It’s getting close to the time when you start researching smartphone upgrades and looking for a replacement. Maybe you’re nearing the end of your current wireless contract. Perhaps your phone is wearing out or you’re just tired of dealing with the quirks of your old phone and are ready to invest in a new one. Whatever the case, you have your work cut out for you in deciding which new gadget to go for.
Not only do you need to be aware of all the phones currently available, but you’ll also want to keep an eye on all the top upcoming phones too. Why? Well, because no one wants to buy a brand, spanking new smartphone only to find a month later the company launched a new model. It happens even to the best of us.
That’s why it’s always a good idea to stay on top of the latest and greatest releases. Luckily, we have you covered with this comprehensive guide. Check out these 10 new phones coming in 2018.
1. Samsung Galaxy S9
Let’s start with one of the most anticipated models of the year, Samsung’s new flagship which released on March 11, 2018. No doubt, the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+ have built upon all the previous features and technology upgrades of their predecessors when. The infinity display returns, for instance, nearly eliminating the existence of bezels. If you’ve seen the Galaxy S8 in action, then you have some idea of what the next model looks like. The aluminum chassis is nearly identical to the S8, and the screen sizes are the same, too.
As for power and performance, the S9 is packing a Snapdragon 845 mobile processor, up to 2GB of extra memory (Galaxy S9+ only), Android 8.0 Oreo, faster 1.2 Gigabit LTE and up to 256GB of storage. It also has improved stereo speakers for better, louder sound.
Most of those changes are minimal, however. The real upgrade happened with the camera. Both models now sport a rear camera equipped with a variable aperture, which means it can adjust to low light conditions to create better, more vivid pictures. The S9+ also includes a second lens for the main camera. Then there’s Slo-Mo video modes, full HD recording at 720p and 960 frames per second and lots of editing options.
The first major flagship to launch in 2018, both Galaxy models are available now with a price tag of $720+.
2. iPhone 2018
You didn’t think we’d put together a list of the best phones coming out in 2018 without talking about Apple, did you? You can bet your lucky stars that Apple will be launching a new iteration of their wildly popular iPhone X. We don’t know for sure what it will include regarding features and specs, so take everything with a grain of salt.
Rumors point to a larger overall form factor, possibly a Plus variant similar to what Samsung offers with their flagship models. If and when it arrives expect it to have all the great features of the previous model, including that gorgeous OLED display.
Rumors have also pointed to another smaller, low-cost handset that’s slightly below the iPhone X’s grandeur. It will reportedly have an LCD screen — as opposed to OLED — and a metallic back, but will be much larger than previous iPhone models. It’s currently estimated to be around 6.1 inches in size. That’s a bit smaller than the rumored iPhone X Plus model, apparently measuring 6.3 inches.
They’re pegged to release sometime in 2018, but there’s no word on price or release date just yet. Count on Apple to release the new iPhone in the second half of the year based on their recent releases.
3. LG “Judy” (G7 ThinQ)
It was surprising to see a larger LG presence absent at Mobile World Congress last year. They didn’t unveil a successor to their flagship G6. This is because the company has decided to move away from annual updates like many of the other phone providers. The goal is to deliver better, more robust options on a tight schedule.
According to VentureBeat, their next device is codenamed “Judy” and will be launching sometime in June. It will sport a 6.1-inch MLCD+ display, which offers much brighter and more vivid visuals when compared to an OLED. If the rumors are right, that’s impressive, because OLED displays certainly are beautiful. It’s tough to imagine anything more clear and vibrant.
LG’s reported screen is also said to require less power, which means better battery efficiency. Of course, other specs rumored include a wide f/1.6 aperture for the camera, stereo speakers, water and dust resistance, and HDR or High Dynamic Range imaging support. Wireless charging, a digital assistant, voice commands and more advanced AI functions will also be included in the update.
It’s rumored for June, so expect to see LG’s new beau drop in the hot summer months. Stay updated to be the first to learn about a price range for this device.
4. Sony Xperia Lineup – XZ2 / XZ2 Compact
Sony’s 2018 lineup includes two Xperia flagships, the XZ2 and XZ2 compact. Both will consist of a new Snapdragon 845 processor and an “extra-wide” display with a stunning 18:9 aspect ratio. It’s the same boxy design you know and love from Sony’s usual phones, except for the extra real estate. You can bet the display on both of these phones will look just as gorgeous.
The 5.7-inch Xperia XZ2 is the better model of the two, with a larger size and screen for days. The XZ2 compact comes in at 5-inches, which means it will be easier to hold, making it the more comfortable option for most.
Sony’s Xperia lineup gets a 19-megapixel motion eye camera, with 960 frames per second video recording at full 1080p HD. A whopping 3180mAh battery is packed into the XZ2, while the Compact has a 2870mAh battery. Both devices should last you through the day and well into the next. As you’d expect, they’ll also come in Sony’s white and black finish options.
Preorders for both phones are live now in some countries and the release is scheduled for spring, likely sometime in April or May. Price remains to be seen for these, but expect them to be costly.
5. HTC U12
The HTC U11 was not favorable for the company, as many were turned off by the design and features HTC chose. This forced the company to do a mid-year refresh with the U11 Plus, which was much better.
Hopefully, they learned their lesson with the next series iteration, currently nicknamed the U12. Very little is known about HTC’s next flagship, unfortunately. We do know it will have a similar — though more appealing — design and style as the previous generation. It will also have the expected upgrades like a better processor, more memory, a more prominent display and possibly more internal storage. It’s also expected to sport a dual camera setup, which hasn’t been seen since the M8 and is definitely welcome.
4K and HDR quality visuals and wireless charging will also debut here. An exact price and release date have yet to be known, though we’d say you can expect to see it later in the year, maybe toward the end of the second quarter.
