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Best gadgets 2019: the top tech you can buy right now

best gadgets 2019

When you insist on only having the best gadgets in your life, money is no object. If you're prepared to splash cash on the crème de la crème of technology, you want to make sure that you're truly getting the finest gear on the market. And so you've come to the right place – TechRadar's Best Gadgets 2019 run down.

To help you overcome the problem of researching your own superior tech set up, we've collated a list of the best gadgets available right now. The industry leaders. The best of the best.

For each category there is only one entry, and this will only be updated when a new challenger knocks the reigning champ off the top spot – so you know you're seeing the very best gadget in its relative sector.

Seen something you like? If you're able to wait until Black Friday and Cyber Monday, you might be able to find a fantastic deal that'll knock a considerable chunk off the price.

So if you're the sort of person who just wants to know what the best is and you don't care about the rest, welcome to your new shopping list...

Best phone 2019

Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus best gadgets 2019

Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus

Samsung’s best phone with a big screen and superb camera

Weight: 189g | Dimensions: 158.1 x 73.8 x 8.5 mm | OS: Android 8 | Screen size: 6.2-inch | Resolution: 1440 x 2960 | CPU: Snapdragon 845 / Exynos 9810 | RAM: 6GB | Storage: 64GB/128GB | Battery: 3,500mAh | Rear camera: Dual 12MP | Front camera: 8MP

Excellent low-light cameras
Super premium build
AR Emoji mode is overrated
Not all that different to S8 Plus

TechRadar Senior Editor, Mobile and Buying Guides Matt Swider thinks the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus is the best phone on the market for a number of reasons, but the write-home-to-mother feature has to be the low-light camera.

Samsung is making a big deal about the camera on the S9 range and for good reason, on the back of the S9 Plus are dual 12MP cameras, both with an impressive f/1.5 maximum aperture. At the time of writing the S9 range is the only phone with a camera aperture this wide, making its low-light prowess second-to-none.

Add on top of that the 'infinity' screen that the Samsung Galaxy range is now famous for, and this big-screened beauty comfortably takes the top spot. We thought the AR Emoji feature was overrated, but if you're in the market for the best screen and best camera on a phone, this is the handset for you. (If you're keen to wait for something newer, though, you might want to check out its incoming successor, the Samsung Galaxy S10 .)

Read the full review: Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus

  • Want to see the best of the rest? 
  • In the US, check out Best phone in the US for 2019: the 10 top smartphones we've tested
  • In the UK, check out Best phone 2019: the 10 top smartphones we've tested
  • In Australia, check out Best phones in Australia 2019: the 10 top smartphones we've tested

Best laptop 2019

Huawei MateBook X Pro best gadgets 2019

Huawei MateBook X Pro

Our new pick for the best laptop in the world

CPU: 8th generation Intel Core i5 – i7 | Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620 , Nvidia GeForce MX150 2GB GDDR5 | RAM: 8GB – 16GB | Screen: 13.9-inch 3K (3,000 x 2,080) | Storage: 512GB SSD

Beautiful design
Fantastic display
No SD card slot
Webcam not great

The Huawei MateBook X Pro is our new pick for the best laptop money can buy in 2019, after years of this list being dominated by the (still excellent) Dell XPS 13, which is now in second place. While Huawei hasn't been making laptops for as long as more established manufacturers in this list, it has absolutely knocked it out the park with the MateBook X Pro. 

This is a gorgeously-designed laptop with a stunning screen (albeit with a rather odd aspect ratio), and it comes packed with cutting edge components that allows it to perform brilliantly, and a battery life that runs rings around many of its rivals. It also has a very competitive price, giving you features, design and performance for quite a bit less money.

Read the full review: Huawei MateBook X Pro

  • Want to see the best of the rest? These are the best laptops of 2019

Best TV 2019

Samsung Q9FN QLED (2019) best gadgets

Samsung Q9FN QLED (2018)

The best TV ever? Could be!

65-inch: Samsung QE65Q9FN

Spectacular HDR picture quality
Powerful, well-rounded sound
Limited viewing angles

After an underwhelming debut, Samsung’s QLED technology really needed to bounce back in style in 2018. It didn't surprise us in the least, then, to discover Samsung threw the kitchen sink in with its new Q9FN QLED Series of TVs. 

As well as being even brighter and more colorful than last year’s equivalent model, Samsung's 2018 flagship screens use a completely different lighting system to combat its predecessor’s contrast problems: Full Array Local Dimming rather than edge-lit LED lighting. The FALD panel works in tandem with Samsung QLED Quantum Dots to produce a picture that's brighter and more colorful than near any we've seen come from the South Korean manufacturer. 

Do those features alone make Samsung Q9FN the best TV on the market? No, but throw in technology like HDR10+ and Q HDR EliteMax – what Samsung bills as its maximum High Dynamic Range experience that’s exclusive to the Q9FN – and there's very little doubt in our mind that this is Samsung's best TV ever. (Even if it may have competition in Samsung's 2019 TV range.)

