PhoneArena Readers' Awards 2022: Google triumphs winning multiple categories in an epic battle

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PhoneArena Readers' Awards 2022: Best Phones of the Year!
Which are the best phones in 2022? Which phone has the best design? And which one has the best camera?

We asked you these and a few other questions before the end of the year, and now it's time to look at your votes and do the big recap!

And in case you are curious, we have earlier announced our team's votes for smartphone of the year across different categories. Your votes and our team's votes are often very close, but there are some interesting differences, so with no further ado, let's take a look at who won the popular vote!

BEST INNOVATION of 2022

The most innovative new feature

Vote for BEST INNOVATION OF 2022

Dynamic Island (Apple's iPhone 14 Pro)
17.56%
Super Fast Charging (Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo)
13.94%
Variable Zoom with moving lens (Sony Xperia)
18.25%
Satellite connectivity (Apple iPhone 14)
13.15%
Crease-less Foldable Phones (Oppo Find N/N2)
13.2%
Large 1-inch Sensors in Phones (Xiaomi, Vivo)
11.1%
Crash Detection (Apple iPhone 14)
4.31%
Other
8.49%

Smartphone innovation has surely slow down from the early years of the industry, but it's alive and well, and this category was actually one of the most contested ones!

Your votes were split between the Variable Zoom lens technology that the Sony Xperia 1 IV brought into this world and Apple's cool new Dynamic Island, but it was the variable zoom tech that emerged as the winner. This technology moves an element inside the lens that allows you to zoom at different levels without losing quality! Typically, you would need two separate zoom lens for that, but this technology squeezes it all down into one.

The Dynamic Island is a cool software features that animates the Face ID cutout in the iPhone 14 Pro and turns it into an interactive element that acts as a status bar of sorts.

At number three, you voted for fast charging technologies by the likes of Xiaomi and OnePlus. With these 100W chargers or often even more powerful, a full charge takes less than 30 minutes, and with some phones even less than 20 minutes!

BEST DESIGN of 2022

This smartphone pushed smartphone design forward

Vote for BEST DESIGN OF 2022

Nothing Phone (1)
15.3%
Xiaomi 12S Ultra
4.39%
Asus ROG Phone 6 Pro
2.29%
Google Pixel 7 series
25.06%
Apple iPhone 14 / Pro
9.62%
Samsung Galaxy S22 / Ultra
23.17%
Samsung Galaxy Flip 4 / Fold 4
16.16%
Other
4.02%


In another contested battle, the Pixel 7 series design scored a win over the Galaxy S22 series. The Pixel won 25% of your votes, while the Galaxy family got 23%, so they were really close!

Our team's choice, the exciting Nothing Phone (1) finished third fourth in your voting, outclassed by the design of Samsung's foldable series.

BEST AGING PHONE of 2022

This 2021 phone aged best in 2022

Vote for BEST AGING PHONE OF 2022

Apple iPhone 13 series
40.06%
Samsung Galaxy S21 series
30.25%
Google Pixel 6 series
22.03%
Motorola Edge 20
2.55%
Other
5.12%


Which 2021 phone still seemed incredibly relevant in 2022?

Well, this was a relatively easy win for the iPhone 13 series, which got 40% of the votes compared to 30% for the Galaxy S21 series and 22% for the Pixel family.

The iPhone 13 series introduced larger battery sizes and it was an extremely solid launch by Apple, and you the readers, seem to have appreciated these improvements. 

BEST GAMING PHONE of 2022

The best one for the mobile gamer

Vote for BEST GAMING PHONE OF 2022

Asus ROG Phone 6 Pro
54.55%
Xiaomi BlackShark 5 Pro
4.09%
Lenovo Legion Y90
1.89%
Apple iPhone 14 Pro Max
17.34%
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra
18.72%
Other
3.41%


In the battle for the best gaming phone, one phone stood tall in your votes: the Asus ROG Phone 6 Pro!

This monster of a phone with a large screen, cool design and a massive, 6,000mAh battery is equipped with some useful toggles for gaming, it supports fast refresh rates for games and is just a pleasure to use for the mobile gamers out there. It got nearly 55% of the votes in one of the most convincing wins in this year's awards!

BEST BUDGET PHONE of 2022

The budget phone that gives you most value for your money

Vote for BEST BUDGET PHONE OF 2022

Google Pixel 6a
54.85%
Apple iPhone SE 2022
5.22%
Samsung Galaxy A53 5G
17.33%
Nothing Phone (1)
13.33%
OnePlus Nord 2T
5.46%
Other
3.82%


Talk about doing a good job in one particular area, and that surely has been what Google did with the Pixel 6a.

By equipping it with the Tensor G1 chip, same as in the Pixel 6 series, this phone outperforms most Android budget phones by a mile, and it has a much more modern display and camera system than the Apple iPhone SE 2022.

