If something characterizes a server, it analyzes, with some criticism, much of the technological products that go through my hands. Personally, I think in a market where the high range costs about 1,000 euros and the average of about 300 should not be large, since If the negative aspects of a product are not highlighted, the company will never make an effort to improve it. But as a lover of technology, I can't help but be excited year after year after seeing the innovations and news presented by the manufacturers.
2018 may seem like a year off more of the same. We have seen a lot of sophistication regarding the terminals last year, but few products have managed to make us release wow. But in my opinion 2018 has been a very important year in key aspects, which I will detail a few lines belowAnd that is why some bases have been laid down by some of us for years. So we continue to collect The best thing that signatures have done in 2018, to close the year with a good taste in the mouth and face 2019 with positivity and hope that everything will continue to improve.
2018 has not been bad and I tell you why
There has been a strong commitment to design
The hack has been the leading role in 2018What a doubt though We have found design proposals commendable. Samsung Galaxy Note 9, Huawei Mate 20 Pro, Oppo Find X, iPhone XR, Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S, OnePlus 6T … Businesses have made every effort to reduce fine edges, bet on materials premium and offer practically experienced luxury experiences.
Only time knows if the sensors under the screen or holes in 2019 are waiting for a temporary solution, but there is no doubt We are facing one of the most relevant times in terms of design changeAnd seeing the positive side, we enjoy larger panels every day in smaller terminals.
Project Treble has helped, at least in the high end
This is the first year in which companies such as Xiaomi manage to update their high-end range – including high-end assortment such as POCO F1 – in precautionary times. OnePlus has promised 3-year updates – two major updates and three security patches – Huawei has updated its full range to Android Pie, Nokia shows that the center area can also be updated, Honor has done his homework better than ever …
In small but fixed steps, we move towards a less fragmented Android, where at least the last terminals released are updated before the end of the year. There is still work going on, but we have seen a small improvement.
Computational photography reaches its sweet place
Google did such work with HDR + of their Pixel it until Apple has decided to copy the system, create your own Smart HDR. This has enabled us in the market to have smartphones like Google Pixel 3 or iPhone XR, single-camera terminals that deliver better results than alternatives that triple them to the number of sensors.
The software begins to be the main protagonist in terms of photography, and it is It is of no use to increase the number of sensors if the treatment is quite improved. Night mode becomes popular, the portrait mode is already a standard, and we reach a point where the terminals hardly have weaknesses at a photographic level, regardless of the lighting conditions.
Companies have improved several key points
If we're talking about Samsung's high end, Note variants had been immersed in a well of mediocre autonomy. Samsung Galaxy Note 8 was the clear example of this, showing the clear fear of the company repeating the fatal error in iname, Galaxy Note7. With the ninth generation, note that Samsung has finished its complexes in autonomy, giving the Galaxy Note 9 4000mAh generous milliamperes that place it in a privileged position for battery life. Panel calibration has also been significantly improvedAnd while continuing with a saturation slightly over alternatives like the iPhone XS, we can't deny that the company has with the best AMOLED panels found on Android.
Samsung is still committed to a unique design that shows that trends should not be followed to succeed in the market. Personality and constancy, the two keys to the South Korean company.
It is also relevant how the Galaxy catalog has seen its camera improved. Perhaps this year they haven't reached the podium, seen the work done by Huawei, Google and Apple, but innovations like the variable aperture or quad camera on models like Samsung Galaxy A9 show that Samsung does everything to bring different features to smartphones Now they just fine-tune the final result, which is important.
In the first quarter of 2017, Huawei P10 was introduced, a terminal that was not up to the competitors neither in power, in the camera or in the battery. Who would have thought that just a year later, the P20 generation was putting the company on top of the Android podium reaches its maximum exponent with alternatives such as Huawei Mate 20 Pro. The Chinese company has taken a step that few expected and demonstrated their desire to become the world leader in 2019.
Huawei has managed to place its high-end terminals on the podium of high-end Android. After a somewhat decaffeinated 2017, the company aims to become the first global producer by 2020.
The pace of company updates has also improved, updating its full range for Android 9.0 Pie by the end of the year, delivering beta to several of its last generation terminals. Huawei's work on photography is developing well, with some pending improvements in the treatment and depth map of portrait mode, but with a versatility far above the rest of its rivals
EMUI is still a pending issue, however It is a fairly usable ROM, with relative respect for the messaging systemand with an advanced performance that we cannot complain about. It is still to see how its development will take place in future versions, but there is no doubt that they are in line with progress.
