PhoneArena Awards 2013: Best Smartphones

PhoneArena Awards 2013: Best Smartphones
This is it, guys! It is time for the culmination in our PhoneArena Awards of 2013. We're pleased to announce the final and most exciting category in our series, and as you can probably tell already, today we'll be announcing the year's best smartphones. Before we get to it, we have to admit that picking today's winners was a pretty difficult task. That's because we got to play with a ton of smartphones over the past 12 months and we did like many of them. Only a few of this year's smartphones, however, truly stood out. 
Drumroll, please...


In 2013, LG had an uneasy task on its hands. The company had to develop a top-notch smartphone to challenge its competitors with; a smartphone that could outpace all other Android-based high-end offerings. This led to the launch of the LG G2, and boy was it a remarkable phone! And it still is, of course, ranking among the best handsets money can buy. Seriously, there's a lot to like about it. For starters, the LG G2 is a phone that feels surprisingly compact and wieldable for something that sports a pretty large (and gorgeous) 5.2-inch display on its front. Then there's the performance. The G2 is a true powerhouse with its top-tier hardware configuration. At the same time, few other smartphones can come close to beating the G2's battery life. Simply put, if you want a smartphone that has it all, then the LG G2 would be a worthy pick.

Google Nexus 5

Last year, Google made headlines with the launch of the Nexus 4, which was more that just reasonably priced. It was a steal considering what it had to offer. And the phone was so good that it got honored as our favorite phone of 2012. Fast-forward 12 months into the future and the Google Nexus 5, powered by Android 4.4 KitKat, is now walking in the footsteps of its predecessor. It is an amazing device no matter how we look at it – a device that performs like an Android flagship, yet costs only half as much. And what's no less important, in charge of its powerful hardware is Google's software in its pure, unaltered, bloatware-free form. 

Apple iPhone 5s

The year 2013 saw the launch of the Apple iPhone 5s. Visually, it wasn't very different from its predecessor, and its specs didn't seem as droolworthy as those of Android flagships, but nevertheless, Apple's smartphone did sell by the truckloads. And why wouldn't it? The iPhone 5s is still a top-of-the-line smartphone worthy of giving any Android flagship a run for its money. Without a doubt, it is not any less capable than any of them. It has a great camera, solid construction, beautiful screen, and the performance of its A7 chip is outstanding. Plus, the iPhone 5s is one of the very few high-ends that come in a truly compact form factor. And these are just some of the reasons why the iPhone 5s is loved by millions of people worldwide.

Story timeline



1. GeekMovement unregistered

Surprised that the Note 3 is not here.. really surprised actually.

2. amats69

Posts: 1527; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

It is already choosen as best phablet by PA..maybe PA give chance to

3. GeekMovement unregistered

Good point, I totally forgot about that. Anyway the phones mentioned above are truly remarkable. My next wish would have been the Lumia 1520, but that was also in the phablet category. I guess my favorite phones are now no longer smartphones, but phablets lol.

25. amats69

Posts: 1527; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

Oh too..i dont like wp but the lumia 1520 got my attention....but 2013 is about to end in a couple of anothers sets of flagships is coming and for sure some of them are more powerful than the maybe ill wait and check the 2014 flagships before i buy my next phone.

76. abdane

Posts: 507; Member since: Oct 07, 2011

in my experience i tried the HTC One, GS4, G2, Z1 and the 5S HTC One tops them all... HTC One > G2 > Z1 > 5S > S4

82. in_core

Posts: 80; Member since: Sep 14, 2012

Yup HTC One is "almost the best phone ever made", just let down by its camera. I hope HTC leads in 2014, trashes Samsung as they dont like to just repeat last years phone with improved hardware only. And obviously I hope HTC this time uses a camera that can compete with todays smartphone, not 2005's phones. Best wishes HTC FYI: I bought G2 3weeks back. Had the choice of HTC One and G2, ditched the One only for its camera. IF it were better would have blindly got it.

85. DKJnr

Posts: 24; Member since: Mar 11, 2013

Totally agree with you save for the camera but everything else kind of makes up for the camera shortfall especially BoomSound. What about the Lumia 925 or 1020?

