Premium smartphone makers seemed to be in a course correction mode in 2019. From fast charging capability to multi-optic camera modules and software optimisation for enhanced user experience, smartphone makers brought to the table some of the technological advances that had been long overdue. At the same time, smartphone manufacturers moved their focus from technical specifications to optimisation, features and algorithms, setting precedents for the industry to follow in the upcoming year.
Let’s takes a look at the top 10 best smartphones launched in 2019.
1. Samsung Galaxy Note 10+
The Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ is one of the most versatile in the premium smartphone segment. Besides top-notch specifications, the smartphone boasts premium optics, a multi-purpose digital pen (SPen), a curved dynamic AMOLED screen with HDR10+ support and a high-capacity battery with 25W fast-charge support. Moreover, the phone is powered by the Samsung One user interface, which is one of the best Android operating system-based UIs designed for easy one-hand operations.
2. Apple iPhone 11 Pro
From triple rear cameras to better on-battery time and improved operating system, the iPhone 11 Pro — like its elder sibling iPhone 11 Pro Max — addresses the gaps that had for long dragged Apple smartphones behind their Android peers. The phone also boasts enhanced security and privacy features like location service permissions and Sign in with Apple, which the company introduced earlier this year at its annual worldwide developer’s conference.
3. Huawei P30 Pro
This smartphone excels as an imaging device, but it is not its only area of strength. The Huawei P30 Pro has a premium glass-metal construction, OLED display, high-capacity battery with fast-charge support and feature-rich user interface. These make it tick all the right boxes — something you expect from a premium smartphone. In terms of imaging, the phone has a multi-optic camera system capable of up to 50x zoom, besides other features like ultra-wide photography, night mode, etc.
4. Samsung Galaxy S10+
This smartphone was the first to pack the Samsung dynamic AMOLED screen with HDR10+ support. Besides, it has the 3.5mm audio out port, which was later not used in the Samsung Galaxy Note 10-series smartphones, hinting future premium smartphones from Samsung might also give it up. The phone has top-notch specifications, a premium camera module, ample RAM and internal storage, and the capability to turn supported big screens and monitors into full-fledged computers, powered by the Samsung DeX computing platform.
5. OnePlus 7 Pro
This was the first premium smartphone from the Chinese smartphone brand OnePlus, which specialises in midrange products. The OnePlus 7 Pro boasts a curved fluid AMOLED screen with a 90Hz refresh rate in QHD+ resolution, another first for the brand. Besides, the phone offers the fast-charge support, a premium glass-metal build, stereo speakers and sleek OxygenOS user interface based on the Android operating system. Though not a gaming smartphone, this phone has a dedicated gaming mode that makes it one of the better regular smartphones matching the performance of gaming-centric smartphones.
6. RealMe X
Coming in two colour options – Polar White and Space Blue, Realme X is a mid-range flagship smartphone that comes powered by 2.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 710 octa-core processor. It runs ColorOS 6 based on Android 9 Pie update and houses a 3,765mAh battery. USP of the device is the 16MP pop-up selfie camera and 48MP primary rear camera.
7. Google Pixel 3XL
Google Pixel 3XL has a starting price of Rs 83,000 in India. If you are looking for an Android phone with best camera, then your search ends with Google Pixel 3XL. Though it has just one camera, the software optimisation and the image processing techniques used in the handset is far better than other flagships. While the autofocus mechanism works impressively, the Pixel Visual Core processing chip delivers near picture-perfect photos.
8. Huawei Mate 20 Pro
The smartphone comes with a 6.39-inch screen with 3120x1440p resolution. The display offers 19.5:9 aspect ratio and an 86.9% screen-to-body ratio. It runs on Android-based EMUI 9.0 operating system and is powered by the company’s own 7nm Kirin 980 chipset processor. Huawei Mate 20 Pro features triple camera setup at the back. This comprises of 40-megapixel sensor with f/1.8 aperture, a 20- megapixel sensor with f/2.2 aperture, and an 8-megapixel telephoto lens. On the front, the device offers a 24-megapixel RGB selfie camera with f/2.0 aperture. Huawei Mate 20 Pro houses a 4,200mAh battery and supports wireless reverse charging as well. Connectivity options offered include 4G LTE, Wi-Fi 802.11ac, dual-band Bluetooth v5.0, Bluetooth v5.0 LE with aptX, GPS/ A-GPS, GLONASS and a USB Type-C port.
9. Oppo A9
This smartphone was one of the best-selling during Q3 2019. The smartphone features a 6.53-inch Full HD+ display, a MediaTek Helio P70 octa-core SoC with 4GB RAM + 128GB storage, a 4,020 mAh battery, a 16MP f/2.0 front camera and a 16MP + 2MP dual-camera setup on the back. Oppo A9’s successor, the A9 2020, has been launched in India with better cameras and faster internals.
10. Apple iPhone XR
Apple iPhone XR continues to top the list of best-selling smartphones around the world in Q3 2019. iPhone XR has been the best-selling iPhone right from the quarter it was launched, i.e. Q3 2018. iPhone XR features a 6.1-inch Liquid Retina display with a 1792 x 828 resolution, Apple A12 Bionic chip with 3GB RAM and up to 256GB internal memory. Other iPhone XR specifications include a 12MP f/1.8 primary sensor, a 7MP front camera, etc. iPhone XR is currently available on various e-commerce websites for Rs 47,900 for the 64GB variant.