Best phones: July 2017

With so many different (yet similar) smartphones from so many brands from across the globe, one may start feeling a bit lost. Which one of those many is the best phone you can buy right now, in summer 2017?

This is a trick question, of course. There is no definite one-size-fits-all device: some people prefer larger phones, some smaller, others look for the best camera in a phone, yet others value battery life above all, and then there are the gamers, the 24/7 music crowd, and on and on the list goes.

That is why we look at different options rather than the one best phone. We look at both their pros and their cons because we have not yet encountered the perfect phone. We also look for your thoughts! That's why you will see an open poll for you to support your favorite device and if it's not on the list, let us know in the comments section at the bottom of this page. So with no further ado, let's get started.

Best Phones in July 2017

We first take a look at phones around the 5" form factor. Call them regular-sized, smaller phones, but these phones strike a good balance between screen size and handling.

#PhoneAddedChangeWhy Should You Buy It?
Top 3 Reasons
1Apple iPhone 7Oct 2016-1/ Best-in-class performance
2/ Excellent apps, 3/ Proper updates
2Google PixelOct 20161/ Second best-in-class performance
2/ Excellent camera, 3/ Proper updates
3Samsung Galaxy S8April 20171/ Stunning design
2/ Very good camera, 3/ Solid battery life
4HTC U11June 2017New1/ Stunning camera
2/ Stunning design, 3/ Clean interface
5LG G6April 20171/ Unique dual cam w/ wide angle
2/ Great price, 3/ Sturdy build
6Huawei P10Mar 20171/ Great price
2/ Good dual cam, 3/ Thin, elegant design

What is YOUR favorite phone in July 2017?

Apple iPhone 7
Google Pixel
Samsung Galaxy S8
Huawei P10
Another one (tell us which one in the comments!)

Best Big Phones in July 2017

Our second category rounds up the best big phones: phones that are around 5.5-inch in size, giving you that larger screen, but in exchange for a more clumsy in-hand feel and larger overall footprint that makes them less comfortable to carry around in your pocket.

#PhoneAddedChangeWhy Should You Buy It?
Top 3 Reasons
1Apple iPhone 7 PlusOct 2016-1/ Best-in-class performance
2/ Excellent apps, 3/ Proper updates
2Samsung Galaxy S8 PlusApril 2017-1/ Stunning design
2/ Very good camera, 3/ Solid battery life
3Google Pixel XLOct 2016-1/ Second best-in-class performance
2/ Excellent camera, 3/ Proper updates
4OnePlus 5June 2017New1/ Great price
2/ Fast performance, 3/ Solid battery life
5Moto Z2 PlayJune 2017New1/ Top battery life
2/ Clean interface, 3/ Good price
6Huawei Mate 9 ProJan 2017↓ #51/ Excellent design
2/ Dual camera, 3/ Good performance
7LG V20Oct 2016↓ #61/ Excellent camera
2/ Great audio quality, 3/ Replaceable battery

What is YOUR favorite BIG phone in July 2017?

Apple iPhone 7 Plus
Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus
Google Pixel XL
OnePlus 5
Moto Z2 Play
Huawei Mate 9 Pro
LG V20
Another one (tell us which one in the comments!)

Best Affordable Phones in July 2017

Our third category is the best affordable phones. We have not set a price tag, but we look at phones that are easier on your wallet, without being easy in terms of features and actual performance. These are the overachievers of the phone industry.

#PhoneAddedChangeWhy Should You Buy It?
Top 3 Reasons
1Honor 9June 2017New1/ Great design
2/ Very good camera, 3/ Solid battery life
2Moto G5 PlusApril 20171/ Very good performance
2/ Great battery life, 3/ Clean interface
3Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)Jan 2017-1/ Excellent design
2/ Great battery life, 3/ Water-proof
4Xiaomi Redmi 4 PrimeNov 20161/ Top battery life
2/ Smooth performance, 3/ Super customizable
5Honor 8July 20161/ Excellent design
2/ Smooth performance
6Lenovo P2Nov 20161/ Industry-leading battery life

What is YOUR favorite AFFORDABLE phone in July 2017?

Honor 9
Moto G5 Plus
Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)
Xiaomi Redmi 4 Pro
Honor 8
Lenovo P2
Another one (tell us which one in the comments!)

Best Compact Phones in July 2017

Looking for something truly small? Our fourth category is for you, those who look for a phone they can use with one hand.

#PhoneAddedChangeWhy Should You Buy It?
Top 3 Reasons
1Apple iPhone SEMar 2016-1/ Best-in-class performance
2/ Excellent apps, 3/ Proper updates
2Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017)Feb 2017-1/ Excellent design
2/ Great battery life, 3/ Water-proof
3Sony Xperia X CompactSept 2016-1/ All-around performance for decent price

Best Exotic Phones in July 2017

Finally, our fifth category is for exotic phones. These are devices that are either hard to find or that go crazy with their features.

