Some smartphones are worth waiting for, and there are some stunners coming in 2016. These are the best phones coming in 2016, including the best new Android phones, best new iPhones, best new Windows phones, best new Samsung phones, best new Sony phones, best new HTC phones, best new LG phones and more.
In this article we’ll show you some of the exciting new iPhones and new Android phones (listed alphabetically) that will launch over the coming year. We’ll also look back on some of the best new phones of 2015.
Apple iPhone 5se(iPhone 6c/iPhone mini)
Apple’s holding a special event in mid-March in which it is expected to take the wraps off a new 4in iPhone, alongside the second-gen Apple Watch and iPad Air 3. There’s not a lot on the rumour mill regarding what to expect, but we’d guess it will be very much like the iPhone 5s.
We reckon the 4in iPhone will, like the 5s, have a 326ppi Retina display and 1GB of RAM, but feature the beefed up A9 processor. For more spec speculation see our iPhone mini rumour round-up.
Apple iPhone 7
The iPhone 7 will be Apple’s brand-new flagship phone for 2016, and following tradition should be announced in September. Although the final release date is still many months away, that hasn’t stopped the rumour mill going crazy over the upcoming iPhone.
We’ve already seen rumours that the new iPhone will feature big design changes, with an all-new D-jack headphone jack, waterproofing protection and an eSIM. Loads of rumours are circulating about the screen too – will it get bigger? Will it feature a curved edge? Will it have a Touch ID display, or edge-to-edge glass?
One things for sure, the new iPhone will be faster than ever, with an A10 processor and embedded M10 motion co-processor, plus 2GB of RAM.
Apple iPhone 7 Plus
Apple’s upcoming iPhone 7 Plus will be the best iPhone to date, with an array of spec improvements that include a bump up to the A10 chip and M10 motion co-processor with 2GB of RAM.
It’s been suggested that the iPhone 7 Plus’ screen size will increase to 5.7in, but without increasing the overall size of the iPhone 7 Plus – this could be achieved with an edge-to-edge screen or sidewall display. We just hope it’ll improve the resolution as well.
In common with the smaller iPhone we could see a new D-jack headphone connector, and waterproofing protection as standard.
Samsung Galaxy S7 & S7 Edge
The Galaxy S6 is a brilliant product from Samsung, and there has been so much intrigue in its Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge that it has since unveiled the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge+ phablet. Samsung doesn’t rest on its laurels too long, though, and on 21 February at Mobile World Congress we will see the new Samsung Galaxy S7 on show alongside a new Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge.
In the S6 Samsung turned its back on Qualcomm and instead used one of its own Exynos processors; while it’s possible that we could see a continuation of this trend, we know Samsung has already been testing out the Snapdragon 820. In fact, Samsung is thought to be working alongside Qualcomm in manufacturing the 820 with 3GHz Kyro CPU cores. This also means the new S7 could see Adreno 530 graphics and LP-DDR4 RAM – possibly as much as 6GB, although 4GB is more likely.
We don’t expect to see anything new in the already very good screen, so expect a 5.1in Quad HD SuperAMOLED panel. The fingerprint scanner and heart-rate montor found in the S6 will also likely feature. The Samsung Galaxy S7 will come with Android 6.0 Marshmallow and TouchWiz.
We expect the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge to go on sale in March 2016.
Sony Xperia Z6
Sony has had a rough ride in the smartphone market this year and while it will hope the Xperia Z5 range will be a big success, its thoughts must now be firmly with the Xperia Z6.
There’s little in the way of leaked information on the phone but it does seem that Sony will stop its six-month refresh cycle meaning the Xperia Z6 will arrive around September 2016.
We’re expecting a similar offering to the Z5 with waterproofing and a fingerprint scanner but we hope it will shake things up a bit with something very different to past phones.
Google Nexus 6 2016
It’s very early days for new Nexus 6 rumours, but we’ve already heard a tip-off that the smartphone will once again be made by Huawei, and that it will feature a Snapdragon 820 chip, which is more powerful and energy efficient, and builds in support for Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0.
Some other stuff we ‘know’ includes the fact it will be the launch vehicle for the new Android OS, Android N, and it will most likely arrive in October. This will be a large-screen phablet (the clue is in the ‘6’) and with support for USB-C now built into Android it will use that format for data transfer and charging.
