The 10 Best Android phones 2016 – which should you buy?

The 10 Best Android Phones

Best Android phones

Apple may have kickstarted the smartphone revolution when it launched its very first iPhone back in 2007, but it was Google’s Android operating system that truly took it mainstream.

With an open platform and multiple manufacturers using the operating system, Android was always destined for greatness. Today, Android is easily the biggest mobile OS in Australia.

With only a couple of exceptions (thanks Nokia), all the companies that were making mobile phones before iOS was launched now run Android.

Samsung, Sony, LG, HTC and Motorola all wave the Android flag proudly on their devices. What’s more, more and more companies are joining them, with the likes of Oppo, Huawei and Acer bringing Android smartphones to market at a wide range of price points.

Even Google itself has joined the fray, partnering with manufacturers to release flagship Nexus devices.

Still, the many variations in screen size, processing power, software features and design makes finding the best Android phone for you extremely tough.

To help find the best Android phone for you, we’ve rounded up the best Android handsets out there today, rating the phones on hardware performance, OS upgrade potential and, of course, how shiny and nice they are to have and boast about to work colleagues.

So here they are – the best Android phones money can buy today. For many, many different reasons.

10. OnePlus 2

OnePlus 2

10. OnePlus 2

Delivering a phone that feels more premium and has a sturdier build, OnePlus has upped its game with this second generation handset.

With a 5.5-inch display that matches the iPhone 6 Plus for pixel density – 401 ppi – the OnePlus’ panel offers excellent viewing angles, although it can look washed out in direct sunlight.

The surprise inclusion of a functional fingerprint scanner is a welcome addition, and one that brings the OnePlus 2 into line with Samsung and Apple’s handsets, adding to the phone’s premium feel.

It’s not without its flaws, and getting one in Australia may take a bit of hunting around, but when you consider that the OnePlus 2 costs a fraction of price of certain flagship phones, you may be willing to make some compromises.

9. Sony Xperia Z5 Compact

Sony Xperia Z5 Compact

9. Sony Xperia Z5 Compact

Sony is one of few companies still making compact flagships, and the Sony Xperia Z5 Compact shows that it’s still well worth doing.

Essentially the Xperia Z5 Compact is the Sony Xperia Z5 in miniature, with the same great 23MP camera, the same speedy fingerprint scanner, the same level of water resistance and almost as much power.

The screen is a little lower resolution, but at 4.6 inches it can get away with it and if anything the battery life is even better. Small Android phones don’t come better than this and the Z5 Compact even gives the similarly small iPhone 6S a run for its money.

8. Samsung Galaxy Note 5

Samsung Galaxy Note 5

8. Samsung Galaxy Note 5

Samsung’s Note family of phablets proved there was a market for the hybrid phone and tablet. With its large screen and powerful processor coupled with incredible battery life, the Note shook up the industry.

Now in its fifth iteration, the Galaxy Note 5 looks and feels like the premium phone it is. With a slick glass back and a stunning 5.7-inch screen that excels in almost all conditions, including bright sunlight, the Note 5 is a powerful tool.

The included S-Pen offers a versatile approach to data input, and creativity, and even though Samsung did sacrifice the microSD slot and removable battery to create the Note 5’s design, the product doesn’t suffer too much for those sacrifices.

7. LG G4


7. LG G4

It’s an unwritten law that leather makes any product more desirable, and so it is with the LG G4. Combining a leather back and a curved body, the G4 is immediately recognisable in a sea of similar glass and aluminium devices.

The specs match the aesthetic design too, with the G4’s 5.5-inch QHD IPS display offering some of the most vibrant images we’ve ever seen on a smartphone.

The impressive camera delivers great shots thanks to the inclusion of some manual options, and the spec sheet it right up there at the top of the pile for premium handsets.

The rear volume buttons may not be for everybody though, and the battery life isn’t quite up to the competition. But this is still a fantastic device for anyone wanting something a bit different.

6. Sony Xperia Z5

Sony Xperia Z5

6. Sony Xperia Z5

Chances are you can’t afford James Bond’s latest custom-made Aston Martin, but if you’re desperate to get in touch with your inner super spy you can probably afford to pick up his smartphone.

Sony’s flagship phones have always been the standard bearers for incremental upgrades, but the Xperia Z5 takes the biggest leap in years. That’s not to say this a mind-blowing reimagining of the Sony smartphone experience, but its thinner, lighter chassis and frosted glass back are very handsome indeed.

