We are finally way into the year 2020. But it doesn’t mean that we can forget what 2019 gave us, especially to the ever-growing smartphone industry. If we take a look back at the year before this, there were a lot of impressive smartphones introduced by various companies and it was us consumers who were able to make the best use out of them. 2019 gave us hole-punch displays, high-refresh-rate displays, quad-camera setups, foldable phones, whopping 108MP primary sensor and many more. With all these new things integrated into the smartphones of various price tags, every price range was able to get an immense upgrade from 2018.
It’s only January 2020 but we already have new smartphone announcements from various companies. Keep looking out for new tech updates and announcements of 2020 on our website.
For now, let’s have a look at the existing smartphones in the Nepalese market and what are our favorites of 2019.
“Best Budget-King of 2019”
- Display: 6.2-inch IPS LCD with Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection
- Resolution: HD+ resolution (720 x 1520 pixels), 19:9 aspect ratio @ 271 PPI
- Rear Camera: Single, 12 MP Sony IMX363 sensor with f/1.9 aperture
- Front Camera: 8MP
- Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 439
- CPU: Octa-core (2×2.0 GHz Cortex-A53 & 6×1.45 GHz Cortex A53)
- GPU: Adreno 505
- RAM: 2/3 GB
- Storage: 32 GB, expandable up to 256GB via microSD card (dedicated slot)
- OS: Android 9.0 Pie, MIUI 10
- Features: 3.55 headphone jack, splash resistant (P2i Rating)
- Battery: 5000 mAh; 18-watt fast charging support; USB Type-C Port
- Color Options: Sunset Red, Ocean Blue, and Midnight Black
- Xiaomi Redmi 8A Price in Nepal (2+32GB): Rs. 11,999
- Xiaomi Redmi 8A Price in Nepal (3+32GB): Rs. 12,999
We have decided to give this title to Redmi 8A instead of Redmi 8 because of the same processor used in both but lower price tag of Redmi 8A.
Realme 3, Redmi 8 and Samsung A10s.
“Best Mid-Ranger of 2019”
Redmi Note 8 Pro
- Display: 6.53-inch IPS LCD screen, Full HD+ (2340×1080 pixels), 19.5:9 aspect ratio, Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection
- Rear Camera: Quad camera – (64 MP, f/1.8, Dual Pixel PDAF) + (8 MP, f/2.2 (wide-angle) + (2 MP, f/2.4, macro lens) + (2MP, f/2.4, portrait lens)
- Front Camera: 20 MP, f/2.2
- CPU: Helio G90T (2 x 2.27GHz Cortex A76 + 6 x 1.7GHz Cortex A55)
- GPU:Mali G76
- RAM: 6GB, 8 GB
- Storage: 64 GB, 128GB; Expandable
- OS & UI: Android 9.0 (Pie) with MIUI 10 on top
- Sensors: Fingerprint, Gyro, accelerometer, proximity, compass
- Battery: 4500 mAh; USB Type-C port
- Price : 6GB + 64GB: Rs. 26,999, 6GB + 128GB: Rs. 29,999, 8GB + 128GB: Rs. 32,999
This title is a no-brainer because there’s no other smartphone in the Nepalese market right now that comes close to what this smartphone offers. Overall, it is a solid package for the price and the most deserving out of all other titles.
Samsung A50 (4GB+64GB at Rs. 26699, AMOLED display, good camera and processor), Samsung M30s (6GB+128GB at Rs.30,200, impressive battery at 6000maH), Honor 9X (6GB+128GB at Rs.30000, bezel-less display with pop-up camera)
“Flagship-Killer of 2019”
Redmi K20 Pro:
- Display: 6.39-Inches Super AMOLED display at 1080×2340 resolution and a screen ratio of 19.5:9
- Chipset: Snapdragon 855
- CPU: Octa-core (84 GHz Kryo 485 & 3×2.42 GHz Kryo 485 & 4×1.8 GHz Kryo 485)
- GPU: Adreno 640
- OS: MIUI 10 on top of Android 9.
- Memory: 256GB ROM and 8GB RAM or 128GB ROM with 6/8GB RAM
- Primary Camera: 48 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), 1/2″, 0.8µm, PDAF/Laser AF — 8 MP, f/2.4, 53mm (telephoto), 1/4″, 1.12µm, PDAF/Laser AF, 2x optical zoom — 13 MP, f/2.4, 12mm (ultrawide), 1/3″, 1.12µm
- Battery: 4000mAh with 27W Fast charging.
- Price: 8GB+256GB only available at Rs.50000
PocoF1 is what started the wave of flagship killer smartphones and in 2019, Redmi K20 Pro is what delivered the most that the consumers wanted. It became the PocoF2 for most people. With flagship-level design, processor and an impressive camera, at this price, the phone is a major steal.
Huawei Nova 5T (8GB+128GB at Rs.53900, if only it was priced around Rs.45000 I would gladly choose this over K20 or even the K20 Pro), One Plus 7T (8GB+128GB at Rs.67000 – The best pricing, lower than international pricing) and One Plus 7 Pro (6GB+128GB at Rs.75000, price drop from Rs.90000).
