The best Android smartphones in the UK 2023

More widespread than Apple's iOS, Android equips 8 out of 10 smartphones. Its free interface and apps to download on Google Play are its strength. Apart from the brand (Samsung, Huawei, Xiaomi, ...), choosing an Android smartphone is based on certain criteria such as the battery, the screen or the photo quality. Find yours with our guide to the best Android smartphones.

Android smartphone - OnePlus Nord 1

Best value for money

Android smartphone - OnePlus Nord

The best Android smartphone in 2021

Offered at less than 400 euros, the OnePlus Nord promises versatility and high performance. Refined design, AMOLED display, Snapdragon 765G 5G SoC and fast charging characterize this Android smartphone.

268 £ on Amazon

Along with its attractive looks, 6.44-inch 90Hz AMOLED display, solid performance, and 5G and OxygenOS compatibility, the OnePlus Nord is one of the most affordable 5G smartphones around. Despite a 1080 x 2400 resolution, which is lower than the OnePlus 8 Pro, the display is still sharp and very clear.

Moreover, the OnePlus Nord houses a Snapdragon 765G Soc, 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. Offering such a tempting spec sheet, for less than 400 euros, however, required some compromises: no waterproof certification, poor low-light photos and a hazardous fingerprint reader. On the other hand, the videos are superb.

Android smartphone - Xiaomi Redmi Note 9S 2

Best value for money

Android smartphone - Xiaomi Redmi Note 9S

The best entry-level Android smartphone

Like recent Xiaomi models, the Redmi Note 9S has exceptional battery life. Despite average photo quality, this update of the Redmi Note 8 Pro attracts with its good grip, power and price.

191 £ on Amazon

Succeeding the Redmi Note 8 Pro, the reference at less than 300 euros, is not easy. However, the Redmi Note 9S is up to the challenge, making some welcome updates. In addition to its huge 5020 mAh battery that supports fast charging, this Android smartphone features a Snapdragon 720G optimized for gaming.

Add to that the mini-jack port, the very good grip, the 6GB of RAM and the 128GB of expandable storage via micro SD. Not to mention the 6.7-inch screen with FHD+ display of 2400 x 1080 pixels, or a resolution of 395 dpi! However, the system overlay MIUI 11 remains perfectible and the photo quality is still average.

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 3

Best value for money

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra

The best high-end Android smartphone

The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra is a very complete smartphone with dual SIM. Compatible with the 5G network, it is a model with a great autonomy: a Lithium-ion battery of 5,000 mAh.

876 £ on Amazon

Both SIM cards are 4FF format and have access to 5G network connectivity. However, both SIMs can be detected simultaneously. It is considered to be the best dual SIM smartphone in its class. Moreover, this smartphone packs a powerful Samsung Exynos 2102 processor. Moreover, it offers good image quality with its 4 rear sensors of 108 x 12 x 10 x 10 MP and its 40 MP front sensor.

We have to admit that Samsung has outdone itself with this device that can store up to 128 GB of data. Its 6.8" screen offers HD+ resolution and 8k video for a more immersive experience. This smartphone can also withstand a fresh water pressure of 1.5 m deep for about 30 minutes.

Android smartphone - Huawei P30 Pro 4

Android phone

Android smartphone - Huawei P30 Pro

A great Android smartphone for photography

The photo is the main asset of the Huawei P30 Pro. Without equaling the Galaxy S20 Ultra, the quadruple sensor on the back and the excellent front camera make the Chinese smartphone a new reference of the genre.

476 £ on Amazon

Let's get right to the point! The Huawei P30 Pro has a photo block composed of 4 sensors: a main sensor 40 Mpx 27 mm f/1.6 OIS, an ultra wide-angle 20 Mpx 16 mm f/2.4, a x5 zoom of 8 Mpx 125 mm f/3.4 OIS and a TOF or Time Of Flight sensor to measure the distance between the subjects and to realize the background blurs. Note the quality of the 32MP front camera, capable of producing sharp selfies.

The P30 Pro also has 8GB of RAM, 128GB of internal storage, a beautiful 6.47-inch display with curved edges and above-average battery life. However, the Kirin 980 SoC in this smartphone proves to be slower than the Snapdragon 855 in the Galaxy S10 Plus, its main rival. As for the EMUI 9.1 overlay of the Android 9 Pie system, it lacks originality and looks a lot like iOS.

Buying guide • November 2023

Best Android smartphone

Any specific needs?

