August 2022

Smartphones: Meta Ranking Report

This report contains an aggregate consensus of Smartphone rankings posted by key online experts, as of August 2022.

Summary

As of 3 Aug 2022, Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra takes the cake as the most critically-acclaimed smartphone with 8 expert endorsements. 3 experts out of 8 recommended it as the '#1 smartphone' this month. It is followed by iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 , with 7 and 7 expert endorsements respectively.

At a glance - August 2022 Ranking

Scroll horizontally to browse this ranking table
Rank Change Price Smartphone
Laptop Mag
Tom's Guide
TechRadar
Consumer Reports
Pocket-lint
IGN
Creative Bloq
T3
The Verge
Digital Trends
1
- $1080
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra
-
2
1
-
3
6
1
1
5
3
2
- $999
iPhone 13 Pro
1
7
3
-
2
3
-
-
3
1
3
- $829
iPhone 13
-
3
7
-
5
1
-
7
1
2
4
- $1099
iPhone 13 Pro Max
6
1
-
1
-
-
2
2
-
-
5
- $860
Google Pixel 6 Pro
8
9
-
-
1
4
-
5
-
4
6
- $1400
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3
-
12
11
-
-
7
8
-
8
8
7
- $558
Google Pixel 6
2
4
4
-
-
-
-
-
6
6
8
+2 $429
iPhone SE
5
10
2
4
-
-
-
-
-
7
9
-1 $779
OnePlus 10 Pro
9
8
6
-
6
-
-
3
-
-
10
+1 $979
Oppo Find X5 Pro
-
-
-
-
4
-
5
4
-
-
11
+2 Check price
Xiaomi 12 Pro
10
-
-
-
7
-
-
6
-
-
12
- $750
Samsung Galaxy S22
-
11
5
-
-
-
-
8
-
-
13
+1 $900
Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus
3
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
2
-
14
+1 $1200
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra
-
-
-
2
-
-
-
9
-
-
15
+1 $699
OnePlus 9 Pro
-
-
9
-
-
-
3
-
-
-
16
New * $449
Google Pixel 6a
4
5
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
17
- $729
Apple iPhone 13 Mini
-
-
10
-
-
-
-
-
4
-
18
- $350
Samsung Galaxy A53
-
6
8
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
19
- $829
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3
7
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
7
-

We ranked Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra #1 in August 2022 because:

  • 8 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
  • Out of those, 3 experts ranked Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Tom's Guide

Samsung's best phone

Pros
Best-in-class display
Built-in S Pen
Improved cameras with better Night mode
Faster 45W charging

Cons
Shorter battery life than S21 Ultra
Very expensive
Less RAM than previous model to start

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TechRadar

The best phone overall

Pros
Incredible cameras and zoom
Excellent little S Pen

Cons
No microSD slot
Battery life could be better

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Pocket-lint

Pros
Superb build and display
Camera performance is elite

Cons
Battery life slightly lets it down
Charging speeds could be quicker

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IGN

Best Phablet

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Creative Bloq

The best do-it-all smartphone

Pros
Brilliant pen tech
Excellent camera zoom

Cons
Big and bulky

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T3

The best flagship Android phone right now

Pros
Seriously powerful hardware
Versatile camera with AI features
S Pen comes in a handy slot

Cons
It's pricey
No microSD card slot
S Pen stylus won't be for all

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The Verge

The Phone that does Everything

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Digital Trends

Best Android phone

Pros
S Pen is convenient and highly accurate
Versatile camera takes great photos
The latest processor for power
Long software support
Beautiful high refresh rate screen

Cons
Not very fast battery charging
Large and heavy

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We ranked iPhone 13 Pro #2 in August 2022 because:

  • 7 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
  • Out of those, 2 experts ranked iPhone 13 Pro as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Laptop Mag

Best smartphone for most people

Pros
Bright 120Hz display
Excellent camera performance
Unmatched software support
Outstanding battery life
Untouchable performance

