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, that there's anticipation for the next big thing.
Here we look at those phones that haven't yet launched, the upcoming phones for 2019. We'll be updating this list on a regular basis, with those device rumours we think are credible and exciting.
As for already-launched handsets, we've rounded up the best smartphones for 2019 elsewhere - those we consider to be the best across all platforms. If your budget is a little smaller, there is also our budget smartphones for under £200 feature - and there's a mid-range roundup up to £400 as well.
The upcoming generation of phones
Before we dive into the detail, here are some of the anticipated handsets for 2019:
- Google Pixel 4
- Sony Xperia 2 and Xperia 20
- Huawei Mate 30
- Motorola Razr Folding phone
- Apple iPhone XI
- Apple iPhone XR the second
- Samsung Galaxy Note 10
- Huawei Mate X
- Samsung Galaxy Fold
Google Pixel 4
Stop the press! No sooner had concepts started leaking about the Pixel 4, than Google came forward and shared an image - confirming a radical rearrangement of the rear cameras. The Pixel is considered to be one of the best camera phones out there - thanks in many parts to AI - but it's never had a multi-lens system before. There's no shortage for what it might be able to do. Elsewhere little is known - but it will run Android Q, that's for sure - and we're expecting an October launch.
Sony Xperia 2
Sony Mobile has pushed out phones every 6 months recently and the emergence of the Xperia 2 and 20 names suggests this might happen again. Little has been said, but we've started to see some mention of a phone with a six-camera arrangement on the back. Impossible? Not so - Sony announced that it was working with Light earlier in the year, the company that put five cameras on the back of a Nokia - so it might be the Xperia 2 that gets it.
Huawei Mate 30
The Huawei Mate 30 would be expected around September or October, but recent troubles with the US might see Huawei's plans changed. It might not just be another phone launch, however, it could see the launch of Huawei's own mobile OS going under the name of Hongmeng. Certainly, the launch window for the Mate 30 falls outside the end of Huawei's current license extension with Google, so this could be a hugely interesting device.
Motorola Moto RAZR
Yes, the Moto RAZR name might be coming back to life with a new Moto RAZR. Rather than just being a retro phone, there's rumours that this will be a folding phone, probably with two displays. That will preserve some of the RAZR clamshell heritage, while giving a modern twist on the genre. Little has been said, but a Lenovo exec has confirmed that Motorola doesn't want to get left behind in launching its own folding handset and even showed a fan video in a presentation. There's no smoke without fire, right?
Apple iPhone XI
At this point in time it's hard to know what Apple will call its next iPhone. We're expecting two sizes and we're not expecting a huge shift in design, but so far there are very few rumours. It was originally thought it wouldn't be a 5G handset, but since Apple has ceased its spat with Qualcomm, that could quickly change. There could also be a triple camera system on the rear, which has drawn some early concept renders. Expect this update to arrive in September 2019, in two (larger) sizes.
Apple iPhone XR the second
There's no telling what Apple might call its next Apple iPhone XR - its cheaper model - but with the news that a couple of new colours are being considered, it puts this phone back on the radar. We're not expecting a huge change, but it might see a move to a dual camera experience to keep it competitive with rivals. We're not expecting to see it until September 2019.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10
Samsung has confirmed that its next launch will be on 7 August and we're expecting to see the Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10 Pro launched. That's right, two devices. There's expected to be a central punch-hole camera and improvements to the S-Pen, while others say that the 3.5mm headphone socket will be removed. There's also talk of faster charging speeds.
Huawei Mate X
Setting the standard for folding phones, the Huawei Mate X took a lot of people by surprise, throwing the Galaxy Fold into the shade when it was unveiled at MWC 2019. However, with Huawei's current troubles, there's a question mark over what happens to this great device. Will it get the planned launch? EE - who had been expected to offer it - said that Huawei devices were "on pause". Will this be the greatest phone that never launched?
Samsung Galaxy Fold
The Samsung Galaxy Fold is no longer a pipedream or a concept, it's a real device that you can buy - if you have a spare $1980. While it's being talked about as a folding phone, you can easily say it's a folding tablet with a screen on the outside. There's a 4.6-inch display on the outside, folding open to the 7.3-inch display inside. There's a lot of software magic, letting you do things like open three apps for multi-tasking, as well as continuity from outside to inside. It will be available in the second quarter of 2019 - but actual availability details are still a little obscure following faults with early models.