6. Huawei P20 ($999 RRP, $719 Actual)
This year, Huawei redefined the standards of mobile photography with the P20 Pro. However, if you’re looking to save a little money, the mainline Huawei P20 still holds up as a compelling option. The primary difference here is the camera. Rather than the revolutionary triple-lens configuration found in the Pro variant, the standard P20 opts for a dual-lens configuration.
Beyond that, the 5.8-inch handset comes with most of the same flagship features found in the Pro model: including a 3400 mAh battery and IP67 waterproofing.
7. OnePlus 6 ($899 RRP, AU$672 Actual)
If the older aspect ratio on display and by the numbers design of the OnePlus 5 put you off picking it up, the OnePlus 6 is probably going to prove itself a solid option. It’s a little more expensive but opts for a gorgeous all-glass design similar to that of Samsung Galaxy smartphones. It also comes with this year’s Snapdragon 845 processor and a significantly better dual-lens camera.
You’ll have to import it, since OnePlus isn’t officially sold in Australia. But, if you do, rest assured that you’re in for a solid value-driven alternatives to the most expensive flagships out there.
8. Galaxy Note 8 ($1499 RRP, $799 Actual)
Though Samsung did put up a big song and dance around the improvements that came to the Galaxy Note experience with this year’s redesigned S-Pen, the differences between the Galaxy Note 9 and Galaxy Note 8 aren’t realistically all that huge. Not that they needed to be. Last year’s Note 8 is still a powerhouse of a phablet.
As we said in our review at the time, “if you’re the kind of phablet power-user that the device is surely aimed towards appeasing - make no mistake - Samsung are back on track with the Note 8. “
9. LG V30+ ($1199 RRP, $654 Actual)
On paper, LG’s V30+ is feels like the quiet achiever of the 2018 flagship line-up. It’s got everything you’d expect: IP68 waterproofing, a Snapdragon 835 processor, a powerful dual-lens camera, face unlock, an always-on display and support for wireless charging. It’s also got some stuff you might not expect, like dedicated videography capabilities.
As we said in our review of the LG V30+, “If you’re a sucker for a good snap (or selfie), LG’s V30+ is probably not going to cut it for you. However, if you’re willing to live with photos that are only good rather than great, it’s got the makings of the best Android phones of the year. It ticks (almost) all the right boxes and does so at a price that neatly undercuts the competition.”
10. Xperia XZ Premium ($904 RRP, $569 actual)
When you factor in the raw discounts that this past calendar year has incurred, it’s hard to look past Sony’s ultra-premium flagship from last year: the Sony Xperia XZ Premium.
Armed with last year’s Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor, an IP68 rating against water damage, a 4K HDR display and a Sony MotionEye camera, it’s far from out of date. It even supports the same super slow-motion video you can find in this year’s Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+.
As we said in our review of the device, “It’s not an outright winner, but it’s another great all-rounder with no real weak point which makes it even more attractive if you’re bothered by any of the failings and foibles of the competition.”
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