HTC One M10
Now that we know the phone unveiled by HTC in October was an HTC One A9, we’re still expecting to see the HTC One M10 in March 2016.
HTC One launches are traditionally held just prior to March’s Mobile World Congress show, and HTC chairwoman Cher Wang has said there would be significant improvements in innovations and design for the next flagship model next year. However, we’re expecting to see the HTC One M10 shortly after MWC, with a separate launch event held in March 2016.
A key area in which HTC now lags behind its rivals is the screen, with the M9 featuring a full- rather than Quad HD display. We’d expect to see some key improvements here, as well as some general performance enhancements.
It’s not long since we welcomed the LG G4, but the LG G5 will be announced by the company on 21 February.
Rumours suggest we’ll see a metal design with a large 5.6in 4K screen (which LG has said will be ‘always on’) an Iris scanner, Snapdragon 820 processor, removable battery via an ‘accessory slot’ and dual cameras. LG has also announced a Quick Cover case for the phone ahead of the launch.
The new LG G5 is thought to have a larger-capacity battery – perhaps up to 4000mAh – and the company is expected to retain the ability to remove- and also wirelessly charge the battery.
LG G Flex 3
The LG G Flex 2 was an interesting smartphone, with its curved form-factor and material that would automatically heal scratches. Mark 3 should be more interesting still, with a rumoured metal body and premium design.
Expect the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 and 4GB of RAM inside, plus 32GB of (expandable via microSD) storage. Leaks suggest there will be a 3500mAh battery, a fingerprint scanner, and 20.7/8Mp cameras.
Although the LG G Flex 3 has not yet been officially confirmed by the company, we expect it to make an appearance in early 2016, with a price tag a touch over £500.
LG has unveiled what looks to be the LG G4 Pro, except it’s known as the LG V10. It’s a dual-screen Quad-HD smartphone with two front-facing selfie cameras, a manual mode for video and support for microSD up to 2TB. Other highlights include 64GB of built-in storage, a 3,000mAh removable battery, a hexacore Snapdragon 808 chip with 4GB of RAM and a 32-bit Hi-Fi DAC.
It’s not yet been confirmed when the LG V10 will go on sale in the UK, although we hope it will be late 2015 rather than early 2016.
Things on Kickstarter are often a complete load of rubbish but the Nextbit Robin is a success story which we’re looking forward to seeing in the flesh.
The firm was founded in 2012 and its key staff have been involved with Android since the beginning. Collectively, they’ve worked on launching phones including the G1, Nexus and HTC One M8 and M8.
Due to arrive February 2016 with a price tag of $399, the ‘cloud-first’ smartphone has a different approach to most other Android devices on the market. There is on-board storage but the phone will automatically optimise by doing things like moving unused apps and photos to the cloud.
One Plus 2 Mini
Despite having only recently announced the OnePlus X, a smaller OnePlus smartphone than the company’s flagship OnePlus 2, there are rumours that we’ll soon see a third OnePlus smartphone.
This new OnePlus phone will be smaller than the OnePlus X, but with performance to match the OnePlus 2, so we assume it will be priced somewhere in between the two – that’s if it ever sees the light of day.
The rumours of a OnePlus 2 Mini phone stem from an entry in the GFXBench database of an unknown OnePlus device with a 4.6in screen (the OnePlus X has a 5in screen and the OnePlus 2 a 5.5in screen). That’s a full-HD (1808p panel), and other specs include a 1.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor, 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage and 12Mp/5Mp cameras. In common with the OnePlus 2, there’s no NFC.
OnePlus has spoiled us in 2015 with both the OnePlus 2 and OnePlus X, but we’re already hearing whispers about a OnePlus 3.
The image pictured here is merely a render, and may be little more than an artist’s impression of what they’d like to see. Still if it’s true, there’s no sign of the fingerprint scanner previously built into the home button, which may mean OnePlus is going down the Sony route by building it into the power button, or it could mean it’s dropped it completely, possibly in favour of something more radical such as iris-scanning.
Early leaked specifications include the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chip that will feature heavily in 2016 flagships, offering improved performance and battery efficiency, plus support for Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 and Adreno 530 graphics. And OnePlus will allegedly continue to fit a 1080p full-HD screen, which suggests to us the OnePlus 3, like the One and 2 before it, will be a great-value phone (probably under £300) with high-end specs and a mid-range price.
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