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Compare the Best SmartphonesMay 2021

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What is the Kagoo Score? Our unique smartphones rating which considers: 17,000 US prices • 52,000 expert & user reviews • 190 product comparisons • 1,700 industry awards • Score breakdown
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$250
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5.7"
DISPLAY
128GB
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1080 X 2280
PIXELS
DISPLAY
$30 Price Drop
$229
$199.00$229
4.7"
DISPLAY
128GB
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$179
$159.00$179
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256GB
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What Are The Best Smartphone Brands?

We looked at the reviews for every smartphone and used this to calculate the average overall rating of each brand. The top rated smartphone brand is Samsung with an average rating of 84%.

Rank Brand Number of Smartphones Price Range Average Rating
#1
Samsung Smartphones 51 $38 - $1,197
84%
15,092 reviews
#2
Apple Smartphones 20 $136 - $1,366
77%
8,073 reviews
#3
Huawei Smartphones 25 $44 - $3,289
77%
7,680 reviews
#4
Oppo Smartphones 24 $194 - $12,550
72%
3,041 reviews

Trending Smartphone Comparisons

Apple
iPhone SE 2020
$220.00
$329 cheaper
Newer by three
months
VS
Samsung
Galaxy S20 Ultra
$549.00
Better Kagoo
Score
22 more awards
Better brand
Samsung
Galaxy A12
$119.00
$120 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
One more award
VS
Alcatel
3L
$239.00
Expert reviews
are slightly
better
4 Expert Review
Sites Gave It a
Higher Review
Score
Apple
iPhone SE 2020
$220.00
128GB bigger
storage
capacity
VS
Samsung
Galaxy A32
$155.00
$65 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
Better brand
Huawei
P20 Pro
$284.79
$314 cheaper
47 more awards
Better brand
VS
Oppo
Find X3 Lite
$599.00
Bigger storage
capacity
Newer by six
months
Bigger display
diagonal
Huawei
P30 Pro
$398.00
29 more awards
User reviews
are
significantly
better
Expert reviews
are a lot
better
VS
Samsung
Galaxy A32
$155.00
$243 cheaper
23 months newer
Better Kagoo
Score
Huawei
P30 Lite New Edition
$529.00
Two more awards
Better overall
reviews
Better expert
reviews
VS
Samsung
Galaxy A32
$155.00
$374 cheaper
Better brand
Better Kagoo
Score
Google
Pixel 4a
$302.95
Better Kagoo
Score
Newer by 18
months
12 more awards
VS
Samsung
Galaxy A40
$236.99
$66 cheaper
Better brand
Marginally
bigger display
diagonal
Honor
20 Lite
$217.99
Four more
awards
A bit better
expert reviews
7 Expert Review
Sites Gave It a
Higher Review
Score
VS
Samsung
Galaxy A12
$119.00
$99 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
21 months newer
Honor
View 20
$347.10
20 more awards
Significantly
better user
reviews
Considerably
better expert
reviews
VS
Samsung
Galaxy A32
$155.00
$192 cheaper
Better brand
Better Kagoo
Score
Oppo
A53
$199.99
$454 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
Four months
newer
VS
Samsung
Galaxy S7
$654.20
26 more awards
Better brand
Overall reviews
are appreciably
better
Huawei
Nova 5T
$294.00
Eight more
awards
Significantly
better user
reviews
Considerably
better expert
reviews
VS
Samsung
Galaxy A32
$155.00
$139 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
Better brand
Apple
iPhone SE 2020
$220.00
Better Kagoo
Score
Bigger storage
capacity
Newer by nine
months
VS
Samsung
Galaxy A20e
$89.00
$131 cheaper
Two more awards
Better brand
Samsung
Galaxy A21s
$1,196.99
Better brand
User reviews
are a bit
better
A lot bigger
storage
capacity
VS
Motorola
Moto G9 Play
$149.99
$1,047 cheaper
Overall reviews
are slightly
better
Expert reviews
are slightly
better
Samsung
Galaxy S10
$269.00
Better brand
10 more awards
Better overall
reviews
VS
Oppo
A72
$235.99
$33 cheaper
Better user
reviews
Newer by six
months
Samsung
Galaxy S21
$769.89
10 more awards
Better brand
10 months newer
VS
OnePlus
8 Pro
$619.99
$150 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
Significantly
better user
reviews
Samsung
Galaxy A42
$315.00
$284 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
One more award
VS
Oppo
Find X3 Lite
$599.00
A little better
overall reviews
Better expert
reviews
Bigger storage
capacity
Motorola
Edge
$349.99
Five more
awards
Expert reviews
are better
Overall reviews
are better
VS
Samsung
Galaxy A32
$155.00
$195 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
Better brand
Huawei
P40 Pro
$549.99
Better Kagoo
Score
19 more awards
384GB bigger
storage
capacity
VS
Samsung
Galaxy A70
$178.99
$371 cheaper
Better brand
Moderately
better user
reviews
Xiaomi
Redmi 9AT
$127.00
Better Kagoo
Score
Better brand
Much better
expert reviews
VS
Alcatel
1S
$53.50
$74 cheaper
Overall reviews
are slightly
better
Samsung
Galaxy A12
$119.00
$166 cheaper
Better Kagoo
Score
21 months newer
VS
Huawei
P20 Pro
$284.79
Nine more
awards
Expert reviews
are appreciably
better
14 Expert
Review Sites
Gave It a
Higher Review
Score
View All Smartphone Comparisons
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

