Top 5 Flagship Smartphones of 2019!

Staff Writer / 10-01-2020 / News

Every year, smartphone manufacturers scramble to outdo each other when it comes to their flagship smartphones, packing in as many hardware upgrades and features as possible. Leading this pack for the last several years is Samsung and Apple, with Chinese manufacturers Huawei and Xiaomi closing the gap quickly thanks to their ranges of high-quality, feature-packed smartphones that are much more affordable. As a result, smartphones are evolving faster than we can keep up, and 2019 definitely had its share of incredible devices.

Here is our list of the top 5 flagship smartphones to have graced us this year:

Apple iPhone 11

Apple sprung their brand-new smartphone offering on us in September this year, loaded with the latest iOS 13 software which has been well received by users. In terms of looks, it’s available in 6 new colours (White, Black, Red, Lavender, Yellow and Green) with an aluminium and glass design and 6.1-inch Liquid Retina Screen.

The iPhone 11 supports faster charging and the battery will last longer (approx. 1 hour) than in the previous iPhone XR. The 2 rear camera lenses, one of which is a 12-megapixel wide-angle lens, and the other, a new 12-megapixel ultra wide camera with a 120-degree field of view, will no doubt be irresistible to those who want to take their mobile photography to the next level. For selfie fans, Apple has introduced a feature called ‘slowfies’ into the front facing camera, adding a whole new dimension to your selfies.

Apple iPhone 11 Pro & Pro Max

These smartphones are being touted as the most powerful iPhones ever made. Both sport the all new surgical-grade stainless steel exterior with a matte finish available in gold or even midnight green, among other new colours. The iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max both house triple cameras at the rear, including an awesome 12MP wide angle camera which will allow you to cram more into a single photo. On the downside, you will have to deal with a slightly bulgier iPhone because of the extra camera. Apple is promising loads of power with this range, but they’re also offering four more hours of battery life than its predecessor, the iPhone XS) .

Samsung Galaxy Note 10

Samsung’s flagship smartphone is undoubtedly the Note range and this year it provided us with the Note 10. In terms of screen size, the Note 10 has a 6.3-inch screen which is actually smaller than its predecessor, but it has a dynamic AMOLED+, HDR10+-certified screen made of Corning's latest Gorilla Glass 6. At only 168 grams, it’s really nifty and compact which makes the phone easy to handle. The Note 10 features three rear cameras - a 16-megapixel ultra-wide lens, a 12-megapixel wide angle lens and a 12-megapixel telephoto lens with 2x optical zoom. There's a 10-megapixel selfie camera at the front. Added to that, it has Live Focus Mode which auto focuses on subjects while shooting video. It also has a Zoom-In Mic feature which cuts out all background noise when recording audio.

The Note 10 is an upgrade to the Note 9 in that it has 256GB of onboard memory but doesn’t have a slot for an SD Card. The 8GB of RAM is decent enough to run applications on the device without any delay or lag. On the battery front, it is smaller than the Note 9 at just 3500mAh.

Huawei P30 Pro

The P30 Pro helped the Chinese company raise the bar this year. The first feature that stands out is the quad camera setup. The Leica quad-camera setup consists of a 40-megapixel main sensor, a 20MP ultra-wide camera, an 8MP telephoto lens with 5x optical zoom and a “time of flight” camera. It has a larger screen at 6.47 inches with OLED display. The P30 Pro is available in a variety of colours and also is a dual-SIM smartphone. The slot also doubles up as Huawei’s nano memory (NM) card slot. It is powered by Huawei’s next-generation Kirin 980 chipset, comes with 8GB of RAM and a bumped-up 256GB of storage that is expandable using an NM card.

Samsung Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus

Regarded as a more affordable, compact version of the Note 10, the Galaxy S10 range was one of the most talked about smartphones of 2019. Both the S10 and S10 Plus have a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, Super AMOLED Infinity-O display, 8GB RAM (with 12GB option), 128GB to 1TB storage options with a microSD slot for even more capacity, five cameras, IP68 rating, Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5, and a stunning design with Prism colour options. The S10 plus come with high level water resistance and also the popular fast wireless charging. The additional capabilities to charge up other devices and gear via wireless technology on the back of the S10 Plus is ideal for people on the go.

