Best Android Camera Android Central 2020
One of the biggest reasons to buy a high-end phone is for the cameras. Whether through computational processing or versatility through the use of as many lenses as possible, phones are taking good enough photos these days that most people don't even consider a dedicated camera. Luckily, there are plenty of options for people that want effortless point-and-shoot style photography, as well as those who want to go more in-depth or have different needs in a phone beyond the camera.
- Point and shoot: Google Pixel 4
- Multi-camera threat: Huawei P30 Pro
- Incredibly consistent: Samsung Galaxy Note 10
- Physical shutter button: Sony Xperia 1
- Solid camera, incredible value: OnePlus 7 Pro
- Amazing camera on a budget: Google Pixel 3a
Google's Pixel 4 doesn't have best-in-class camera hardware, but it still manages to take amazing photos in almost every situation thanks to its incredibly advanced processing. It takes excellent portrait and zoom shots enhanced by its top-notch data processing, and it can practically see in the dark with its industry-leading Night Sight feature. It's great for selfies, too, thanks to the same great processing and automatic lens correction.
Huawei has outfitted its flagship with three incredible cameras (plus a fourth time-of-flight sensor) that give it ultimate versatility. The primary 40MP camera takes breathtaking shots on its own, but with the additional lenses, you can quickly switch to an ultra-wide angle or zoom up to 5X closer. The P30 Pro also takes exceptional low-light photos just a small notch below the Pixel 4's capabilities. Though unfortunately, it isn't officially supported in the U.S.
Samsung's phones have always excelled in the photography department, and the Galaxy Note 10 is no exception. For the first time in a Note phone, you get a triple camera array consisting of standard, telephoto, and ultra-wide lenses just like the P30 Pro. Low light isn't quite as good as what you get with Google and Huawei, but you get remote shutter capabilities with the S Pen, along with plenty of great manual controls.
Like Samsung and Huawei, Sony packed its 2019 flagship with three cameras in the typical wide, telephoto, and ultra-wide combination. Still, one advantage of the Xperia 1 is its two-stage physical shutter button for quickly launching the camera and capturing photos. The Xperia 1's display is fine-tuned with the BT.2020 color gamut, so you can shoot and edit photos with confidence, and when it comes to video, Sony takes it a step further with in-depth manual controls.
The OnePlus 7 Pro takes solid photos for considerably less than flagships of the same size and specs. It isn't great in low light, but in every other situation the main camera takes consistently solid photos — and does so super quickly with a clean camera interface. The drawback compared to the competition is the telephoto and wide-angle lenses don't add much to the experience, and the selfie shooter is a step down.
The Pixel 3a makes cuts across the hardware and specs to meet a much lower-than-flagship price, but one area Google didn't skimp on is the camera. This is the exact same camera you get in the more expensive Pixel 3, and the front-facing camera produces the same sort of results as well. Any time you can get flagship-level photography on a much more affordable phone is a huge win.
If we're making some suggestions
The Google Pixel 4 is the best overall Android camera available, based on its amazing ability to capture beautiful photos in every situation without any tweaking, guessing with settings, or edits after capture. It has limitations in that it doesn't have the wide-angle camera that many others have, but you'll forget all about that when you shoot with this great primary camera. Plus, its selfie shooter is fantastic.
The Huawei P30 Pro is more powerful and versatile than some of the other options on this list, and can take better photos than the Pixel 4 — but it's a bit more complicated to use and isn't available officially in the U.S. If you live in the U.S., your other best bet is the Galaxy Note 10, with Samsung offering a compelling alternative to the P30. Particularly for group selfies, tripod shots, and those times when you just can't reach the shutter button, the S Pen's remote shutter capabilities come in handy.
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