It’s the fall season and that means an interesting last few months of the year for smartphone buyers. With flagship phones from the likes of Samsung and LG just hitting the market, holiday shopping is sure to be fun.
Whether you’re looking for a new flagship device or looking to save a little money with an affordable mid-range model, T-Mobile offers some of the best devices around.
Here are some of our favorite models to choose from for T-Mobile customers.
OnePlus is back at it with another solid flagship phone that runs a fraction of the price of the competition. A first for the handset maker, it’s available in the US with a wireless carrier — thanks to a partnership with T-Mobile.
Running the latest version of Android available, and featuring some of the most hardware you’ll find in a phone, it’s an enthusiast’s dream device.
It might not have a traditional headphone jack or wireless charging, but both of those technologies are still in flux anyhow Still, it beats nearly all in specs and the price tag mops the floor with anything that comes near.
The fingerprint reader is found under the display, and the cutout display is minimal when compared to others. Big, beautiful, and ready for any task you want to throw its way, this is a bargain device with killer brains.
LG G7 ThinQ
Embrace the notch! LG certainly has with the LG G7. The latest flagship from the South Korean giant features a notched 6.1-inch IPS LCD with a 3120 x 1440 resolution. Last year we saw phones finally break through to the 18:9 aspect ratio, but now we’re seeing device manufacturers like LG push that to an insane 19.5:8. The display is surrounded but incredibly small bezels and features a small chin on the bottom of the phone. If you’re alright with a notch, you might agree that this is a pretty handsome phone.
Like most 2018 flagships, the LG G7 features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 SoC, 4 or 6 GB of RAM, and 64 or 128 GB of RAM. A 3000 mAh battery might feel underwhelming but LG promises all-day battery life and there’s quick charge onboard for when you need to top off.
Where LG hopes to differentiate itself is in its AI capabilities. AI is starting to feel like a buzzword right now, but LG hopes that some new camera functionality and smart battery capabilities are enough to win customers over.
Samsung Galaxy Note 9
The Note 9 is that big-screen, stylus-packing experience that we’ve long appreciated. With a 6.4-inch Super AMOLED display, Snapdragon 845 processor, and 6GB or 8GB of memory, you can purchase it with a whopping 128GB or 512GB of internal storage. Moreover, it offers up the same dual-camera setup introduced in the Galaxy S9 Plus.
Samsung has ratcheted up the battery from 3,300mAh in the Note 8 to 4,000mAh for 2018. What’s more, the S Pen now supports Bluetooth, meaning you can control your camera and music with the stylus’s button.
Although the dual-camera setup is essentially the same as the S9 Plus, it can now recognize what’s in a photo, automatically adjusting settings for you on the fly.
LG V40 ThinQ
The LG V40 ThinQ features a 6.4-inch QHD POLED display. 6GB of RAM and a Qualcomm 845 round out the main specs of this flagship. Storage is your choice of 64GB or 128GB of internal with microSD expansion.
The V-series continues its lineage of content creation with an additional third rear camera. This brings the combination to a 12MP f/1.5 lens plus a 16MP f/1.9 wide-angle lens and a 12MP f/2.4 2X optical zoom lens. There are even a double 8MP and 5MP front-facing camera layout.
LG also keeps the 3.5mm headphone jack in an age where companies are consistently abandoning it and adds a QuadDAC for superior audio playback. Lastly, the phone offers all-day battery life with a 3,300mAh power cell.
Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus
Samsung’s newest phones are also its best phones. The Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus came out less than a month ago to high praise around the tech industry. While there aren’t huge changes from last year’s Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus, there didn’t need to be for Samsung to stay atop the Android latter.
The most notable new addition to the devices is the dual mechanical aperture lens. Depending on your lighting, the lens will change between a f/1.5 aperture and a f/2.4 aperture. This allows the camera to let in more light when it needs it. In practice, pictures look absolutely fantastic, just like they did last year. The new camera setup does improve the reduction of noise in low-light situations and maintaining fine lines in pictures. While most may not notice a difference, it is there and camera hounds will know what to look for.
Read more: How to get Android 8.0 AOSP on the Galaxy S9
Another notable change is how Samsung is differentiating the two devices. While last year’s devices both featured a single camera and 4 GB of RAM, that’s not the case this year. Spending the extra ~$120 on the Galaxy S9 Plus will get you an extra 2 GB of RAM (to 6 GB total) which matches the Galaxy Note 8. It also has a dual camera system, where the S9 just has a single shooter.
Despite their differences, the devices are largely the same. Both feature the brand new Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor that promises better performance and better battery life. Both have all-day battery life and Android Oreo on board, along with Samsung’s own software enhancements.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8
The Samsung Galaxy Note 8 combines power, speed, and beauty to be one of the best smartphones of the year. Samsung simply had to put out an amazing device after the Galaxy Note 7 fiasco and it delivered. The Galaxy Note 8 is expensive at a $999 initial asking price, but delivers some of the best performance available on a smartphone today.
The standout feature of the Galaxy Note 8 has to be the display. The 6.3-inch Super AMOLED display features the new 18:9 aspect ration that most phones moved to in 2017. It’s big, bright, and the colors pop unlike any other on the market. Combine a beautiful curved display with almost no bezels and you have a recipe for success. One thing to keep in mind is that the display is one of the largest on the market and even though the bezels are tiny, the phone is too big for most people to use one-handed. If you have smaller hands, you may want to consider other options.
Samsung finally joined the dual-camera club with the Galaxy Note 8. Though Samsung had featured dual cameras on some of its mid-range phones, the Note 8 was the first flagship the company produced with the camera setup. And boy did it impress! DxOMark gave the Samsung Galaxy Note 8’s camera a 94 rating. One of the biggest reasons it scored so highly was the excellent zoom feature that the second lens enables on the device. The device also got high scores for autofocus, flash, exposure, and contrast.
While Samsung’s software skin may have been a reason to avoid its devices in the past, that has changed in recent years. Samsung made some smart design and aesthetic choices which makes using its devices fun and easy. There are still a ton of features packed in, but you don’t feel overwhelmed when setting up the phone or during daily use. Samsung gives you the tools to make the phone function exactly how you want it to.
Motorola Moto E5 Plus
You’re simply not going to get more battery in a phone from a reputable brand. Forget about external power supplies and portable chargers — you’ve got two days of juice, plus some.
One of the best all-around mid-range experiences you’ll get out of a handset, the Moto E5 Plus is built for those of us who can’t get our face out of our phone. It runs a very current version of Android at 8.0 Oreo and there’s no bloatware or extra junk wasting space. Moreover, it will likely pick up a software update as quickly as others.
The hardware is no slouch with the octa-core processor, 3GB RAM, and 32GB of storage space. Need more for your photos, games, and music? Throw in a microSD card up to 128GB and you’re good to go.
You know what else is cool about this phone? It’s got a 3.5mm headphone jack and water repellent coating, two features we’re only too happy to find in a device.
What do you think about our list? Are we missing anything? Let us know down in the comments.