Read the full review: Samsung Q9FN QLED TV (65Q9FN)

  • Want to see the best of the rest?  
  • In the US, check out this version of the Best TVs in the US for 2019
  • In the UK and Australia, check out this version of the Best TVs 2019

Best games console 2019

PS4 Pro best gadgets 2019

PS4 Pro

Sony's souped-up PS4 Pro is amazing for 4K TV owners

Dimensions: 29.5 x 32.7 x 5.5 cm (W x L x H) | GPU: 4.20 TFLOPS, AMD Radeon™ based graphics engine | RAM: 8 GB of GDDR5, 1 GB DDR3 | Communication: USB 3.1, HDMI 2.0a, Ethernet, Optical Audio and PlayStation Camera ports, Dual-band 802.11ac wireless, Bluetooth 4.0 | Max Resolution: 3840 × 2160 | Maximum controllers: 4 | Storage: 1TB

First 4K HDR Sony console
1TB hard drive
No 4K Blu-ray player
Pro Mode support isn't universal

The battle between Sony's PlayStation consoles and Microsoft's Xbox series is hard-fought, but right now we think the PS4 Pro has the edge over the Xbox One S or Xbox One X, thanks to a combination of good hardware, great games, and a generous online offering. 

An improvement on the already very strong PS4, the PS4 Pro supports 4K and HDR technologies; plus with advances in frame rate due to beefed-up processing speeds, gaming will look cleaner, crisper and smoother.

The only thing stopping the PS4 Pro from being the ultimate console is the omission of an Ultra HD Blu-ray drive. Instead you'll have to rely on streaming to get your 4K media fix – or, if you're using Sony's PS Now service, the new download feature to play rented games without your patchy connection dropping the resolution. Until we get a firm release date for the PS5, this the way to go.

Read the full review: PS4 Pro 

Best fitness tracker 2019

Moov Now best gadgets 2019

Moov Now

The no-screen wonder

Screen: No | Heart rate tracker: No | Waterproof: Yes | Activity tracking: Yes | GPS: Yes, through phone | Battery life: Six months | Compatibility: Android/iOS

Great battery life
Cheap price
Limited features
No screen

The Moov Now doesn't have all the bells and whistles you would associate with a fitness tracker. It doesn't have GPS tracking, it doesn't even have a screen; but what it does have is a cheap price tag and six-month battery life. Yes, you read that right: six months.

During those six months you can track your steps, your sleep, your fitness, your running technique and a whole lot more. This may be an unconventional fitness tracker, but it's a great one. 

Read the full review: Moov Now

  • Want to see the best of the rest? Best fitness tracker 2019: the top 10 activity bands on the planet

Best camera 2019

Nikon Z6

Nikon's new full-frame mirrorless is the pick of the bunch

Sensor: Full-frame CMOS | Resolution: 24.5MP | Autofocus: 273-point AF | Screen type: 3.0-inch tilt-angle touchscreen, 2,100K dots | Maximum continuous shooting speed: 12fps | Movies: 4K at 30p | User level: Enthusiast/expert

Refined handling
Great image quality
Limited buffer depth
Limited XQD support

The Nikon Z6 is one of the newest cameras we've had the pleasure to test, and it matches youth with excellent usability.

A full-frame mirrorless, it ticks all the boxes for features, performance, and price, with a 24.5MP sensor that offers superb color reproduction and pin-sharp detailing.

For the wobbly-handed there's a 273-point autofocus system, alongside a 12fps burst-shooting mode for capturing every moment of a fast-moving scene.

Along with these smart touches, it's an ergonomic body, easy in the hand with sensibly-placed controls and a massive, bright EVF.  If you're already on the Nikon train, you'll be pleased to hear that a simple FZT adapter will let all your existing F mount lenses work just fine. Whether a pro or an enthusiast looking to upgrade, there's lots to enjoy here.

Read the full review: Nikon Z6 review

Best tablet 2019

iPad Pro 11 (2018)

The best tablet you can buy right now

Weight: 468g | Dimensions: 247.6 x 178.5 x 5.9 mm | OS: iOS 12 | Screen size: 11-inch | Resolution: 2388 x 1668 pixels | CPU: A12X Bionic | Storage: 64GB/256GB/512GB/1TB | microSD slot: No | Battery: 7,812mAh | Rear camera: 12MP | Front camera: 7MP

Pencil clips on, finally
Insane amount of power for a tablet
Software limits laptop experience
Pencil and keyboard expensive extras

If money is truly no object, there's never been a finer tablet than the 2018 iPad Pro 11 inch slate. It's a superb two-in-one when paired with its folio keyboard case, and a lovely large touchscreen tablet when flying solo.

