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Last updated: 21 March 2018

Choosing the right smartphone can be mind-boggling. You need to consider a range of factors such as operating system, size, features, functions and price – and that's before you even get started navigating the complexities of a mobile phone plan.

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We test and review more than 59 smartphones, including the iPhone X, ranging in price from $149 to $1849, to help you choose the best phone for:

  • web-browser performance
  • sound, picture and video quality
  • battery life
  • display
  • email and SMS performance
  • handling
  • durability.
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Brand

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List of brands we tested in this review.

Price

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Recommended retail at time of purchase.

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 149 and 1829

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Type

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(Operating system) There was a time when you had various choices but today its basically an Apple iPhone (Apple iOS) or an Android (Google Android) smartphone as far as operating systems go. You may find some mobiles with the Windows OS but Microsoft has moved focus away from smartphones to tablet and notebook devices.

Internal memory (GB)

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Internal memory is the storage on the phone itself which will be used to contain both the Operating System (OS) as well as any other stuff you want to keep on your phone such as photos, video, apps etc.

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 8 and 256

Camera resolution (Mp)

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 8 and 23

Inches display

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Screen size in inches (measured diagonally).

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 4 and 6.3

Removable memory card (microSD)

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A memory card is a good expandable memory option to store photos, video and music. Check to see exactly which type of card you'll need, as all the models we tested that support removable memory use microSD cards.

Removable battery

USB connection

Test results

Display score

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The size of the display as well as quality of the image with regard to sharpness and colour clarity.

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 0 and 0

Sound quality score

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We measure a number of acoustic criteria, such as frequency response, for both incoming and outgoing calls. In addition, a user panel subjectively rates the sound quality of calls.

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Camera score

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We assess the phone's digital camera capabilities to produce an image in different lighting situations. Photo images are printed and rated for resolution, colour reproduction and noise. We also look at how easy it is to use the phone in picture-taking mode.

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 0 and 0

Durability score

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We simulate falls from a table or out of a shirt pocket up to 25 times; store the phones in hot, damp conditions; and carry out a rain test.

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Internet score

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How easy it is to start the browser, navigate to sites, enter addresses and use favourites and bookmarks. We also do a practical test on content downloads and award extra points for Wi-Fi connectivity.

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 0 and 0

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  • Overall score
  • Recommended
  • Internet score
  • Sound quality score
  • Camera score
  • Music score
  • Video score
  • Touchscreen score
  • Texting score
  • GPS score
  • Synchronisation score
  • Display score
  • Durability score
  • Reception score
  • Good points
  • Bad points
  • Price
  • Brand
  • Model
  • Availability
  • Time in use 3G (hours)
  • Standby time 3G (days)
  • USB connection
  • Wi-Fi (b/g/n)
  • Camera resolution (Mp)
  • Front camera resolution (Mp)
  • LED flash
  • HD video capture
  • NFC
  • Standard headphone jack
  • Removable memory card (microSD)
  • Bluetooth 3
  • FM radio
  • Gyroscope
  • Compass
  • Internal memory (GB)
  • Internal memory available (GB)
  • Maximum memory (GB)
  • SAR (W/kg)
  • Battery capacity (mAh)
  • Operating system
  • Type
  • Screen resolution (px, WxH)
  • Inches display
  • Weight (g)
  • Removable battery
  • 4G
  • SIM
  • Name of application store
  • Contact
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