The Mobile Industry Awards look to be fiercely contested this year given the tremendous quality of the phones this year. The longlists for smartphones and accessories according to their categories are out and the lists can be described as a smartphone fanatic’s dream.
Although each phone on the list is a great phone in its own right, here are some of the phones that stand out from each of the different categories in this year’s MIA:
Best overall phones
If you want the best of the best and aren’t concerned about how much it may cost, then these phones nominated in the MIA are the best of the best.
Google Pixel 2XL
For all the people out there who want the latest and best version of Android out there currently, then this phone is the one for you. It has a solid build, has a great camera and performs without any hiccups as well. It’s hardly received a bad review so far and it’s reflected by its average 9 out of 10 rating.
The Android OS comes with little to no bloatware and the camera performance is superb. As far as the specifications go, it has Snapdragon 835 processor with 4 GB of RAM. The phone also has a 3250 mAh battery which can give more than a day of battery life. On top of that, the phone also has IP67 waterproofing, a full HD 1080p screen, and pretty good quality front-facing speakers.
The only downsides of the phone come in the form of no MicroSD card slot as well as no 3.5mm headphone jack. Since the OS has almost zero bloatware, the MicroSD card can be forgiven to some extent, however, removing the headphone jack is a big let down. Another tiny let down is the phone’s display, it doesn’t have much to offer. The phone features a bland and lifeless screen out of the box and you’d need to change color presets after downloading a different app.
However, that depends on each person’s taste, it’s not a major issue. Overall, the phone is pretty decent and doesn’t cost as much as some of the other options on this list. Starting at $649, you can purchase the phone from here.
Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus
Dubbed as “the next big thing”, Samsung‘s flagship phone for 2017 was a big hit, and for good reason. It’s a big phone, literally. At about 6.2 inches, one would think the screen is massive, venturing into the Galaxy Note territory. However, most of the size comes from the phone’s height and it surprisingly works well, it doesn’t feel like you’re carrying a tablet around.
If you can’t handle the large screen, then there’s always the smaller 5.8-inch regular Galaxy s8, however, this one works fine too. The phone, as you would expect has top-level specs and performs like a flagship model as well. If you’re upgrading from previous models, then the transition may be a bit rocky at first, because the phone takes on a new design route different from previous phones. The Galaxy s8 doesn’t have the oval home buttons the previous phones did, which adds to its ‘tall’ look. Adjusting to a button-less screen may take time, but it’s worth it.
Before newer 2018 phones came along, the s8 had arguably the best camera among all the phones in 2017. Coupled with the phone’s “Infinity Display”, the phone really stole the show last year. Even though the phone has a great camera, snappy performance, and perhaps the best screen of any 2017 phone, it’s far from perfect. No home button means that the phone’s fingerprint scanner has been relegated to the back alongside the camera lens which makes it really awkward and hard to unlock the phone using fingerprints.
Samsung tried to tackle the fingerprint problem with a new Iris scanner but that’s also far from perfect. Moreover, Samsung’s attempt at their own ‘Siri‘ in the form of Bixby. However, Bixby isn’t at the same level as Siri or Google Assistant yet, so there’s that. Although the newer S9 is out, if you don’t want to spend a lot of money on the newer version, then this one will last you a long time as well.
Best Mid Market phone
One Plus 5T
Of course, the One Plus 5T would be on this list. Don’t let the “Mid-Market” tag fool you, the latest One Plus flagship is a thing of beauty. It has picked up from where the One Plus 5 left off and improved it even further. It’s the perfect choice for anyone looking for a high-end smartphone that doesn’t cost a thousand dollars.
The phone has a 6-inch FHD+ screen and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor. Alongside 6-8GB of ram, it’s almost impossible for the phone to get stuck, the phone makes zero compromises when it comes to performance. As is the case with other One Plus phones, the phone does not have a MicroSD card slot, however, it makes up for it by giving users an option to choose from 64 to 128 GB internal memory with the former being the minimum, thus, allowing users adequate space on their phones even without an SD card.
The camera, although good, isn’t what people may hope for it to be. You’d expect more from a 16 MP front and back camera. Again, the camera is good, but one would expect better given that other phones can do much better with lesser MP cameras. The battery on the phone, however, is great. A 3300 mAh battery gives the phone enough juice to last a long while, and the best part is, the phone only costs around $600.
Best Value phones
Motorolla Moto G5
Although the phone comes under the “Best valued” section, it has all the essentials and then some. The phone, although only costing just under $200, has a lot of tech given its low price tag. It’s certainly not a case of quantity over quality either as the phone passes almost all of the tests a phone should pass in order for it to qualify as a decent phone.
The Moto G5 comes in two variants, the only real differences being the amount of RAM being offered on both the phones. One variant comes with 2 GB of RAM, whereas the other variant has 3 GB. The RAM, combined with the Snapdragon ensures the phone has minimal performance hiccups. The phone also comes with a 12 MP rear camera which is decent. Overall, you get more out of the device than what you’re paying for.
However, the device is all but perfect. Given that the previous Moto models were water resistant, it’s a bit disappointing that the Moto G5 isn’t. Water resistance is something many big phone companies advertise nowadays since more and more people find it very useful to have. Moreover, if previous phones had it, then it feels like a downgrade to not have it in this one.
Another thing missing in the Moto G5 is the NFC chip. The NFC chip is actually pretty useful especially for making online payments through systems such as Google Pay. However, most people can get by without these two things and it shouldn’t be hard to adapt to other things even if you heavily relied on the two above mentioned features. Overall, the phone is really good and well worth the money, deserving its spot in the MIA’s longlist.