to 120Hz refresh rate
- An array of cameras on the back (50 MP primary, 48 MP ultrawide, 32 MP telephoto), 16 MP front camera
- 5,000 mAh battery
The OnePlus 11 is a beautiful example of how to combine more expensive and less expensive phones.
The OnePlus 11 is an excellent alternative to more expensive phones for people who want a giant screen, good cameras, and exceptional performance at a lower cost than a typical flagship phone. In many aspects, the OnePlus 11 is similar to a less expensive Galaxy S23+, with a comparable 6.7-inch 120Hz display, a large 5,000 mAh battery, and a quick Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor. Meanwhile, it charges faster than any Google or Samsung phone because of OnePlus’ lightning-fast 100-watt wired charging. Furthermore, the company’s continued collaboration with Hasselblad in the camera division has led to substantial enhancements in image quality.
The primary drawbacks of the OP11 are that its 2x optical zoom lens feels a little on the short side, and its IP64 designation for dust and water protection is not as good as those of rival devices. However, the OP11 is a well-equipped device far less expensive than its competitors because OnePlus added more excellent carrier compatibility, OS updates for four years, and security patches for five years.
Google Pixel 7a
Best budget Android phone
- Google Tensor G2 processor
- 6.1-inch FHD+ display with 90Hz refresh rate
- 64MP wide, 13MP ultrawide, and 13MP front cameras
- 4,385mAh battery
Google’s Pixel 7a is the best option if you’re all looking for a primary phone at a reasonable price.
Everything you look for in a fantastic, cost-effective Android phone is included in the $500 Pixel 7a. A faster Tensor G2 CPU, a smoother 90Hz display, and wireless charging support, a first for Google’s A-series phones, are among the new features. Additionally, it feels and looks like the regular Pixel 7 but costs $100 less, thanks to a redesigned design that includes IP67 water resistance. Three years minimum of software and five years of security updates mean you also get excellent support. The only minor issues with the Pixel 7a are that it doesn’t have a dedicated zoom lens and doesn’t support mmWave 5G unless you buy the $550 model from Verizon, which is a little more expensive.
Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra
The best high-end Android handset
- Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2
- Display: 6.8-inch QHD+, up to 120 Hz
- Cameras: 12 MP front, 10 MP telephoto, and 200 MP wide angle on the rear array
- Battery: 5,000 mAh
Even though the Galaxy S23 Ultra is pricey, it offers almost everything you need or want in a smartphone.
The Galaxy S23 Ultra is an expensive smartphone with a starting price of $1,200, but it offers incredible performance, a fantastic camera system, and almost everything you need or want. A whopping 6.8-inch OLED display with a 120Hz adaptive refresh rate, five cameras, the primary, ultra-wide, 3x, 10x, and a selfie shooter, as well as an integrated S Pen stylus for note-taking and drawing, are among its features. It also has a massive 5,000 mAh battery that offers some of the most extended runtime of any phone. With Samsung’s reaffirmed dedication to software support, you can anticipate at least five years of consistent security fixes and four significant OS upgrades.
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5
Best foldable Android phone
- Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2
- Display: 7.6-inch QXGA+ main display (up to 120Hz), 6.2-inch HD+ front display (up to 120Hz)
- Cameras: 10MP (Cover) + 4MP UDC (Main) front camera
- Rear array: 50MP wide, 12MP ultrawide, 10MP telephoto
- Battery: 4,400mAh
For those seeking to optimize their mobile productivity, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 remains the finest large foldable available, even with the Pixel Fold posing a more significant threat.
One of the best substantial foldable phones currently on the market is still the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5, which is for consumers looking to enhance their mobile productivity, even in light of the Pixel Fold’s growing competitiveness. With the most recent model, Samsung has raised the number of recent apps you can see on the taskbar from two to four, adding two new gestures for starting side-by-side multitasking or moving from a full screen to a windowed program.
Faster performance and longer battery life are also provided by the Z Fold 5’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 CPU compared to the Pixel Fold, despite the latter phone having a more significant power cell (4,800 mAh vs. 4,400 mAh). However, the most significant modification for this iteration is Samsung’s new Flex Hinge, which slows the phone out of the box and enables complete flat closing. Regrettably, the Z Fold 5’s camera technology hasn’t changed much from the previous year, and at $1,800, it’s not even close to being cheap.