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July 3, 2018

Best Dual-SIM Android Phones in 2018

by John_A

  • Best overall
  • Best runner-up pick
  • Best for battery life
  • Great $500 option
  • Best budget pick

Best overall

OnePlus 6

oneplus-6-19.jpg?itok=DknsDp8W

See at OnePlus

The OnePlus 6 is packed to the gills with features, but it doesn’t have the same hefty price tag as the Galaxy S9+ or a Pixel 2. The goal is to offer the same hardware at several hundred dollars less than the likes of Samsung and Google, and OnePlus has gotten very good at doing so over the years.

The OnePlus 6 comes with an excellent 6.28-inch Super AMOLED display, and the phone is powered by the Snapdragon 845 chipset. You get 6GB of RAM and 64GB of storage as standard, and there’s the option to pick up a variant with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage as well.

The 16MP + 20MP rear camera has been overhauled, and does a much better job of taking photos in low-light conditions. Elsewhere, you’ll find a 16MP front camera, Wi-Fi ac, Bluetooth 5.0, aptX HD audio codecs, a 3.5mm jack, and a 3300mAh battery with Dash Charge.

The OnePlus 6 also features one of the most refined manufacturer skins available on a device today. OxygenOS doesn’t deviate much from Google’s vision of Android when it comes to the design language, but it does offer a host of customization options that let you make the device your own.

Bottom line: For the amount you’re paying, there isn’t another phone that offers quite as much value.

One more thing: The OnePlus 6 is a GSM-only device, so it won’t work on Verizon or Sprint.

Why the OnePlus 6 is the best

Over the last three years, OnePlus has made a habit of offering phones with top-notch hardware for a few hundred dollars less than the competition. The tactic made the company a fan-favorite, and things haven’t changed much with the OnePlus 6.

The phone features some of the best hardware you’ll find today, and combines that with a new glass design that gives it a more polished look. OnePlus is also rolling out new limited-edition variants that spice things up on the design front.

A key feature on the OnePlus 6 is the 6.28-inch Super AMOLED panel at the front, which now has a notch. The notch withstanding, the display is one of the best you’ll find in this category, with excellent contrast and vibrant colors.

The camera has also been overhauled for 2018, and is now usable in low-light shooting scenarios. That was the biggest problem in years past, but it’s no longer an issue. Sure, it may not be quite as good as the Pixel 2, but for the amount you’re paying, you’re getting incredible value.

The OnePlus 6 dominates the market when it comes to value.

The Snapdragon 845 along with 6GB/64GB or 8GB/256GB of memory and storage make the OnePlus 6 one of the fastest phones in the market, and OxygenOS continues to strike a great balance between efficiency and customizability.

OnePlus isn’t quoting an IP rating for the device, but the OnePlus 6 is resistant to dust and water for “everyday” use cases. So while it isn’t advised to take it to the pool, the phone should weather the occasional splash of water with ease.

The phone comes in a single SKU worldwide, so regardless of where you’re buying your OnePlus device, it will come with two SIM card slots and global LTE bands. As for dual-SIM usage, both SIM card slots in the OnePlus 6 feature 4G connectivity, and dual VoLTE is available as well.

Runner-up pick

Samsung Galaxy S9+

galaxy-s9-plus-1.jpg?itok=dukYYz34

See at Amazon

The Galaxy S9+ shares the same design fundamentals as last years Galaxy S8+, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The design is still one of the most evocative around, and the dual curved screen is a standout.

Talking about the display, Samsung leads the industry with its AMOLED panels, and the one on the Galaxy S9+ is brighter and more vivid when seen against last year’s device. Simply put, it is the best display you can get on a phone today.

Then there’s the camera, which has variable aperture — a first in the smartphone segment. The S9+ also gets a secondary camera that offers 2x optical zoom, allowing you to zoom in on objects without losing out on the quality.

The S9+ also comes with 6GB of RAM as standard, and you can pick up a storage option with as much as 256GB of internal storage. Overall, the S9+ offers meaningful upgrades from last year’s flagship — particularly in the camera department.

Bottom line: If you want the most feature-rich phone available today, look no further than the Galaxy S9+.

One more thing: The dual-SIM variant of the Galaxy S9+ is powered by the Exynos 9810.

Best for battery life

Huawei P20 Pro

p20-review-9.jpg?itok=60JEr8x4

See at Amazon

At over $800, Huawei’s P20 Pro is one of the costliest phones available today. It is also one of the best you can pick up in 2018. The phone has a unique camera arrangement that sees three lenses — a primary 40MP camera joined by a 20MP monochrome module and an 8MP telephoto sensor.

As you’d imagine from a phone that offers 68MP across three sensors, the camera on the P20 Pro is fantastic. Of particular interest is the phone’s Night Mode, which takes images at several exposures over a four-second window and interlaces them together to create a single photo.

