The HMD-backed resurgence of Nokia in the smartphone market has been a real treat to watch. After years of watching Microsoft bungle its Nokia acquisition, the Nokia name is again emblazoned on excellent smartphone products. However, most Nokia phones have been toward the budget end of the spectrum. They've been good for the money, but the Nokia 9 PureView is a true flagship with high-end specs, a wild five-camera setup, and an in-display fingerprint sensor. All that, and it's a few hundred dollars less than competing phones. Read More
I reviewed the Galaxy S10+, and I had a lot of positive things to say about it. Epic battery life, an outstanding display, and performance that blew away almost anything coming out of 2018 set a new bar for smartphones this year, and I still think all that's true. But it's a phone with drawbacks: a fairly terrible fingerprint scanner, a very high price, and a bunch of secondary cameras that really aren't all that great, making them feel like afterthoughts. The standard Galaxy S10 doesn't really do much to redeem those faults - it's a bit cheaper, sure, but you take such a substantial hit on battery life that it's hard to say it comes with no tradeoffs. Read More
The Galaxy S10+ has the largest display, biggest battery, and the most base storage and RAM Samsung has ever fitted to a mainline Galaxy S handset. Its screen is the best and brightest of any phone on the planet, its processor the most advanced in any Android device, it has five cameras, and, oh: it’s really expensive.
Samsung wants a thousand of your hard-earned dollars for the privilege of owning its biggest, baddest Galaxy S phone to date. Knowing full well you’ll be able to get it for less than that in three months, this may seem a dubious proposition. But honestly? Read More
Nubia is finally selling a phone in North America. Sadly, it's not that wacky dual-screen device but the more modest Red Magic Mars gaming phone. We've talked repeatedly about how most gaming phones aren't any more suited to gaming than the competition, but the Red Magic Mars at least tries to justify the name with dedicated shoulder buttons and a custom gaming mode. Read More
At today's glitzy Unpacked event in San Francisco, Samsung unveiled a raft of new products, some of which are mostly aspirational for the time being. One device the company will hope to sell a boatload of in the coming months is the Galaxy S10e, a new cheaper variant in the popular series. It's a departure from the norm for Samsung, and a response to growing consumer unrest at the rising price of high-end flagship phones. It also serves to counter Apple's more affordable iPhone XR, obvious from the identical $749 starting price and variety of bright colors being made available. Read More
Nokia's nothing short of a legend when it comes to mobile phones, having been responsible for some of the most iconic handsets of all time. Over the years we've seen the brand change hands numerous times, reinventing itself and crossing platform lines in the process, but it's always been a survivor, managing to find its next niche. Most recently that's meant creating some no-nonsense, streamlined Android handsets under the direction of HMD Global. Now HMD is finally making inroads onto the US carrier marketplace, bringing Nokia handsets to both Cricket and Verizon. Today we're taking a look at what that Cricket option has to offer as we review the Nokia 3.1 Plus. Read More
Since Samsung unveiled the Infinity-O display, anticipation has been building for notchless phones with what's become known as the hole-punch camera cutout. The View20, from Huawei sub-brand Honor, was unveiled in Paris today for the European market after debuting in Hong Kong at the end of 2018. From a purely aesthetic point of view, it's certainly refreshing. The 4.5mm camera hole might not be quite as inconspicuous as Honor's marketing materials would have us believe, but it's got to be better than a notch, right?
The other major selling point of the View20 is that it's the first phone to ship with a 48MP camera sensor — the Sony IMX586 CMOS — with tiny 0.8 μm pixels. Read More
It's been a strange year for smartphone design. The notch has infiltrated pretty much every major OEM at every price point, yet everyone seems to hate it (or at least those most vocal on the internet). Manufacturers keep plowing on, however, with even Samsung jumping on the camera cutout bandwagon ahead of the Galaxy S10 launch. If you're patiently waiting for the display cutout fad to end, it's good to know some Chinese smartphone makers have already come up with alternative solutions for bezel-free phones. Read More
Chinese manufacturer Xiaomi is a jack of all trades. It makes a variety of connected gadgets, including TVs, toothbrushes, scooters, and even kettles. Yet, we know it mostly as a smartphone maker, and it’s now the fourth-largest in the world. It’s reached those lofty heights thanks to a simple promise: quality hardware at rock-bottom prices, and its flagship Mi 8 lineup is a prime example of that. Read More
Smartphones have achieved the ridiculous level of market penetration they have thanks in no small part to their universal utility: While in the not-too-distant past you might have carried around a separate MP3 player, game console, PDA, flashlight, and any number of other accessories in addition to your cell phone, having all this functionality baked into one device is what helps make the general-purpose smartphone so appealing. But lately we've been seeing the emergence of more specialized phones, and easily the most visible segment there has been hardware targeted at gamers. Today we're looking at just how successful one of those efforts has been, as we review the ASUS ROG Phone. Read More