Mobile devices

Published on December 31st, 2018 | by Biplab Das

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The 2018 Phone Awards

In this world, there is no such thing as the best smartphone because there is a lot of competition between manufacturers to make the best smartphone to suit everyone. Also, making the best smartphone to fit everyone is impossible as everyone has different tastes. Popular smartphones are divided between two groups, the ones running Android and the other by Apple, running iOS. But for purposes of the comparison, we will consider the all the smartphones and not discriminate based on the platform.

2018 is ending. We are moving forward to a new year. So I wish everyone a Happy New Year in advance. We still have a day left so I’m thinking about choosing the best smartphone from the ones launched this year.

Choosing the best smartphone is not quite simple as we think. Since there is no objectively the best phone, I didn’t make any review scoring system. Instead, I’m choosing subjectively from real-world experience.

Before that, I would like to mention that in my list you will find all kinds of smartphones and in any budget. I’m also categorizing them in best camera, best performance, best build, best unique design and best value for money.

Best Value for Money

The smartphone market is aggressive these days: you can get thousands of good devices in a very tight budget. Here, I’m in a tie between these two devices: The Asus Zenfone 5z and Xiaomi Poco F1. Both devices give similar performance. In some aspects, Poco is better and for others, 5z. But when it comes to battery life and overall longevity, the winner is Xiaomi Poco F1.

Although I love the Zenfone 5z for its design and performance, most of the ASUS phones I have used have poor longevity. After using for 9 months,  you will notice lag, excessive heating, and battery issues. So, here I have to choose the Xiaomi POCO F1 as the winner.

Best Performance

Here in this category I also have two devices: the OnePlus 6T and the LG G7 thinQ. I know that almost everyone will vote for the 6T but I feel that the LG G7 is the most underrated phone. The LG G7 is cheaper than the OnePlus 6T, but you are not missing much in terms of features. Coming to the performance, you might wonder why I didn’t select flagship devices like Galaxy S9+, Note9 or iPhone XR, XS Max? Because those phones are actually flagships at flagship prices, so they are meant to deliver good performance CPU and GPU-wise, so I have categorized them separately.

Coming back to the topic, here I would like to choose the G7. The G7 is an underrated phone, with the value of money, good specs, and performance. Yes, the 6T is the better choice with waterdrop notch and in display fingerprint scanner. But the G7 defining features like IP68 certification, wireless charging, better camera and 6T’s performance in a cheaper price distinguishes it as a winner in this category.

Best Unique Design

In this category, we’re not comparing specs but looking for the most uncommon design. Most smartphone designs are unoriginal. From those with glass back to those with metal chassis, every device has a rectangular design with a notch on top of the display.

So what would be my choice? The Blackberry Key2.

This is a compact sized device with a physical keyboard taking your typing experience to the next level. In the time of full-body displays, I still found it satisfying to type on the physical keys. No matter how realistic the haptic feedback is, typing on glass is still typing on glass.

The Key2 has a higher price tag but it is still one-of-a-kind phone. It also has decent specs and Blackberry’s security. So here, the Key2 is the clear winner.

The Best Camera

Here in this category, I’m confused because it is hard to choose between so many devices. As I already mentioned before, I have iPhone XS Max, Galaxy Note 9, Pixel 3XL, Mate20 Pro and S9+ in the list.

You can already see it is really hard to choose, but if we compare all these devices together then we either get the best performer or get versatile results.

In some other articles, you will find someone saying the Pixel 3XL is the best, someone saying the Mate20 Pro is the best and someone rooting for the iPhone XS Max. So there is no clear winner here. So I will go with the phone that offers the most capabilities.

I’m choosing the phone that every photographer wants: The Mate20 Pro. The Mate20 Pro has 3-lens camera: 40+20+8MP. This year they have also replaced the monochrome lens with an ultra-wide angle lens so you won’t miss any detail in any picture. Moreover, the software is fully loaded with professional features. So, the Mate20 Pro is the clear winner.

The first runner up is the Pixel 3XL. It is the only phone with a single camera dominating the market. When you have a Pixel phone you don’t need to worry about adjusting manual mode settings. You just need to point and shoot for getting perfect shots every time.

Finally here is the last category of the awards.

The best build

Nobody was awarded in this category before. I am doing this for the first time, in order to find a smartphone with rock-solid build.

Here I’m choosing the Razer Phone 2. Yes, you may not like it because of the higher price and bezels on top and bottom. But, I prefer bezels over the notch.

This is the smartphone for people who want a rock-solid build without compromising on the features.

I don’t think that I need to talk about the specs but I should mention the features that I liked the most. With the 120Hz display having up to 520nits of brightness, IP67 dust/water resistance (up to 1m for 30 mins), RGB Illuminated Razer Chroma logo on the back and front glass, and aluminum body with 220gm weight, I feels this phone is the king in this category.


I am ending this article here. If you think that something is missing in my list, let me know by commenting below. The holiday season is almost at its end and New Year is knocking on the door. So it’s time to log out from the digital life and enjoy the rest of the winter with friends and family. I will be back soon with new articles. Goodbye for now!

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About the Author

Biplab Das

My name is Biplab Das. I’m a writer, sometimes a tech YouTuber, blogger, ICT tutor and a part time website developer whose childhood obsession with science fiction never quite faded. A quarter-century later, the technology that I coveted as a kid is woven into the fabric of everyday life. I’ve spent the past years to learn these technologies, People say smartphones are boring these days, but I think everyone is beginning to take this wonderful technology marvel for granted.



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