The weather is not the only thing that has been heating up recently as the last month has seen a number of new and high-profile smartphones getting announced, resulting in the top-tier smartphone scene changing considerably in the last month alone. In some cases, this has meant just a new addition to an already-existing lineup, while in other cases (looking at you LG) there has instances of more than one high-end phone having become available from the same manufacturer within a small amount of time. Which is where this list comes in as the goal here is to try and help consumers navigate the ever-more complicated smartphone market by highlighting what are the best phones currently available. Here are out best Android smartphone picks for June, 2018.
10. Nokia 6.1
By just about every measure the rest of the phones on this list are better options than the Nokia 6.1. However, the price difference alone represents the gulf of difference between flagship smartphones and the Nokia 6.1, and it’s that price difference which makes the Nokia 6.1 an option worth considering. If, for example, you are after a new phone but just do not want to pay the prices associated with the rest of the smartphones on this list, the Nokia 6.1 might just be what you are looking for – so consider this more of an honorable mention than a vindication as one of the best phones on the market. In spite of coming with a price tag well under $300 the Nokia 6.1 is a phone that offers a number of premium design traits resulting in a rather good-looking device overall. Adding to that, this is also a smartphone which comes running on Android One which essentially means that in addition to a stock-like software experience, this is a phone which will receive regular and routine software and security updates – and directly from Google. At its more basic level the Nokia 6.1 is made up of a 5.5-inch display (with a 1920 x 1080 resolution), 3GB RAM, 32GB storage and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 SoC.
9. LG V35 ThinQ
Up until recently the V30S ThinQ was the best and most current phone from LG although a lot has changed in the last month thanks to the release of two new LG phones. One of which is the V35 ThinQ and this is best summed up as the V30S in terms of design, but an LG G7 in terms of the specs and features. Therefore, if the G7 is not quite the style of LG phone you are looking for, the V35 ThinQ is likely to be the best option to go for. However, there is a fairly big caveat with the V35 ThinQ – that it’s an AT&T exclusive phone in the US. So those not with AT&T might find getting this one a little less welcoming than other options, which might then mean the V30S ThinQ is actually the best option to go for. Complications aside, the V35 ThinQ features a 6-inch display along with an 18:9 aspect ratio and a 2880 × 1440 resolution. As well as 6GB RAM, 64GB storage, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 SoC. Padding out the list of specs and features is a dual rear camera setup and a 3,300 mAh capacity battery. Typically speaking, the absence of a feature or design trait is not normally thought of as a selling point in itself, although for those less keen on the notch revolution it might be – as the V35 ThinQ does not include a notch.Buy LG V35 ThinQ (AT&T) Read more: Hands-On with the V35 ThinQ
8. Huawei P20 Pro
The Huawei P20 and the P20 Pro are certainly phones worth buying, although one of the primary decision-making factors will be where the buyer is located as these two phones are not available everywhere. Either way, the P20 and P20 Pro do offer a heightened and premium smartphone experience and especially in the camera department. This is even more true for the P20 Pro as one of the main differences between the two models is the P20 Pro features, not one, or two, but three rear cameras. Compared to only two cameras on the standard P20. Which does mean of the two the P20 Pro is positioned as the more premium option (along with a slightly higher cost) and so it’s worth focusing more on this model. In addition to a triple rear camera setup, the P20 Pro comes loaded with a 6.01-inch display, 6GB RAM, 128GB storage, a Kirin 970 octa-core SoC, facial recognition, a 4,000 mAh capacity battery, and Android 8.1 (Oreo). Like a number of 2018 flagship smartphones, the P20 Pro does boast a notch.Buy: Huawei P20 Pro Read more: Huawei P20 & P20 Pro Review
7. LG G7 ThinQ
The LG G7 ThinQ might not feel quite as new as some of the other new arrivals, and especially as LG has since announced another new premium smartphone – the V35 ThinQ. That said, this is a new device as it was only announced at the start of May, and only very recently became available to buy in the US. More to the point, it is one of the phones you might want to consider if you are in the market for a new phone this month. Like most 2018 phones, the G7 ThinQ places most of its focus on three key areas: the display, the camera experience, and the use of artificial intelligence (AI), making this a very smart and capable phone. However, unlike other 2018 options it also does come with a couple of extra focuses too, with one of the best examples being the audio capabilities as the LG G7 ThinQ is said to be able to act as a resonance chamber where the body of the phone has been designed to improve the quality and volume of the output. Therefore, those looking for a better audio experience might want to give the G7 ThinQ a closer look…and listen. As for the main specs, the G7 ThinQ features a 6.1-inch display, a minimum of 4GB RAM and 64GB storage, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 SoC, a Quad DAC, a 3,000 mAh capacity battery, dual rear cameras, and an AI shortcut button. That is, all in addition to the notch.
