The Best Rated Smartphones of 2021

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As our lifestyles become more digital, our need for cutting-edge devices increases. Out of all the devices available, the smartphone undoubtedly reigns supreme as the most commonly used consumer electronic in history. Pew Research even notes that over 85% of Americans own one, a drastic increase from the 35% the think tank recorded just a decade ago. To keep up with demand, smartphone manufacturers have been topping their latest models with more sophisticated features and advanced technology.

However, with all the smartphones currently on the consumer market, it might be hard to pick just one. So, below is a rundown of the best smartphones you can get this year.

Best budget option: OnePlus Nord N10

Credit: @oneplus_mex on Instagram]

This phone is definitely the most affordable on our list, costing $299. Regardless of the budget-friendly price point, it comes with a 90Hz OLED display and a multi-camera system that allows for wide, ultrawide, macro, and monochrome shots. It even has a front-facing camera that sits unobtrusively on the upper left corner of the screen. The handset is also fully 5G-enabled, boasts up to 512 GB in storage, and even has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 690 processor.

Best for your pocket: Apple iPhone 13 Mini

Credit: @lovely_hanol on Instagram]

If you're not a slab phone fan, consider grabbing the iPhone 13 Mini for $799. It weighs 140g and has a 5.4-inch screen, compared to the iPhone 13’s 173g and 6.1-inch screen. Yet the Mini is still as powerful thanks to a high density interconnect PCB. The board packs more components into a smaller space, affording the Mini a vibrant OLED screen with a 60Hz refresh rate, an A15 Bionic processor that’s significantly faster than the Snapdragon 888, and up to 512 GB in storage. All this power can fit snugly into your pocket.

Best camera: Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra

Credit: samsungclub_ on Instagram]

No phone can beat the S21 Ultra’s camera. With an excellent dynamic range of 13 to 240 mm, a 108-MP camera at the back, and the ability to record videos in 8K resolution, it's arguably the best photo- and video-taking smartphone on the market. And let’s not forget its massive 6.8-inch screen with a 120Hz refresh rate, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor, and a 5000mAH battery. Ultimately, though the phone is significantly heavier and pricier at $1,299, but it's worth every penny.

Best for gaming: ASUS ROG Phone 5 Ultimate

Credit: @asusrog on Instagram]

If you're one of the over 3 million mobile gamers in North America, then the ROG Phone 5 Ultimate is for you. With a 144Hz display, 18 GB RAM, and a whopping 6,000 mAH battery, its specs are beefy enough to support whatever mobile game is thrown its way. It's even specially designed like a handheld gaming console, with touch-sensitive shoulder buttons, dual front-facing stereo speakers, and a charging port that's located on the side of the phone. And although it costs nearly $1,600, it comes with a laptop-sized box filled with Asus merch.

With so many smartphone options on the market, choosing one ultimately boils down to what you want to get out of it. Whether it is crisper photos, portability, budget-friendliness, or a better gaming experience, there's a phone out there for everyone. So go explore your options. And the latest reviews here at NPG Tech will always be available to help you out.

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