Editor’s Choice: Best Smartphones Launched in 2023


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Several years passed since the launch of the first smartphone and this kind of device still rocks in popularity. While the sales aren’t the same as they used to be years ago, the smartphone world keeps moving the wheel when it comes to mobile technology. In 2023 we had great releases and some neat improvements in this particular segment. As the curtains 2023 are about to close, I’ve elaborated a list of 5 great smartphones released in 2023. In this list, I will dive into the specifications and key features that make these smartphones stand in a competitive tech market.

Great Smartphones Launched in 2023

Smartphone sales decreased in the past few years, moved by the financial disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The supply chain issues also took a long time to ease, and we can say that 2023 was the “return” to normal days. However, the consequences of the past two years still have their effect on this particular segment. Despite the issues, the demand for smartphones is still alive and companies keep trying to launch the most innovative products and grab customers’ preferences.

In 2023, the smartphone world saw the continuous development of powerful camera software, the integration of AI-based solutions in smartphones, and also the debut of 3nm-based processors. There were great options in the smartphone segment for the various pricing fields in the market. In this article, we will discuss the details about 5 smartphones that certainly grabbed the most attention in 2023. They range from mid-range smartphones to premium flagships. So if you’re interested in a quick recap of 5 great smartphones launched in 2023, dive into this article.

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

In 2022, Samsung converted the Samsung Galaxy S22Ultra to make it a spiritual successor for the Galaxy Note series. Besides being the highest smartphone in Samsung’s lineup, it also brings some exclusive Galaxy Note features like an integrated S Pen. This year, the company repeated this feat with the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra. The device brought incremental upgrades over its predecessor and the exclusive Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 SoC For Galaxy Smartphones.

Best Smartphones

The Galaxy S23 Ultra also revamped the camera in flagships thanks to the use of a 200 MP camera on its back which makes this device quite exclusive. The device is massively different from the previous year’s S22 Ultra. The camera and processor alone are enough to make the device worthy. However, there are other interesting features like the S Pen stylus and a series of productivity features within the phone’s software.

The phone also brings a huge display which is the best of its class with 120Hz refresh rate and QHD+ resolution. Some versions start from 256 GB to 1 TB model. The Galaxy S23 Ultra is also the fastest charging device among Samsung smartphones with support for 45W charging. This phone definitively stands as one of the best smartphones launched in 2023.

OnePlus 11

Another great option in this list is the OnePlus 11. The OnePlus flagship launched way back in the start of 2023 and unified the Pro and vanilla variants into a single smartphone. However, when it comes to the specifications, this device was more of an upgrade for the OnePlus 10 Pro.

The OnePlus 11 launched with a 6.7-inch Display offering QHD+ resolution with Gorilla Glass Protection. OnePlus is generous in the hardware department by offering 8GB, and 16 GB of RAM without any issues. In terms of software, the phone runs OxygenOS with a set of exclusive features to make this device stand in the crowd. Other premium features include 100W charging.

The OnePlus 11 has 3,216 x 1,440 pixels of resolution and 120 Hz refresh rate. Under the hood, it is equipped with the powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2. The phone has up to 16 GB of RAM and up to 512 GB of Internal Storage. In terms of optics, it is equipped with a 50 MP main camera with OIS, a 32 MP telephoto shooter with 2x optical zoom, and a 48 MP ultrawide camera with auto-focus. The flagship includes Hasselblad color’s calibration for tuning the setup.

The OnePlus 11 also has Stereo Speakers, Wi-Fi 7, Bluetooth 5.3, and USB Type-C. The lights are kept by the above-mentioned 5,000 mAh battery with 100W wired charging.

 

Apple iPhone 15 Pro Max

This year was remarkable for iPhone fans since all the iPhones embraced the new design with the dynamic island. On top of the lineup, the iPhone 15 Pro Max still stands as the king of the lineup with an impressive set of specifications. It brings the greatest and latest hardware for iPhones.

The iPhone 15 Pro Max offers everything a premium flagship should. That includes a large 6.7-inch AMOLED display for all sorts of usage. Under the hood, the device has the Apple A17 Pro based on a new 3nm manufacturing. Another great advancement is the USB Type-C connector. It supports faster charging and data transfer. It also brings the ability to charge other devices including the Apple Watch from your device as well as enabling it to connect to an external 4K monitor.

The iPhone 15 Pro Max also boasts a new 5x zoom camera lens which is the equivalent of a 120mm focal length on a DSLR camera. There is also a new action button that allows you to customize shortcuts and easily open your apps.

The greatest change with the Apple A17 Pro is the ability to run games that were tough for PCs. This includes Resident Evil Village, Resident Evil 4 Remake, and other titles from Capcom and Ubisoft.

Nothing Phone (2)

The Nothing Phone (2) may not be the most powerful smartphone when compared to premium 2023 flagships. However, the device is a great evolution over the first generation and is a step in the right direction. Nothing refined its design and brought hardware that is more capable to compete with flagships. T 8+he software also got great improvements making it unique when compared to other Android skins.