#PhoneAddedChangeWhy Should You Buy It?
Top 3 Reasons
1Xiaomi Mi 6April 2017-1/ Beautiful, refined design
2/ Dual camera, 3/ MIUI is rich in features
2Xiaomi Mi MixNov 2016-1/ First bezel-less phone
2/ Innovative tech, 3/ MIUI is rich in features
3BlackBerry KeyOneJun 2017New1/ QWERTY keyboard doubles as trackpad
2/ Solid battery life, 3/ Good build quality
4Xiaomi Mi Note 2Nov 20161/ Refined, premium design
2/ MIUI is rich in features
5Oppo R11June 2017New1/ Good-looking metal design
2/ Dual camera
6Honor MagicJan 20171/ Alien design



1. Medoogalaxy

Posts: 232; Member since: May 25, 2017

S8 the best phone Right now until note8

21. Lumbergh

Posts: 463; Member since: Feb 14, 2016


25. sissy246

Posts: 7111; Member since: Mar 04, 2015


2. maple_mak

Posts: 953; Member since: Dec 18, 2013

Xiaomi MIX Pros: "First bezel-less phone" So Sharp Aquos Crystal series isn't?

9. Victor.H

Posts: 1062; Member since: May 27, 2011

Uhm, not really.

11. qwertsun

Posts: 42; Member since: Dec 02, 2015

What are your views to make you say it is not bezeless? Care to share?

15. Victor.H

Posts: 1062; Member since: May 27, 2011

It's got a giant bezel at the bottom.

30. qwertsun

Posts: 42; Member since: Dec 02, 2015

Thank you for your reply. I understand where you are coming from and have the rights to your own view, They are both definitely worthy to be called bezeless devices though, in my humble opinion, AQUOS crystal has a much thinner bezel(not the chin, but left, top & right) is slightly thinner than the one's on Mi MIX, making it a more tasteful and immersive bezeless device. Oh, Sharp was the supplier for MI Mix screen in case anyone wonders how did XiaoMi manage to create such a device.

44. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

But bezel-less has 2 definitions. Bezel-less as in having no bezel at all. Bezel-less in that is has less bezel than the models normally have. So as long as the phone fits one of those definitions, then its bezel-less. No matter what our personal opinions may be. If a phone for example has a 70% screen to body ratio, and now has a 85% screen to body ratio and is of similar size. Then that means the phone has "less" bezel and thus meets the criteria for a "bezel-less" design, There is no "not really". It's either it is or it isn't. According to GSMARENA, both of these Sharp models, had a 77% screen to body ratio and thus would qualify as a "bezel-less" design because it had less bezel vs many other phones in the same year or period as a matter of fact. We don't did to play on words to fit personal vendettas. The Sharp Aquos qualifies as a bezel-less design, even if it was not marketed as such. You answer should have been fair and accurate as -"UHM, yes really". Because, yes ummmmm it really is a bezel-less design.

50. Victor.H

Posts: 1062; Member since: May 27, 2011

No, bezel-less has one definition and it's "without a bezel". Everything else is fairy tale stories.

29. thakuridiwash

Posts: 3; Member since: Aug 13, 2015

Cause the list is about Internationally available phones...Sharp Aquos was limited to Japan...

37. qwertsun

Posts: 42; Member since: Dec 02, 2015

True on that. I nearly forgot how lucky I am to have all access to Japanese phones, including the AQUOS Crystal X :) Still, it is worth mentioning that Sharp has 120Hz phone from 2015 & bezeless devices since 2014

3. ibap

Posts: 867; Member since: Sep 09, 2009

Please explain how, under Best Affordable, the Honor 9 shows as added Oct 2016, but is labeled New, and the Moto G5 Plus was added April 2017 and is not New? And the Galaxy A5 (2017) shows as added Oct 2016 and is New?

5. maherk

Posts: 6876; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

The Honor 9 was released last month, so obviously the date that's showing up there is a mistake.

6. trojan_horse

Posts: 5868; Member since: May 06, 2016

Right. PA's news is getting more and more unreliable these days.

8. Victor.H

Posts: 1062; Member since: May 27, 2011

Thanks for mentioning all of those! The original idea with the added field was a bit confusing, so I have changed the concept to mean release date for the phones. I have just fixed and double-checked all dates, all should be good now!

4. jellmoo

Posts: 2585; Member since: Oct 31, 2011

Why is the HTC U11 not on the big phones list? It's both wider and thicker than the OnePlus 5...

7. Victor.H

Posts: 1062; Member since: May 27, 2011

Thanks for noticing that, jellmoo! It should have been there, but we've already opened the polls, so I will just leave it there for the time being. Next month, it will be in its proper place.

10. notfair

Posts: 740; Member since: Jan 30, 2017

I liked how each category started with Apple iPhone ... Nice job.

16. Victor.H

Posts: 1062; Member since: May 27, 2011

That's just our thoughts! We have included polls for this very reason and we're looking forward to seeing what you guys vote for!