Cons
Slow charging
Telephoto needs more reach
Notch needs to go

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Tom's Guide

A powerhouse flagship with great battery life

Pros
Fast A15 Bionic performance
Stellar cameras
Long battery life

Cons
Relatively slow charging
No Touch ID

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TechRadar

The best performing phone around

Pros
Great performance
Strong battery life

Cons
Limited design changes
Notch still too large

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Pocket-lint

Pros
Finally offers a 120Hz display
Improved battery life
Camera is simply brilliant

Cons
No big leaps from iPhone 12 Pro
Heavy users may still challenge the battery

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IGN

Best iPhone

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The Verge

Best Phone for Photography and Video in 2022

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Digital Trends

Best overall smartphone

Pros
Packs lots of power into the size
Incredible camera and video performance
Very long-lasting battery
Smooth and responsive 120Hz screen
Comes with 1TB storage option

Cons
No USB-C
Not all third-party apps are optimized for higher refresh screen

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Methodology: combine opinions of key experts

Identify Experts

We identify key publishers and experts that consistently review and recommend Smartphones.

Capture Rankings

For each publisher we find a currently recommended "top 10" list of Smartphones, it must be updated in the last 9 months.

Aggregate Rankings

We put all those lists together and aggregate them. The more frequently a product is recommended, the higher it is in our ranking

Experts chosen for August 2022 ranking

We ranked iPhone 13 #3 in August 2022 because:

  • 7 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
  • Out of those, 2 experts ranked iPhone 13 as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Tom's Guide

The best phone for the money

Pros
Best-in-class cameras
A15 Bionic blows away Android phones
Brighter display
Long battery life

Cons
Charging could be faster
No telephoto zoom or 120Hz screen

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TechRadar

The mid-range alternative for Apple users who don't need pro features

Pros
Strong battery life
Powerful internals

Cons
Minimal design changes
No 120Hz screen

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Pocket-lint

Pros
Great display and camera
Battery life is improved over iPhone 12

Cons
Misses out on some flagship features

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IGN

Best Smartphone

Go to ranking

T3

The best phone for most people

Pros
Great screen
Sensible size
Top performance

Cons
Lacks Pro Motion
Limited zoom range

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The Verge

Best iPhone to buy in 2022

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Digital Trends

Runner-up best iPhone

Pros
Fast and responsive performance
Excellent camera and video capabilities
Long-lasting battery life
Supports most premium features

Cons
Still no USB-C
No higher refresh rate or telephoto lens

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We ranked iPhone 13 Pro Max #4 in August 2022 because:

  • 5 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
  • Out of those, 2 experts ranked iPhone 13 Pro Max as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Laptop Mag

Best big screen iOS smartphone

Pros
Beautiful, premium chassis
Excellent performance
Great battery life
Gorgeous display with 120Hz refresh rate
Stellar cameras

Cons
Really expensive no matter the config

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Tom's Guide

The best phone overall

Pros
Best-in-class cameras
120Hz ProMotion display
Superior performance

Cons
Charging could be faster
No Touch ID

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Consumer Reports

Best iPhone

Go to ranking

Creative Bloq

The best iPhone ever

Pros
Superb camera
Great battery life

Cons
Very expensive
Bulky

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T3

The best flagship Apple phone right now

Pros
Pro Motion fast refresh screen is large and luscious
Outstanding for photo and video
Great battery life

Cons
It's bulky and heavy
No distinctive special features over the iPhone 13 Pro

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We ranked Google Pixel 6 Pro #5 in August 2022 because:

  • 6 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
  • Out of those, 1 expert ranked Google Pixel 6 Pro as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Laptop Mag

Best affordable flagship phone

Pros
Excellent software support
Fantastic and versatile camera system
Unique software features
Affordably priced
Bright 120Hz display

Cons
Unproven processor
No charger in the box

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Tom's Guide

A very good flagship value

Pros
Incredible cameras
Tensor performs well
Cheaper than other flagships
Attractive new design

