The Best Smartphones?

By that, I mean the smartphones that offer the best features at a given price. Because if you’re about to buy a smartphone, you want the one that offers the best features possible for your budget, right?

If you have the time to do research… but who does?

You don’t have the time to read or the knowledge to understand detailed smartphones reviews and specifications and just want the answers? In other words, what you want to know is:
What’s the best smartphone for my budget?

So if you don’t have the time, don’t worry. We’re here to help you with this article.

The features that we evaluate in order to make our recommendations:

1. Price
2. Performance: CPU, RAM, Storage, GPU and Wireless Adapter
3. Screen: Size, Resolution, Panel type, Brightness, Contrast, Viewing Angles and Color Accuracy
4. Portability: Dimensions, Weight, Battery life?
5. Usability: Operating System, Sound quality, Security
6. Reliability: How solid is it? Overall manufacturer long-term reliability?
7. Warranty: Warranty length? What does the warranty cover?

Summary

Click on any of these links to jump to the section that interests you, or scroll down to see them all, in this order.

The Best Smartphones:

  1. Entry-level
  2. Mid-range
  3. High-end

Upgrade your Smartphones:

  1. Add extra storage with a MicroSD memory card
  2. Get a case to protect your phone

The Best Entry-level Smartphones

The bare necessities

Memory (RAM):
In order to have a good experience, I recommend avoiding any smartphone with less than 2GB of memory (RAM). While you could spend a little less and get a phone with 1 or 1.5GB of memory, it’s just not enough, applications will freeze or crash and performance with be sluggish.

Internal storage space:
I also recommend avoiding smartphones with only 8GB of internal storage. Remember that the Operating System (OS, Android or iOS) takes a few GB, leaving you with not much storage space to begin with. With the ever growing size of applications, you will run out of storage space quickly, forcing you to choose which applications you want to keep and which ones you have to uninstall.

In both cases, saving a few dollars to end up with a frustrating smartphone isn’t worth it. Which is why all my recommendations have at least 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage capacity.

1. BLU Life One X2 2GB RAM / 16GB storage

This is the least expensive smartphone that I recommend.

You simply won’t find a phone at this price that have features like this.

You get a Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 CPU which, while not being the most powerful CPU, delivers a great performance for a budget phone.

You get a Full HD 1920 x 1080 display resolution which is quite unusual at this price point.

It has 16GB of onboard storage, which isn’t that much, I mean you can install many apps without any problems, but it won’t hold a large picture, music or video collection.

That said, there is a MicroSD slot to allow you to add more storage though.

As a basic phone, it’s a fine inexpensive choice, as long as you don’t expect too much out of it.

Pros:
– 2GB of RAM allows you to run a few apps at the same time without slowdowns
– Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 1.4GHz Octa-Core CPU is pretty good at this price range
– Full HD 1920 x 1080 display resolution
– Runs with the fairly recent Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system, which means a more stable and optimal user experience.
– 16MP f/2.2 rear camera offers a good picture quality and is easily comparable to more expensive models. 8MP front camera is decent too.
– The microSD slot lets you add a microSD card with up to 128GB to store extra music, videos and pictures.
– Quick Charge 3.0: 30 minutes of charging get up to 70% battery or with only 5 minutes get up to 2 hours of talk time
– Decent battery (6 hours while streaming full screen video on LTE)
– Fingerprint reader for extra authentication security

Cons:
– Although 2GB of RAM is decent at the price range, it is also not that much so don’t expect to be able to do much multitasking on this phone.
– 16GB of internal storage is not that much.
– The battery is non-removable which means it can’t be changed if it’s ever used or if it doesn’t work anymore.

Get the BLU LIFE ONE X2

16GB of storage from Amazon and B&H ($134.99)

2. BLU Life One X2 4GB RAM / 64GB storage

This is the same smartphone as the one above, but with twice the RAM (4GB) so you can run more apps without slowdowns and with 4 times the onboard storage (64GB)!

Pros:
– Full HD 1920 x 1080 display
– The 1.4 GHz ARM Cortex A53 Octa-Core processor, combined with 4GB of RAM means this phones is able to smoothly run on casual use and run multiple applications without any problems. In other words it offers a smooth performance.
– 16MP f/2.2 rear camera offers a good picture quality and is easily comparable to more expensive models. 8MP front camera is decent too.
– Runs with the Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system, which means a more stable and optimal user experience.
– It has a 64GB internal storage capacity which means you can store a great amount of videos, music, pictures and application without having to add extra storage or worry about filling up space to quickly.
– The microSD slot lets you add a microSD card to store extra music, videos and pictures.
– Fingerprint scanner for improved security and convenience.
– Decent battery (6 hours while streaming full screen video on LTE)
– Quick Charge 3.0: 30 minutes of charging get up to 70% battery or with only 5 minutes get up to 2 hours of talk time

Cons:
– The battery is non-removable which means it can’t be changed if it’s ever used or if it doesn’t work anymore.