The P20 Pro also relies heavily on AI for the camera, with the feature automatically picking the ideal shooting mode for a particular scene. The AI feature is facilitated by a Neural Processing Unit in the Kirin 970 chipset, which is on par with the best that Qualcomm has to offer when it comes to performance.

Other specs include 6GB of RAM, 128GB of storage as standard, a 6.1-inch AMOLED FHD+ display, Wi-Fi ac, 24MP front shooter, and a 4000mAh battery that delivers two days’ worth of usage. On the software front, the P20 Pro comes with EMUI 8.1 based on Android 8.1 Oreo.

Bottom line: The Huawei P20 Pro is a stunning phone that offers one of the best camera experiences you’ll find on a phone today.

One more thing: The P20 Pro isn’t officially available in the U.S., so you’ll have to pick up the international version from Amazon.

A great alternative

Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S

xiaomi-mi-mix-2s-review-11.jpg?itok=y7Oh

See at Gearbest

The Mi Mix 2S is a particularly great phone as it comes with global LTE bands. It isn’t the first Xiaomi phone to do so, but it has a gorgeous design backed by a 5.99-inch screen with minimal bezels on three sides.

The phone is just as evocative from the back, thanks to the ceramic finish. Under the hood, you’ll find a Snapdragon 845, along with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage.

The dual 12MP + 12 MP camera configuration is the best you’ll find on any Xiaomi phone today, and it’s safe to say that it holds its own against other $500 devices.

The Oreo-based MIUI 9.5 feels much more polished from previous years, and you get one of the best gesture-based navigation available on Android today.

Bottom line: The Mi Mix 2S is still one of the best phones in the $500 segment.

One more thing: Xiaomi isn’t selling phones in the U.S. (yet), so you’ll have to pick this up from a reseller.

Best budget option

Nokia 6.1 2018

nokia-6-2018-review-6.jpg?itok=WFea17SQ

See at Amazon

HMD Global has done a magnificent job reviving the Nokia brand, and its commitment to industrial design paired with the promise of quick updates make its phones highly desirable. The Nokia 6.1 2018 is made out of series 6000 aluminum, and is one of the most durable phones available today.

It comes with a 5.5-inch Full HD panel, and is powered by the Snapdragon 630. You also get 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, 16MP rear camera, 8MP front shooter, 3000mAh battery with USB-C, and fast charging that lets you get a 50% charge in just 30 minutes.

The Nokia 6.1 2018 is a part of the Android One program, and will be the first in line to receive platform and security updates.

Bottom line: The Nokia 6.1 2018 is durable, fast, and receives updates on time.

One more thing: The phone is sold unlocked from Amazon, and is eligible for use on AT&T and T-Mobile.

Conclusion

OnePlus continues to undercut the market by several hundred dollars while not compromising on quality. The OnePlus 6’s glass design gives it a more upmarket feel, and like its predecessors, the phone is one of the fastest you’ll find in this category. The AMOLED display is fantastic, the camera has picked up much-needed improvements, and the headphone jack is thankfully intact. At this price point, you won’t find many phones that offer the same amount of value.

Best overall

OnePlus 6

oneplus-6-19.jpg?itok=DknsDp8W

See at OnePlus

The OnePlus 6 is packed to the gills with features, but it doesn’t have the same hefty price tag as the Galaxy S9+ or a Pixel 2. The goal is to offer the same hardware at several hundred dollars less than the likes of Samsung and Google, and OnePlus has gotten very good at doing so over the years.

The OnePlus 6 comes with an excellent 6.28-inch Super AMOLED display, and the phone is powered by the Snapdragon 845 chipset. You get 6GB of RAM and 64GB of storage as standard, and there’s the option to pick up a variant with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage as well.

The 16MP + 20MP rear camera has been overhauled, and does a much better job of taking photos in low-light conditions. Elsewhere, you’ll find a 16MP front camera, Wi-Fi ac, Bluetooth 5.0, aptX HD audio codecs, a 3.5mm jack, and a 3300mAh battery with Dash Charge.

The OnePlus 6 also features one of the most refined manufacturer skins available on a device today. OxygenOS doesn’t deviate much from Google’s vision of Android when it comes to the design language, but it does offer a host of customization options that let you make the device your own.

Bottom line: For the amount you’re paying, there isn’t another phone that offers quite as much value.

One more thing: The OnePlus 6 is a GSM-only device, so it won’t work on Verizon or Sprint.

Updated July 2018 with the OnePlus 6 as the best overall option, the Galaxy S9+ as the runner-up pick, the Mi Mix 2S as the best $500 alternative, and the Nokia 6.1 2018 as the best budget option.

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