Cons
Disappointing battery life

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Pocket-lint

Our Top Pick

Pros
Top-tier camera performance
Bold design

Cons
Slightly chunky
Not especially fast charging

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IGN

Best Android Phone

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T3

The best phone for a pure Android OS experience

Pros
QHD+ display with 120Hz refresh rate
Staggeringly good AI photography features

Cons
Still no optical zoom camera
No charger in the box

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Digital Trends

Runner-up best Android

Pros
Incredible camera
Fun camera features and editing tools
Vibrant, colorful screen
Android 12
Long software support

Cons
Unreliable in-display fingerprint sensor
Flaky cellular connection in some situations
120Hz screen can jitter

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We ranked Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 #6 in August 2022 because:

  • 6 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Tom's Guide

The best phone with a foldable screen

Pros
More durable, water resistant design
Dual 120Hz displays
Improved mutitasking

Cons
S Pen isn't included
Still pricey

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TechRadar

The best foldable phone

Pros
S Pen support
More durable design

Cons
Cameras could be better
No front-screen S pen support

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IGN

Best Foldable Phone

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Creative Bloq

The best folding smartphone

Pros
Powerful
Beautiful design

Cons
Very expensive
Cameras could be better

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The Verge

Best Folding Phone of 2022

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Digital Trends

Best foldable smartphone

Pros
Improved screen durability and IPX8 waterproofing
Powerful hardware and capabilities
Solid rear cameras
Great for multitasking and productivity

Cons
Still expensive
Lackluster battery life

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We ranked Google Pixel 6 #7 in August 2022 because:

  • 5 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Laptop Mag

Best phone value available today

Pros
Excellent software support
Unique AI software features
Bright 90Hz display
Affordable price
30W fast charging

Cons
No telephoto lens
No charger in the box

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Tom's Guide

The best Android experience for a great price

Pros
Tensor chip adds smarts to the phone
Excellent photo-editing features
Android 12 is a welcome update

Cons
Battery life can be short over 5G
Lacks telephoto lens and 120Hz display of Pixel 6

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TechRadar

The best camera phone

Pros
New design looks classy
Cameras and software are incredible
Great displays

Cons
Middling battery
Pixel 6 price fluctuates by carrier
Pro priced high for extras

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The Verge

The Best Google Experience

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Digital Trends

Best value

Pros
Great camera
Screen is colorful and vibrant
Latest Android 12 software
Years of software updates

Cons
Flakey connectivity
Fast charger not included

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We ranked iPhone SE #8 in August 2022 because:

  • 5 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Laptop Mag

Best budget iOS smartphone

Pros
Performance beast
Portable, compact form factor
Satisfying Touch ID
Decent price

Cons
Obsolete design
No Night mode
Middling battery life

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Tom's Guide

The most affordable iPhone

Pros
Fastest performance for the money
Very good photo quality
More durable design

Cons
No Night mode for camera
No mmWave 5G support

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TechRadar

The best budget phone

Pros
Powerful for the cost
A 5G iPhone that's still affordable

Cons
Starts at only 64GB storage
Screen is cramped

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Consumer Reports

Best Low-Priced (Under $500) iPhone

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Digital Trends

Best small smartphone

Pros
Future-proof A15 Bionic chip
Affordable price point
Excellent image processing
Compact form factor

Cons
Dated bezels and design
Unexciting LCD panel

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We ranked OnePlus 10 Pro #9 in August 2022 because:

  • 5 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Laptop Mag

Best affordable flagship phone

Pros
Versatile triple camera array
Aggressively priced
Outstanding battery life and fast charging
Bright 120Hz display
Powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor

Cons
Limited to 128GB of storage
Camera can't quite match top flagships

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Tom's Guide

A great Samsung alternative

Pros
Excellent battery life
Beautiful new design
Best OnePlus cameras to date
Lower price than last year