Get the BLU LIFE ONE X2

64GB of Storage from Amazon and B&H ($179.99)

The Best Mid-Range Smartphones

3. LG G4

lgg4

The LG G4 is the most inexpensive mid-range smartphone that we recommend. It is equipped with a fairly powerful 2.0GHz six-core Snapdragon CPU combined with 3GB of RAM for a smooth performance even with many applications open at the same time.

It has 32GB of onboard storage which is a decent amount for images, music, videos and applications. If you ever need extra storage space you can add more with the available MicroSD slot.

This model is also equipped with a great 16MP f/1.8 camera with optical stabilization for beautiful pictures even in the dark and a full manual mode with RAW support if you want to take fully advantage of it.

Finally, it has a removable battery so it is possible to carry an extra battery around and just swap it whenever it is needed, to go from 0% to 100% in a matter of seconds!

Pros:
– Good CPU (Snapdragon 808) means this phone will run smoothly in most circumstances without having any performance problems.
– Great 16MP f/1.8 camera with optical stabilization which takes beautiful pictures, even in low-light
– 8MP front camera
– Full manual camera control, with RAW support
– Laser autofocus on the camera for nearly instantaneous autofocus, so that you don’t miss that moment.
– 3GB of RAM which allows you to run multiple apps without any problems
– Back cover has a leather like finish, with a great grip.
– Volume control on the back allows you easily reach it with your index finger when holding the phone
– Powerful speaker for a smartphone, you’ll have no problem listening to music or a video with a friend.
– Micro SD slot
– Removable battery
– NFC
– Beautiful 2560 x 1440 Quad HD IPS display for a bright, crisp and colorful display.

Cons:
– The build is mostly made of plastic so it’s not as solid as other smartphones. Then again, using a case to protect it is a good idea.
– 32GB internal storage is less than competitive models

Get the LG G4

32GB of storage from B&H ($229.99)

4. LG V10 H900

The LG V10 H900 is an amazing phone at its current price.

You get 64GB of onboard storage with which you can add plenty of apps, music, videos and images without worrying too much about filling your phone quickly and if you ever need extra storage space, you can always add extra storage space with a MicroSD card.

It is also equipped with 4GB of RAM which, combined with the fairly powerful Snapdragon 808 SOC can multitask easily and run smoothly. In terms of power and features at this price point, this phone is pretty much unsurpassed.

It also has a removable battery so it is possible to carry an extra battery around and just swap it whenever it is needed, to go from 0% to 100% in a matter of seconds!

Pros:
– Great 16MP f/2.2 camera which takes beautiful pictures.
– Good CPU (Snapdragon 808) means this phone will run smoothly in most circumstances without having any performance problems.
– Good amount of onboard storage: 64GB to add applications, pictures, videos and music.
– Beautiful 2560 x 1440 Quad HD IPS display for a bright, crisp and colourful display.
– 4GB of RAM which makes multitasking easy.
– Gyroscope, Magnetometer and Proximity sensor.
– Laser autofocus on the camera for nearly instantaneous autofocus, so that you don’t miss that moment.
– Quick charge
– Has a Fingerprint sensor which gives you a possibility of adding extra security to your device.
– MicroSD slot to add extra storage with a MicroSD card.
– Removable battery so you can always carry an extra battery around or change the battery when needed.
– Second 2.1″ screen for shortcuts and notifications
– Available in two colors.

Cons:
– The build is partially made of plastic so it’s not as solid as other smartphones. Then again, using a case to protect it is a good idea.

Get the LG V10 H900

64GB of storage from Amazon and B&H ($299.00)

5. Apple Iphone SE


Same size as the Iphone 4s, so if you find the new Iphones too large and want a smaller model, this is the right choice. It packs all the same powerful hardware as the Iphone 6s but fits more easily in your pocket and is less expensive.

Pros:
– Outstanding performance: Apple devices have high-end CPUs, are very responsive.
– iOS is a very user friendly and stable operating system: this means it is easier to navigate around your device and it is also less likely to crash at any given time or in any situation.
– Great display: Apple products offer beautiful image and display quality on all of their phones.