QWhat is a Smartphone?
AA smartphone is a mobile phone that has access to the internet, and a fleet of different programs (called 'apps') to do everything from take photos, to browse facebook, to playing music.
QWhat are the main types of smartphone?
AWhile there are many different types of phone, the major split is what operating system they use. Apple's iPhone range uses 'iOS', while the majority of the other phones used 'Android'.
QWhat is 'Siri'?
ASiri is Apple's artificial assistant - a voice-controlled helper that can look up info, answer questions and perform basic tasks.
QWhat is 3G, 4G & 5G?
A3G, 4G & 5G refer to the communication networks used by the phones to transmit calls and data. Each one provides a faster, more reliable service - so a phone with 4G capabilities will download data faster than a 3G phone, but worse than a 5G phone.

Kagoo Guide to Smartphones

Mobile phones have existed since the 1980s, and are an invaluable part of modern society - most of us wouldn’t be able to function without a phone with us at all times. While originally capable of little more than making and receiving phone calls, mobile phones have seen a massive increase in their capabilities, especially in the last 20 years. Almost all mobiles these days are no longer just phones - they are smartphones.

What are Smartphones?

Smartphones is simply a mobile device that is capable of running programs, accessing the internet and transferring data, as well as standard calls/text messages. A modern smartphone is more than just a communication device - it’s a portable entertainment centre, able to store/stream hours of music, take professional quality photos and play a vast collection of games. Hard to go back to a time where you couldn’t just break out your phone and distract yourself for 5 minutes while waiting for the bus!

What is 3g/4g/5g?

Smartphones use dedicated cellular networks to transfer calls and data. As time has gone on, the networks have become more powerful - allowing faster data transfer speeds, meaning your phone will download apps or stream video faster. They are named by ‘generation’ - so a 4G (4th Generation) compatible phone will be able to access the internet and download data faster than a 3G phone, but not as fast as a model that supports 5G.

What are Apps?

One of the key features of the smartphone is the ability to download & run programs to provide additional capabilities for the phone. These are known as ‘applications’, universally shortened to ‘apps’.

You can download apps for pretty much anything you want - many websites and companies offer dedicated apps to make it easier for you to access/use their services. Popular examples include Facebook for social media, The Guardian for news, Deliveroo for takeaways, etc. There is also a fleet of apps designed for self improvement - everything from marathon training & daily exercises, to self-care & meditation support.

Of course, a large portion of available apps are games - smartphones are a potent tool for killing time or distracting yourself, so it’s unsurprising that there is a massive selection of video games available to mess about with.