Cons
Telephoto is just 8MP

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TechRadar

The best OnePlus phone for the most seamless Android experience

Pros
Fantastic screen
Undercuts its rivals

Cons
Cameras aren’t perfect
Slower charging speed in US

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Pocket-lint

Pros
Fantastic display
Speedy performance
Customisable and bloat-free software

Cons
Battery life could be stronger
Not very different to Find X5 Pro
USB-A charging cable is puzzling

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T3

The best phone for most people

Pros
6.7-inch QHD+, 120Hz display
Powerful efficient performance
Seriously fast charging

Cons
Other phones have a better battery life
Camera can be a bit inconsistent

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We ranked Oppo Find X5 Pro #10 in August 2022 because:

  • 3 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Pocket-lint

Pros
Durable, beautiful design
Incredible display
Excellent charging speeds

Cons
The punch-hole camera is quite stark
The camera software isn't that intuitive

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Creative Bloq

The best smartphone for an incredible camera

Pros
Unique, sleek design
Stunning display
Excellent camera

Cons
Expensive
Poor zoom on camera

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T3

The best Android phone design

Pros
6.7-inch 120Hz, QHD+ screen
Long-lasting battery and fast charging
Impressive camera system

Cons
No MicroSD card slot or headphone jack
Expensive

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We ranked Xiaomi 12 Pro #11 in August 2022 because:

  • 3 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Laptop Mag

Best alternative Android phone

Pros
Unmatched charging and battery life
Impressive triple 50MP camera array
Solid software support
Bright adaptive 120Hz display
Powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor

Cons
Occasional stutters in OS
Weak telephoto versus competitors
Generic design

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Pocket-lint

Pros
The screen is unrivalled
Very good camera trio
Slick software experience

Cons
Battery life is mixed
Notification issues
Can run warm

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T3

One of the best screens in an Android phone

Pros
Superb screen for entertainment
Strong triple rear cameras

Cons
Battery life fairly weak
Some software quirks

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We ranked Samsung Galaxy S22 #12 in August 2022 because:

  • 3 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Tom's Guide

The new low-cost Galaxy flagship

Pros
Most affordable Galaxy S22 model
Improved zoom and low-light photos
Solid performance

Cons
Below-average battery life
Cameras still trail Pixel 6, iPhone 13

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TechRadar

The best Samsung phone if you don't need the kitted-out S22 Ultra

Pros
Small and solidly built
Excellent performance

Cons
Not a major update
Camera system pales in comparison to its Ultra cousin

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T3

The best small-scale Android flagship phone

Pros
Stunning Dynamic AMOLED 2X display
Loads of new AI-based camera features
Powerful hardware

Cons
Not that different to the S21
S22 Plus and S22 Ultra exist

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We ranked Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus #13 in August 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Laptop Mag

Best premium Android phone for most people

Pros
Unmatched optical zoom
Gorgeous adaptive QHD+ AMOLED screen
Excellent battery life
S Pen support

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The Verge

The Best Android Phone to Buy in 2022

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We ranked Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra #14 in August 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Expert Consensus
(as of 26 Jul 2021)
The most powerful Android smartphone available that exceeds expectations in terms of performance and features at a premium price.
Experts Praise For:
  • S Pen support
  • Impressive optical zoom capability
  • Large AMOLED screen
  • Extended battery life
Experts Criticise For:
  • No microSD card support
  • Charger not included
  • Very expensive
A more detailed summary:

The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra was made to impress, and it doesn’t come short on features. It is a beast in terms of size and power. Its massive size is justified by a large 6.8-inch AMOLED display that delivers a great viewing experience, and with a 120Hz refresh rate, it is certainly smooth. Backed by a powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor and a generous 12GB of RAM, it is responsive and will perform without much effort. The 888 happens to be the most powerful chip that Qualcomm has to offer. Of course, this needs a battery that can last. Thankfully, the 5,000mAh battery will do just that. The S21 Ultra runs on Android 11 and comes with S Pen support. However, the stylus is sold separately.

