Best Android Phones – September 2017

With IFA 2017 having now come and gone, there has been a few new smartphones announced. Although, these are only smartphones that are confirmed as on their way and not ones that are now available to buy. While some may want to hold out for those new arrivals, for those looking for a smartphone to buy this month there is plenty to currently choose from. Smartphones to suit all budgets and some which come with unique selling points that you will not find on other smartphones. To help narrow down the search a little, here is our top 10 picks for best Android phones in September, 2017.

10. Moto Z2 Play

Starting off the list this month is a smartphone that is by design more affordable than the rest. This also means that by design it is not quite as premium as the others. Although, for what this phone does offer for the money, this is an easy phone to recommend. For instance, the Moto Z2 Play can be picked up for a little over $400 making it the most affordable smartphone on the list this month.

For that price, this is a smartphone that features a 5.5-inch display along with a 1920 x 1080 resolution. Inside, the Moto Z2 Play is available with a minimum of 3GB RAM, a minimum of 32GB internal storage, and is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 626 SoC. On the camera side of things, this smartphone boasts a 12-megapixel rear camera, along with a 5-megapixel front-facing camera. While additional features include a 3,000 mAh battery, and Android 7.0 (Nougat). Not forgetting of course, with this being a Z series smartphone from Motorola, it is also one which is fully compatible with the company’s line of Moto Mods. Something which adds immense value considering the current price of this smartphone.

9. Essential PH-1

The Essential Phone (or the Essential PH-1) has been a long time coming, although it is now here. After an extensive pre-order phase, the Essential Phone is now reaching the hands of those who pre-ordered. Although one of the downsides that still remains with this phone is that it is not quite as widely available as some of the others. With the Essential Phone currently only available to buy either as an unlocked model, or through Sprint. In either case, this is a phone that comes with a $699 price attached. For that price though, you are getting a very unique and appealing design. One which in spite of making use of an en vogue all-screen approach, is one which looks fairly different to the rest of the current all-screen smartphones. So it is is one to consider for those looking for something a little different.

As for the main specs, this is a fairly standard flagship device on paper, with the Essential Phone features a 5.71-inch display along with a 2560 x 1312 resolution. As well as 4GB RAM, 128GB internal storage, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC. Other aspects worth noting include an 8-megapixel front-facing camera, a 3,040 mAh battery, USB Type-C connectivity, and Android 7.0 (Nougat). On a last note, and again in a similar vein to a number of 2017 flagship smartphones, the Essential Phone boasts a dual rear camera setup, with this particular configuration consisting of two 13-megapixel cameras.

8. BlackBerry KEYone

BlackBerry has now brought to market a number of new smartphones, and in quick succession. However, the BlackBerry KEYone is quite likely the best of what BlackBerry’s currently has to offer. In fact, due to its inclusion of a physical QWERTY keyboard, this is also a smartphone that is fairly unique compared to the current crop of seemingly-similar flagship smartphones. Not to mention, in spite of the keyboard being physical, it is also one which comes with its own ‘smarts’ due to it having been fine-tuned to offer a number of OTT features that you won't find on other smartphones. So if you are looking for something different, and not the Essential PH-1 different, then the BlackBerry KEYone is certainly another one to consider.

As for the rest of what is on offer with the BlackBerry KEYone, this is a smartphone that features a 4.5-inch display along with a 1620 x 1080 resolution - a size which allows for the accommodation of the keyboard. Inside, the KEYone features 3GB RAM, 32GB internal storage, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 SoC. In addition to a 12-megapixel rear camera, an 8-megapixel front-facing camera, a 3,505 mAh battery, and Android 7.1.1 (Nougat). As for the price, the BlackBerry KEYone currently costs just under $550.

7. Moto Z2 Force

At IFA this year, Motorola announced the return of the Moto X line with the Moto X4. Although, if you are after the best that Motorola has to offer then the Moto Z2 Force is still the one to go for. Not only does this smartphone continue the Z line’s ability of making use of Moto Mods - resulting in one of the most unique smartphone lines on the market, but it also comes with a spec list to rival anything else on the market.