All these apps are available from special portals called app stores. These collect everything together, and attempt to tame the flood of apps with personalised suggestions and searches, so you can find exactly what you’re wanting. On the iPhone this is simply called the ‘Google Play Store’.

Pricing structures for apps on smartphones can be a little bit confused. Generally speaking apps are either free or cost a small amount of money, but there are a number of important considerations:

  • Free - doesn’t require you to pay, completely free to use
  • Free (add supported) - no need to pay, but the developers raise money by showing adverts while you’re using the app. These can be varying levels of annoying, depending on how invasive they are.
  • Subscription - users will need an ongoing subscription (usually charged monthly) to continue using the app. You can normally get a free week or month to try it out before you buy. Sometimes you’ll be able to use the app free in a limited format without paying for a subscription.
  • Premium - the app costs money to buy, but there are no extra costs and no ads once you’ve paid.

What are the main types of Smartphone?

Smartphones are extremely varied, and cover a massive array of different specifications, features and prices. Some models are small, and concentrate on the basics, while others are miniature computers, with powerful graphics chips for the latest games. There are compact phones that fit neatly into a back pocket, or larger sizes for better watching movies on the tube. There are even models with special bendable screens, so that they can unfold to offer twice as much screen space!

Over time though, 2 main camps of smartphones have emerged, based on the operating system powering the phone. These are:

  • iOS - the software powering Apple’s iPhones, iPads and related devices. Offers a streamlined, easy to use experience, although one that is tightly controlled by Apple. There is little (official) 3rd party customisation possible with iOS, and the apps available are carefully curated. While this limits what can be done with the phone, only having a single version of the system means that Apple can limit compatibility issues, and ensure that users can always get the most up-to-date version of the software.
  • Android - if your phone isn’t an iPhone, it’s probably running Android. Based of the Linux operating system, Android is an open-source, extremely customisable system. While it’s not always as sleek or user-friendly as iOS, developers can modify every part of the system - allowing them to change how it functions or looks. This is a double-edged sword - on the one hand, phone makers can tweak Android to perfectly fit their needs. On the other hand, the sheer number of Android variations available can make choosing a phone difficult - there may be compatibility issues with apps, and a model of phone isn’t guaranteed to have the most recent version of the system.

As a broad generalisation, iPhones have a more polished selection of apps and have better camera functionality, while Android phones are cheaper, offer greater customizability and can be upgraded/improved.

How to choose the best smartphone for you

There are great phones available whether you look at Android or an iPhone, and your choice will depend largely on personal preference. Some important considerations while you browse our list of the best smartphones:


Screen size: A larger screen size will make it easier to watch movies, but also increase the size of the device. Some people with small hands find large phones hard to handle effectively.

Storage capacity: The larger the internal capacity, the more apps, videos & music the phone can hold at once. Some models allow you to add bigger memory cards to improve storage.

Camera: Smartphone cameras can vary drastically - from reasonably good to professional level. There is a lot to pay attention to: optical zoom (much better than digital zoom), a front facing camera for video calls/selfies, low-light mode for night shots and 3d depth perception are just a few of the extras smartphone makers add to improve the cameras on their phones.

Headphone support: As phones have become thinner and sleeker, manufacturers have to make sacrifices. One of the most controversial is the removal of physical headphone jacks from phones - without this port, you’ll have to use bluetooth headphones to listen to music.

Water-resistance: smartphones are expensive gadgets, and they can be very costly to fix or replace. Improvements to the construction process in recent years have allowed for water resistance - some models are even entirely waterproof. Look for the IP rating of a phone to see whether it can survive getting wet - if not, then it would be wise to invest in a case!

Smartphone Retailers, Prices and Features

Smartphone Prices

The price range of smartphones is from $25 to $12,550 and in total we found prices for 172 smartphones. A new smartphone costs on average $469 and 80% of smartphones are priced between $134 and $799. The most expensive mobile phone that we found is the Oppo Find X2 Pro at $12,550, and the cheapest is the Samsung Galaxy A01 at only $25.