The best Android smartphone in 2021

The best entry-level Android smartphone

The best high-end Android smartphone

A great Android smartphone for photography

Your guide : Samuel

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Comparison table of the best Android smartphones

Android smartphone - OnePlus Nord 5
Android smartphone - Xiaomi Redmi Note 9S 6
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 7
Android smartphone - Huawei P30 Pro 8
Android smartphone - OnePlus Nord
Android smartphone - Xiaomi Redmi Note 9S
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra
Android smartphone - Huawei P30 Pro
Offered at less than 400 euros, the OnePlus Nord promises versatility and high performance. Refined design, AMOLED display, Snapdragon 765G 5G SoC and fast charging characterize this Android smartphone.
Like recent Xiaomi models, the Redmi Note 9S has exceptional battery life. Despite average photo quality, this update of the Redmi Note 8 Pro attracts with its good grip, power and price.
The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra is a very complete smartphone with dual SIM. Compatible with the 5G network, it is a model with a great autonomy: a Lithium-ion battery of 5,000 mAh.
The photo is the main asset of the Huawei P30 Pro. Without equaling the Galaxy S20 Ultra, the quadruple sensor on the back and the excellent front camera make the Chinese smartphone a new reference of the genre.
Battery capacity
4 100 mAh
5,020 mAh
5,000 mAh
128 GB
Operating system
Android 10 Q
Android 10 Q
Android 11
40 x 20 x 8 Mpx + 32 Mpx
Snapdragon 765G
Qualcomm Snapdragon 720G
Exynos 2102 Samsung
Android 9.0
Screen size
Storage capacity
128 GB
128 GB
128 GB
Kirin 980
48 x 8 x 5 x 2 Mpx + 32 x 8 Mpx
48 x 8 x 5 x 5 MP + 16 MP
108 x 12 x 10 x 10 Mpx + 40 Mpx
4,200 mAh

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Buying guide - Android smartphone

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How to choose your Android smartphone

About Android smartphones, the choice will depend mainly on the use you plan (photo, mail, calls, social networks ...). Indeed, the perfect smartphone in all respects does not exist. Nevertheless, you will find your happiness by considering the following criteria.

#1 - Display

The screen of an Android smartphone measures 4.7 to 6.3 inches. For gaming, streaming, office and professional use, it is better to choose a large screen. Conversely, a smaller screen fits easily in a pocket and can be operated with one hand. Unfortunately, the current trend is towards larger screens. It's not just the size that counts. The occupancy rate and screen resolution are also important. You can find everything: HD, OLED, AMOLED, even 4K. But ultra high definition doesn't necessarily fit on a screen as small as a smartphone. The more pixelated the screen, the faster the battery will run out.

#2 - Performance

By abuse of language, the heart of the smartphone is called processor. In reality, it is a multicore SoC. In addition to the calculations performed, the System on a chip manages everything that makes the smartphone work. In Android, the best known SoCs in Europe are Exynos (Samsung), Snapdragon (Qualcomm), Helio (MediaTek) and Kirin (Huawei). Based on the SoC, and possibly the graphics chip, we can get a clear idea of the fluidity and speed of an Android smartphone. For example, if the device you are interested in has an 8-core SoC clocked at 2.6 GHz, you will get its total frequency by multiplying 2.6 by 8! Also consider the size of the internal memory.

#3 - Autonomy

No matter what the intended use, a good Android smartphone should last all day. Indeed, you will need the phone and your favorite apps from the moment you wake up until the moment you charge the device before going to sleep. Manufacturers have understood this need and provide batteries with a higher capacity. Expressed in mAh, this capacity determines the battery life. This indicator measures the remaining electrical power over time. The higher the capacity, the better the autonomy. As an example, a 3,000 mAh battery on a full charge can last 25-30 h, or even a little more depending on the apps used.

The price

Your needs and your level of requirement condition the amount of money you have to pay. Are you looking for the right balance between price and performance? Do you want a high-end, state-of-the-art phone? Are you mainly interested in photography or gaming? Or do you just want a device to make calls, read emails and send messages? The brand and screen size also impact the price of an Android smartphone.

#4 - Photo and video


the camera, start by looking at the resolution, expressed in megapixels or Mpx. A high resolution implies a high level of detail.

In addition, lovers of beautiful photos will want to check for dual lens, wide angle, telephoto, triple lens, auto focus, optical image stabilization, and wide aperture. Once a luxury, 4K video at 3840 × 2160p definition is now available on many Android smartphones. However, 4K video takes up a lot of space (internal memory or micro SD card). At the very least, you'll need 200 MB for 30 seconds of recording time. Of course, HD and FHD formats remain available.

