With the official unveiling of the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 and Galaxy Note 10+ behind us, we’re now in the home stretch for 2019’s crop of flagship smartphones.
And beyond Samsung’s pricey and premium phablet, there are still three major smartphone releases left in 2019 that you should be (extra!) excited about. If you’re looking to upgrade your smartphone and get the most bang for your buck this holiday season, you’ll want to wait until we know more about each of these devices before you spend the money.
The Google Pixel 4
Google’s Pixel phones have always been good but this year’s budget-friendly Pixel 3a (review here) was the first time you could rightfully call them great. And with the Pixel 4 set to include Google’s first multiple-lens setup, expectations are high that the fourth-generation Pixel could well live up the high expectations that Android fans have of it.
In addition, the Pixel 4 is also expected to be Google’s most ambitious and feature-laden device yet. It’s supposed to have full-blown Face-ID-style 3D face unlock, a 90Hz display and a new form of gesture controls based on Project Soli, something Google first showcased back in 2015.
The Pixel 3a raised the bar for what a mid-tier smartphone looks like. The Pixel 4 could well redefine what we expect from a flagship - how can you not be excited for it?
The Google Pixel 4 doesn’t have a solid release date just yet but we expect it to be officially announced in early-to-mid October, as this is usually the go for Google's pre-Christmas Pixel hardware event.
The Huawei Mate 30
Huawei have had a hell of a year and a year from hell. After being added to a trade blacklist by the United States government and threatened with being locked out of the Android ecosystem, it’s been hard to know what the future holds for the Chinese tech company and even harder to wholeheartedly recommend buying one of their products.
However, one things for sure, the next installment of their flagship Mate series? That’s still coming. What’s more, if past years are to be taken as precedent, it’s probably going to be one of the year’s best smartphones. More than that, the Mate 30 is a chance for Huawei to reset the narrative. At least a little.
And where the Mate 20 (review here) took the outstanding photographic prowess of the P20 and fleshed out the rest of the smartphone around it, the Mate 30 is expected to do much the same for the P30 (review here). It’s expected to utilise a circular rear camera lens configuration, full 3D face unlock plus the next generation of Huawei’s homegrown Kirin processors.
If the latest rumors are to be believed, Huawei are planning to launch both the Huawei Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro within spitting distance of this year’s iPhones on the 19th of September.
The Samsung Galaxy Fold
Look, the story around the Galaxy Fold hasn’t exactly inspired confidence in the idea of foldable phones, I wouldn’t blame you. However, all the same, the Galaxy Fold is still set to be the first mainstream foldable phone. Whether or not it succeeds in offering something exciting, different and compelling enough to cement the category as a mainstream - it’s still going to be exciting to get our hands on the Fold and see what it brings to the table.
With the Fold almost managing to launch back in April, there’s not too much mystery left around what’s inside it but there’s plenty of unknowns around whether or not the device’s reworked design can really live up to the rigors of regular, everyday usage. It’s too ambitious to write off entirely but the problems faced by earlier versions of the Fold makes it impossible to fully buy into the hype around it. Either way, we can’t wait to mess with it.
Samsung say that the Galaxy Fold will finally be making its way to customers sometime in September. Australian availability for the Galaxy Fold remains TBD.