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The best Android phones to buy in 2024: Expert tested and reviewed


Samsung’s latest Galaxy S24 line is the first to go all-in on AI, and the S24 Ultra, the most premium of the three, is the best Android phone today. The new Galaxy AI model embedded in the device brings a host of generative capabilities, including real-time phone call translations, the ability to circle an object on screen to perform an image-based Google search, AI-assisted photo editing and transcriptions, and even a Chat Assist feature for figuring out how to phrase a message in different tones.

Like its predecessor, the S23 Ultra, the S24 Ultra is built with a large 6.8-inch AMOLED display and a reliable 5,000mAh battery. Though the price has gone up to $1,299 ($100 more than the S23 Ultra), the phone’s upgrades make it well worth it: The S24 Ultra is made of a lightweight yet durable titanium frame, compared to last year’s aluminum, and features Corning’s new Gorilla Armor. 

Review: Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra

The difference in display protection means the S24 Ultra is more glare-free than ever, which ZDNET reviewer Jason Hiner suggested: “makes its screen more enjoyable to use than the iPhone 15 Pro Max and other flagship phones.” Reddit users seem to agree with Hiner, including one who said he believes “the anti-reflective glass really makes a difference.”

Under the hood, the S24 Ultra includes an upgraded Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset for improved graphics and AI features, 12GB RAM (an increase from last year’s 8GB), and 2,600 nits of brightness — a big improvement over last year’s 1,750. As for the new camera system, the big upgrade comes in the form of a 50MP telephoto lens with 5x optical zoom. The results, as Hiner discovered, were sharper and less noisy images, and an overall camera system that can pull in more light than ever before.

Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra specs: Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 | Display size: 6.8 inches | Storage options: Up to 1TB | Rear cameras: 200MP main, 12MP ultrawide, 50MP telephoto (5x), 10MP telephoto (3x) | Front camera: 12MP | Battery: 5,000mAh


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