“Best Flagship of 2019”
Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus
- Display: 6.8” AMOLED screen (1440 x 3040 pixels), Corning Gorilla Glass 6 protection
- Dimension: 162.3 x 77.2 x 7.9mm
- Weight: 196g
- Design: Glass body, Metal frame, IP68 Water & Dust Resistance
- Rear Camera: 12MP, f/1.5-2.4 (wide),12MP, f/2.1 (telephoto), 16MP, f/2.2 (ultra-wide), 3D ToF sensor
- Front Camera: 10MP, f/2.2 (wide), Dual Pixel PDFA
- OS: Android 9.0 Pie with One UI on top
- Processor: Exynos 9825, Octa-core (2 x 2.73GHz Mongoose M4, 2×2.4GHz Cortex-A75, 4×1.9GHz Cortex-A55)
- GPU: Mali-G76 MP12
- RAM: 12GB
- Internal Storage: 256GB; expandable up to 1TB through microSD slot
- WLAN: Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot
- Sensors: Fingerprint (in-display, ultrasonic), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer
- Battery: 4300mAh, non-removable
- Charging: 45W fast charging and 15-watt wireless charging
- USB: 3.1, Type-C 1.0
- Colors: Aura Glow, Aura White, Aura Black Aura Blue
- Price: Rs.129,599
I have always been a fan of Samsung’s Note Series especially for that S-Pen which has support for those beautiful air gestures. Even though there aren’t many significant upgrades here from Note 9, we have chosen Note 10 Plus for its overall flagship-level features. The camera is the same as S10 Plus but with better software processing. All in all, I think this phone deserves this spot for 2019.
I don’t like to call them alternatives here because each of these devices that I will be mentioning has their own quirks and I can’t undermine any of them.
1. Samsung Galaxy A80 (8GB+128GB at Rs.49,999)
A mid-range capable smartphone with a rotating rear camera for your selfies.
2. Huawei P30 Pro (8GB+256GB for Rs.1,19,000)
One of the best cameras out there with 5x optical and 50x digital zoom with all the flagship features of a 2019 smartphone.
3. Huawei Mate 30 Pro (8GB+256GB at Rs.1,29,000)
The most deserving of the flagship title of 2019 but couldn’t make it because of the lack of Google Services. With the highest DXO-mark score of 121, its camera is unlike any other smartphone out there. It’s like a forbidden fruit of 2019 that makes you want it so much but you wouldn’t get it.
Also Read: Must Have Nepali Apps in 2020
4. One Plus 7T Pro (8GB+256Gb at Rs.99,999)
With its smooth 90Hz panel and beautiful Oxygen OS experience along with flagship Snapdragon 855+ processor, impressive camera setup and bezel-less display, one cannot go wrong with this device at this price range.
5. iPhone 11 Series:
There has been a significant upgrade in the camera department in the entire iPhone 11 series which is noteworthy. Mainly, the quality of the ultra-wide lens in both photos and videos is pretty good along with night mode pictures. The entire iPhone 11 series uses the same chipset or processor which beats every Android smartphone processor in the market right now. So, the cheapest of the lineup i.e. iPhone 11 (64GB at Rs.110000) is the one I would recommend if you have a lesser budget but want the latest from Apple while compromising on the display.
“Best Gaming Smartphone of 2019”
Nubia Red Magic 3
- Display: 6.65-inch AMOLED display with 90Hz refresh rate, 430 nits brightness
- Resolution: Full-HD+ (2340 × 1080 pixels), 19.5:9 aspect ratio
- Chipset: Snapdragon 855; 7nm Mobile Platform
- CPU: Octa-Core (1 x 2.84GHz Kryo 485 + 3 x 2.42GHz Kryo 485 + 4x 1.80GHz Kryo 485)
- GPU: Adreno 640
- RAM: 6GB / 8GB / 12GB LPDDR4x RAM
- Storage: 64GB / 128GB / 256GB (UFS 3.0) storage
- Software & UI: Android 9.0 (Pie) with Redmagic OS 2.0
- Rear Camera: 48MP 1/2.0″ Sony IMX586 sensor, 0.8μm pixel size, f/1.75 aperture, Dual LED flash
- Front Camera: 16MP, f/2.0 aperture
- Fingerprint sensor: Yes, Rear mounted
- Audio: 3.5mm audio jack, Stereo front-facing speakers, DTS:X
- Connectivity: Dual-SIM (Dual 4G VoLTE), WiFi 802.11ac dual-band (2×2 MU-MIMO ), Bluetooth 5, GPS/GLONASS/Beidou, USB Type-C
- Battery: 5000mAh battery with 27W fast charging
- Nubia Red Magic 3 Price in Nepal: Rs. 59,999
Verdict: 2019 has all been about games while judging a smartphone’s capability. The introduction of PUBG mobile and COD has taken the smartphone gaming industry by storm. Nubia, a company pretty less heard of, has given us an impressive game-centric smartphone with a competitive price tag. We have tested it out personally and can say that this is the one you should get right now if you are a hard-core gamer.
So, this sums up our smartphone picks for 2019. We hope we did justice to all the smartphones with this list. So, which one did you buy for 2019 and what are you expecting to upgrade to in 2020? Let us know down in the comments.