Best Mobile Phones in India
From streaming our favourite shows on Netflix to paying our utility bills online, everything is going mobile first.
In order to keep with this advancements, you need a premium flagship phone that offers the best of the best features.
So, which is the best smartphone available in India that can claim this title?
Who offers the best experience you can expect from a mobile phone without any budget constraints?
What model aligns perfectly with your interest?
We will find out in this article!
1. Apple iPhone XS Max
Overall Best Pick
- Futuristic technology in the pocket
- Excellent performance
- Guaranteed updates
The iPhone XS Max is the latest flagship smartphone from Apple announced this fall.
This latest iteration of iPhone brings some significant improvements over the last flagship, making it the best possible smartphone available in the entire world.
Design and build quality
The iPhone XS Max carries over the popular design of the original iPhone X, and looks minimal and premium at the same time.
The display is a lot bigger, and will satisfy those who crave for more screen real estate for an immersive experience.
As with the iPhone X, this phone also got away with the touch ID and relies solely on face ID to unlock the device. It now works faster and more reliably, thanks to the improvements in the hardware optimizations.
The glass front and back build is now a lot more tougher and scratch resistant with the Corning gorilla glass 6 and has been receiving praises from online reviewers regarding this.
There are dual speakers on this phone and the stereo effect is evident with the sound output. The sound is very louder than the previous versions and with no distortions per se.
The display has now received a spec bump, in the sense that it is now a larger 6.45-inch Super AMOLED display.
Apple has optimized this display to output wonderful images and videos with exceptional clarity and details.
This display has a pixel density close to 500 ppi and about 650 nits of brightness which is quite unheard of, in an AMOLED panel.
You’ll find no trouble using this phone in the direct sunlight. The screen to body ratio of this iPhone is 84.4%, which means the only substantial thing that breaks the continuity is the notch up top.
No, you can’t hide the notch and would have to bear with it while watching videos on this smartphone.
Processor and performance
Apple is a front runner in the mobile chipset industry and their chips perform better than the the likes of Snapdragon and Mediatek.
The iPhone XS Max features the latest Apple A12 Bionic SoC manufactured on 7nm process that outperforms Snapdragon 845 in almost all the tests.
The performance is fluid and lightning fast with the 4GB RAM and the superfast 256GB UFS storage adds to it.
The four core Apple GPU performs exceptionally well in graphic intensive tasks and delivers excellent performance while gaming.
The only downside of this powerful internals is with the glass back that is not as efficient as the metal back in dissipating the heat.
Apple rivals Samsung when it comes to the camera technology.
The iPhone XS Max has a dual 12MP camera unit at the back of which one is a f/1.8 wide-angle sensor and the other is a 12MP f/2.4 telephoto lens.
Both these lenses have Optical Image stabilization (OIS). The quality of images and videos that comes out of these lenses are very pleasing and has natural colours and a wide dynamic range.
The videos are stabilized and can shoot up to 4K at 60fps.
The front camera is a 7MP sensor that takes high quality selfies and portrait mode snaps.
The dedicated image processor does eliminate the noise in the images and videos and smoothens the textures to give more natural looking shots.
The battery on this iPhone XS Max is a non-removable 3174 mAh Li-ion cell that is a significant upgrade from the yester year flagship model.
The SAMOLED display and the highly optimized iOS 12 doesn’t drain battery like Android phones and can last easily over a day with moderate usage.
Tests have proven that this iPhone has a screen on time of about 11 hours.
Also with features like wireless charging and fast charging support, the device can be easily juiced up.
The iPhone XS Max is the best smartphone that you can buy in the market if you want a beast in terms of raw performance.
Excellent software support and durable build quality makes this device worth the premium you pay for it.
|Operating System||iOS 11.1.1|
|Internal Storage||256 GB|
|Camera||12 MP+12 MP Rear, 7 MP Front|
|Display||5.8-inch 1125 x 2436, SAMOLED|
2. Samsung Galaxy Note 9
- Best productivity device
- Excellent all round performance
- Stunning design and great build quality
Before the original Note came along, people were a bit skeptical about a large display on a phone that they’d would carry around daily in their pockets.
The Galaxy Note 9 is the latest and greatest addition to the Note family and is probably the best till date.
Design and build quality – Glorious!
The Samsung galaxy Note 9 is more of a professional workhorse rather than a typical smartphone.
The features and the design is targeted at people who want more productivity on the go.