Cons:
– No MicroSD slot for extra storage means you are limited to the internal storage , althought Apple does have Icloud, a cloud storage service that is easy to use if you ever need extra storage.
– The battery is non-removable which means it can’t be changed if it’s ever used or if it doesn’t work anymore.

Get the Apple Iphone SE

16GB of storage : Click here to see the price on Amazon
64GB of storage: Click here to see the price on Amazon

The Best High-End Smartphones

6. ZTE AXON 7

This Smartphone is all you need if you are looking for a device that is powerful, has plenty of RAM for multitasking, good amount of storage with extra storage options, great camera and a beautiful screen quality.

It has a powerful Snapdragon 820 CPU, a 20MP rear camera, 4GB of RAM and 64GB of onboard storage with a possibility of adding extra storage with a MicroSD slot.

Pros:
– Powerful Snapdragon 820 CPU
– 4GB of RAM
– 64GB of storage
– Dual SIM
– Great camera that that offers clear picture quality.
– MicroSD slot to add extra storage for more pictures, music , videos and applications.
– Has a Fingerprint sensor which gives you a possibility of adding extra security to your device.
– Runs with the Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system, which means a more stable and optimal user experience.
– QHD 2560 x 1440 Resolution with AMOLED display.

Cons:
– The battery is non-removable which means it can’t be changed if it’s ever used or if it doesn’t work anymore.

Get the ZTE AXON 7

64GB storage from Amazon, B&H ($379.99) and Newegg ($399.98)

7. OnePlus 3T
oneplus_3

With the newer and more powerful Snapdragon 821 SOC, 6GB of RAM, a 13% better battery life, an outstanding 16MP front camera, the OnePlus 3T is the improved replacement of the already excellent OnePlus 3.

Compared to the ZTE Axon, you get a lower resolution screen (still 1920 x 1080 Full HD) and lose the micro SD slot, but the higher performance (better CPU/GPU and more RAM), longer battery life and faster charging make up for that in my opinion.

Pros:
– Powerful Snapdragon 821 CPU
– 6GB of RAM
– 64GB of storage
– Dual SIM
– Great camera that that offers clear picture quality.
– Dash charge: 63% charge in 30 minutes
– Has a Fingerprint sensor which gives you a possibility of adding extra security to your device.
– Runs with the Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system, which means a more stable and optimal user experience.
– Amazing battery life that offers up to 16 hours of battery on video playback in airplane mode.

Cons:
– The battery is non-removable which means it can’t be changed if it’s ever used or if it doesn’t work anymore.
– No microSD slot

Get the OnePlus 3T

64GB ($439) or 128GB ($479) storage from Oneplus

8. Samsung Galaxy s7

The previous version of Samsung’s popular line of Galaxy S smartphones. Powerful, waterproof, great camera, top-notch display, fast charging, everything that you’d expect from a flagship phone.

Thanks to the new S8, the S7 is now available at a much more affordable price!

Pros:
– Waterproof design: you don’t have to worry about rain, spillage and other liquids when it comes to this phone.
– The rear camera on this phone takes some of the most beautiful and clear pictures you can get on an android high-end phone.
– The microSD slot lets you add a microSD card to store extra music, videos and pictures.
– Amazing resolution : the screen of this device looks sharp and the colors are beautiful, you can get the most out of your images, videos and apps when it comes to the display.
– This device supports fast charging and can charge your phone up to 60% under just 30 minutes.

Cons:
– The battery is non-removable which means it can’t be changed if it’s ever used or if it doesn’t work anymore.

Get the Samsung Galaxy s7

32GB storage from Amazon and B&H ($429.99)

9. LG V20

When it comes to high-end Android smartphones, the LG V20 truly has it all. It comes equipped with a powerful Snapdragon 820 processor, 4GB of RAM and 64GB of onboard storage. Need more storage space? Don’t worry as this smartphone is equipped with a MicroSD slot to add extra storage space.

Some of the key features of this phone include the high quality Hi-Fi Quad DAC Audio which makes it one of the best phones for audio playback. It is also equipped with not one but two rear cameras : a 16MP f/1.8 as a primary camera and a 8MP f/2.4 Wide-Angle camera. This phone also comes with the latest Android 7 operating system at launch, which means you get a phone that is more stable and offers a better performance.

