2022 is going to be a banner year for smartphones. There have been murmurs that phones are as powerful as they’re ever going to be, and that any further innovation will be token at best. We’re betting that’s not the case. Big offerings from the likes of Samsung, Apple, OnePlus, and other companies we’ve come to rely on for quality phones will show up again in 2022, and that’s without considering any potential dark horse offerings from companies we’ve yet to learn about. Here are the best smartphones coming in 2022, or rather, the ones we’re most looking forward to getting our hands on.
Samsung Galaxy S22 range
If Samsung continues with the naming conventions it’s been using since 2020, then we’ll be getting our hands on the Galaxy S22 range next year. Rumours are already floating around regarding what we can expect from these handsets. Some have suggested that the S22 Ultra will look more like a Galaxy Note, with a larger form factor and heftier build. Others say that the 108MP camera we’ll be getting on the S22 will have detail enhancement, allowing you to take even sharper photos. One thing’s for sure: Android fans should be excited at the arrival of Samsung’s newest flagships.
iPhone 14 range
We’re expecting Apple to come out of the gate swinging with its iPhone 14 range (or whatever the company ends up calling it). There’s still no concrete news regarding what to expect from these devices; we’re likely many months away from the eventual reveal and launch. However, rumours are currently suggesting that we’ll be getting a hole punch-style selfie camera on the iPhone 14 Pro range, with the standard iPhone 14 retaining the notch design favoured by Apple since the iPhone X. We’re also expecting 120Hz refresh rates, continuing the display standard of the iPhone 13 Pro.
For many years now, OnePlus has been the dark horse providing flagship-quality devices at a low cost. In recent times, that cost has ballooned a little, but OnePlus still represents an excellent alternative to the standard flagship costs if you’re looking for something different. The OnePlus 10 will likely sport the now-standard 120Hz refresh rate, as well as a redesigned camera on its rear and a 20:9 screen. We’re also expecting the OnePlus 10 to continue its industry-leading charging tech domination, with a potential 80W of wired charging and 50W of wireless charging to look forward to.
Xiaomi 12 range
Following on from the success of the Mi 11 range, the Xiaomi 12 devices (the company has now dropped its Mi branding, choosing instead to name its phones eponymously) will likely be powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor, as will most flagships in 2022. The massive circular camera on the rear of the device is likely to be a divisive component; some will love it and see it as a fashion accessory, while others will hate how obtrusive it looks. Either way, expect the Xiaomi 12 range to compete with other flagships in its price range.
Google Pixel 7
Will we see a Google Pixel 7 in 2022? All signs point to yes; the Pixel 5 launched in late 2020, and we’ve just seen the release of the Pixel 6, so in all likelihood, we’ll be getting a Pixel 7 late next year. Google’s emphasis has always been on the quality of its camera software (and hardware), so it’s likely that the Pixel 7 will focus on this element as well. Of course, Pixel devices also come with stock Android operating systems, which means buttery-smooth performance, even if the hardware itself isn’t usually competitive with the latest flagships.
Samsung Galaxy S21 FE
The S20 FE brought S20-style performance to a wider crowd thanks to its lower price point, and we’re expecting Samsung to do something similar with its current S21 flagship range. The S21 FE will probably have a plastic design that feels a little less premium than the S21 proper, but will bring similar performance and features to the table, making it a solid choice for those who don’t mind how their phone looks or feels. For our money, the big purchase in 2022 will be the S22, but the S21 FE will be a serious mid-range competitor.
Huawei P60 Pro
Huawei is in something of a troubled position when it comes to the global market. Phones made by the Chinese company can’t use the Android operating system due to US trade restrictions, which means they also can’t get access to the Google Play Store and its range of apps (without some underhanded technical wizardry). The Huawei P50 series is set to launch in Europe next year, but we could also get a first glimpse at the P60 range, which might not arrive until 2023 thanks to the aforementioned restrictions. It’s a shame, because Huawei makes some seriously excellent phones.
Asus ROG Phone 6
We really want to see a potential ROG Phone 6 from Asus. There is no better smartphone for gaming, and with games like League of Legends: Wild Rift and Genshin Impact revitalising mobile gaming, the time is ripe for a new gaming flagship to swoop down and claim its crown. The ROG Phone 6 could boast even smoother refresh rates on its screen, as well as a more powerful processor and better ergonomics. Here’s hoping Asus sees the demand for a great gaming phone and gives us what we want in 2022.