The industrial design is very much similar to the previous Samsung Note series phones which in itself is a great thing because those phones looked dope.
The glass back and the seamlessly integrated infinity display makes this phone look like a stunning marvel worth drooling about.
The build quality is top notch with Corning Gorilla Glass 5 covering the glass, both in the front and the back for protection.
There is an headphone jack – yes, and the phone comes with an IP68 protection rating as well.
IP, or Ingress Protection, is a universally accepted measurement of varying degrees for dust and liquid resistance.
Devices backed by an international standard rating of IP68 are deemed fit enough to withstand dust, dirt and sand, and are resistant to submersion up to a maximum depth of 1.5m underwater for up to thirty minutes.
Best display on a smartphone, ever!
Samsung makes the best displays in the entire world.
The Galaxy Note 9 comes with a 6.4-inch Super AMOLED display with a resolution of 2960 x 1440 pixels.
The colours look vivid and punchy.
The wide color gamut of this panel makes the colours to be as close to the natural colour palette.
The brightness levels are excellent and the sunlight legibility isn’t a thing to worry about.
As Samsung named it, this 6.4-inch infinity display curves on to the back shell seamlessly and makes the device look and feel premium in hand.
The only issue we had with this device was its one hand usability.
Since it’s a large display, people with relatively small fingers will find it difficult to access the far reaching corners of the display with a single hand.
Dual camera – with the variable aperture!
The Samsung Note 9 comes with a dual rear camera setup that comprises of two 12MP sensors.
One of the sensors is a telephoto one with 2x optical zoom capability. The variable aperture camera from Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus has also found its way to this device.
There is OIS (Optical Image Stabilization) for both the dual rear cameras. The images that comes out of these sensors look great and detailed.
The colour saturation is excellent with minimal noise.
The front 8MP camera has live auto focus and takes selfies with good details as well.
Performance – Top notch!
This device in India features an homebrewed Exynos 9810 Octa core processor inside.
This chipset is fast and reliable for gaming as well as other resource intensive tasks to run smoothly.
There will be no sort of lags or stutters while multitasking with apps, thanks to the ample 6GB RAM on board.
The powerful chipset with Android Oreo optimizations makes this device one of the fastest performing devices in the market at present.
The 6GB variant comes with 128GB of onboard memory which can be expanded if needed up to 512GB.
Battery – Excellent!
The Note 9 packs in a 4000mAh Li-ion battery inside. This is almost a 20% increase in capacity when compared with the Note 8 which had a 3300mAh cell inside.
Even with heavy usage, this big screen beast can last over a day comfortably and then some.
With fast charging support, this device can get charged up pretty quickly as well.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is the best productivity smartphone that money can buy at present.
The phone comes with a Bluetooth stylus that lets you do a plethora of stuff so easily which you will find quite strenuous with fingers.
The long lasting battery and the excellent display makes it a gaming as well media consumption device as well.
So in short, productivity and entertainment can go hand in hand with this latest offering from Samsung.
|Operating System||Android Oreo|
|Internal Storage||128 GB|
|Camera||12 MP+12 MP Rear, 8 MP Front|
|Display||6.4-inch quad HD+ SAMOLED|
3. Google Pixel 3
Best Android Software Experience
- Clean stock Android
- Assured software updates
- Superior build quality
The Pixel 3 was launched with its elder brother, the Pixel 3 XL.
Being a showpiece of the Android operating system, the new Pixel 3 has a lot to offer when it comes to premium smartphone segment.
Design and build quality
Google Pixel 3 follows the same design footsteps of the Pixel 2 devices.
The two-tone color as well material back case and a polished rounded candy bar design are what you get with this smartphone.
The upper part of the back case is made of plastic to ensure better signal reception and the lower back is of glass to enable wireless charging.
This time around the glass has a smoked texture which adds to the grip while holding the phone with one hand.
The contrast color power button has been retained and it gives the phone a refreshing look.
The Pixel 2 had an awesome OLED display. With the Pixel 3, Google brings a 5.5-inch P-OLED panel with a resolution of 1080 x 2160 pixels.
It is an 18:9 aspect ratio panel with a pixel density of about 443 PPI.
The 5.5-inch screen is very bright with excellent color reproduction and being an OLED panel, the contrast levels hit the ace.
The 5.5 inch size is very comfortable for immersive media experience as well as for single-handed usage.