Smartphone Brands - Price Range

Oppo smartphones range in price from $194 to $12,550, and the average price of Oppo smartphones is $1,068 which is the highest average price of all mobile phone brands.

Fairphone smartphones start at $649 and their most expensive smartphone costs $649. The second highest average smartphone price out of all brands is Fairphone smartphones with an average price of $649.

The third highest average mobile phone price out of all brands is Apple mobile phones with an average price of $622. Apple mobile phones start at $136 and their most expensive mobile phone costs $1,366.

Mobile Phone Brands - Average Ratings

We have analysed 29,616 expert reviews and 17,685 user reviews for mobile phones and used this information to determine the average rating for each brand of smartphone. Samsung is the top rated smartphone brand with an average rating of 84%. Apple is the second best brand with 77% and Huawei is the third best brand with 77%.

Biggest Mobile Phone Retailers

The biggest mobile phone retailer by number of products currently for sale is eBay. We found 167 current mobile phone offers from eBay. The second biggest retailer is Adorama with 14 offers. That means eBay is over 11 times bigger than Adorama when it comes to mobile phones. Appliances Connection is the third biggest retailer with 14 current offers.

When Are Most New Smartphones Released?

We looked at the release dates for new mobile phones over the last 3 years, but couldn't see any evident pattern. In May 2020, 13 new smartphones were released making it the biggest month that year for new mobile phone releases. In 2019 most new mobile phones were released in August, with 24 new mobile phones released that month. Seven new smartphones were released in November 2018 making it the biggest month that year for new mobile phone releases.

How Fast Do Smartphone Prices Drop After Release?

In the first 6 months after release, smartphones drop in price by 53% on average.

That means a saving of $249 on a typical $469 new smartphone if you wait 6 months before buying.

Display Diagonals

'Display Diagonal' is a measurement of the size of the screen on a smartphone, measured from the top-left to the bottom-right corner.

Across the range of mobile phones, the display diagonals range from 2.8" to 7.6". The display diagonals of the majority of mobile phones range from 6.4" to 6.8". The mobile phone with the biggest display diagonal is the Huawei Mate 20X 5G, which is a 7.2" display diagonal mobile phone and is priced at $2,409.00. The mobile phone with the smallest display diagonal is the Nokia 2720 Flip, which is a 2.8" display diagonal mobile phone and is available at $89.00.

Storage Capacities

The amount e.g of data which can be stored inside the device.

Across the range of mobile phones, the storage capacities range from 4GB to 512GB. The storage capacities of most mobile phones range from 110GB to 160GB. The smartphone with the biggest storage capacity is the Samsung Galaxy Note10 Plus, which is a 512GB storage capacity mobile phone and sells for $519.87. The mobile phone with the smallest storage capacity is the Nokia 2720 Flip, which is a 4GB storage capacity smartphone and sells for $89.00.

5G

5g denotes whether the smartphone has support for 5g networks.

Of the 196 new smartphones currently listed on Kagoo, the vast majority are mobile phones which do not support 5G. 142 out of 196 smartphones are mobile phones which do not support 5G and only 53 smartphones out of 196 are mobile phones which support 5G.

Which Are the Cheapest Retailers for Smartphones?

The chart below helps you decide which retailer is normally cheapest for buying smartphones. For each retailer it shows the total number of smartphones where they currently have a market leading price. The chart below helps you decide which retailer is normally cheapest for buying smartphones. For each retailer we took all of their prices and looked at what proportion of those prices where the cheapest on the market. The cheapest retailer that we found was eBay. 134 of their smartphone prices were the cheapest that could be found anywhere.

Proportion of Mobile Phones for Which Each Retailer is Cheapest?

Assessing how cheap each retailer is for smartphones by counting the number of cheapest prices for that retailer, makes the retailers that offer the greatest number of mobile phone prices more likely to offer the greatest number of cheapest prices. The chart below considers the proportion of each retailer's mobile phone prices that are the cheapest compared to other retailers. The cheapest retailer that we found using this approach was eBay. 80.2% of their mobile phone prices were the cheapest that could be found anywhere.

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