Best Android phone - which should you buy?

The top Android phones compared

Xperia Z3 Compact

5. Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

Sony has done such a good job of shrinking down the Xperia Z3 into a smaller handset with only a few minor cuts to the specifications that it has, perhaps by accident, created a more desirable phone.

It has the same 2.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor as the Z3, along with an Adreno 330 GPU and very good 20.7MP camera. The smaller 4.6-inch screen gives the Z3 Compact a better battery life than the full size Z3, as well as being more comfortable to hold. The price has also been cut, making the Z3 Compact a more compelling purchase.

Easily the best compact Android phone on the market today. Sony has worked hard to fit some excellent features into this handset despite its smaller stature and it has paid off. This is great work from Sony, and doubly brilliant if you own a PS4 too thanks to the Remote Play feature.

LG G3

4. LG G3

The big selling point for the LG G3 was its display, with a QHD resolution making it pin sharp, but it's no longer the only phone packing such a screen.

Away from the screen and things are still good for the G3 with a punchy 2.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor, 3GB of RAM and an Adreno 330 GPU ensuring the interface, widgets, apps and games all speed along at a rate of knots. It's also now got Android 5.0 Lollipop in most places.

The LG G3 has a great screen and high end specs, but the whole package isn't quite there. It's a strong handset that's more phablet than phone, but it's slightly let down by a lacklustre faux-metal design.

S6 Edge

3. Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge

If money is no object then the Galaxy S6 Edge arguably has the standard S6 beat, as it offers the same compelling specs with the addition of an eye-catching curved display. But for most people money is an object and the S6 Edge is both more expensive and not much better in use, as the curves are more about form than function.

Still, its 5.1-inch QHD screen is glorious, its 16MP camera impresses and it's got a powerful octa-core processor and all the nifty features of the S6, like a fingerprint scanner and fast charging.

The curved screen feels like a missed opportunity but it's undeniably stylish and if you can stomach the price tag this is a powerful, futuristic phone which is sure to inspire admiration and jealousy in everyone who sees it.

HTC One M9

2. HTC One M9

For all the work Samsung's done on improving the design of its flagship HTC still has it beat. The One M9 is easily the best looking Android phone around and arguably the best looking handset running any OS.

Not only does it look incredible but it's got lots of power and a decent 20.7MP camera on the back, with its UltraPixel snapper relegated to selfie duties. Plus its slick Sense interface and impressive BoomSound audio make it a joy to use.

The HTC One M9 isn't a big upgrade over the One M8, but that phone was our favourite for a long time so any improvements guaranteed this a place near the top of our chart. Compared to the Galaxy S6 this feels lacking in specs and features, but it's as close to a work of art as a phone has come.

Galaxy S6

1. Samsung Galaxy S6

After the disappointing Galaxy S5 Samsung has turned it all around with the Galaxy S6. That's obvious as soon as you set eyes on it, with its luxurious metal and glass build and brilliantly impressive 5.1-inch QHD screen.

It's got an incredible camera too and even the TouchWiz overlay, something which is traditionally bloated and clunky, has been polished into something far slicker.

Packed full of extras like fast charging and a fingerprint scanner, the Samsung Galaxy S6 really is the complete package and its octa-core Exynos processor leaves rivals in the dust. All that power is hard on the battery, but otherwise this is a near perfect phone.

Power, performance, a premium design and heaps of extras, the Samsung Galaxy S6 has it all. It's not cheap and the average battery and lack of a microSD card slot might put you off, but in most other ways this is the best Android phone we've ever used.