If you love Android phones, 2023 is proving to be a very good year. So far, we’ve rounded up the biggest news of the year, including the biggest phone launches and mobile platform rumors, as well as our predictions for what’s to come. We’ve already seen new phones outperforming ours best phones list, some of best camera phones never, and the best foldable phones we have ever reviewed.
Android is all about flexibility and trying out new innovations before anyone else. We haven’t seen many amazing new technologies this year, but some Android innovations like foldable displays and high-end phone cameras are finally reaching maturity and evolving into devices worth buying.
Unfortunately for our US readers, some of the most advanced Android camera phones are not sold in the US, as Chinese phone makers shun the US market. We’re still covering all the new sensor and lens innovations.
Thankfully, the new generation of foldable phones like the Google Pixel Fold and Motorola Razr Plus aren’t just available in the US, you can even get one from a wireless carrier for a great deal on one of these expensive phones.
The year isn’t over and we just received invitations from Samsung to attend its next Unpacked event where we expect the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Galaxy Z Flip 5, and maybe some surprises. We’re also expecting more Pixels from Google this year, another Razr from Motorola, and maybe a little Nothing Phone on the side. It’s going to be busy, but that’s why we love Android phones.
Android phones in 2023: What have been the biggest launches so far this year?
While the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra launched in February (and quickly shot to the top of our best phones list), the real excitement for Android phone fans came in June when both the Google Pixel Fold and Motorola Razr Plus appeared one after another. .
Neither phone came as a surprise, as Google has been talking about its Pixel Fold for months and Motorola has already launched some foldable Razr smartphones. What’s surprising is that both of these foldable phones are great and worth buying if you can handle the high prices. The days of foldable phones that come with warnings and excuses may finally be over.
We’ve also seen tremendous innovation from Chinese phone makers Huawei, Oppo, and Honor on camera capabilities. Using massive sensors, ultra-wide aperture lenses, and tuning from respected camera brands like Hasselblad, these phones are exceeding expectations of what a mobile camera can create. Too bad we can’t buy them in the US, but at least this year Oppo has given us a sample in its OnePlus brand and the OnePlus 11 phone, also tuned to Hasselblad.
Of course, Android phones aren’t just for people with deep pockets, they’re for everyone, and it’s been a solid year for budget phones. Google’s Pixel 7a brings you all the power of the Pixel 7 Pro with the Tensor G2 chipset, and Motorola has had a banner year with respectable mid-range phones like the Moto Edge 30 Fusion.
Finally, earlier in the year we saw the first widely available consumer satellite communications with a cell phone on a soon-to-be-released Motorola Defy built by the Bullitt Group. While the iPhone can use a satellite for emergencies, this Android phone can connect whenever you can’t reach a cell tower, even if you don’t need help. There is also a satellite-connected Defy accessory that will give other smartphones the same power.
Android phones in 2023: what launches do we expect in the rest of the year?
We’re not expecting any surprises in the Android world for the rest of 2023, as most of the major phones were either heralded or widely leaked. That doesn’t mean it won’t be an exciting ride, we just know where this ride is going.
Our first stop will be Seoul for the launch of the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Galaxy Z Flip 5. Samsung has already announced that its Galaxy Unpacked 2023 event will take place later this month. We’re not expecting any major updates to the foldable line save for a much larger display on the cover of the Z Flip 5.
Samsung needs to win new foldable devices to compete with the Google Pixel Fold and two Motorola Razr devices. The Motorola Razr Plus 2023 is already here, but the base model Razr 2023 will arrive later this year at a much more affordable price. That phone also uses the cool vegan leather finish and features a bigger battery than its premium sibling, so it could be a winner in its own right.
We also recently learned that OnePlus is launching its first foldable phone, and we expect the OnePlus Open (if the new naming rumor sticks), or OnePlus Fold or whatever it’s called, to show up later this year. OnePlus has a habit of launching killer flagships, which could mean a foldable phone at a good price that makes some necessary compromises. With the Pixel Fold peaking in the foldable price range, it would be nice to have a more affordable option.
If nothing above excites you, perhaps the Nothing Phone (2) is what you need. Nothing said its next phone is coming soon, with a launch event on July 11th. In fact, Nothing CEO Carl Pei has asked reviewers to post sample photos on Twitter, so I can admit I have a Nothing Phone (2) in hand and a full review will be posted soon. The new Nothing Phone (2) will be the company’s first device to go on sale in the United States and around the world.
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