This display supports HDR and it makes it one of the best smartphone displays in the market right now.
There is Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection for the display to save it some accidental scratches.
The Pixel 3 comes loaded with the flagship Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 SoC.
This octa-core chipset along with 4GB RAM works flawlessly with the Android 9.0 Pie OS.
Thanks to the underlying optimizations, multitasking and gaming offer a delightful experience.
Adreno 630 GPU handles graphics-intensive tasks with relative ease and keeps the processor free for other purposes.
There are two versions of Pixel 3 available for purchase – one with 64GB of onboard storage and the other with 128GB, both have 4GB of RAM.
Surprisingly, the Pixel 3 this time also didn’t joined the bandwagon of dual camera madness.
The single rear camera sensor is of 12MP that has dual pixel PDAF feature along with OIS (Optical Image Stabilization).
With Google’s crazy good camera algorithm, the Pixel 3 takes stunning quality photos and smooth and detailed videos just like from an expensive camera.
In the front, there is a dual selfie camera with two 8MP sensors. This allows ultra-wide selfies without losing any subject while clicking photos.
The Pixel 3 is powered by a 2915 mAh non-removable battery that will last for a day even with heavy usage.
With features like fast charging, this device can be quickly juiced up without having to wait forever.
If you have a wireless charger in hand, rejoice.
The Pixel 3 supports this and you can now comfortably charge your phone overnight by just placing it on the wireless charging pad.
There are a lot of phone that’s half as expensive as the Pixel 3 with similar specifications in Indian market.
But if you love the brand Google and love to stay fresh with the latest software updates as soon as the company announces them, the Pixel 3 is worth it.
|Operating System||Android Pie|
|Internal Storage||64GB / 128 GB|
|Camera||12.2MP Rear, 8 MP Front|
|Display||5.5-inch 1080 x 2160 , P-OLED|
4. OnePlus 6T
Best Budget Pick
- Best value for money flagship
- Great build quality
- Faster DASH charging
OnePlus is a Chinese smartphone brand popular for its affordable flagships that often beat the big players in the market.
The OnePlus 6T is the latest incremental hardware update to the popular OnePlus 6 with almost all the good features retained and then added some that makes this phone more likeable.
Design and build quality
The design of this flagship OnePlus smartphone has a teardrop notch instead of the ugly wide one that the OnePlus 6 had.
Also, the physical fingerprint scanner at the back has been removed to give way for the in-display fingerprint scanner beneath the display.
The chin size has been reduced slightly to make the display seem to stretch all the way across the front side.
The quality of construction is top notch and the attention to details is very much evident from the fit and finish of this display.
Processor and Performance
Inside this device, what powers the show is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor.
This flagship processor from Qualcomm along with the Adreno 630 GPU performs everything you throw at it with relative ease.
Be it gaming or any other resource-intensive tasks such as video/photo editing, the device performs exceptionally well without any lags.
The Oxygen OS that runs on top of the base Android 9 Pie is very minimal and adds only the necessary features without bloating the interface too much.
This makes the operations smooth and fast, also aids in achieving better battery life.
The OnePlus 6T has a 6.41-inch Optic-AMOLED display with a teardrop-shaped notch. This full HD panel looks fantastic with true to life colour reproduction and excellent contrast levels.
This is by far the best looking 1080p AMOLED panel in any smartphone in the market. Nifty additions like a super fast facial recognition, which works extremely well and the dedicated gaming mode improve the usability of the device to the next level.
The fingerprint scanner now resides in the lower half of the display and works well to unlock the device from sleep.
There is a slight delay to unlock when compared with physical fingerprint scanners but the technology is still evolving, so it’s just the way it will be.
This device comes with a dual 16+20MP dual camera at the rear and a 16MP front camera.
The 16MP sensor on the rear features Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) for steady smooth shots. Electronic Image stabilisation is also present as well.
The pictures taken by the camera is rich in detail and exhibit great dynamic range. Both the front and rear cameras perform great in good lighting conditions but the same can’t be said about the front cameras.
The battery capacity shows a significant bump with the OnePlus 6T when compared with the earlier model.
This device has a 3700mAh Li-ion battery that will last for a day and half on moderate usage.
The renowned dash charge support makes it easy to juice up the battery within no time.
OnePlus 6T is a value for money smartphone that offers flagship internals at a really affordable price.
This device is well built and the overall construction feel premium and durable.
