tech

The hottest new smartphones of 2020

By Allen Kim

Published December 12, 2020

OnePlus

iPhone 12

Apple redesigned the iPhone and revisited design cues from its older phones, a much-needed refresh to what was becoming a tired design. The performance is second to none with the A14 Bionic chip powering the phone, and the new MagSafe system is a great new feature. Best of all, it comes in a wide array of new sizes so there’s something for everyone.

Apple

Pros

  • Fantastic camera

  • Welcome design change

  • Ingenious MagSafe system

Apple

Cons

  • Lack of a fingerprint sensor not ideal during the pandemic

  • Still no high refresh screen

  • Still using lightning and not a USB-C port

Apple

OnePlus 8 Pro

The OnePlus 8 Pro is the company stepping up to the big leagues. The company made sure that its flagship phone would have the best hardware, although that included a price bump to match. This phone checks all the boxes for what you would want from a flagship phone in 2020.

OnePlus

Pros

  • Gorgeous, smooth display

  • Top-notch hardware and performance to match

  • Clean Android experience, fast updates

OnePlus

Cons

  • No longer a budget phone

  • Camera falls behind competitors

OnePlus

Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra

Samsung quietly released a number of excellent phones this year, with the Note20 Ultra standing out as the company’s flagship phone. The phone comes with all the bells and whistles you’d come to expect from Samsung, and if you like having the most screen real estate, this is the phone to get.

Samsung

Pros

  • Best-in-class screen

  • Ultra smooth experience

  • S Pen more useful than ever before

Samsung

Cons

  • Camera bump is very noticeable

  • Unwieldy size

  • Expensive

Samsung

Google Pixel 5

Google decided to exit the premium arena and develop a more budget-friendly phone with the Pixel 5. While it lacks the latest and greatest hardware, it manages to deliver a relatively smooth experience with the fastest Android updates. The camera is arguably on par or up there as the best among smartphones.

Google

Pros

  • Simple, compact design

  • Pure Android experience with fastest updates

  • Fantastic camera

Google

Cons

  • Outdated hardware

  • Phone speakers lack punch

  • Lacking variety and options for different sizes

Google