The most anticipated smartphones of 2019

UPDATED: MWC headliners like the Sony Xperia 1 and Huawei Mate X join the list

Sure, 2018 was an excellent year for smartphones, but we think 2019 could be even better. Why? Because we've already seen loads and loads of leaks.

They show a next generation of handsets that are sleeker and sexier than before, smoothing out the rough edges of past smartphones while adding more capabilities than ever. And some of them break fascinating new ground, as well, instead of just improving on what's come before.

Want an early look at the next super-phone that'll line your pocket sometime in 2019? Here's what we know so far about the year's biggest and brightest smartphones.

SAMSUNG: GALAXY S10

s expected, Samsung revealed its Galaxy S10 – four of them, actually. The Galaxy S10Galaxy S10+, and Galaxy S10E will all release on 8 March, while the larger Galaxy S10 5G will ship a bit later, sometime in the first half of the year.

All of the models adopt a new punch-hole display, which scraps much of the top and bottom bezel in favour of a small hole cut out for the front-facing camera(s). It's just one camera on the Galaxy S10 and S10E, with a larger hole for two front cameras on the Galaxy S10+ and S10 5G.

The Galaxy S10 and S10+ are similarly equipped, opting for curved 6.1in and 6.4in Quad HD+ displays, respectively, along with a triple-camera setup on the back and ultrasonic fingerprint sensor within the screen. Meanwhile, the smaller Galaxy S10E opts for a 5.8in flat screen at Full HD+ (1080p), has just the two back cameras, and features a more traditional capacitive fingerprint sensor on the side home button.

The standard Galaxy S10 sells for 66,900, the S10+ bumps up to 73,900, and the S10E undercuts the rival Apple iPhone XR at 55,900. Meanwhile, the Galaxy S10 5G bulks up to a 6.7in display and adds a fourth 3D camera on the back, along with the obvious 5G support. No word on pricing for that one yet, however.

SAMSUNG: GALAXY X FOLDABLE PHONE

Samsung is getting adventurous again, as seen with the long-awaited debut of the Galaxy Fold smartphone. Looking like two flagship phones stacked atop each other, the Galaxy Fold has a compact 4.6in display on the outside – but fold the phone open and you'll find a 7.3in tablet-like Infinity Flex panel inside.

You have to see it to believe it – especially the way that apps seamlessly transfer from one screen to the next depending on whether you want to one-hand the phone or get a better view inside. It's also loaded with top-end tech, including a 7nm processor, 12GB RAM, 512GB of onboard memory, and 4,380mAh between its two battery packs.

The price is as wild as the concept however: it'll start at US$1,980 (about 1,38,790), and that's surely for the LTE model. We can't even imagine what they'll be asking for the 5G edition. The Galaxy Fold ships on 26 April, and we're definitely looking forward to playing around with it.

HUAWEI: P30 + P30 PRO

The Huawei P20 Pro was our favourite phone for the better part of 2018, only to be replaced by the company's own brilliant Mate 20 Pro. Given that, we can't help but be thrilled to find out what's in store for the P30 Pro.

The leaks are building. They suggest four back cameras – up from three – in an effort to continue Huawei's camera dominance, with official teases suggesting some serious zooming capabilities. Huawei's European head previously suggested 10x zoom could be possible, and the official P30 teases hint at such an extreme feature.

What you see above are purportedly official renders leaked by WinFuture, a site with a strong track record for such things. It indeed shows four back cameras - the fourth is just below the flash - as well as a tiny teardrop notch on the front.

Huawei's powerful Kirin 980 chip should be onboard, and we hope to see a Quad HD OLED panel like in the Mate 20 Pro, although the latest leaks point to another 1080p panel. Rumours and leaks point to a very similar-looking standard Huawei P30, albeit with three cameras on the back and maybe a bit more bezel arround the screen.

Huawei will officially debut the P30 line in Paris on 26 March.

APPLE: NEXT IPHONES

As of now, there aren't a lot of strong rumours and leaks out there about the 2019 iPhones, although we expect to see successors to the iPhone XS (shown), iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR around the same annual September target that Apple prefers.

Purported leaked renders show three awkwardly-arranged back camera sensors in a huge-looking module, and it may use Sony's new 3D camera sensors that can measure distance. Another supposedly leaked render from the same leaker shows a center-mounted horizontal camera array, instead; he says that Apple may be deciding between them. The above concept render from Ben Geskin shows the first design on the iPhone XS Max successor, with a smaller notch on the front.

Other rumours are all over the place as of now. All three phones might use OLED displays… or they may not (the next iPhone XR will probably stick with LCD). The pricier models could follow the iPhone XR's lead and drop 3D Touch support… or maybe not. Apple Pencil support? That's been rumoured, too.

Bloomberg report suggests that the new 2019 iPhones will not come with 5G network support – so if that's something you want ASAP, you may not get it from the next iPhone. At this point, however, it's too early to put much stock into any of these rumours and reports. We're enticed by the rumour that the iPhone XS follow-up will have a huge 4,000mAh battery, but a 50% boost like that is unlikely given Apple's history in that department.

We'll get juicier and surely firmer details as the year goes on, though. After all, the Apple rumour mill never disappoints.

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