6. Moto G6
Ah, Motorola. The ever faithful yet often overlooked provider that delivers genuinely innovative and reliable handsets. The Moto X and Moto G models were some of the best at the time, enough to crown the company as one of the better mid-range providers in the industry.
In the last year alone, we’ve seen the likes of the Moto G5, G5 Plus, G5S and G5S Plus. That’s quite the pace, there, Moto — why stop now?
Rumors point to a refresh of the Play line, starting with the Moto G6 and including the G6 Play and G6 Plus. We can expect the usual hardware improvements — new processor, memory and display — alongside the same tried and true Moto software experience on previous handsets.
As of now, we don’t know an exact price or release date for the new Moto phones — other than the fact that they’ll show up sometime this year.
7. Red Hydrogen One
One of the more unique devices to surface this year will be the Red Hydrogen One, a premium $1000+ phone that rivals even some of the best in the industry. What makes this particular phone special — other than its modular design — is that it can offer a holographic display, 3D visual content and both VR and AR experiences sans the headset.
It’s an impressive array of support that we’re not quite sure how the developers and manufacturers are going to pull off just yet. Red does have a history of delivering high-end cameras, so we certainly have faith. We’ll just need to wait and see what comes of it all.
You can pre-order the Hydrogen One starting in April, with the initial shipments expected to go out sometime in the summer of 2018.
8. Nokia 8 Sirocco
HMD Global now develops phones for Nokia, yet not all their devices make it stateside. That makes it difficult to predict which ones will appear in our market.
We’re placing our bets on the Nokia 8 Sirocco, an excellent and gorgeous phone with an edge-to-edge wraparound display. The glass surface wraps around the sides, delivering a seamless and beautiful casing. The bezels are incredibly small too, which seems to be the trend lately.
But on top of looking great, the Nokia 8 Sirocco is also incredibly durable. It can withstand up to 450 pounds of pressure and includes IP67 dust and water resistance for the exterior. As for features, it includes the Snapdragon 835 processor, plenty of memory, dual rear cameras for better shots and a 5.5-inch display.
Since we don’t know if the phone will be launched here in the west, we can’t give an official price or release date. But, we’re betting on a release sometime by the end of 2018.
9. Huawei P20
Two new flagships from Huawei are coming, named the P20 and P20 Pro. The phones were officially announced on March 27, which puts their release schedule sometime in late spring or early summer.
Images of the new phones point to thin bezels that look a lot like the iPhone X, dual rear cameras, and even a third lens. Stereo speakers will also appear, offering excellent sound and audio. Other rumors claim a facial recognition feature better and safer than Apple’s Face ID, a 5.8 inch LCD on the P20 and a 6.1 inch OLED on the P20 Pro, plenty of processing power from an Octa-Core CPU and up to 4-6GB of RAM.
Once again, we’ll have to wait to see exactly what’s included, as well as their US price tags.
10. Samsung Galaxy X
Supposedly, Samsung is working on a foldable smartphone, potentially called the Galaxy X. The idea is that it folds up into a smaller, phone-sized device and when you need more screen real estate you can unfold to a tablet shape. There may or may not be a hinge in the middle, with either two or one seamless OLED panels. If we had to guess, they might even release it as part of their Note brand.
All last year, we were clamoring for more news about the mysterious phone, hoping it would appear, but alas, it did not. Maybe it’s wishful thinking, but we think it’s going to show its face sometime this year, perhaps even with a full launch.
Because it’s merely speculation at this point, we’re not sure about an exact price or release schedule. This might not make 2018, but we had to include it! Check back as the year progresses to get updates on any rumors.
While everything else you see here comes from significant phone providers, that doesn’t mean they are the only phones launching this year. There are several mid-range and low-end phones that are just as promising, and more affordable.
Some of the honorable mentions for new phones coming out in 2018 include:
- Honor View 10 (Q1 2018)
- OnePlus 5T (Available)
- ZTE Blade V9 (2018)
- Unnamed Blackberry (2018)
- Nokia 8810 4G (May 2018)
Holding Out Hope for AI and Better Assistants
Voice assistants and AI technology have come a long way, especially the kind you find on smartphones and handsets. Don’t get us wrong — we love the support we get from Siri and Google Assistant. However, we can’t help but hold out hope for the better, more advanced technologies that are on the horizon.
It will be interesting to see how AI and machine learning affect some of the newer smartphone launches in the future. When will a phone arrive, for instance, that includes a fully-featured and capable AI assistant? One that does just about everything for you with little to no input? Is something like that entirely out of reach?
We don’t believe so, and there are plenty of others who agree with us. But it will undoubtedly drive up the cost of handsets and phones when it does arrive. Which begs the question: How can you prepare for these new arrivals? How can you be sure you’ll have the money to upgrade and get your hands on that sweet new phone?
Prices Are Going Up
As many of the flagship smartphones become more advanced and more capable, it stands to reason that prices will rise. That has been true for the past couple of years, where the sweet spot — the best phones on the market — are increasing in absolute cost. This makes it harder and harder for consumers to upgrade to the latest and greatest models. If that’s you, don’t fret. There is an ideal solution. Consider trading in or selling your old phone to The Whiz Cells to recuperate some of the cost of the new phones you’d buy in 2018. In most cases, your old phone is just going to sit around collecting dust anyway — why not make a little money off of it?
This gives you that little nudge or financial bump so you can make the upgrade to the newest Samsung Galaxy S9 or Apple iPhone X Plus. If you’re truly interested in the top upcoming phones in 2018, and you want to get your hands on one of them, the best choice may be to sell or trade-in your old handset. Heck, that may be your only choice if you don’t have a lot of extra money hanging around.