Many of the grumbles from earlier iPad Pro tablets have been ironed out. The Apple Pencil finally connects to the tablet magnetically, the speakers now have the oomph to match the larger real estate, and the screen-to-body ratio has been improved to a point where it's hard to see where Apple can go from here.

Is it a true laptop replacement? That's still a tough question, and one worth considering before purchase – the iOS 12 software feels limiting when trying to multitask and perform laptop-like tasks. 

Another strictly mobile challenge: it doesn't have a headphone jack. If you want the standard 3.5mm jack in a computer-like device, you'll spring for an actual computer.

Those points taken into account, it's a real winner. Just don't go in expecting an actual replacement for your MacBook Pro and you'll come away a happy techhead.

Read the full review: iPad Pro 11

  • Want to see the best of the rest? Check out the best tablets you can buy in 2019

Best smartwatch 2019

Samsung Galaxy Watch

Samsung Galaxy Watch

The sporty Samsung watch gains some style

OS: Tizen OS | Compatibility: Android, iOS | Display: 1.2" or 1.3" 360 x 360 Super AMOLED | Processor: Dual-core 1.15GHz | Band sizes: 22mm or 20mm | Onboard storage: 4GB | Battery duration: 4 days on 46mm / less on 42mm | Charging method: Wireless | IP rating: 50m | Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth

Impressive battery life
Useful rotating bezel
Annoying charger
Bixby isn't great

Following on from the Gear S3 series and the Gear Sport in 2017, the Samsung Galaxy Watch comes much improved over its predecessors and rightfully knocks the Apple Watch off the top spot for this section of our best gadgets list.

Having played around with the larger 46mm version of the Galaxy Watch, you're looking at a rock-soild four day battery life for the wearable – an incredible feat considering most usually conk out after just a single day's use.

Tizen is an increasingly capable wearable OS, and the rotating bezel used here to navigate works like a charm.

The one drawback remains Tizen's app availability, which pales in comparison to Watch OS and Wear OS. That said, there's a lot of filler on those two platforms, and Samsung's core offering hits all the right notes for what you'd like to get from a smartwatch.

Read the full Samsung Galaxy Watch review

  • Want to see the best of the rest? Best smartwatch: the top smartwatches you can buy in 2019

Best VR headset 2019

HTC Vive best gadgets 2019

HTC Vive

HTC Vive wins the first battle in the VR war

Screen resolution: 2160 x 1200 | Compatibility: Windows | Field of View: 110 degrees | Play-space: 13 x 13 feet | Controllers included?: Yes | Weight: 470g

Best overall VR experience
Software partnership with Valve
Requires a high-end GPU
The most expensive option

The HTC Vive is the best VR headset in the world right now. The controls are intuitive to use, the resolution is incredible, with a 1080p screen per eye, and the base stations mean you can play in a space that's 13 x 13 feet in size – that's some serious playing space to swing yourself around in.

HTC's close rival Oculus still has designs on the crown, and the incoming Oculus Quest – a wireless VR headset with PC-quality performance, reportedly – could well swing the balance.

Like most of the entries on our list this is a premium product at a high price, but for now if you're looking for the best first-generation VR headset around, then the HTC Vive is the one to go for. 

Read the full review: HTC Vive

  • Want to see the best of the rest? The best VR headset 2019: which headset offers the best bang for your buck?

Best headphones 2019

Sony WH-1000XM3

The best noise-cancelling headphones in the world, two years running

Acoustic design: Closed | Weight: .8.99 oz | Cable length: 3.94 ft | Frequency response: 4Hz to 40kHz | Drivers: 40mm Dual-Layered Diaphragm | Driver type: Dynamic | Sensitivity: 104.5 dB | Impedance: 47 ohm | Battery life: 30 hours | Wireless range: 30 meters (98ft) | NFC: Yes

Outstanding noise cancellation
Fantastic sound quality
30-hour battery life
Small tweaks from 1000XM2
Mediocre call quality

Sony's done it again. Despite being a new model for 2018, the Sony WH-1000XM3 are the best noise-cancelling headphones in the world two years in a row. How can that be possible? 

That's because, even though there's new audio wizardry going on, they are for the most part a small refinement of last year's excellent WH-1000XM2.

So what's changed? the WH-1000XM3 uses the newer USB-C charging standard instead of a legacy microUSB connection, and there is also a bit more padding along the bridge to keep your noggin' comfy. But that's about it.

At first, that lack of substantial improvement gave us some reservations about recommending them - especially when the 1000XM2 could be found for less online. But those days are over. If you want a critically-acclaimed noise-cancelling headset that's brand-new for 2018 and has two-plus years of experience being the best, the WH-1000XM3 are the way to go.

Read the full review: Sony WH-1000XM3

  • Want to see the best of the rest? Best headphones 2019: the best headphones for any budget

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