With the pace of smartphone evolution moving so fast, there's always something waiting in the wings. No sooner have you spied the latest handset, then there's anticipation of something else, the next big thing.
We've rounded up the best smartphones for 2017, those we consider to be the best across all platforms, and we've regularly updated that list as the smartphone world has evolved.
You can find those in our Best smartphones 2017: The best phones available to buy today feature. If your budget is a little smaller, there is also our Best budget smartphones 2017: The best phones available to buy for under £200.
Here we're looking at those phones that haven't yet launched, the best upcoming phones for 2017 and 2018. We'll be updating this list on a regular basis, with those device rumours we think are credible and exciting, and devices just announced but yet to hit the shelves.
Best upcoming phones 2017/2018
Before we dive into the detail, here are some of the anticipated upcoming handsets for 2017 and 2018:
- Nokia 9
- HTC U11 Mini and Plus
- Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+
- Next Sony Xperia
- Samsung Galaxy Note 9
- Apple iPhone X
- Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL
- Motorola Moto X4
- Huawei Mate 10 and Mate 10 Pro
That's right, Nokia's next smartphone is rumoured to be called the Nokia 9 and it's said to be more premium than the recently-announced Nokia 8. That might see the display adopt curved edges with an 18:9 aspect, see the introduction of waterproofing and keep that metal body.
Nokia is also sure to keep the Zeiss partnership going and it will probably offer the bothie function of the Nokia 8 - although we suspect that this newer flagship will also be about premium performance.
HTC U11 Mini and HTC U11 Plus
There have been a couple of rumours to suggest a mini version of HTC's flagship - the U11 - might appear in the form of the HTC U11 Mini, currently codenamed HTC Ocean Life. It is expected to be a mid-range handset, with talk of a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 processor, 5.2-inch Full HD display, 16-megapixel cameras on the front and back and a 2600mAh battery.
However, in more recent times there's been an invite to an HTC event on 2 November in Taipei attached to rumours that HTC isn't only going Mini, but launching the U11 Plus too. This is a lot more exciting, with talk of an 18:9 display at 5.99-inches and flagship specs, as well as 8 and 12-megapixel cameras. Isn't that just what we need to prove that HTC isn't only going to be doing Google phones?
- HTC Ocean Life details leak, U11 Mini on the way? | HTC to hold 2 November event, likely for HTC U11 Plus phone
Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+
Smartphone giants never sleep and it wasn't long after the launch of the Galaxy S8 and S8+ (pictured) that we started to hear about Samsung's future plans. The Samsung Galaxy S9 is thought to be coming in two sizes once again and sticking with the Infinity Display. Having seen the debut of Samsung's dual camera on the Note 8, we're also expecting to see these zoom skills coming to the S9 too.
Rumours are a little light on the ground, but there's already chatter that it will be running Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 and we'd be expecting to see it launch around April 2018.
Next Sony Xperia
Sony churns phones more often you we have hot meals. Having announced the Xperia XZ1, XZ1 Compact and XA1, new then appeared suggesting that Sony wants to change its smartphone design. That's big news, because we've essentially had the same OmniBalance design in Sony Xperia phones since the Xperia Z1.
There's no word on what we might see or when we might see it, but it's safe to suggest that MWC 2018 would be a likely venue, although Sony has also used CES to launch devices in the past. Either way, expect to see something early in 2018.
Samsung Galaxy Note 9
The Note 8 has barely gone on sale, but Samsung is already talking about the Note 9. In an interview, the development team confirmed that they'd moved straight into planning for the next Note model, including working on enhancing notable features, like the S Pen.
So there's no firm details at the moment, but we'd expect Samsung to be unveiling the Galaxy Note 9 in late August 2018, with more enhanced S Pen features.
Huawai Mate 10/Mate 10 Pro
Huawei announced the Mate 10, Mate 10 Pro and the Porsche Design version of this phone on 16 October, joining the 18:9 party with a 6-inch OLED display and introducing Huawei FullView to banish bezels. What it doesn't do is ramp up the pixels, as this phone sticks to a 2160 x 1080 resolution.
It's a premium quality phone however, offering waterproofing, HDR support, a huge 4000mAh battery and lots of power, along with twin Leica cameras on the rear. It also launches with Android Oreo, the first phone outside of Google's own Pixel to launch in the latest software. You will, however, have to deal with EMUI over the top. The Mate 10 will be available from mid-November for €799.
Apple iPhone X
It's been announced, it's been previewed, but it's not available yet. It's also safe to say that the iPhone X is the most anticipated phone of 2017, as Apple moves on from the display layout it's used since 2007, and embraces a whole new range of technologies.
Firstly you have an AMOLED display filling the whole of the front of the phone, except for the distinctive "notch" at the top. With no home button or Touch ID, the notch accommodates sophisticated cameras that provide face recognition to give you easy unlocking. No home button also means a new gesture-based user interface. It's quite a change for the iPhone, it's also going to cost you £999.
Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL
Google unveiled the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL on 4 October, with pre-orders opening immediately with the new phones available from late October. Sitting on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 platform, there's plenty of power in these new Google phones, although Google says they are more about the power of machine learning and less about the hardware itself.
We're expecting great things from the camera on the rear and with both devices offering IP67 water protection and a wonderful metal body design, there's a lot to be excited about. The real question is whether you choose the regular 5-inch device, or opt for the new 18:9 6-inch version with a higher resolution display.
Motorola Moto X4
Motorola, under the stewardship of Lenovo, announced an update to the Moto X at the end of August 2017. The new device comes in the form of the Moto X4 and it brings with it an aluminium frame with a 3D contoured glass body, front-mounted fingerprint sensor and a dual rear-camera.
There's a 5.2-inch AMOLED Full HD display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 platform, Android Nougat and three personal assistants in the form of Alexa, Google Assistant and Moto Voice. Motorola has said the Moto X4 will be available in September 2017, though an exact date has yet to be announced. It will cost €399.