The Best Android Smartphone is…, and it Doesn’t Begin with Samsung
With each conversation that includes the best Android smartphone of the year, it’s hard to imagine such a conversation that doesn’t include the name Samsung. The South Korean tech giant has become synonymous with Android smartphones as they have easily become the leader in innovative mobile technology. This year we’ve seen huge changing of the guard which wasn’t the intention of A when it launched their latest flagship.
When looking at the huge lineup of Android smartphones out right now, there’s one that shines above all the rest. The Google Pixel and Pixel XL are easily the best Android smartphones in 2016, and when looking at what is expected to launch before year’s end, there isn’t much that will stand in Google’s way.
A couple of months back, the heir apparent of the best Android smartphone of the year would have been a landslide. When the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 launched in early September, it was easily the best handset available on both Android and IOS platforms. This was before the small issue of exploding Note 7’s came into focus which inevitably had the handsets pulled off the market completely.
This set the stage for Google to launch the Pixel and bigger brother Pixel XL, and ooh what a stage it’ been. To date, it boasts the best processor, cameras, screen, battery, and virtually every other aspect consumers look for the most. Google Assistant surely doesn’t hurt either which has become the direct competitor to Siri which is Apple’s virtual, mobile assistant.
Specs and Features
- 5.0-inch quad-HD display 1,080 x 1,920 pixels (441ppi)
- 5-inch quad-HD display 1,440 x 2,560 pixels (534ppi)
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 821
- 4GB RAM
- Android 7.1 Nougat
- Google Assistant
- 32GB or 128GB storage
- USB Type-C and fast charging
- 3,450mAh battery
Daydream is Something the Others Don’t Have
The Google Daydream View is the most recent attempt of the tech giant to enter into the realm of virtual reality. Daydream offers some subtle enhancements to other competitors such as the Samsung Gear VR and Oculus Rift, but offers a truly open platform that will be available to other developers.
Daydream launched alongside the Pixel and Pixel XL, and if you were one of the first to preorder your handset you will be getting your new VR headset shipped to you very soon. Out of the box, it functions and is much easier to set up than the Gear VR and the Oculus Rift which have become one of their biggest drawbacks.
As far as performance, the Daydream comes in slightly lower than the other two, but it’s a great virtual reality platform for those, like most of us who are stepping into uncharted territory. Considering the price, it’s also a better option and considering it should be even more expansive due to being on an open platform it definitely has more potential.
Future of Samsung and Android Smartphones in 2017
We all know Samsung will be making quite a splash in 2017 along with all of the other big names such as LG, Xiaomi, HTC, Sony, and of course, Google, but there are definitely question marks. Some rumors suggest Sammy will be shedding the Note series in search of something that will seem different to consumers in an attempt to reverse the negative press of the Galaxy Note 7.
The Galaxy S8 will launch Q1 of 2017 which is certain to become an instant hit, and one of best Android smartphones of 2017. Aside from the GS8 and GS8 Edge, we can expect to see the LG G6 and Xiaomi Mi6 later in the year. With the success of the Pixel and Pixel XL, there will certainly be a Google follow-up, but as of this time, it’s anyone’s guess what it’ll be.