I already played. Sony has finally made the leap for the OLED technology with its Xperia XZ3, manages to create one of the best screens ever seen on a smartphone. At the design level, although there is always room for the subjective component, it is undeniable that the evolution of the previous generation is remarkable, leaving behind the exaggerated commandments and adapting more to the present requirements.
The Japanese company continues with the camera as a pending problem, however has managed to improve its results As for the last generation, introduce new features like 960 FPS recording in Full HD.
LG G7 ThinQ is probably the most underrated high end of the market, but it does not cease to be a recommended purchase. A terminal that competes without problems with the rest of the advanced alternatives, and whose price on Amazon is less than 419 euros. LG continues with the battery and camera as a pending problem, but offers complete alternatives that, by time and adjusted price are quite recommendable.
It is still to see how they are facing 2019, year in which we would like to see a greater presence of the V area in our country, alternatives that lie at the height of virtually any of their direct rivals, but quite invincible in our country.
Xiaomi has expanded its presence in Spain and its terminal catalog. Although the number of launches is still too high in our opinion, Most of the alternatives they propose are recommendable, to the extent that there are few alternatives to this company in the middle. Terminals such as Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite show that you do not have to spend more than 250 euros to have a satisfying experience, and so far is the average range of 350 or 400 euros.
Xiaomi still shows that you don't need too much money to have a good smartphone. The company increases its presence in our country and continues to expand its catalog with more than interesting opportunities.
On the other hand, Mi Mix is still synonymous with innovation, and Xiaomi Mi 8 has come to offer – today – a high-end experience almost premium for less than 400 euros. Xiaomi has it all to become the third global company in a few yearsand we are confident that time will tell us right.
Oppo has landed in Spain in 2018 with options such as Oppo Find X. This has been one of the terminals that surprised me most in 2018, for its spectacular design and face recognition – the best thing in Android, in my opinion. Regardless of the price, it is a reason to celebrate the arrival of the Asian company in our country, expand the opportunities for consumers and demonstrate that different terminals can be made at this time.
A company that does not yet have a foothold in the market but who presents interesting terminals with a design that is completely different from the other competitors, and with a clear intention to continue to invest in hearts by Qualcomm.
OnePlus has managed to consolidate its position in Europe and offer two of the most complete alternatives in the high range. OnePlus 6 and its 6T variant are two of the most recommended high-end mobile phones todayThat offers a performance that is slightly better than that of most of its rivals at a lower price.
The camera and sound are still his great unfinished business, however The performance, the ROM, and the updates it receives give us the uniqueness of its terminals. OnePlus will continue to grow in 2019, and the only thing we ask is the price, as maintaining the quality rate is part of its essence, and to some extent slow down annual increases.
Motorola has gone quiet and tiptoe in this 2018. We have not seen a top-end alternative in the company, something we would have loved. But they have continued with their middle class work, betting on clean software and the right additions and necessary not to hinder the user experience.
In 2018 we asked Motorola for a faster update and a bit more ambitious betting with hardware. The company has done its homework this year, but we are convinced that they can do even better.
Nokia has been one of the revelation companies in 2018. Your efforts on the Android One in all its terminal catalogs are worth welcomingand has one of the best refresh rates in the middle and low range. Betting on a Nokia is betting on guaranteed updates for two years and receiving them in precautions. A feature that makes them shine over the rest of the rivalsbut it does not replace missing ones like the camera.
In 2019, the famous 5-camera Nokia awaits us. A bet that we hope will revolutionize the Android landscape – At least on a par with functionality, not results – and demonstrate that the company has room for innovation.
In summary 2018 has been a merger of notch, updates to updates, crazy suggestions in design and extension of signatures like Xiaomi, Oppo or OnePlus. Year after year, skepticism can cause us to believe that improvements have been minimal, that the ceiling is reached in the vast array, and that uncertainty about the future of smartphones is growing. From another point of view, The technology we have every time is better. The improvements, but not essential to previous generations, do nothing but show that we are getting closer and closer to the achievement the perfect machine.
We are facing 2019 with positivity. Samsung is waiting for us with a big design change in S10, Xiaomi intends to expand further by our country, Sony will continue to improve design, OnePlus will focus on the power and continue to improve its multimedia sections, Nokia could be the first companies in offer Android 10 update for intermediate terminals, Honor opens stores for our country …
There are still things to come, terminals to try and improvements to enjoy.
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