There’s no doubt that 2019 has served up some really awesome smartphones that promise to get even better when 2020 rolls around. For now, though, it all comes down to the features you’re looking for, your brand preference and, of course, the price you’re willing to pay.


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Huawei Y7p 2020 – Best Budget Phone of the Year?

The Huawei Y7p is positioned at the top of the entry-level smartphone category. It’s a great budget option for gamers and social media users thanks to solid hardware accompanied by an optimised software platform and premium-looking design. OPERATING SYSTEM The Y7p runs on Android-based EMUI 9.1 and offers Huawei Mobile Services (HMS) in place of the standard Google Play Services, which means no native Google apps. DISPLAY The Huawei Y7p sports a 6.39-inch display with a resolution of 720 x 1560. Unfortunately, it is not a full HD screen, but still gives you a sufficiently crisp, clear experience for photos, video and apps. HARDWARE It has an Octa-Core processor with the Kirin 710F chipset. Unfortunately, this device isn’t water-resistant but does offer a rear-mounted fingerprint scanning sensor. BATTERY AND CHARGING The device does not feature wireless charging but the Huawei Y7p takes around 120-130 minutes to reach a full charge. The battery life is reasonable, offering a day with average use. CAMERAS The Y7p has a triple-camera set up on the rear and a hole-punch front-facing camera in the top left corner of the device. The system employs a 48MP main sensor, combined with an 8MP ultra-wide sensor and a 2MP depth camera, while the selfie camera is an 8MP lens. Video recording is 1080p@30fps for both the selfie camera and rear cameras. STORAGE AND SPACE The device ships with 64GB of internal capacity, which can be expanded to 512GB with a microSD card. COMPARISON Overall, it is an improvement on its 2019 predecessor as the 2020 Huawei Y7p comes with more storage, better cameras and a larger screen. VERDICT Although it is technically an entry-level smartphone, the processor doesn’t disappoint as there is no lag when playing simple games or using popular apps for messaging or social media. Battery life is better than other devices in this category, and the overall design gives it a premium look that will definitely grab attention. However, there are better smartphones out there in the mid-range category if you are willing to spend a little more, so it all comes down to affordability. RELEASE DATE The Huawei Y7p is already available in South Africa and can be yours by clicking here.


Huawei P30 Lite 2020 – King of the Mid-Range Camera Phones!

Huawei is known for making incredible flagship smartphones, but where they really shine is giving their mid-range customer base access to the same awesome experience with their “lite” versions of these devices. The Huawei P30 lite, just like previous generations, is a budget version of the popular Huawei P30 and P30 Pro, and it delivers a lot of bang for your buck. OPERATING SYSTEM The P30 lite runs Android 9.0 (Pie) but will likely be updated to the latest Android OS with the EMUI 10 skin. DISPLAY The Huawei P30 lite sports a crisp 6.5-inch IPS LCD with 1080 x 2400 pixels resolution. HARDWARE Under the hood, you get an Octa-Core processor witha Kirin 710 (12 nm) chipset. The device does not feature dust or waterproofing, so we wouldn’t recommend taking it with you to the beach. BATTERY AND CHARGING Wireless charging isn’t supported but fast charging is, taking roughly 105 minutes for a full charge. On average, the battery should last you about two days, but that is dependent on the use. CAMERAS The Huawei P30 lite sports a triple-lens rear camera and a punch-hole selfie camera. The rear cameras are made up of a 48 MP (wide-angle lens, f/1.8 aperture) + 8 MP (ultra-wide-angle Lens) + 2 MP (Bokeh lens) cameras with autofocus. The front-facing camera is a single 32 MP shooter. The rear-camera and front cameras can shoot videos at up to 1080p at 30fps. STORAGE AND SPACE The phone comes standard with 128 GB of storage space with microSD expansion of up to 512GB (depending on model). COMPARISON Huawei couldn’t change too much with the P30 lite 2020 as it needed to remain close to last year’s version. However, there are considerable improvements with particular features that make it a value-for-money option, such as an increase in battery capacity, RAM and several other features. VERDICT This is a solid update from Huawei with great design and performance, especially for photography enthusiasts who don’t want to break the bank on the flagship versions of the P30 or P30 Pro. RELEASE DATE The Huawei P30 Lite 2020 is available right now by clicking here.