The AMOLED display with great colours and capable camera along with continuous software support from the company makes this device one of the best phone available in the market.
OIS + EIS Camera
|Operating System||Android Pie|
|Internal Storage||128 GB / 256GB|
|RAM||6 GB / 8GB|
|Camera||Dual 16 MP + 20 MP Rear, 16 MP Front|
|Display||6.41-inch, 1080*2340, Optic AMOLED|
5. Samsung Galaxy S9 / S9+
Best Feature-Rich Phone
- Excellent AMOLED display
- Best in class processor
- Variable aperture rear camera
They have built the best AMOLED displays, unique sensors and many other hardware devices for mobile phones in the past.
The Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+ follow the same pattern.
A slight improvement from the S8 design…
Starting off with the design, the Galaxy S9 looks almost similar to its predecessor, the S8 with the same glass body design and curved infinity display.
The build quality of this 2018-flagship from Samsung as expected is awesome. The unibody chassis is carefully crafted to perfection. The curved glass on the front meets the glass back panel with ultimate precision.
The build quality of S9 is simply amazing thanks to the glass body build at the front and back.
The glass is Corning Gorilla Glass 5 which is protected with IP68 certification for water and dust proofing.
The glass back can catch some fingerprint smudges and it’s always advised to apply a back cover or skin for extra protection from accidental drops.
A noticeable difference between the S8 and S9 is the fingerprint positioning.
The S9 has fingerprint scanner located right below the rear cameras, which is a welcome move.
Headphone jack and Bixby button are retained on this phone as well.
Best smartphone display at present.. period.
The Super AMOLED display on this device is the best you can get on any smartphone.
The colours look accurate and the viewing angles are amazing.
It has a very thin bezel at the top and bottom.
The display is 5.8-inch on the S9 and 6.2-inch on the S9+.
Homegrown Exynos processor inside…
The Galaxy S9 and S9+ are powered by the Exynos 9810 SoC which is an octa-core processor and Mali-G72 GPU.
This SoC is comparable in performance to the flagship SoC from Qualcomm, the Snapdragon 845.
The phone is running on Android Oreo with Samsung Customization.
The S9 has a 4GB RAM and the S9+ has a 6GB RAM with both having either 64GB or 256GB internal storage with memory expandability via micro SD card.
A smooth performance is guaranteed on this smartphone.
Single camera.. But with variable aperture!!!
The key highlight of Galaxy S9 is its new rear camera setup with variable aperture.
The 12MP rear camera on this phone can adjust its aperture based on the outside lighting.
Thanks to this feature, there’s a considerable improvement in low light camera performance and this is the best camera for low light photography.
The camera performance, on the whole, is pretty damn good but it’s still a bit overexposed and can’t beat the camera performance of Pixel 2 or even iPhone X.
The S9+ has a dual rear camera with an additional telephoto lens for optical zoom and live focus.
The front camera is an 8MP shooter.
The S9 and S9+ have 4K video recording capability at 60fps and a cool super slow-mo at 960fps.
Extra bits and pieces…
Usual suspects like USB Type C, Iris Scanner and all the required sensors are present on this device.
Samsung has even added a heartbeat sensor and blood pressure sensor for those health conscious users.
Face unlock feature is also added with an added Intelligent Scan support that uses a mix of Iris and face to unlock the device.
The biggest negative of Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+ is its battery life.
Both these phones have a 3000mAh and 3500mAh batteries respectively but they drain too fast and last just about a day.
On the flip side, both these phones have wireless charging and quick charging features.
Another downside of this phone is the Software optimization.
Samsung is not known for quick software updates and you may have to wait a while to get Android P updates or other security updates.
There is no dual 4G LTE support as of now.
In conclusion, the Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+ are the best feature-rich flagship phones in India for most users.
If you love the headphone jack or expandable memory storage or dual SIM capability, the Galaxy S9 won’t disappoint you.
It also has the best display for a smartphone, a re-imagined camera for great low light shots and the latest SoC under the hood for blazing fast performance.
|Operating System||Android Oreo|
|Internal Storage||64 GB / 256 GB|
|RAM||4GB / 6GB|
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 845|
|Camera||12 MP Rear, 8 MP Front on S9|
|Display||5.8-inch, 1440*2960, 570 ppi|
That concludes our list of the best flagship phones in India right now. As always, the choice is completely yours.
Think wisely and select the best phone that suits your mode of use.
If your budget is less check out our best lists in other price ranges here.
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