The fingerprint sensor is a welcome, if long overdue, addition, and positioning on the side of the handset makes so much sense that we were left wondering why nobody had put it there before.

It has a habit of overheating and the UI is in need of an upgrade, but that doesn’t prevent the Xperia Z5 from being the best smartphone Sony has ever made.

5. Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge

S6 Edge

5. Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge

If money is no object then the Galaxy S6 Edge arguably has the standard S6 beat, as it offers the same compelling specs with the addition of an eye-catching curved display. But for most people money is an object and the S6 Edge is both more expensive and not much better in use, as the curves are more about form than function.

Still, its 5.1-inch QHD screen is glorious, its 16MP camera impresses and it’s got a powerful octa-core processor and all the nifty features of the S6, like a fingerprint scanner and fast charging.

The curved screen feels like a missed opportunity but it’s undeniably stylish and if you can stomach the price tag this is a powerful, futuristic phone which is sure to inspire admiration and jealousy in everyone who sees it.

4. HTC One M9

HTC One M9

4. HTC One M9

For all the work Samsung’s done on improving the design of its flagship HTC still has it beat. The One M9 is easily the best looking Android phone around and arguably the best looking handset running any OS.

Not only does it look incredible but it’s got lots of power and a decent 20.7MP camera on the back, with its UltraPixel snapper relegated to selfie duties. Plus its slick Sense interface and impressive BoomSound audio make it a joy to use.

The HTC One M9 isn’t a big upgrade over the One M8, but that phone was our favourite for a long time so any improvements guaranteed this a place near the top of our chart. Compared to the Galaxy S6 this feels lacking in specs and features, but it’s as close to a work of art as a phone has come.

3. Nexus 6P

Nexus 6P

3. Nexus 6P

For the first time, Chinese manufacturer Huawei worked with Google to produce the flagship Nexus 6P, and the results are truly impressive.

It’s still not a device designed for small hands, although with slightly smaller dimensions than the previous Nexus 6 device, it is a bit more comfortable to hold.

With a lightning-fast fingerprint scanner conveniently located on the back of the device, you’ll have your Nexus unlocked before it’s out of your pocket. The inbuilt 12.3MP camera is incredible in low-light situations and the phone’s inbuilt speakers are surprisingly powerful.

Destined to always be running the most recent version of Android, the battery life and performance is best in class for Android devices.

It may be more expensive than previous Nexus handsets, but the 6P still stands out as incredible value for money.

2. Samsung Galaxy S7

Samsung Galaxy S7

2. Samsung Galaxy S7

Second place goes to the Samsung Galaxy S7. The Galaxy S6 was our favorite Android phone of 2015, but now the Galaxy S7 has improved on it in almost every way.

There’s a brand new waterproof design with a variety of little changes that make it much more comfortable to hold.

It doesn’t look as innovative as the Galaxy S7 Edge with its curved display, but this version is much more compact than the Galaxy S6 Edge+.

The issues come in the high price and the fact there’s only one storage version. But you can always buy a microSD card, up to 200GB, and get a bit of extra room.

If you’re looking for one of the best, high-end phones in the world right now – this Android is a great choice.

1. Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge

Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge

1. Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge

It has finally happened – the Edge version of a Samsung phone is now actually the best Android phone in the world.

Samsung’s Galaxy S7 Edge expands on what the curved display from the Galaxy S6 Edge can do. It has found a happy medium at the 5.5-inch size as well as adding in a lot of new functionality for the most innovative screen tech in phones.

The camera may look like it has dropped when you see it on the spec sheet – but in fact bringing it down to 12MP and updating the sensor technology has meant this is one of the best phone cameras out there.

All in all, the Galaxy S7 Edge is an improvement on everything that went before it. Finally, Samsung has nailed the most interesting version of its phone and made the Galaxy S7 Edge the reigning champion of the phone game.


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  1. Reply Mr. Bertram Muller April 8, 2016 at 5:59 am

    it's not google's OS. It's "owned" by the Open Handset Alliance (http://www.openhandsetalliance… of which Google is a member along with 83 other companies.

  2. Reply Brett Glover April 8, 2016 at 6:35 am

    HTC is dead.

  3. Reply Kiarra Willms April 8, 2016 at 8:06 am

    OnePlus One should still be on the list!

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