Pros:
– Powerful Snapdragon 820 CPU and 4GB of RAM: you will have little to no problems at all running any apps or multi-tasking with this device.
– Hi-Fi Quad DAC Audio, offering clearing sound, 132 dB SNR and 124 dB of dynamic range. Voltage output is twice as much as any other smartphone, ideal for driving high impedance headphones.
– 64GB of onboard storage.
– MicroSD slot to add a MicroSD card for extra storage capacity.
– Android 7.0 which is the latest version of Android : this means a better performance and stability.
– Beautiful Quad HD 2560 x 1440 resolution with IPS display.
– Wide angle front camera, so all your friends fit in your selfie
– Advanced Manual Photo Mode and Video Mode
– 3 High AOP (Acoustic Overload Point) Mics allow you to record loud scenes without sound distortion.
– Hybrid autofocus: LDAF (Laser Detection Auto Focus), PDAF (Phase Detection Auto Focus) and Contrast AF
– Removable battery so you can change it whenever it’s needed or even to carry a spare battery around.
– Aluminum body for a more solid build and better in hand feel.
– Quick Charge, 0-50% in 30 minutes
– Two rear cameras : 16MP f/1.8 primary camera and a 8MP Wide-Angle camera.
– Second 2.1″ screen for shortcuts and notifications
– USB Type-C

Cons:
– Average battery life compared to other similar models (13 hours video playback on airplane mode)

Get the LG V20

64GB storage from Amazon, B&H ($549.99) and Newegg ($599.99)

10. Apple Iphone 6S

While it’s no longer Apple’s latest Iphone, the Iphone 6S remains an excellent iOS phone, which is now available at a lower price than the Iphone 7.

Pros:
– Outstanding performance: Apple Iphones have outstanding CPUs, are very responsive will last you years if you take care of it.
– iOS is a very user friendly and stable operating system : this means it is easier to navigate around your device and it is also less likely to crash at any given time or in any situation.
– Great display quality

Cons:
– No MicroSD slot for extra storage means you are limited to the internal storage , althought Apple does have Icloud, a cloud storage service that is easy to use if you ever need extra storage.
– The battery is non-removable which means it can’t be changed if it’s ever used or if it doesn’t work anymore.

Get the Apple Iphone 6s

16GB of storage:  Click here to see the price on Amazon 
32GB of storage: Click here to see the price on Amazon
64GB of storage: Click here to see the price on Amazon 

11. Apple Iphone 6s Plus

The Plus format is good for people who like a bigger screen and it also offers optical image stabilization compared to the regular Iphone 6S.

Get the Apple Iphone 6s Plus

16GB of storage: Click here to see the price on Amazon 
32GB of storage: Click here to see the price on Amazon
64GB of storage: Click here to see the price on Amazon 
128GB of storage: Click here to see the price on Amazon 

 12. LG G6

The LG G6 is a great step up from the LG V20 as you get a better performance and a more beautiful screen resolution.

This phone has a great design and despite being a large screen phone, it is taller than other smartphone which means it fits easily in your hand.

Other than that, this phone is water, dust and shock resistant which is pretty good and also quite useful if you are a clumsy by nature.

Pros:
– Great Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 CPU combined with 4GB of RAM : this phone can pretty much handle any applications and workloads without any problems.
– IP68 Water and dust and shock resistant
– Corning gorilla glass 3 makes your screen more scratch resistant
– 32GB of storage is a gives you a decent amount of storage space for your files and applications.
– MicroSD slot to add extra storage via a MicroSD card
– Despite the fact that it’s a large phone, it fits easily in your hand
– Beautiful and sharp display
– In my opinion, this smartphone has a great design.

Cons:
– 
Battery cannot be replaced
– No other available storage options other than 32GB

Get the LG G6

32GB of storage: Click here to see the price on Amazon

13. Samsung Galaxy S8

This is Samsung’s newest model from the Galaxy lineup.

As of now, of all smartphones available on the market, this model has the best display panel of all. It has an amazing color reproduction with great contrast and vibrant colors.

It is also one of the only few smartphones to have the Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 CPU, which means it offers a great performance and responsiveness while performing heavier tasks.

It also has a great 12MP rear camera that takes clear and beautiful pictures,

It has 64GB of internal storage, which is a great amount to start with, and If you ever need more, there is a MicroSD slot to add extra storage capacity.

Another perk of this phone is that it has a great design: It easily fits in your hand, the buttons are integrated in the screen and with its bezel-less display, you get a lot more screen size than on most other smartphones.

