Best Phone in 2019
Our best phone in 2019 list has changed dramatically thanks to new smartphones that keep being released: the Galaxy Note 10 in August, iPhone 11 in September, and the Google Pixel 4 in October. That means it’s smartphone shopping season.
Picking up one of these top-tier handsets is an expensive investment, no matter if it comes from Samsung, Apple or Google. Some of these phone prices start at $1,000, so you’ll want to take your decision seriously. But don’t worry: we’re here to guide you through the ins and outs of each…along with our professional opinion about how they rank.
Our idea of the best phone has a big screen, yet is easy to handle; packs a camera suite capable of replacing a point-and-shoot; and has enough processor power and battery to get work done while you’re on the go. You won’t find slow smartphones with anything less than all-day battery life on this list.
Tomorrow’s top smartphone? That’ll probably be a 5G phone, like the Galaxy S10 5G, and then, eventually, a fordable phone with 5G, starting with the Huawei Mate X and Samsung Galaxy Fold. But foldable phones are unproven, and 5G in the US isn’t in enough cities around the country to recommend. Our list will remain practical.
Why we have more than a No. 1 pick: We have a top pick, but not everyone looks for the same smartphone features. Some will demand iOS 13 and cling to Apple’s iMessage, while others will want customizations and Google Assistant tools available in Android 10. Our phone reviews and best phone list reflect that diversity.
Likewise, your contract with AT&T, Verizon, Sprint or T-Mobile is a preference. The best phone for AT&T may not be available on-contract on Verizon, and vice-versa. While we’ve seen more unlocked phones in the US in 2019, not all are available for every carrier. We have to take that into account when recommending phones, and we favor those that are completely unlocked or available on the four major carriers.
Our pick for best phone isn’t just crowning the newest iPhone and calling it a day, though our list does have a lot of familiar names: Apple, Samsung, Google and LG, all in the top 15. Newer companies in the US like Huawei and OnePlus make the list, too, though their limited availability is noted.
Best phone at a glance:
- Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus
- iPhone 11
- Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus
- iPhone 11 Pro Max
- Samsung Galaxy S10e
- OnePlus 7 Pro
- Google Pixel 4 XL
- Huawei P30 Pro
- Samsung Galaxy S10
- iPhone XR