Although smartphones are unveiled and launched throughout the year, there's one specific trade show that features the highest concentration of new devices displayed to the public for the very first time; Mobile World Congress.

The event in Barcelona has plenty of phones on the show floor and most of the major manufacturers have press conferences either during or prior to the doors opening. Apple is always purposely absent, traditionally preferring its own special event later in March, but the likes of HTC, Samsung, Microsoft and LG are happy to lift the lid on brand new handsets and other devices.

That's why we've decided to bundle a fair few of the announced smartphones here - the ones we feel have so far stood out the most for one or more reasons. And we'll be updating the list as we see more devices during our travels around the show floor.

These are, therefore, the best smartphones of MWC 2015.

HTC has stuck with the same design cues as previous iterations with its HTC One M9 smartphone, but has really raised the bar in other areas.


The 5-inch 1080p phone has a new, classy shell and uses Qualcomm's Snapdragon 810 processor so is super speedy in operation. And it comes with HTC's new Sense 7 user interface on top of Android 5.0 Lollipop, plus a 20-megapixel f/2.2 camera on the rear.

READ: HTC One M9: The devil is in the details (hands-on)

After months of speculation, Samsung finally revealed its two flagship Android smartphones and so far everybody seems to be impressed.


The first of the two is the standard, more conventional Samsung Galaxy S6, with its 5.1-inch Quad HD (2560 x 1440) Super AMOLED display and new style body with toughened Gorilla Glass 4 front and back. The company has opted for its own 64-bit octa-core processor inside and 3GB of RAM, so things should move very smoothly indeed.

There's wireless charging and a fingerprint sensor for security too.

READ: Samsung Galaxy S6 hands-on: Giving the people what they want

In just about every way bar the display and external design, the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge is identical to the standard SGS6. However, that screen could well be the deal breaker for some.

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It's 5.1-inches and Quad HD (2560 x 1440) like the display on the other Galaxy S6, but it curves around the edges, giving the impression that there is no bezel - at least on each of the sides. You can also set colours for alerts so that when the handset is seen from the side, you can see when you receive a call or message, for example.

READ: Samsung Galaxy S6 edge hands-on: A bezel-free revolution begins

Microsoft announced two mid-range Lumia Windows Phone handsets during its MWC press conference and the 640 XL is by far the more interesting of them both.


It has a 5.7-inch HD display, which is just 259ppi, but there is a 1.2GHz quad-core processor inside and the rear sports a 13-megapixel camera with a Carl Zeiss lens. It will also be able to be upgraded to Windows 10 when Microsoft releases the operating system later this year.

And the best bit is that the 640 XL only costs 219 euros for the 4G model. That's a little under £160.

READ: Microsoft Lumia 640 XL hands-on: Big brute packs in Zeiss lens

Sony perhaps surprised everyone by not announcing a follow up to the Xperia Z3 during Mobile World Congress, but in the Xperia M4 Aqua it has at least added some flagship-style specifications in a device that costs around half the normal price tag.

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It has a 5-inch HD display and 13-megapixel f/2.0 camera on the rear, plus a 5-megapixel selfie cam on the front. And it must be said that the 64-bit octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 processor makes it a very capable device when it comes to day to day tasks and software management.

Then of course there is feature that justifies the "Aqua" name; it's waterproof, so you can take it out in the rain.

READ: Sony Xperia M4 Aqua hands-on: Flagship features for mid-range price

Like Sony and Microsoft, LG preferred to focus on entry-level and mid-range handsets at this year's Mobile World Congress and of those the LG Magna stands out as having potential for the price point.


That's because the company has adopted a curved display on a cheaper model than its current bendy king, the LG G Flex 2. In this case it's a curved in-cell 5-inch HD LCD display rather than OLED, but shows that LG is persisting with the idea.

READ: LG Magna hands-on: All about that curve, 'bout that curve, no P-OLED

Acer's previous Liquid Jade smartphone only reached the UK at the end of last year but the manufacturer is already geared to replace that model with a brighter, faster follow-up.

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The Acer Liquid Jade Z has a 5-inch HD display so sits the device in the mid-range bracket, but a 64-bit quad-core 1.5GHz processor keeps things running smoothly enough. And the phone is a 4G device and has a 13-megapixel camera to boot. It will also cost no more than 200 euros (around £144).

READ: Acer improves the Liquid Jade with brighter, faster Liquid Jade Z

Although Motorola owner Lenovo is not best known for innovative smartphones under its own name, the A7000 definitely bucks the trend by being the first phone to have Dolby Atmos processing on board.


The surround sound technology has been wowing the home cinema industry with its expanded soundstage abilities, and it's assault on mobiles starts here. In addition, the A7000 has a 5.5-inch HD display, so is one of the physically bigger Android handsets to make their bow at this year's MWC.

READ: Lenovo embraces Dolby Atmos in mobile devices and more: Vibe Shot, A7000 smartphone, pocket projector

The ZTE Grand S3 has a 5.5-inch Full HD screen and a 2.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor with 3GB of RAM to ensure things run smoothly, but neither are as interesting as the phone's main selling point. Its security is managed through retina scanning technology.

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Using EyeVerify, you can unlock the phone using just your peepers. Swipe down with a finger and look into the camera so that you are framed in the window that appears and bob's your uncle, the operating system sparks into life.

READ: Want to unlock your smartphone with your eyes? The ZTE Grand S3's retina scanning tech can do just that (hands-on)

Although BlackBerry wasn't expected to unveil any new devices during Mobile World Congress, not only did it show off a prototype slider phone that will make a full appearance later this year, it introduced the Leap; a 4G, keyboard-free smartphone aimed at young professionals.


It has a 5-inch HD display (1280 x 720) and is reasonably inexpensive. It runs on a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Plus chipset and 2GB of RAM. And it has an 8-megapixel camera on the rear.

READ: BlackBerry Leap: Affordable 5-incher lacks Z30 charm (hands-on)

British brand Kazam, which is providing alternative handsets to those of the big boys, has launched the Tornado 552L, which at just 5.5mm thick is a superslim device that also packs a punch.

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It has a Full HD 5.2-inch screen and is powered by a 1.7GHz octa-core processor. There is a 13-megapixel camera on the rear, an 8-megapixel snapper on the front, and it has DTS audio support on board. So if you're looking for something a bit different to the norm, this could be it.

READ: Kazam Tornado 552L: Slender 5.2-inch smartphone has got the looks (hands-on)

The Honor 6+ is a follow-up device from the Chinese manufacturer that is heading to the UK in the second quarter, so any time in the next three months.

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It has a 5.5-inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) display and, like the Kazam Tornado 552L, a 13-megapixel camera on the rear, 8-megapixel one on the front. It also has an octa-core processor and backs that up with 3GB of RAM. There's 32GB of internal storage too, with a microSD card slot for expansion.

READ: Honor 6 Plus: The two-lens snapping smartphone is coming to Europe (hands-on)