Samsung's top-end phones are getting more and more expensive at an alarming rate, as evidenced by the fact that very few people bought an S20 during the series's launch window. Seeing the gap to fill between bargain-bin budget phones and outright luxury devices, this week, Samsung launched the Galaxy S20 Fan Edition. It costs $700 (currently $600 on sale), and it packs a ton of features we're used to seeing in flagships with very few compromises. This might just be the best phone of the year.
Xiaomi's Mi Band series has won fans by offering a lot of fitness features for not a lot of money. That formula isn't changing with the latest entry, the Mi Band 5. It looks almost identical to its predecessors but makes some notable improvements: There's finally magnetic charging so you don't have to pry the device out of the band anymore, the screen is a little bigger, and the tracking is a bit more accurate.
The Mi Band 5 might not compete with high-end trackers and smartwatches from Garmin or Fitbit, but it doesn’t have to.
In the span of a couple of years, true wireless earbuds have transitioned from being a luxury purchase to a commoditized, affordable product. Even within the category, features like USB-C or Bluetooth 5.0 that were once only found on expensive models have made their way to cheap sub-$50 buds. Now, active noise cancellation is going down the price echelon and the Tribit FlyBuds NC are a perfect example. $60 for a pair of TWS buds with a good sound seems too good to be true, but in reality, the FlyBuds manage to deliver on their promise without much compromise.
It's rare that a battery has enough going on that it warrants a full review, but the Aukey PowerStudio 300 is no ordinary battery. For one, it's gigantic with a 297Wh capacity and more ports than you can shake a USB cable at. It's also lovely, which is not something I've ever said about a battery before. The power and functionality of the PowerStudio make it a great battery for long trips away from the power grid or as a home backup power source. Although, not everyone needs something like that, and the $329 asking price is steep if the PowerStudio won't fulfill a specific need.
Almost exactly two years ago, Xiaomi pulled a page from OnePlus’ playbook and stunned everyone with the Poco F1 (or Pocophone F1), a phone with proper flagship specs that cost just $300. While the F1 cut some corners to achieve this feat (plastic build, no NFC), it still delivered amazing performance and battery life. Then in 2019, it was followed up by… crickets?
While Redmi’s excellent K20 Pro was technically the Poco F1’s successor, Xiaomi didn’t release a Poco-branded device last year. That changed back in February 2020, when the company announced it was spinning Poco off as a sub-brand.
Samsung's one of the biggest smartphone players around, and while we drool over cutting-edge devices like the Note20 or Fold2, these luxury handsets are hardly its primary business. When it comes to sheer numbers, the company's more conservative phones drive the lion's share of sales, and for good reason — these models strike a balance between flagship-level features and budget-friendly pricing. Even here, phones run the gamut from the super-cheap A21 to what we're looking at today, the beefiest of Samsung's mid-rangers, the Galaxy A71 5G. With a big 6.7-inch screen, 5G connectivity, and a 64MP-headlining quad-camera array, is this the A-series phone to finally get you asking, "who needs a flagship?"
Gaming phones are a newer niche for Android devices, and Nubia is one of the companies running headlong into this fledgling field. This past May, we took a look at the Red Magic 5, and we did not come away impressed thanks to numerous bugs and compromises. Now that the Red Magic 5S is here, and we can say for certain that features like internal cooling and a high refresh rate come at a cost: the Red Magic 5S is good for gaming but not much else.
The Red Magic 5 isn't a complete wash—its gaming-centric features and performance help to even out the device's lack of polish.
The Galaxy Note is an unusual smartphone for one reason, and one reason only in 2020: its stylus, the beloved S Pen. And while everything else about it feels incredibly familiar, it's impossible to deny that no other phone can scratch the very particular itch Samsung does with the Note. If you were a bit of cynic, you'd probably sum up the Note20 Ultra as "an S20 Ultra with a pen," and I'll level with you: you wouldn't really be wrong.
Sony has been making noise-canceling headphones for years, and it's gotten pretty good at it. We had very few complaints about Sony's WH-1000XM3 headphones, so there wasn't much to fix in the latest iteration. Still, Sony listened to customer feedback and made several notable improvements in the new WH-1000XM4. They still sound phenomenal, but Sony added wear detection, some new Bluetooth tricks, and made the noise cancelation even more effective. At the same time, the XM4s look almost identical to the last-gen headphones. They don't look ugly or cheap, but the design isn't as striking as I'd expect from the best noise-canceling headphones on the market.
This story was originally published and last updated .
It's been almost a year since Microsoft first teased the Surface Duo, and we've been waiting to get our hands on one ever since. Our review unit arrived a few days ago, and given the excitement around it, we thought we would show you what it looks like in person ahead of our full review. While the unboxing isn't exactly anything groundbreaking, just holding the Duo in your hands makes you realize Microsoft's built something special here, something legitimately new and different. In other words: the Surface Duo is really cool.