Nothing Phone (2) Best Smartphones

Obviously, on top of the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 chipset and a new refined display design, the device counts with a new take on its Glyph interface. At first glance, some may consider this a gimmick. However, it has great utility allowing you to customize multiple LED lights and make them work as alerts, notifications, and other kinds of reminders.

In terms of specifications, the Nothing Phone (2) has a 6.7-inch LTPO OLED screen with a 120Hz refresh rate and 1600 nits of peak brightness. The phone has a 2,412 x 1,080 pixels resolution and an Always-On Display.

Under the hood, the Nothing Phone (2) has the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 with up to 12 GB of RAM and 512 GB of Internal Storage. For optics, there is a dual-camera setup with a 50 MP OIS camera and a 50 MP ultrawide shooter. It’s a decent setup that does the job for those who don’t need advanced Zoom. For selfies and video calls, there is a 32 MP camera. Other features include Stereo Speakers, NFC, Wi-Fi 6, and Bluetooth 5.3. It draws power from a 4,700 mAh battery with 45W fast charging and 15W wireless charging.

Vivo X90 Pro

The Vivo X90 is another great launch of 2023. Vivo pushes the camera-centric philosophy of this lineup forward with this release. The device is a premium offering and boasts ZEISS optics for professional-grade photography. Of course, the device also stands as one of the best flagships launched in 2023 thanks to the other aspects of its hardware. That includes the gorgeous OLED display with 2,800 x 1,200 pixels of resolution. Under the hood, the device boasts the excellent Dimensity 9200.

Best Smartphones

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In terms of optics, the device has a 50.3 MP camera with Dual Pixel PDAF, Laser AF, and Optical Image Stabilization. It also has a 50 MP telephoto shooter with OIS and a 12 MP ultrawide camera with auto-focus. For selfies and video calls, there is a 32 MP camera. The phone has ZEISS optics, Zeiss T* lens coating, Dual Tone Flash, Pixel shift Feature, and HDR. It boasts a 4870 battery with 120W fast-charging support.

Read Also:  Breaking Sales Records: Nothing’s CMF Phone Sells 100,000 Units in 3 Hours

Xiaomi 13 Ultra

Another great smartphone released in 2023 was the Xiaomi 13 Ultra. The smartphone is equipped with a 6.73-inch LTPO AMOLED screen with a 120 Hz refresh rate, 1,300 nits, and 2,600 nits of peak brightness. The phone is covered with Corning Gorilla Glass Victus coating.

Under the hood, the Xiaomi 13 Ultra is equipped with Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 and sells in variants with up to 16 GB of RAM and 1 TB of Internal Storage. One of the device’s greatest highlights is the Quad-Camera setup. The phone boasts a 50 MP main camera with Laser AF and OIS.

There is also a 50 MP periscope telephoto shooter with 5x optical zoom. Furthermore, the phone has a 50 MP telephoto shooter with 3.2 x optical zoom and a 50 MP ultrawide camera. Is a powerful camera setup powered by LEICA.

The Xiaomi 13 Ultra also has Stereo Speakers, Wi-Fi 7, Bluetooth 5.3, NFC, and a USB Type-C 3.2 port. Other features include an under-display fingerprint scanner and a huge 5,000 mAh battery with 90W charging. There is also 50W wireless charging and 10W reverse wireless charging.

POCO F5 Pro

In the flagship killer segment, we had another great addition from POCO. The POCO F5 Pro continues this smartphone series’ legacy bringing flagship specs at a lower pricing point. The POCO F5 Pro is equipped with a gorgeous 6.67-inch AMOLED screen with 120 Hz refresh rate and HDR10+. It has a 3,200 x 1,440 pixels resolution and Corning Gorilla Glass 5 coating.

Under the hood, the handset has the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 with up to 12 GB of RAM and 512 GB of Internal Storage. In terms of optics, it has a 64 MP camera with OIS, an 8 MP ultrawide snapper, and a 2 MP macro camera. For selfies and video calls, the device has a 16 MP wide camera with HDR.

Other interesting features include Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.3, Under display fingerprint scanner, and a USB Type-C 2.0 port. The phone has a huge 5,160 mAh battery with 67W fast charging.

Realme GT Neo5 / Realme GT3

One of Realme’s greatest offerings for the smartphone market in 2023 was the Realme GT3. The device launched as Realme GT Neo5 in China offering great specifications and unprecedented fast-charging tech. The phone boasts a gorgeous 6.74-inch AMOLED screen with 144Hz refresh rate and 1400 nits of peak brightness. Under the hood, it boasts the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 with up to 16 GB of RAM and 1 TB of Internal Storage.

In terms of optics, the phone has a 50 MP main camera with Optical Image Stabilization. There is also an 8 MP ultrawide snapper and a 2 MP microscope camera. For selfies and video calls, there is a 16 MP wide camera.