#5 - Design and connectivity

The manufacturers compete with ideas concerning the color and materials used. Glass, polished metal, ultra-resistant plastic, the choice is yours. Samsung inaugurated the curved screen, much less likely to break under pressure compared to conventional screens. Among the features, the fingerprint reader and facial recognition allow you to unlock the phone without using a password. Some large-screen smartphones still come with a touch-sensitive stylus. And unlike iPhones, Android smartphones have a headphone jack to plug in wired headphones! Wireless headphone owners can rest assured. Wifi and Bluetooth connections exist on all Android smartphones. The same goes for 4G LTE technology, while waiting for 5G. NFC is also useful for wireless payment and data transfer. Choose a Wifi ac or Wifi 6 compatible device for more speed and stability.

Should you change your Android smartphone every year?

The best Android smartphones 9

As long as you are satisfied with the way your Android phone works, there is no need to buy a new one. You don't replace a smartphone because it's fashionable, but because the drop in performance demands it. Of course, newer models offer better performance. But they cost more, and the performance gap is often small.

Also, switch to another Android smartphone if yours is no longer receiving updates. Lack of software patches can affect the security of your data and the phone's performance. Resetting the device, disabling bloatware or performing a system upgrade are temporary solutions and not always effective.

Those who have a 1 or 2 year old Android smartphone with a big battery life problem can simply replace the battery. If the battery is sealed, you will have no choice but to replace your Android smartphone. For the rest, deterioration, obsolescence or the desire to buy the latest model justifies replacement.

Good to know

Remember to set up your Android smartphone properly in order to keep control over your personal data. Indeed, Google makes money mainly on the sale of targeted ads. However, your data is a mine of information about your preferences, your habits, your desires. The more Google exploits your personal data, the more money it makes, and the more it forces you to spend.

Android or iOS smartphone?

Android smartphone

Designed by Google, Android powers 80% of smartphones sold. You can find it on many brands, such as Samsung, Huawei, Sony, Nokia, Xiaomi, OnePlus, LG, HTC and many others. Android also has the advantage of a free interface and software, customizable by manufacturers (overlay) and users.

About apps, Google Store offers more than 1 million. Games, image editing, social networks, reservations, shopping, fitness apps... everything is there. And the best Google apps (Gmail, Google Drive, Google Photo, Google Maps, YouTube, etc.) can be downloaded from AppStore, Apple's platform!

Unfortunately, Android's popularity is also its main weakness. Google's operating system is the least secure on the market. In particular, it concentrates the majority of viruses and malware on smartphones. Not to mention the collection and use of your personal data by Google without your knowledge.


Exclusive to Apple smartphones, iOS shines through its simplicity but also its numerous integrated functions. Equipping 1 smartphone out of 5, this operating system is the main competitor of Android. The iOS apps, optimized by Apple for each generation of iPhone, offer features shared with the iPad and Mac and MacBook.

AppStore, Apple's store, is the other major asset of iOS. It offers quality apps, including those that Google is known for. But the offer is less extensive than on Google Play. Moreover, iOS-only apps like Messages or FaceTime don't exist on Android.

Unfortunately, iPhones are expensive. The iPhone SE 2020, sold for 500 euros, is less powerful than a Xiaomi, a Galaxy or a Huawei for less than 400 euros. And the inability to make extensive changes to iOS is an advantage for security but a disadvantage for everything else. For example, there is only one update per year.


Although it is not mandatory, it is wiser to stay on the same software environment and buy an iPhone if you already use an iPad, a Mac or a MacBook. This makes synchronization easier.

If you're looking for a high-performance smartphone for a low price and aren't really a fan of Apple's restrictions and prices, then you need an Android smartphone. Among the many manufacturers, you'll be spoilt for choice!

Why buy an Android smartphone?

Lots of choices

One of the main reasons Android is the preferred platform is because it offers so many choices. It comes in all shapes, sizes, specifications, price ranges and brands, making it an attractive option for consumers with specific preferences. Whether it's a huge screen size, a big battery, a good selfie camera or a high-end build, Android has it.

Budget flexibility

Whether it's as low as Php1,000 or Php40,000, there is an Android smartphone that can fit your budget. Given this flexibility, you'll also be able to control your purchase, like going all out on a flagship smartphone, or skimping a bit and buying two mid-range smartphones (one for work, one for play) instead.

Customization and openness

You can criticize Android OS for its fragmentation, vulnerability to slow update rollout and limited support for Android upgrades, but that can be attributed to its greatest strength, which is its openness. Users can customize almost every aspect of its user interface, and if you can root and get your hands on a custom ROM, you can add features, improve its performance and extend its usability.