6. HTC U12 Plus
The HTC U11 marked a fairly big change for HTC-branded smartphones and while the new HTC U12 Plus continues the same trend, it differs far less from its predecessor, than its predecessor did from its predecessor. So this is much more of a refined released than a revolutionary one. Which is not a bad thing, as for those who liked the look of the U11 the U12 Plus offers much of the same and more. For example, the U12 Plus sports the same stylish design, setting it apart from the rest of the flagship options that seem to be collectively emulating the look of an iPhone. Adding to that, this one also does feature a dual rear camera setup (one of the main differences compared to the U11), as well as a 6-inch QHD display with an 18:9 aspect ratio. Not forgetting of course, the U12 Plus continues on from the U11 with the inclusion of Edge Sense technology letting the owner squeeze the sides to initiate a specific command. This is very similar to what Google offers on its Pixel 2 devices although the HTC implementation is a lot more customizable, and even more so now with the U12 Plus. The major downside with this smartphone is that’s primarily only available as an unlocked model and does come with a fairly high price tag attached.Buy HTC U12 Plus Read more: Hands-on with the HTC U12 Plus
5. Sony Xperia XZ2
More recent Sony phones in the US have left a lot to be desired although they have still remained good options and especially for buyers already heavily involved in the vast Sony ecosystem. Things have now changed though with the latest premium options from Sony, as the Sony Xperia XZ2 is arguably the best smartphone to have come from Sony in a long time. Not only has it seen updates to its design, but also a ton of new features added. As a result Sony now offers consumers something different and more unique, compared to the majority of top-tier smartphones that are now more alike than different. The new model comes with a much more refined design with a greater reduction in bezels (compared to previous models), a working fingerprint sensor in the US, a heightened camera experience, and a feature-packed experience in general. Of course, it is not without its downsides but with all things considered the Xperia XZ 2 is looking like a great option for those who like the Sony way of doing things. As for the more general numbers, the Xperia XZ2 features a 5.7-inch display along with an 18:9 aspect ratio and a 2160 x 1080 resolution. Along with a minimum of 4GB RAM, 64GB storage, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 SoC, a 19-megapixel rear camera, and a 3,180 mAh capacity battery.Buy Sony Xperia XZ2 Read more: Sony Xperia XZ2 Review
4. OnePlus 6
The OnePlus 6 is a new arrival to the smartphone scene having been announced last month and only recently became available to buy. Of course, with this being a OnePlus phone its main selling point is that it’s a more affordable flagship smartphone and therefore will be best-suited to those looking for a top-tier device without a top-tier price. Price aside, the OnePlus 6 is a very powerful smartphone as it does come with a core combination 6GB RAM (minimum), 64GB storage (minimum) and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 645 SoC. This is in addition to a 6.28-inch display, a dual rear camera setup, and a 3,300 mAh capacity battery – with fast charging support. In spite of the selling points, the OnePlus 6 is a device that is limited in other respects as it is not the most feature-rich smartphone on the market. So when directly compared to other flagship options (which do cost more) there is less on offer with the OnePlus 6, and this is its biggest compromise. However, if those extra-added features are not quite what you need in a smartphone, then the OnePlus 6 is likely to be a great option for you. It’s also worth mentioning the OnePlus 6 does include a notch – which will either be a benefit or an additional cost depending on your notch viewpoint.Buy OnePlus 6
3. Samsung Galaxy Note 8
In spite of their common purpose, some smartphones have become more individual over the years and the Samsung Galaxy Note line is an example of this. As while this phone will fulfill the smartphone needs of any consumer, those who find themselves using a Galaxy Note device tend to stick with the line exclusively, highlighting the unique properties of the Note line. In today’s market, the Note line comes in the form of the Galaxy Note 8. A phone that is not only larger than most other phones, but also one that comes equipped with a stylus and a wealth of software optimizations and features designed to further heighten the stylus experience. In 2018 the use of the stylus has become more apparent with a number of personal devices now sporting a pen-like accessory, and so for those users the Galaxy Note 8 will likely be a great addition to their newly-found pen-powered lifestyle. Besides the pen, the Galaxy Note 8 is as about as powerful as a smartphone gets, as it does come with a spec list to rival everything else on this list. To sum up, the Galaxy Note 8 features a 6.3-inch display along with an 18:9 aspect ratio and a 2960 x 1440 resolution. As well as dual rear cameras, 6GB RAM, 64GB storage, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC (in the US), fast charging support, wireless charging support, Samsung Bixby and Samsung Pay.
2. Google Pixel 2 & Pixel 2 XL
The Pixel 2 and 2 XL have remained solid options ever since they were first announced and in spite of now being positioned as the runner-up, these could easily be the best Android phones on the market. For some users specifically – they will be the best options. One such example is for those who care about a stock Android experience as the software is at the heart of the two Pixel 2 phones and in more ways than one. As Google has looked to ensure there is a tight integration between the software and the hardware on these phones. In other words, while on paper they do not boast the greatest of specs, the hardware is very much a conscious decision as the software has been fine-tuned to draw the best out of that hardware. The cameras being the absolute best example, as while both models feature a single rear camera, the experience is equal to, if not better than, the experience on offer by competing devices sporting a dual rear camera setup. It is this sort of optimization where Google has excelled in thanks to its emphasize on machine learning and the Pixel 2 and 2 XL are the sum of that excelling. If you want a highly-tuned and highly-Google-oriented smartphone experience, the two Pixel 2s are the only way to go. As for their differences, the Pixel 2 XL is certainly the more premium option due to its larger display and overall more bezel-less-like design and 18:9 aspect ratio.Buy Google Pixel 2 Buy Google Pixel 2 XL Read more: Google Pixel 2 & 2 XL Review
1. Samsung Galaxy S9 & S9 Plus
Put simply, the Samsung Galaxy S9 and the Galaxy S9 Plus are two of the best phones you can buy right now, if not the very best phones. As while they are top-tier priced, they are not quite as expensive as some of the options on this list, and in spite of this they both come packed full of extra features. In fact, regardless of what an individual’s smartphone feature preferences are, the Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus will likely have those features included. If you need a high-quality display, you got it. A heightened camera experience, you got it. Additional security features, you got it. Facial recognition, AR, VR-compatible, mobile payments, you got it, you got it, you got, you got it. Therefore when it comes to deciding on which phone to buy the only real question is which of the two Galaxy S9 phones to opt for, and even that decision has become easier this year with the Plus version now featuring more distinctive traits compared to its sibling model. Some of the most noteworthy differences with the Plus model include a dual rear camera setup, 6GB RAM, a larger display, and a greater capacity battery.Buy Samsung Galaxy S9 or S9 Plus Read more: Samsung Galaxy S9 & S9+ Review