Holiday Gift Guide 2016 – 2017: Top 10 Best Smartphones

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Lenovo Moto G4

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These days money can go a long way when purchasing a smartphone, but it has to be of a certain variety, and the Moto G4 is certainly part of that selection. The Moto G line has been offering excellent smartphone experiences without the price tag for some time now, and this version is even cheaper on Amazon Prime if you take the option of ads. Even if you don't, however, there are few smartphones out there that are as cheap as this, while offering similar features and performance to much more expensive models. The Full HD 5.5-inch display gives people what they want – a larger device – and it also works on all networks, too.

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Buy the Moto G4

Google Nexus 6P

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The Nexus 6P might not be the new Pixel XL, but with its 5.7-inch AMOLED display, 3GB of RAM and Snapdragon 810 it's still a competitive smartphone, and one to be proud of nonetheless. The Nexus 6P is an excellent smartphone that's quick, up-to-date with the latest version of Android and has an excellent camera that still puts some of today's phones to shame, despite its age. Available from Amazon, even though the Google Store has long since ran out of stock, the Nexus 6P is excellent value, and a great gift for anyone.

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Buy the Nexus 6P

Samsung Galaxy S7 + Galaxy S7 Edge

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With a great glass and metal construction, an excellent 12.3-megapixel camera and a stunning Super AMOLED Quad HD display, the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge offer users something truly special. The Galaxy S7 is a 5.2-inch machine for the everyman while the Galaxy S7 Edge and its larger 5.5-inch display not only offers that curved display, but also gives users a larger display that will make it super-easy to view videos and show off photos. Either of these are an excellent choice right now, and as they're flagship smartphones from 2016, they will continue to stay relevant for a long time to come.

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Buy the Galaxy S7 Edge Buy the Galaxy S7

BLU VIVO 5

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There's not much you can get for $200 these days, but on Amazon you can get the BLU VIVO 5, a US company that uses Chinese manufacturing to keep costs down, BLU has been in the game longer than you might think. With a 5.5-inch Full HD display, 4G LTE on most GSM networks in the US and a 13-megapixel camera, the VIVO 5 ticks most of the boxes. With a metal build and a sleek design and finish, this is a device that punches above its weight. There could be some better software features here, and updates are up in the air a little bit, but this is a great gift for average users or younger users.

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Buy the BLU VIVO 5

Sony Xperia X Compact

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Sony is a big name when it comes to consumer electronics, and the Sony Xperia X Compact is a return to the small-yet-capable devices they used to be known for with the Xperia Z range. The Xperia X Compact is a 4.6-inch device with an HD display and the same stunning 23-megapixel camera you'll find on higher-end smartphones from Sony, as well as a dedicated camera button to go with it. Sure, the Snapdragon 650 on the inside could be better, but for the average user, as well as those looking for a more compact affair without sacrificing on design and build, the Xperia X Performance is an excellent choice. A little on the pricey side, this is still a great gift and a great device all-round.

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Buy the Sony Xperia X Performance

Huawei Honor 5X

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Huawei's Honor brand has been successful in China and Europe, offering excellent experiences without the usual price tag. Now, they've made it Stateside and the Honor 5X is readily available on Amazon. For those looking for a good-looking device with lots of features under $400, this is an excellent choice. The fingerprint sensor is super-quick and there's a great 5.5-inch Full HD display and 13-megapixel camera to round things out. Where Huawei have excelled here however, is in the included dual SIM card slots as well as microSD card slot. Users can pick and choose their network with the two 4G-capable SIM slots, allowing them to choose different networks for Data and voice, or just more Data all round.

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Buy the Huawei Honor 5X

LG G5

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The LG G5 was launched earlier this year to compete with the Galaxy S7 line, and while the G5 comes with all kinds of cool tips and tricks, such as the ability to change the device into a camera, a high-end music player and more on their way. Even so, the Snapdragon 820-powered, 4GB of RAM smartphone has failed to capture mainstream fame. With that said though, there will be people that love the LG G5 for what it is; an excellent all-rounder with the ability to evolve into something more. The 5.3-inch Quad HD display is also something that will appeal to those looking for a smaller device, without losing too much in screen size. A quality 2016 flagship device, the G5 is like few other devices on the market.

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Buy the LG G5

ZTE Axon 7

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ZTE is a name that many of you will recognize from Chinese phone reviews and such, but the firm is trying to become a force in the US as well, having set up shop here some time ago. As such, the Axon 7 was designed here in the US of A, and it takes a lot of cues from other smartphones here, too. With a great 5.5-inch Full HD display, as well as a quick fingerprint sensor, the Axon 7 is a great device to consider. The Snapdragon 820 and high-end audio help to make sure this holds its own against all other devices from 2016, and there are more than enough features included here to make this a contender for best Chinese phone available in the US.

Buy the Axon 7

Sony Xperia XZ

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The Xperia XZ is a sort of return to form for Sony, and the return of the Z name, albeit with a few changes. The 5.2-inch Full HD display, as well as Snapdragon 820 are fairly standard fare for devices this year, but with a new and improved design as well as a stunning 23-megapixel camera, the Xperia XZ is a device that stands out from the crowd. Whether or not the Xperia XZ is worth the asking price Sony is after is up to you, but for a stunning smartphone with an excellent look and feel, the Xperia XZ is a nice change of pace from the other brands on the market, that's for sure.

Buy the Xperia XZ

Huawei Honor 8

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If the Huawei Honor 5X isn't cutting it, then the Honor 8 might help there, with a shiny glass finish, the same quick fingerprint sensor, and a fancy dual camera. With two 12-megapixel cameras, the Honor 8 is all about capturing your life in better detail, and giving you more photo modes to be creative with. Fast, good-looking and excellent value for money, the Honor 8 would be mistaken for something more expensive, and given the results the cameras get, it's not hard to see why. Compatibility could be better in the States, but there's generally a lot to be impressed with when it comes to the Honor 8, and it's the sort of phone people will enjoy finding out more about and experimenting with.

Buy the Huawei Honor 8