Android smartphones always benefit from the latest technology

Water and dust resistance? Dual rear cameras? High capacity batteries? Modular design? Android smartphones have it first. So if you like to have the latest bells and whistles of smartphone technology, keep an eye on the latest Android device.


Competition is always good for consumers, as it drives down prices and encourages companies to improve their products. Android is ripe with that. That said, you can expect smartphone brands to introduce new technologies and features in the coming years, which makes the world of Android much more exciting.

The best brands of Android smartphones

In our opinion, the best brands of Android smartphones in 2022 are :


As the world leader in smartphones, the Korean manufacturer is upgrading its J, A, S and Note series. The releases and renewals are frequent, without the previous models having left the shelves. This strategy is unique to Samsung and allows you to find high-end smartphones for cheap!

Also owner of Redmi and Poco, the Chinese manufacturer continues to apply its recipe for success. It combines unbeatable quality/price ratio, very rich and diverse catalog and releases at regular intervals. The fourth place of this brand in the world ranking does not suffer any dispute.

World number 3 behind Samsung and Apple, Huawei is one of the main artisans of the future 5G network. This premium brand has a more accessible subsidiary called Honor. The global telecom giant is resisting as best it can the repeated assaults of the U.S. administration and the covid-19 crisis.

Founded by an ex-Oppo executive, OnePlus has experienced a meteoric rise. Its OnePlus 3, OnePlus 6T, OnePlus 8 and OnePlus Nord quickly found their audience, lovers of high-quality but not too expensive Android smartphones. The brand also makes the Bullets Wireless headphones.

The American giant is famous for its search engine, browser, acquisitions like YouTube and its Android operating system. Not surprisingly, Google also makes smartphones, the Pixel, considered by some to be the best photophones on the market.

What is the price for an Android smartphone

The diagram below will help you to get an idea of the typical prices for each price range (entry-level, mid-range and high-end).

However, more expensive does not necessarily mean better.

We therefore advise you to always consult our ranking before deciding, rather than blindly relying on price ranges.

80 £ to 250 £
250 £ to 500 £
more than 500 £
Price range diagram


Enable fast charging.

You can charge your Android smartphone faster by enabling the fast charging feature. To find it, plug in the phone's charger and access the settings. In the battery settings, check the fast charging option.

Be smart about which apps to download.


careful when downloading apps from the Play Store. Indeed, Android is known for malware and viruses. Take the time to read some reviews left by other users before downloading. And don't forget to update regularly.

Use OK Google to send voice SMS.


sometimes infuriating to type text on a touch keyboard. Small space between keys, lack of reactivity, automatic corrector not always useful... Not to mention the time wasted. Save yourself these inconveniences by activating the OK Google function. It obeys your voice to send messages. For example: "OK Google, tell [one of your contacts] I'll be there in 15 minutes."

Enable smart lock.


if you don't store much private information on your phone, it's always a good idea to protect it. Android can encrypt it, making it unreadable by others without a PIN or password. Activating it is very simple: go to Settings, then Security, then choose the Encrypt Phone option.

Smart Lock feature removes the need to use a keypad lock in a trusted area like your home. You can use your face, wireless networks, or GPS location to prevent your phone from locking. This way, you don't have to enter your password every time.


What is the best Android smartphone?

The best Android smartphone depends on your needs and budget. Read our buying guide to learn more.

Do I have to change my Android smartphone every year?


necessarily. Drastic drop in performance and battery life or deterioration of the smartphone should be the main reasons to change a smartphone. On average this happens every 2 years.

How to upgrade an Android smartphone?


your mobile is connected to the Internet, Google Play alerts you to the availability of updates for installed apps. You are free to install them or not. But be aware that these patches improve the functioning of your smartphone.

How can I optimize my Android smartphone?

Here are

5 tips to optimize the functioning of an Android smartphone: remove unnecessary applications and clean the memory, change the application launcher and remove widgets, do not install animated wallpapers, do a reset from time to time, prevent social network apps from using your mobile data in the background


What is NFC linking?

NFC or Near Field Communication started its conquest of nomadic devices in 2011. Currently, this technology allows a plethora of operations such as contactless payments or data exchanges (photos, vCard, tickets, etc.). NFC technology is present in the majority of smartphones, especially under Android.


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March 2022 : Translation of this buying guide from our partner

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Our selection
Android smartphone - OnePlus Nord 10
Android smartphone - OnePlus Nord
Android smartphone - Xiaomi Redmi Note 9S 11
Android smartphone - Xiaomi Redmi Note 9S
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 12
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra
Android smartphone - Huawei P30 Pro 13
Android smartphone - Huawei P30 Pro


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