The device has stereo speakers, Bluetooth 5.3, Wi-Fi 6, NFC, and an IR Blaster. There is an under-display fingerprint scanner, and a 4,600 mAh battery complete with 240W wired charging. Even today, it’s one of the fastest charging standards in the smartphone market. Considering the full package of specifications, we can easily classify this smartphone as one of the greatest offerings for 2023.

Motorola Edge 40 Pro

This year, Motorola brought another great addition to its Motorola Edge series, the Motorola Edge 40 Pro. The smartphone launched with a 6.67-inch OLED screen with HDR10+, Dolby Vision, and 1300 nits of peak brightness. It also has 2,400 x 1,080 pixels of resolution and Corning Gorilla Glass Victus.

Under the hood, the device has the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 gen 2 with up to 12 GB of RAM and 512 GB of Internal Storage. In terms of optics, it has a 50 MP main camera with multi-directional PDAF and OIS. There is also a 12 MP telephoto snapper with 2x optical zoom. Finally, there is a 50 MP ultrawide snapper with Auto-Focus.

The handset has Stereo Speakers, Bluetooth 5.3, Wi-Fi 7, and a USB Type-C port with 3.2 technology. It also supports the DisplayPort 1.4 standard. The phone has a 4,600 mAh battery complete with Motorola’s 125W fast-charging technology and 15W wireless charging.

POCO X5 Pro

Another notable release from POCO was the POCO X5 Pro. The device was the Redmi Note 12 Speed Edition launched for global markets. It has a 6.67-inch AMOLED screen with a 120 Hz refresh rate and up to 900 nits of peak brightness. It has 2,400 x 1,080 pixels of resolution.

Under the hood, the POCO X5 Pro was equipped with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G with up to 8 GB of RAM and 256 GB of Internal Storage. In terms of optics, the phone has a huge 108 MP main camera with PDAF, an 8 MP Ultrawide snapper, and a 2 MP macro shooter. This is the usual combo for mid-range smartphones, but the 108 MP camera does a great job as a main camera keeping a rich amount of details.

The phone has a 16 MP camera for selfies and video calls. It also has Stereo Speakers, Wi-Fi 7, Bluetooth 5.2, and NFC depending on the market. Other features include a side-mounted fingerprint scanner and IR Blaster. It draws power from a huge 5,000 mAh battery with 67W wired charging.

iQOO 12 – An Honorable Mention

The iQOO 12 also deserves a place on the list as an honorable mention! Although the device will be there to compete with the 2024 flagships, it stole the spotlight in 2023 with excellent specifications and features. iQOO keeps the tradition of bringing great specifications and hardware at an intermediary price.

The iQOO 12 is equipped with a 6.78-inch LTPO AMOLED screen with 2,800 x 1,260 pixels of resolution, 144Hz refresh rate, HDR10+ support, and 3000 nits of peak brightness. Under the hood, the handset is equipped with the almighty Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3. It has up to 16 GB of RAM and up to 1 TB of Internal Storage.

iQOO 12

In terms of optics, the iQOO 12 has a 50 MP f/1.7 main camera with PDAF and Optical Image Stabilization. There is also a 64 MP periscope telephoto camera with OIS and 3x optical zoom. Finally, we have a 50 MP ultrawide shooter with auto-focus. For selfies and video calls, the iQOO 12 stands with a 16 MP selfie shooter.

Other great features of the iQOO 12 include stereo sound with Hi-Res Audio and Snapdragon Sound tuning. It also has an under-display fingerprint scanner. On the connectivity front, the device has up to Wi-Fi 7, Bluetooth 5.4, GPS, NFC, IR Blaster, and USB Type C with OTG support.

The iQOO 12 runs Android 14 with OriginOS 4.0 running atop. The phone draws power from a huge 5,000 mAh battery with 120W wired charging.

The iQOO 12 is certainly a memorable smartphone launched in 2023 and you can find in-depth coverage with all its features and specs evaluated in our review. 

Conclusion – Best Smartphones Launched in 2023

The above list includes some of the most notable smartphones released in 2023 based on our editor’s view. Obviously, one could have a different opinion about the greatest launches of the smartphone. The market received a series of great additions, we saw great advancements in camera technology, performance, and efficiency. For the next year, we expect even better upgrades for the smartphone market. Feel free to leave a comment about your personal best of 2023.

Disclaimer: We may be compensated by some of the companies whose products we talk about, but our articles and reviews are always our honest opinions. For more details, you can check out our editorial guidelines and learn about how we use affiliate links.

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  2. March 30, 2024

    Wow, what a comprehensive list of the best smartphones launched in 2023! 📱 This blog post is a treasure trove of information for tech enthusiasts like me who are always on the lookout for the latest and greatest devices. 💫 I appreciate how the editors have curated a diverse selection of smartphones, considering factors like performance, design, camera quality, and value for money. 🌟 Reading through this list has given me valuable insights into the top contenders in the smartphone market, helping me make informed decisions for my next upgrade. 🤔💡 Huge thanks to the team at GizChina for putting together such a helpful resource! 🙌👏