For example, the Moto Z2 Force is a smartphone that features a 5.5-inch display along with a 2560 x 1440 resolution. In addition, this is a smartphone loaded with 4GB RAM, 64GB internal storage, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC. Like a number of 2017 flagship devices, the Moto Z2 Force also features a dual rear camera setup, consisting of two 12-megapixel cameras. Which is in addition to a 5-megapixel front-facing camera, a 2,730 mAh battery, and Android 7.1.1 (Nougat). Of course, one additional point worth noting is that the Moto Z2 Force also comes equipped with the company’s ShatterShield technology. Making this phone one of the most durable flagship smartphones currently available.

6. OnePlus 5

When it comes to value for money, there are few smartphones that offer more than the OnePlus 5 does. While this is actually less-heavy on OTT features, when it comes to the core specs and features the OnePlus 5 is a powerhouse of a smartphone - and at a bargain price. As the baseline model (which is not that baseline in terms of the specs) can be picked up for under $500. Making this a great option for those who want a solid and reliable Android experience, along with a very competitive core spec list.

Speaking of which, the OnePlus 5 is a smartphone that features a 5.5-inch display along with a 1920 x 1080 resolution. Inside, the OnePlus 5 comes loaded with either 6GB or 8GB RAM, 64GB or 128GB internal storage, and is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC. The cameras have been a big focus with this smartphone and in part due to the OnePlus 5 being equipped with a dual rear camera setup. One that consists of a 16-megapixel RGB sensor, along with a 20-megapixel telephoto sensor. Additional features worth noting include a 16-megapixel front-facing camera, a 3,300 mAh battery, USB Type-C connectivity, and Android 7.1.1 (Nougat). Not forgetting of course, this is also a smartphone that claims one of the fastest charging speeds around, thanks to its Dash Charge support.

5. HTC U11

In many ways the HTC U11 has not quite got the publicity it deserves. This is not only the newest smartphone from HTC, but also the best one. Offering consumers a unique user experience due to its Edge Sensor functionality, as well as a camera experience that rivals any smartphone on this list. So if nothing else, the HTC U11 is one of the smartphones you should be considering if you are in the market for a new smartphone this month. At present, those looking at picking up the HTC U11 can expect to pay around $649.99 for the pleasure.

For that price, this is a smartphone that features a 5.5-inch display along with a 2560 x 1440 resolution. Inside, the HTC U11 comes loaded with 4GB RAM, 64GB internal storage, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC. As well as a 12-megapixel rear camera, a 16-megapixel front-facing camera, a 3,000 mAh battery, USB Type-C connectivity, and Android 7.1 (Nougat). Although as mentioned the big selling point with this one is its Edge Sensors - which basically allows you to squeeze the sides of the device to initiate assigned features. For example, a very quick and easy way to take a selfie.

4. Google Pixel / Pixel XL

It was not that long ago the Google Pixel and Pixel XL were our favorite devices. However, a lot has changed since then and especially with the arrival of a number of 2017 smartphones boasting more features and offering more for your money. In fact, it has been so long since these phones were originally announced that the second-generation Pixel and Pixel XL are also now knocking at the door - with their announcement expected to take place next month. However, if you are more of the stock Android persuasion, then there are few, if any, smartphones currently available to buy better than the Google Pixel and Pixel XL. These are not only well-built devices, but also ones which comes with a number of Pixel-specific features and selling points. Aspects which manage to keep the Pixel and Pixel XL on this list and above a number of other smartphones that have come through since then.

As for the differences, these largely reside in the display size, resolution, and battery capacity. Those aspects aside, the rest of the Google Pixel experience is the same with both smartphones, featuring 4GB RAM, a minimum of 32GB internal storage, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 SoC. As well as a 12.3-megapixel rear camera, an 8-megapixel front-facing camera, USB Type-C connectivity, and Android 7.0 (Nougat). Speaking of which, these phones are already able to be updated to Android 8.0 (Oreo) - a selling point in its own right.