While all the features above make the S21 Ultra an exceptional smartphone, the camera is what sets it further apart from the flagship offerings of other brands. Its quad-camera system features wide-angle, ultra-wide, and two telephoto cameras that enable a whole range of capabilities for the device. Recording 8K video is effortless, and its 108MP wide-angle camera captures high-quality images that are crisp and clear. The system is capable of 3X, 10X, and 100X (Space Zoom) zoom. Taking pictures at 100X zoom surprisingly produces better images now.

The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra is a premium smartphone that comes with a premium price. It does not include a charger nor an S Pen. However, if those things are not an issue for the user, then it is worth the price tag.

Critic endorsements:
Consumer Reports

Best Android Phone

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T3

The best last-gen Android flagship on the market

Pros
Superb 120Hz, WQHD+, HDR10+ screen
Hyper premium internal hardware
Versatile, feature-packed camera
S Pen digital stylus support

Cons
Still pretty pricey
S22 Ultra adds integrated S Pen stylus

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We ranked OnePlus 9 Pro #15 in August 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Expert Consensus
(as of 17 Sep 2021)
A very good smartphone that’s fast and shoots great pictures.
Experts Praise For:
  • Greatly improved camera
  • Impressive AMOLED display at 120Hz
  • Fast charging (wired and wireless)
  • Good phone performance
Experts Criticise For:
  • A bit expensive
A more detailed summary:

The 9 Pro is the latest flagship offering from OnePlus. There are several things to like about this smartphone that are worth mentioning. To start with, it has an impressive 6.7-inch AMOLED display that is convenient to use. The size is just right to handle comfortably, not too big and not too small. The screen responds well, thanks to the higher refresh rate. Achieving full charge status is fast, with wired charging taking about half an hour to fully charge, and wireless charging taking less than an hour. That’s actually impressive. In addition, the 4,500mAh battery can last a full day with normal use, depending on the usage.

The smartphone packs enough muscle with the powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor and 8GB of memory, providing all the heavy lifting. The phone also features a much-improved camera system with the help of Hasselblad technology. The OnePlus 9 Pro is a good phone overall. The price may be a bit steep for some people, but in exchange, you get a great camera, good performance, a high-quality screen, fast-charging capability, and decent battery life.

Critic endorsements:
TechRadar

Excellent camera, great Android experience

Pros
The best OnePlus camera phone
Great power

Cons
High price
No microSD support

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Creative Bloq

The best sub-£1,000 camera phone

Pros
Impressive camera
Sharp, smooth screen

Cons
Good, not great battery life
Mediocre zoom on camera

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We ranked Google Pixel 6a #16 in August 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Laptop Mag

Best affordable Android smartphone

Pros
Excellent software support
Unique AI software features
Bright and colorful display
Affordable $449 price
Solid performance

Cons
Older camera sensors
Lacks wireless and true fast charging
60Hz display

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Tom's Guide

The best phone under $500

Pros
Excellent cameras
Bright display
Tensor-powered features for a low price

Cons
Subpar battery life
Noticeably cheap materials

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We ranked Apple iPhone 13 Mini #17 in August 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
TechRadar

Excellent for those who prefer smaller phones

Pros
Gorgeous compact design
Better battery life than iPhone 12 mini

Cons
Only 60Hz screen
Higher price than 2020 model

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The Verge

Best small smartphone in 2022

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We ranked Samsung Galaxy A53 #18 in August 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Tom's Guide

The best low-cost phone for Android fans

Pros
Good display with 120Hz refresh rate
Excellent software support
Expandable storage up to 1TB

Cons
Pointless macro and depth cameras
Ho-hum battery life

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TechRadar

The best budget Samsung phone

Pros
Good cameras for price
Good-looking screen

Cons
Slow to charge
Slow to navigate

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We ranked Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 #19 in August 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Smartphones” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Laptop Mag

Best foldable phone you should actually consider buying

Pros
Unique and stunning design
Bright, vivid 120Hz display
Excellent camera performance
IPX8 water resistance
Affordably priced

Cons
Terrible battery life
Lacks telephoto

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The Verge

Best Flip Phone of 2022

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