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This smartphone takes the best photos in 2020

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Credit: David Imel / Android Authority

Smartphone photography was a pretty competitive space in 2020, as the most popular brands all delivered great camera experiences. We also saw some companies resist the urge to go with super high resolution sensors yet still deliver polished results, once again demonstrating that software smarts are incredibly important.

Which phone delivered the best photos this year though? Well, we put five devices to the test, eventually choosing the Mate 40 Pro has the best overall due to its consistency. But which phone would readers choose? We asked this question at the end of our shootout, and these are the results.

Which of these phones takes the best photos?

Results

A grand total of 1,854 votes were tallied as of writing, and it was actually a really close race. In fact, three percent separated the top three smartphones. But the Google Pixel 5 earned the most votes, with 25.8% of respondents feeling that it took the best photos out of all the competing smartphones.

Meanwhile, we chose the Mate 40 Pro as the overall winner but it landed at a close second in this poll. Apple’s iPhone 12 Pro was just 0.1% behind the Huawei device, rounding out the podium.

Samsung’s Galaxy S20 Plus was in fourth, less than two percent behind the iPhone. The last-placed Sony Xperia 1 II was way behind the pack though, garnering just 6.5% of reader votes. Our own Rob Triggs noted that Sony’s device was simply too inconsistent, while also bemoaning exposure issues and low-light quality. Still, Rob reckoned that patient enthusiasts might get more out of the Xperia 1 II’s pro camera software, adding that the phone delivers more realistic shots.

Your comments

  • Tone_Blanco925: I think the LG V60 can hang but never gets the love.
  • The One: iPhone takes great photos, but they just look too flat for my taste. I prefer the more contrasted look of the Pixels. Huawei is great too, but is non existent in the US.
  • slandg: 26% of vote to the pixel just shows the amount of google fanboys here lmao.
  • Kevin Hoang: Note 20 can replace that s20 in the list . I’m using pixel 4 basically same camera with pixel 5. Excellent photo but i go for the Huawei.mate 40 pro it’s just better for me.
  • Ellio74: I’ve already pick the one for me, the Xperia 1 II. The natural looking pics makes it the best in my opinion.
    Samsung is always over the top with colors, Huawei has some strange colors (maybe due to the RYYB sensor) and a not so wide ultra wide, the iPhone overdoes HDR with strange halos here and there while not being really better at something and Google is just behind this year (they’ve improved their HDR though).
    I just wished the 1II was a tad shaper in low light.
  • HelloThere: Whoever made this gets kudos from me. These selection of phones is perfect. Not what companies call the “best of the best”, like the S20U, Note20U, and12 Pro Max, but instead the phones that consumers would more likely get. As an S20+ user I’m just happy my phone gets to be in the spotlight for once, and doing really well too. I also like the inclusion of the Xperia, it doesn’t really get that much attention. Also I wouldn’t put the Mate 40 Pro in this, since I’m American and can’t really consider it, but damn I wish it was avalible here. Great job.
  • hoggleboggle: Amazing how stubborn fanbois are in the face of all contrary evidence they still pick the pixel as top camera. It has been outclassed by every other phone in the lineup by a country mile, even the Sony beats it on points. For me it is a toss-up between the Samsung and Huawei, whilst apple comes third, unless you do a lot of portraits, in which case apple takes the top spot.

That’s it for this poll, thanks so much for voting and for leaving comments. What do you make of these results and our shootout? Sound off in the comments below!

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