Our best 5G phones guide could get some big changes soon, as Apple is finally expected to launch a 5G iPhone with the iPhone 12 in either September or October.
And we probably won’t just get one 5G model – rather the iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Max, iPhone 12 Pro, and iPhone 12 Pro Max are all rumored to be on the way with 5G in tow.
But Apple is late to the 5G party so there’s no need to wait for a new iPhone to get one of the best 5G phones.
From the Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra to the OnePlus 8 Pro and beyond there are loads of excellent 5G handsets already. Indeed, most 2020 flagships support the tech, as do a number of lower end phones.
Below then, you’ll find our ranked list of the very best 5G phones available, complete with a specs list, overview, and the main good and bad points of each.
And if nothing catches your eye make sure to check back soon, as beyond the iPhone 12 range we’re also expecting the Google Pixel 5 to land soon, packing 5G, and numerous other great 5G phones are sure to follow.
- What is 5G? Our full explainer about the next-gen internet tech
Best 5G phones at a glance
- Samsung Galaxy S20 / S20 Plus
- OnePlus 8 Pro
- Oppo Find X2 Pro
- Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra
- Motorola Edge Plus
- Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra
- Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus
- OnePlus 8
- Sony Xperia 1 II
- Xiaomi Mi 10
Best 5G phones
The Samsung Galaxy S20 series are all available with 5G versions, but we'd suggest the base and Plus versions are the best option, as they combine plenty of top-end features with a (relatively) low price tag.
As with most Samsung phones, the S20 devices have great-looking displays with AMOLED panels, but they up the refresh rate to 120Hz. They've also got top-end chipsets and cameras with plenty of software tricks to help you take the best picture possible.
Sure, they're missing some tricks from the phone that sits at the top of their range (which is just below in this list), but we believe the low price makes the Samsung Galaxy S20 and S20 Plus more accessible and better value for money.
The OnePlus 8 Pro is one of the best phones available so of course – since it comes with 5G as standard – it’s also one of the best 5G phones.
5G-aside the highlight is undoubtedly its screen, which is a 6.78-inch curved, Fluid AMOLED display with 513 pixels per inch. But it also has a 120Hz refresh rate, which is higher than most phones, and can help interactions feel smoother.
This being a flagship it also has flagship power, with a Snapdragon 865 chipset and up to 12GB of RAM. It has a quad-lens camera too, headlined by a 48MP snapper, and there’s a big 4,510mAh battery.
Speaking of the battery, this is the first OnePlus phone to support wireless charging, as well as the first to have a real water resistance rating. You could in fact say that it’s the first to have no real compromises.
Read our OnePlus 8 Pro review
Beyond offering 5G, the Oppo Find X2 Pro is a truly top-end phone in every sense – including the price, which might come as a shock given that this is a relatively small brand.
But you can’t argue that you don’t get a lot for your money, including a brilliant 6.7-inch screen with a 120Hz refresh rate, an unusual finish in ceramic or faux leather, and a great quality triple-lens camera.
The Oppo Find X2 Pro also has a big, very fast charging battery (though actual life is simply okay), and of course there’s top-end power, courtesy of a Snapdragon 865 chipset and 12GB of RAM. If you’re after a 5G flagship and happy to take a chance on a smaller name, you won’t be disappointed by this.
Read our Oppo Find X2 Pro review
If you don't mind a phone that's huge and very expensive, the Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra might be for you.
The phone has top-end cameras, a large and beautiful screen top processing power and an S Pen stylus with loads of tricks to improve your use experience.
This is one of the most premium 5G phones you can buy right now, so if you're ready to kick off the 5G generation in style, it's certainly one to consider.
Read our Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra review
In 2020 Motorola unveiled a brand-new line of smartphones - the Edge phones - and this top model in the line is seriously one you should look at if you're looking for a top-powered 5G phone.
The Motorola Edge Plus has a 108MP main camera, big battery, top-end chipset and a display which curves dramatically at the edges (hence the name) it's premium in the hand and to the touch.
Sure, the Motorola Edge Plus is pretty pricey, so it might put off some buyers who want a 5G phone on a budget, and if that's you the standard Edge or perhaps the Moto G 5G Plus is better for you, but if money's not a problem, this could be worth looking at.
Read our Motorola Edge Plus review
The Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra is the 5G phone for you if you want plenty of cutting-edge features, specs and tricks on your handset, no matter the price. And you better be ready to ignore the price, because this phone isn't cheap.
With its 6.9-inch AMOLED 120Hz screen, 108MP main camera, 100x digital zoom, top-end chipset and of course its 5G compatibility, you're not going to be left wanting for new features to try out.
The Galaxy S20 Ultra is not a perfect phone by any means, and its price is so high that we'd argue the Samsung Galaxy S20 and S20 Plus are probably better 5G phones for most people, but if price was no object this phone would likely land higher.
Read our in-depth Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra review
The Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G is one of the best phones from 2019 and the absolute top from that year if you're looking for 5G connectivity.
As with all Samsung Galaxy Note phones, the Note 10 Plus 5G has a stylus you can use, which is great for note-taking, sketching and annotating documents, all tasks that 5G will improve by offering a more reliable internet connection and faster downloads and uploads.
Sure, this is a pricey phone, even within the high-price standards that the others on this list set, but there's enough to like here to offset that, like the top-end cameras or screen technology.
The OnePlus 8 isn’t the best OnePlus phone – you’ll find that further up in this list, but it’s still good enough to secure a spot.
Unlike the OnePlus 8 Pro, this is a somewhat affordable phone, while still being something of a flagship, with a top-end chipset, lots of RAM, a 90Hz refresh rate, a big 4,300mAh battery, and of course 5G.
It’s not quite a top-end phone – the screen is just 1080 x 2400, the triple-lens camera isn’t a match for the best, and there’s no wireless charging. But for the price and everything you do get those are small sacrifices.
Read our OnePlus 8 review
We have to add a caveat to this entry because oddly the Sony Xperia 1 II isn’t a 5G phone in the US, but elsewhere it is, and a good one at that.
The highlight is undoubtedly its 6.5-inch 1644 x 3840 screen with a 21:9 aspect ratio. It’s super sharp, coming in at 643 pixels per inch, and that aspect ratio makes it great for most games and any content shot in 21:9.
The Sony Xperia 1 II also has a top-end Snapdragon 865 chipset, a decent amount of RAM and storage, a quad-lens camera, and strong life from its 4,000mAh battery.
Its main issue – other than the lack of 5G in the US – is simply its high price. This rivals the most expensive of Samsung and Apple’s handsets, and Sony arguably isn’t a brand that can get away with that, even when the hardware is this good.
Read our Sony Xperia 1 II review
Xiaomi tends to make reliable affordable phones, which can be surprisingly feature-packed for its price, but the Mi 10 line was different in that the price tags of the phones actually matched their specs.
The Xiaomi Mi 10 is a good phone with a 108MP main camera, a good-looking screen and lots of power under the hood. It's not as feature-packed as some other devices on this list, hence its low ranking, but if if you're looking for a reliable handset that won't let you down it could be for you.
Read our in-depth Xiaomi Mi 10 review
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