3. LG G6

Technically speaking, LG now has a new smartphone on the scene, the LG V30. However, the LG V30 has yet to become available to buy, or even pre-ordered. While that is expected to change this month, with no firm details on price, it remains to be seen how good of a purchase the V30 will be. Therefore in the meantime, if you are looking for the best of what LG has to offer, then the LG G6 is the one to consider. And by all accounts, this is a smartphone which easily holds its own. The LG G6 is in stark contrast to its predecessor (the LG G5) and has widely been praised from industry experts and the general public, alike. Not forgetting of course that with a new LG phone having been announced, the LG G6 has been the subject of a price drop of late, and can now be picked up for as little as $449.99. Which is an extremely good price for this screen and camera-centric smartphone.

As for general background, the LG G6 is a phone that is all about the display thanks to its inclusion of an 18:9 aspect ratio which results in a taller and slimmer display. One which measures in at 5.7-inches, while boasting a QHD+ resolution. Inside, the LG G6 features 4GB RAM, 32GB internal storage, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 SoC. As well as a dual rear camera setup consisting of two 13-megapixel cameras, a 5-megapixel front-facing camera, a 3,300 mAh battery, and Android 7.0 (Nougat).

2. Samsung Galaxy S8 & S8 Plus

Since becoming available, the Samsung Galaxy S8 (as well as the Galaxy S8 Plus) has remained our go-to smartphone. This is in spite of multiple smartphones arriving in the meantime. However, that has now changed with the Galaxy S8 series having now been bumped off the top spot - albeit by another Samsung smartphone. Of course, the good news is with the arrival of a newer Samsung smartphone, the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus have now started to see some serious price drops. Which adds more to their appeal and results in the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus now being two of the best value smartphones for your money.

Generally speaking, the two models are largely identical with the main differences coming in display size and battery capacity. With the Galaxy S8 sporting a 5.8-inch display (with a 3,000 mAh battery) and the Galaxy S8 Plus a 6.2-inch display (along with a 3,500 mAh battery). Otherwise, both models make use of an Infinity Display with a QHD+ resolution, 4GB RAM, 64GB internal storage, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC in the US. As well as a 12-megapixel rear camera, an 8-megapixel front-facing camera, an iris scanner, Bixby, Android 7.0 (Nougat), and more.

1. Samsung Galaxy Note 8

After months of speculation, the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 has now arrived and lands in the number one position this month. Technically speaking, the Galaxy Note 8 is not quite available to buy just yet, although it will be before the month is out as the Galaxy Note 8 due to become generally available on September 15. However, this one is already available to pre-order for those who do want to be one of the first to get their hands on the latest Samsung flagship smartphone.

Speaking of which, this is pretty much a flagship device in every sense of the word. Not only is the Galaxy Note 8 sporting a premium spec list, but it is also the first major Samsung device to come equipped with a dual rear camera setup. Adding to that, the Note 8 adopts an Infinity Display (as found on the Galaxy S8 series) and of course, comes with its own stylus. As for the main specs, the Galaxy Note 8 features a 6.3-inch display with a QHD+ resolution. Inside, the Galaxy Note 8 is loaded with 6GB RAM, a minimum of 64GB internal storage, and is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC in the US. Also on offer is a 3,300 mAh battery, fast charging support, wireless charging support, Android 7.1.1 (Nougat), and much, much more.

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About the Author
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John Anon

Editor-in-Chief
John has been writing about and reviewing tech products since 2014 after making the transition from writing about and reviewing airlines. With a background in Psychology, John has a particular interest in the science and future of the industry. Besides adopting the Managing Editor role at AH John also covers much of the news surrounding audio and visual tech, including cord-cutting, the state of Pay-TV, and Android TV. Contact him at [email protected]
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