If there is one thing I know about the smartphone industry, it's that there is never a good time to upgrade. Just a few years ago it seemed pointless because something significantly better always seemed to come out the day after you bought a new phone. That same problem is not as prevalent today; rather, the issue we have right now is that we have so many awesome choices to choose from that it can be hard to pick just one.
I had been in the market for a new phone to upgrade my iPhone 6 for months before eventually settling on the Nexus 5X, which is still on sale with Google’s Project Fi service. The deal was too good for me to pass up given that it had such a steep discount, and also gave me a solid excuse to attempt to switch carriers. So far things are good with my 5X, but that doesn't stop me from eyeballing all of the other great options that are still out there.
Recent additions to the flagship smartphone lineup include the Samsung Galaxy S7, which seems to have knocked it out of the park this year. With its amazing camera(s), battery life, display, and waterproofing, the Galaxy S7 is already a top contender all on its own. Additionally, Samsung sweetens the deal with various Samsung Pay promos, and for a while there seemed to have been a lot of buy one get one promos, which is awesome (not to mention rare) for such a high-end device.
Then you have the return of the 4-inch smartphone with the iPhone SE, which also happens to be the most affordable new iPhone yet. Whether you're looking to save money or pocket space, the iPhone SE is actually an appealing option. The best part about it is that even though it comes in a smaller package, the iPhone SE is almost identical in specs to last fall’s iPhone 6s flagship.
And then you come to the most recent flagship to hit shelves, the unique, modular-type LG G5. The first of its kind, the LG G5 allows you to use different modules, or “Friends”, to improve the camera and battery life or audio experience, if you so choose. The G5 is also one of the last flagships to maintain the removable battery, which is a “feature” that many still desire in a smartphone.
However, even if the G5’s design isn't exactly up your alley, last year’s LG V10 is another excellent device worth considering. With a large display, great specs, and even a secondary always on display, the V10 is a powerhouse. In fact, I'm almost inclined to say that that V10 is what the G5 should have been, and the G5 may have done better last year, but I digress. At the end of the day, LG has a couple of enticing and unique options to choose from.
BlackBerry, surprisingly enough, also has a worthy contender, although not with its own BlackBerry 10 operating system. The BlackBerry Priv was probably the most surprising and unsurprising device to come out of 2015, and is an excellent choice if security is important to you. BlackBerry has taken a lot of pride in how seriously they take privacy, and the Priv seems to be no different – despite the fact that it runs on Android. It is also one of the few remaining smartphones with a physical keyboard.
Those are just a few that I have been personally been mulling over, but certainly not the only ones that many have been singing praises for over the past several months. While recent years have seemed stagnant when it comes to innovative smartphones, recently it feels like we’ve broken that stall with the amount of unique smartphones that have hit the market.
Readers, what smartphones have you been considering recently? Let us know in the comments below!