12. nestor

Posts: 9; Member since: Jun 04, 2017

I want a compact smartphone with a large screen. That was not more 130x70mm and with a screen 5.5"

13. ColinW

Posts: 412; Member since: Jun 04, 2014

So according to PA Android phones do not have great apps? Yet Android apps have features IOS gets years later and are praised to the heavens by iFans. Some of the best apps do not even appear in the Apple store. iPhones does not have class leading performance, they may be fast, but have inferior screens, cameras and battery packages yet have outdated, outsized and heavy bodies for the screen size.

17. Victor.H

Posts: 1062; Member since: May 27, 2011

I can't speak for the whole PA team, but while there are many quality apps on Android, it feels like iPhone apps in general are better executed and offer more functionality. And when it comes to games, the iPhone gets the best newest games earlier and often exclusively.

36. Darckent

Posts: 91; Member since: Sep 17, 2016

Stop spreading propaganda Maybe 4 years ago that used to be the case, there are many apps on android that iPhone don't have including launchers,file managers etc There are very few apps that iPhone has that android hasn't. Stop spreading this agenda you have to try to boost the iPhone against the competition with lies,this is not 2013 Android actually has more apps than iOS keep mentioning this 'iphone has the best apps' name them...and I mean apps that actually make a difference,apps that a person cannot live without or stop spreading this propaganda that you keep trying to mention into this false existence Face it that advantage of better and more apps of 3-4 years ago has well and truly been eradicated You just try to make the uninformed believe this nonsense

45. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

I agree with you 100%. FACT - IOS apps use a better quality code. Adjective C is a better code platform vs Java. But its up to the dev to provide the quality of the app itself. Because there are plenty of crappy iOS app. In fact just as many as there are on Android But facts are when you compare 2 exact apps on iOS vs Android, an I mean apps that are highly downloaded and used, iOS apps do not have more features, they have different features. Some yes have some better features, but that is true on both sides. For all the apps I use on my Galaxy and the same app where available on IOS, the quality of both is very identical. Several I use, especially my banking apps on Android, off extra thinks not offered on IOS. Even games. For example, my kid loves Pokemon Trading Card Online. But Apple has blocked the ability to add cards you buy at the store. Example, I buy him cards from Target. Inside the pack is a card that allows you to add the items online. Apple blocked this so he cant add cards through the iOS app. Apple did this because Apple doesnt get a cut of the buy. But they are bought at a retailer. But on Android we can add and even use the camera to scan the car to add them. Other than this feature, the apps are 99.9% identical. Victor's claim is simply untrue as you stated and complete BS. I dont care what platform you prefer. I have no issue with anyone choice. But when you lie and make claims that are purely false for some agenda or a paycheck, then I have no respect for you. The biggest difference in apps that both platforms share, is what Apple allows and what they don't. Android apps in general offer more because Google has less restrictions. Another example is the Samsung Gear Manager. Apple blocked several of the Gear Manager features so that the Gear S series, can do less with the iPhone vs the Galaxy. Example, even though app allows the devices to update certain things like the weather, it will to this day not show the weather on my Gear S3, when I have it BT'd to my iPhone. I contacted Samsung about it more than once and the issue resides with Apple.

14. Nexus4lifes

Posts: 294; Member since: Feb 13, 2014

People voting s8/8+ as the best phone is like a slap to iphonearena. There is no way iphone is the best phone today, with dated design, 1080p bezel display, pixel and s8 have a better camera(dxo mark)

18. Victor.H

Posts: 1062; Member since: May 27, 2011

We love hearing your thoughts! The Galaxy S8 is a great phone, and there are quite a few reasons to get it over the iPhone. There is no one-size-fits-all phone. Yet, you cannot argue with numbers and the iPhone is the best selling phone by a large margin.

23. sachouba

Posts: 266; Member since: Jun 08, 2014

I guess being the best selling phone makes it the best phone. Just like being the singer of the best selling song makes you the best singer in the world. That is why Justin Bieber is one of the most talented singer of all time, ahead of Aretha Franklin by a huge margin.

33. Victor.H

Posts: 1062; Member since: May 27, 2011

That is exactly why we avoid speaking in terms of 'best phone ever, end of discussion'. There is no one-size-fits-all phone, of course, and the Galaxy S8 is a great phone. Personally I find its design stunning, but its stuttery performance pretty annoying. With the iPhone, it's the other way around: performance is top-notch, but other areas are less innovative. *I'd personally go with Aretha Franklin :)

35. Nexus4lifes

Posts: 294; Member since: Feb 13, 2014

I have the s8 plus g955fd, sony xperia xz permium, pixel xl and a 7plus. I personally find the xz to be the fastest phone (times faster than the iphone watch for the speed test on youtube).. pixel has the best camera, iphone has the largest storage but s8plus is the best coz it's the most complete package, along with having the best display - and hence my primary daily driver.

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