Samsung is the largest phone maker in the world, so it’s no surprise that it also makes some of the best phones out there. In this guide, we’ve rounded up some of the best Android phones that you can buy from Samsung. If Samsung’s OneUI isn’t your favorite skin on Android, we also have a list of the best Google phones that offer a more vanilla Android experience.
Read the guide and learn more about the best flagship and mid-range devices Samsung released this year. For those looking for something a little more affordable, we’ve also included some of the best Samsung phones from last year that can still compete with the newer premium phones today.
Best Samsung phone: Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G
The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra has a number of improvements over its predecessor, the Galaxy S20 Ultra. If you’ve ever dreamed of a phone that had it all, from the best high-end chipset, premium construction, all the cameras that fit in one device, a large battery, a massive and responsive display, and even support for the S Pen, the Galaxy S21 Ultra has you covered.
It is the most expensive and high-quality device in the Galaxy S series and does not have any functions or software. It comes with a Snapdragon 888 5G chipset, 8/12/16 GB storage options, and storage from 128 GB. The display is massive at 6.8 inches and the battery with 5,000 mAh is also large. It has a 108 MP main sensor, 10 MP periscope telephoto lens for 10x optical zoom, 10 MP telephoto lens for 3x optical zoom and 12 MP ultra wide angle. The selfie camera is 40 MP.
The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra is the ultimate device for anyone who wants the best of the best, which is available today in a relatively compact package, although you need big hands to use it on a daily basis.
Best for most: Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus 5G
It is often very difficult for most people to choose the best device, but we need to look at what people have bought in the past to understand what they might want in the future. The Galaxy S21 Plus conquers this category with its high-end chipset and first-class workmanship. It is powered by the Snapdragon 888 chipset, 8 GB of RAM and a large 4,800 mAh battery.
The camera quality is some of the best you can find on a smartphone today, including a 12 MP wide angle sensor, a 64 MP telephoto lens with 3x hybrid zoom, and another 12 MP sensor for ultra wide angle shots.
If you want the best possible device at the best possible price, the Galaxy S21 Plus offers flagship-level experience at a reasonable price.
Best high-end compact device: Samsung Galaxy S21 5G
It’s the smaller brother of the Galaxy S21 Plus and offers the same functionality and great performance in a small form factor. It has the same high-end Snapdragon 888 SoC, 8 GB of RAM and a large 6.2-inch AMOLED display with 120 Hz and high refresh rate with HDR10 + certification. Thanks to the capacity of 4,000 mAh, the battery can last a whole working day.
The camera quality is also the same as its bigger brother and offers the best experience at this price point, both day and night. Just like the rest of the Galaxy S range, the S21 is also IP68 waterproof and dustproof, although we strongly advise against trying this out, as always.
If you’re looking for a true flagship experience in a smaller form factor, the Samsung Galaxy S21 has it at an affordable price.
Best with a pen: Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra 5G
The Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra has a powerful, 5G-capable processor and the popular integrated S-Pen for everyone. This could be the last Galaxy Note we’ll see for a while as Samsung is unlikely to release a new version in 2021 due to a global chip shortage. While the new Galaxy S21 Ultra could help as it is compatible with the S-Pen, the Note 20 Ultra is great if you’re looking to save some cash.
If you’re happy with last year’s performance and a less responsive display compared to the Galaxy S21 range, the Note 20 Ultra is a great choice. It has a perfect camera setup for taking pictures day and night and a long-lasting battery to get you through the day.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra has a powerful chipset and great performance for anyone looking for a smartphone with a built-in stylus.
Best price-performance ratio: Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G
While the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE hits the market later this year, last year’s Galaxy S20 FE is still a very capable device, not to mention it keeps getting discounts, which makes it a lot more attractive. It has last year’s Snapdragon 865 5G chipset and 6/8 GB of storage. While it may not be powered by the latest and greatest devices, it is still more than capable of playing graphics-intensive games and functioning like a true flagship. Speaking of the flagship, the camera certainly takes flagship-quality images.
The Samsung Galaxy S20 FE is an excellent purchase for anyone who does not want to spend four-digit amounts on a high-end smartphone. The S20 FE comes with a powerful processor and a long-lasting battery.
The cheapest: Samsung Galaxy A52 5G
The Samsung Galaxy A52 5G has a large 6.5-inch AMOLED display with 120 Hz and a high refresh rate. It is powered by the Snapdragon 750G 5G capable chipset and has 6 GB of RAM and expandable storage. The selfie shooter on the front is 32 MP, and on the back is 64 MP, 12 MP ultrawide, 5 MP macro and another 5 MP for depth measurement.
It’s a true mid-range flagship as it has many features and performance from its more expensive Galaxy S21 sibling. It can take photos of roughly the same quality day and night and thanks to the 4,500 mAh battery it can easily plow through a whole working day on a single charge.
The Samsung Galaxy A52 is the best Samsung phone in the mid-range, offering premium features at an affordable price.
Runner-up: Samsung Galaxy A52 (4G)
The Samsung Galaxy A52 has the same features as its slightly more expensive sibling with 5G. However, it has a slightly less powerful chipset and a 90Hz high refresh rate display compared to 120Hz. If you want to save money and not worry about 5G, this is a great option.
The camera quality of the A52 series is true flagship quality. You will only see some differences in a few dark situations, but even then the quality of the image is still social media and requires little to no editing. The battery also does a good job and can easily last a whole day.
For the price-conscious, the Samsung Galaxy A52 (4G) is an excellent mid-range player that offers flagship features in an elegant package.
The best from last year: Samsung Galaxy S20
If you’re on a tight budget, last year’s compact flagship might be the way to go. It has the performance you need on the go, a great display, and great camera quality. While it may not offer all of the new features in the new Galaxy S21 range, it’s perfect for those looking for a true flagship experience with no drawbacks.
The Samsung Galaxy S20 is a fairly compact high-end flagship from 2020 that can keep up with the competition from 2021 onwards.
Best foldable: Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 is Samsung’s best foldable flagship to date. It has great build quality and Samsung has fixed a number of issues that were present on its predecessor, the Galaxy Fold. Namely, the display is far more durable and less fragile, although it’s still not perfect as this is the second iteration of the Z-Fold range.
Widely used in most markets, the Galaxy Z Fold 2 has a powerful chipset that offers great performance and long battery life, despite the fact that it does need to power two displays. If you are looking for an all-round well-finished foldable smartphone, the Z Fold 2 will not disappoint.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 offers a well-refined foldable smartphone experience.
If you can afford it and want more than you probably ever want and use, the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra is the ultimate smartphone that has all the features and the best and almost everything a phone has to offer. However, if your budget is a little tighter, both the Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus and Galaxy S21 can offer high-end flagship features in one high-quality and stylish package.
Under $ 700, the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE and the cheaper Galaxy A52 5G are one of the best possible devices. If you don’t join the 5G hype, we won’t judge you. It’s not for everyone, especially if it costs a little more. Fortunately, Samsung also offers the Galaxy A52 4G variant, which has only a few small differences between the two models. The 5G model has a slightly faster chipset and 120 Hz display compared to a slightly slower chipset and 90 Hz display. The difference is there on paper, but in practice the changes are barely noticeable.
Roland is a technology enthusiast and software engineer based in the UK. He is also a content creator and author and is best known by the name “Techusiast”.