115. findinghomer

Posts: 14; Member since: Dec 11, 2013

whats your advantage on the HTC one over the G2? Im huge HTC fan its usually all i buy, but i chose the G2 over the HTC one soley on hardware specs.. i really wanted the one, but at this point in the year, 1.7 ghz 600 snapdragon is dated. but i have never used it before. i am still getting the One for my wife, ill be waiting on the next HTC release.

12. Damitel

Posts: 66; Member since: Apr 21, 2013

Iphone 5s is in almost in every award that a phone receives. Phonearena pls why? Personally, I like Samsung product but for HTC one to be ignored is sad. I don't want to talk about S4 or note 3...

116. findinghomer

Posts: 14; Member since: Dec 11, 2013

that is the exact same question i have been wondering for years. Apple has marketed the iPhone very well is my only conclusion.

49. danny_a2005

Posts: 365; Member since: Oct 06, 2011

Honestly I think they should do this awards thing by votes.. this site is driven by us, the users.. so we should be the ones picking our favs

51. bucky

Posts: 3791; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

This website is 95% hardcore fandroids. I'm pretty sure you would know the tesults

69. jaychildz

Posts: 144; Member since: May 31, 2013

Samsung (woooo) HTC (YAAAAAAY) nokia-windows-BB-sony then apple

75. amiroomg

Posts: 19; Member since: Dec 07, 2013

really surprised is Absence HTC ONE when all majer sites like t3 elect one for best 2013.. PA PLZ check your rate,

101. Ashoaib

Posts: 3298; Member since: Nov 15, 2013

I am totally not surprized that they included apple and didnt included samsung... all major website seems jealous from sam's success

4. chaosnightmare

Posts: 182; Member since: May 20, 2010

smartphones and phablets should be in the same category since they both work as phones

42. Physicist

Posts: 7; Member since: Nov 22, 2011

If they made smartphones and phablets into one category with 3 phones, the iPhone wouldn't make the list. That's why they didn't do it.

5. greathero1

Posts: 584; Member since: Jun 13, 2008

Nice to see the Nexus 5 on the list. Weird how the HTC One nor the S4 made the list. Both were powerhouses and I did enjoy my 5 month run with the One.

6. darkkjedii

Posts: 31313; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Ip5S note 3 g2

88. JerryTime

Posts: 468; Member since: Nov 09, 2013

Make your own site with your own awards and that's what it would be.

94. darkkjedii

Posts: 31313; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

No need to, I don't have any issues with the rankings, nor do I complain, whine, b***h and moan about everything. You loser fanboys do enough of that, I simply enjoy all 3 of my flagships. Ip5S retina mini, note 2, life is good.

93. Wiki_jaan

Posts: 704; Member since: Jun 24, 2012

loool g2 is a beast note3 is a phablet iphone is a sh.... ..... nothing

7. XperiaFanZone

Posts: 2279; Member since: Sep 21, 2012

Note 3 > G2 > ___

19. emadshiny

Posts: 1144; Member since: Dec 05, 2012

My ranking Note 3 > Z1 > G2 >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> iP5

61. Kaiser2007

Posts: 173; Member since: Nov 16, 2013

Z1 6903 has multiband LTE (3, 7, 20 and 4), Note 3 doesn't.

65. wilsong17 unregistered

doesnt the note 3 has lte what the benefit of multiband

90. Kaiser2007

Posts: 173; Member since: Nov 16, 2013

All the high-end devices nowaday have multiband LTE. What I mean is Z1 (and Z Ultra) has LTE for USA and Europe. Note 3 has LTE but it's for either USA or Europe, not for BOTH. Anybody know how to put my reply to be in-line with the comment I reply to? It seems I can't find the way. I using desktop PC with Mozilla Firefox.

8. datphoneguy

Posts: 155; Member since: Sep 15, 2013

No HTC One?? HUH????!!!!!!!

125. dirtydirty00

Posts: 428; Member since: Jan 21, 2011

my thoughts exactly

9. dorianb

Posts: 617; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

Wow. LG on the come up

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