Looking at videos on it is quite stunning for a smartphone!

If you are looking for a larger display on a Android smartphone, check out the Samsung Galaxy s8+ below!

Pros:
– Very powerful Snapdragon 835 CPU and 4GB of RAM: you will have little to no problems at all running any apps or multi-tasking with this device.
– 64GB of onboard storage.
– MicroSD slot to add a MicroSD card for extra storage capacity.
– Android 7.0 which is the latest version of Android : this means a better performance and stability.
– Beautiful Quad HD+ 2960 x 1440 resolution display.
– AMOLED display for an amazing visual experience : beautiful colors and great contrast.
– Bezel-less Infinity display : an edge-to-edge screen that gives you a more immersive experience.
– Great 12MP Rear camera and 8MP Front camera
– IP68 Water and dust resistant : Can be submerged to 4.9′ for up to 30 minutes.
– Gorilla glass 5 front coating: Highly resistant to scratches
– Wireless charging
– Comes in 5 different colors.
– Aluminum body for a more solid build and better in hand feel.
– Fast charge
– Newest Bluetooth 5.0 technology
– USB Type-C
– Great battery life

Cons:
– Gorilla glass 5 coating on the rear panel: Sure, it’s Gorilla Glass 5 so it’s more solid than regular glass, but you still have glass on the back of the phone, which can shatter.
– The fingerprint sensor is close to the back camera and it’s quite inconvenient

Get the Samsung Galaxy S8

64GB storage from Amazon and B&H ($829.99)

14. Apple Iphone 7

The Iphone 7 is Apple’s latest model and most powerful up to date. It packs new interesting features such as 3D Touch, as well as a waterproofing and dust resistant design.

Pros:
– Unmatched CPU performance: you will have little to no problems at all running any apps or multi-tasking with this device.
– Waterproof and dust resistant design which makes it easier to bring your phone out on the beach or in the rain without fear of damaging it.
– iOS is a very user friendly and stable operating system : this means it is easier to navigate around your device and it is also less likely to crash at any given time or in any situation.
– Outstanding display: Apple products offer the most beautiful image and display quality on all of their phones.
– Amazing camera: this camera takes some of the most beautiful pictures.

Cons:
– Lacks the headphone jack (Adapter uses the Lightning charging port instead)
– No MicroSD slot for extra storage means you are limited to the internal storage.
– The battery is non-removable which means it can’t be changed if it’s ever used or if it doesn’t work anymore.

Get the Apple Iphone 7

32GB storage from Amazon, and Newegg ($679.99)
128GB storage from Amazon and Newegg ($789.99)
256GB storage from Amazon and Newegg ($889.99)

15. Samsung Galaxy S8+

This is the larger 6.2″ screen version of the Samsung Galaxy S8.

It is great if you are looking for a smartphone that is bigger than usual while keeping the same performance as the Samsung Galaxy S8.

Other than the larger screen, you also get a larger battery for a better battery life: up to 15 hours with WiFi.

As for the rest, the Samsung Galaxy s8+ shares the same pros and cons of its smaller counterpart.

Get the Samsung Galaxy S8+

64GB storage from Amazon and B&H ($929.99)

16 . Apple Iphone 7 Plus

The Apple Iphone 7 Plus is similar to the Iphone 7 except that it offers a larger display and has a few extra features like the Wide-Angle and Telephoto cameras.

It also features optical stabilization for the camera, for improved low-light camera performance.

On the downside, charging is slow, it takes 3 hours to fully charge.

Get the Apple Iphone 7 Plus

32GB storage from Amazon and Newegg ($799.99)
128GB storage from Amazon and Newegg ($899.99)
256GB storage from Amazon and Newegg ($999.99)

Upgrade your Smartphone:

Get extra storage with a microSD memory card

You can get a micro SD memory card to increase your phone’s total storage capacity, but only if your phone has a micro SD slot.
– Click here to browse Micro SD cards on Amazon
Click here to browse Micro SD cards on B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

Protect your phone with a case

– Click here to browse smartphone cases on Amazon
Click here to browse smartphone cases on B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

Conclusion

I hope that you’ve enjoyed this article on the Best Smartphones!

I invite you to leave a comment, let me know what you thought of this article.

Do you think that I forgot a pro or a con for a smartphone?

Perhaps you believe that there’s a better option than my recommendation and want my professional opinion.

A smartphone might no longer be available or you may have some questions.

Just leave a comment below now and I’ll get back to you.