More open than the iPhone and first to adopt mobile technologies (wireless charging has been an Android thing for years), Android is where people head who want to be on the cutting edge of the smartphone frontier.
Here are the 8 models that we think won’t let you down.
1•Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL
Yes, there were the issues with the OLED screen with the bigger Pixel 2 XL, but this is the best camera you can get on a phone and Google Assistant is miles ahead of other voice assistants. This phone also gets bonus points for running an unaltered version of Android, which means a better looking phone along with much faster software updates.
If the screen issues have scared you off, the good news is the smaller Pixel 2 packs the same camera as the XL. Which is to say, if you prioritize photography, but like a smaller phone, this one works wonderfully.
For $500, you get a hell of a lot of phone, and that’s been true of OnePlus’ phones since the beginning. With a near bezel-less display, a Snapdragon 835 processor, an 8GB of RAM, a metal body, and face recognition unlock, it’s feature-laden design is only rivaled by the iPhone X.
In fact, it even has a headphone jack.
3•Samsung Galaxy Note 8
With Samsung looking to put the exploding Note 7 nightmare behind them, the Galaxy Note 8 reminds the world why Samsung’s biggest phone is also one of the best you can buy.
Like its smaller and equally impressive Galaxy S8, the Note 8 is packed with the most impressive tech you’ll find in a smartphone. It’s Super AMOLED display is one of the very best and it’s camera, though not quite as good as the Pixel, is far from being a slouch.
But the Note 8’s most noticeable feature remains its included stylus. It also remains its biggest selling point. If you won’t be using that little pen much, you’ll likely be more satisfied with the bigger S8+ or even the Pixel XL.
4•Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+
Preserving the same design and many of the same features from the the S8 and S8+, the S9 remains Samsung’s flagship for a reason. For years the S series has led the way as what a premium Android phone can be. But even with more competitors crowding the field, the Galaxy S9 still stands on its own.
Its big improvements over the Galaxy S8 include an upgraded camera, better speakers, and front-facing camera tech for iris recognition and AR Emoji (basically Apple’s Animoji).
Its screen tech and industrial design has yet to be rivaled, but just make sure you like their flavor of software.
But if those things aren’t super important to you, last year’s S8 will likely see a price cut in the coming weeks (and it’s still very good).