You, the readers, recognized its excellence and gave it the overwhelming win with nearly 55% of the votes!

BEST "AFFORDABLE FLAGSHIP" of 2022

The "flagship killer"!

Vote for BEST "AFFORDABLE FLAGSHIP" OF 2022

Google Pixel 7
61.77%
Samsung Galaxy S21 FE
18.13%
Motorola Edge 2022
3.26%
Xiaomi 12T Pro
7.03%
OnePlus 10T
5.15%
Poco F4 5G
2.8%
Other
1.86%


OnePlus used to be the company that makes the "flagship killers", but this year it was all about Google which priced the Pixel 7 incredibly aggressively at $600, which made it essentially the no-brainer purchase in this class.

This phone got nearly 62% of the votes, which constitutes the biggest win in a category in 2022! Congrats to Google for making the Pixel 7 not only great, but very reasonably priced, so many people can afford it.

BEST FOLDABLE PHONE of 2022

One phone dominated this vote!

Vote for BEST FOLDABLE PHONE OF 2022

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4
52.84%
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4
23.44%
Oppo Find N
11.31%
Xiaomi Mix Fold 2
4.68%
Huawei Mate XS2
2.92%
Huawei P50 Pocket
1.76%
Other
3.04%


Foldable phones still feel kind of new, but they have already been on the market for around three years and they are better than ever in 2022. The Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Flip 4 are the most mature foldables on the market, and it's no surprise the Fold 4 ran with this award, followed by the other Samsung foldable, the Flip 4.

Together these two had nearly 76% of your votes, an impressive number!

BEST CAMERA PHONE of 2022

Camera phone of the year was...

Vote for BEST CAMERA PHONE OF 2022

Apple iPhone 14 Pro
18.7%
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra
28.42%
Google Pixel 7 Pro
38.8%
Xiaomi 12S Ultra
3.21%
Vivo X90 Pro Plus
3.99%
OnePlus 10 Pro
0.75%
Huawei Mate 50 Pro
3.69%
Honor Magic 4 Ultimate
0.35%
Other
2.09%


Ranking the very best camera is an extremely difficult task, but most of you agreed that if one phone deserves it, it is the Pixel 7 Pro.

With its new 5X zoom camera, improved processing and video recording, the Pixel 7 Pro got nearly 39% of the votes.

The Galaxy S22 Ultra was the runner up with 28.5% of the votes and the iPhone 14 Pro series finished third with nearly 19%.

MOST IMPROVED PHONE of 2022

Compared to its previous version, this phone made the biggest leap

Vote for MOST IMPROVED PHONE of 2022

iPhone 14 Pro series
9.83%
Galaxy S22 series
14.94%
Pixel 7 series
57.04%
OnePlus 10 Pro
2.84%
Galaxy Fold 4
9.37%
Galaxy Flip 4
2.93%
Other
3.05%


We are also curious to hear your thoughts about which phone underwent the biggest improvement since its last year's version, and you didn't think twice: it was the Pixel 7 which got a whopping 57% of the votes.

Google scores yet another win and this just once again confirms that it is set for success in 2023!

BEST ANDROID PHONE of 2022

The king of Androids

Vote for BEST ANDROID PHONE OF 2022

Samsung Galaxy S22 / S22 Plus / Ultra
36.7%
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4
6.87%
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4
0.97%
Google Pixel 7 / 7 Pro
48.06%
Xiaomi 12S Ultra
1.71%
Vivo X90 Pro Plus
1.91%
Motorola Edge 30 Ultra
1.4%
Other
2.39%


If we look at just the beautiful and vast world of Android smartphones, which phone deserves the title "king of Android phones"? Well, in your votes that was the Google Pixel 7 Pro.

Imrproved, best camera, this phone was the gift that kept on giving.

With nearly 48% of the votes, it is deservedly voted as the best Android phone of 2022. The runner-up here, however, is the excellent Galaxy S22 family, which got about 37% of the votes.

BEST OVERALL SMARTPHONE of 2022

The ultimate award: best overall smartphone

Vote for BEST OVERALL SMARTPHONE OF 2022

iPhone 14 Pro / Pro Max
21.88%
Galaxy S22 / Ultra
29.06%
Pixel 7 / Pro
38.78%
Galaxy Fold 4
6.07%
Galaxy Flip 4
1%
Other
3.21%


Finally, this is the big award: best overall smartphone! Here, the best Android phones of the year clash with the iPhones in an ultimate battle to determine which phone deserves the title! 

Not surprisingly, the big three brands got the most votes: Google, Samsung, and Apple.

But we were somewhat surprised to see the Google Pixel 7 Pro score one more win in this category, as it was the most dominant phone in this year's voting!

The Galaxy S22 series finished second, and the iPhone 14 Pro series ended up in third place.

Google seems to have really improved a great deal in 2022, and we are extremely curious to see what's next for the company and whether it can repeat the success in 2023.

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