12 Best Android Phones and Smartphones
Which is the best Android phone in 2015 out of the hundreds available? That depends on what you want and need and our pick of the best Android smartphones includes phones of every size and price.
If you don’t know much about Android smartphones, you can be forgiven for thinking that aggressively-advertised models like the Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8 reign supreme, but that’s just not the case. They're great Android phones, but they're not the only ones.
That's because smartphones running the Android operating system are by far the most diverse on the market. There’s something to suit every taste and budget. You don’t have to spend hundreds of pounds or lock yourself into an expensive contract – our best Android smartphone round-up includes phones available for as little as £100.
We've also updated our list to reflect the fact that new phones are coming very soon. Popular phones like the Galaxy S5, HTC One M8 and Sony Xperia Z3 are all expected to get updates at the upcoming MWC 2015 (Mobile World Congress) tradeshow in March. All the phones in our list are very good, but proceed with caution if you're buying right now.
Click the ‘Next’ arrow above or browse the list below to see the best Android phones, or read on for more smartphone buying guidance.
TrustedReviews Recommended Android Phones
TrustedReviews Editor's Pick | LG G3
Best Android Phone for Selfies | HTC Desire EYE
Best Under £150 SIM-free | Motorola Moto G 2014
Best Under £250 SIM-free | Honor 6
Best Phablet | Samsung Galaxy Note 4
Best Cheap Phablet | Huawei Ascent Mate 7
Best for Enthusiasts | OnePlus One
Best Cheap 4G Android Phone | Hisense Sero 5
Best 4-inch Android Phone | Sony Xperia Z3 Compact
Wait Before Buying
Samsung Galaxy S5 | Replacement coming March 2015
HTC One M8 | Replacement coming March 2015
Sony Xperia Z3 | Replacement expected in March 2015
Last Update: 17/02/1015
Best Android Phone Guide: What you need to knowNot sure what you need, or even how to choose from the selection above, here are a few pointers to get you started.
What size Android phone should I buy?
Smartphones in general are getting bigger and bigger. Some of you might remember Steve Jobs explaining at the launch of the original iPhone back in 2007: "It’s got a three-and-a-half-inch screen on it. It’s really big."
Fast-forward to the present day and 4-inch smartphones are the smallest, and often cheapest, handsets out there. They’re good for children and users who don’t care for games and multimedia content, but even smaller Android phones like the Sony Xperia Z3 Compact have at least 4.5-inch screens.
5-inch screens are far better for watching movies and playing games on, but they’re right on the edge of too big if you have small hands. Anything between 4.5 and 5.1 inches is generally considered the perfect combo of portability and a display that's good for browsing, gaming and more.
Related: Android 4.4 tips, tricks and secrets
You can, of course, go even larger than this. Phones with 6-inch screens, often called "phablets", are growing in popularity. They’re a good option if have a long commute, as their larger screens are perfect for watching films, playing games and reading, but try one out in a shop first if you’ve never owned a phone this big.
Will I get the latest version of Android?
Google is constantly looking at ways to improve the Android operating system, and releases major software updates on a regular basis. But that doesn’t always mean the phone you're buying will get that update.
The latest version is Android 5.0 Lollipop, which is slowly making its way onto existing smartphones. Most current handsets run Android 4.4 KitKat or Android 4.3 Jelly Bean.
Read our Android 5.0 Lollipop update guide to find out if and when your phone will get the latest version.
Other things to consider
Finally, you need to think about extra features. Things like NFC, water-resistance, fingerprint scanners and microSD card slots might seem like bonuses, but they can dramatically affect the overall user experience of a smartphone.
A microSD card slot is a good idea if you want to watch lots of downloaded videos or music, and it’s an essential feature on some cheaper phones that have limited built-in memory. Any phone with 4GB or less will need a microSD card slot.
For more on these, read our Mobile Phone Buyer’s Guide.