MOBILES OF 2021 AT BEST

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so i’ve spent the last five and a half
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months collecting and testing
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all the top globally available
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smartphones i’ve rated every single ones
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performance camera battery and display
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based on what price it’s selling for and
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giving them an overall value rating
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so with that in mind these are the top
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22 smartphones in the world right now
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from good to better to the best some of
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these will surprise you
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okay so at the back end is nokia
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specifically the x20
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which is their affordable flagship 2021
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phone and
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nokia’s doing a lot of great stuff right
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now their phones are all inexpensive
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they’re bloatware free nokia gives
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extended warranties and loads of
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software support their entire angle is
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sustainability
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smartphones that you buy and you keep it
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really is an admirable message
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but i think they focused a little too
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much on this at the cost of
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how capable their phones actually are
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like for this x20
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their marketing doesn’t even mention a
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single specification
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that’s like applying to university but
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refusing to show them your grades
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and fundamentally it’s because this
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phone is absolutely crushed
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by even the cheaper phones from
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companies like xiaomi so
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b minus and then we’ve got samsung they
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recently came out with the a52
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which is like their mid-range flagship
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of the year and there’s nothing
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inherently wrong with it
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it’s a fun design it’s pleasant to use
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but it costs too much for what it is
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it’s pretty clear that all samsung’s
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done is taken one of their top end
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phones
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and made everything a bit worse but for
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500
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in today’s market you can nearly buy
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yourself an actual flagship
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so you don’t need to make this kind of
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compromise do you remember the oppo find
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x3 pro
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the company’s 2021 flagship that looks a
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little too close to the iphone for it to
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be a coincidence
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well there’s plenty to like about it
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it’s supremely comfortable for starters
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thanks to being made of one continuous
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sheet of glass and that microscope
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camera on the back is
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it’s unlike anything i’ve ever seen on a
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phone before but
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the main issue and this seems to happen
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every year is that as soon as oppo
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launches a flagship phone
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it is pretty much destroyed and valued
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by oneplus flagship that launches a
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month later
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both companies use very similar
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components and materials and they are
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good components and materials but
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the fact that this phone is selling at
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the equivalent of fifteen hundred
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dollars
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makes it much less good for the money
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and
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that’s actually a pretty great segue on
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to our next phone
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so we’re getting pretty used to the idea
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of paying over a thousand dollars for a
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top-end flagship right
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but zte has something to say about that
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yeah zte they are still making phones
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but the ax130 ultra genuinely is worth
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talking about
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because it has the highest end
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snapdragon 888 chipset a 144 hertz
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refresh rate amoled display
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big battery fast charging stereo
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speakers really everything
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and it even looks an awful lot like
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samsung’s note 20 ultra which is
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not a taller criticism and most
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significantly
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i’m told this is going to cost 800
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excuse me i was having a whale of a time
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with it
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until i tested the cameras and they
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really revealed just how much progress
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the competition has made
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everything from the interface to the
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image processing feels really behind
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i’ll reserve final judgement until
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updates drop because
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this camera hardware should be better
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than this but in its current state
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it’s a b and thanks to surfsharkvpn for
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sponsoring this video
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okay the iphone 12 mini what is it
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has not been a commercial hit when apple
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first came out and announced that they
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built a fully flagship 5g iphone that
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literally fits into your palm
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i think a lot of us thought whoa that’s
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gonna fly off the shelves
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but it didn’t according to research
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firms this phone only made up about five
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to seven percent of total iphone 12
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sales
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but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad phone i
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think the reason it didn’t sell well is
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because a the price is so close to the
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much bigger iphone 12
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combined with b the apple has kind of
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built an association between their
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smaller phones
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being their cheaper phones which may
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have created the perception that the 12
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mini was an
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inferior product but really it is the
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same speedy experience with a great
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camera as the 12
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that i can recommend to any iphone fan
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who doesn’t need a power user’s level of
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battery life
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okay now we’re getting on to the really
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good phones the rog phone 5
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is a beast it’s the highest performing
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smartphone i’ve used today
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it’s six thousand milliamp hour battery
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is ludicrous actually earning it the
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best battery phones so far in 2021
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and its speakers are so punchy that you
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will want to stop whatever it is you’re
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doing
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and just lose yourself in them its only
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problem comes from the fact that
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it’s a pretty specialized device like it
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takes a certain kind of user to want to
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carry a phone
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of such monumental proportions tolerate
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some slightly outdated looking bezels
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and use a camera system that feels
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noticeably lacking but if you are that
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user then
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bob’s your uncle but what kind of
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surprised me almost as much as phone
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number one is going to surprise you
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is that even though asus has been
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dominating the gaming space for a while
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now
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i don’t think they’re the best value
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anymore enter the lenovo legion phone
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dual 2. it almost exactly matches the
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rog in specs but you get 50
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more ram and 100 more storage by default
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it has fans built inside of it instead
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of needing this external attachment
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and somehow it’s cheaper the hardware on
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this phone is so good for the money that
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they can’t be making a lot of profit but
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it is a little let down on the software
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front
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like the camera image processing isn’t
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getting the best out of the camera
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hardware you have here
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still though this is an a-grade phone
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and is also the winner of
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best gaming phone on the market right
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now okay
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you might remember from my best phones
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of 2020 video that
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one of the winners was a bit of a
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surprise the zenfone 7 pro
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it was just this no-nonsense combination
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of a great price huge battery
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seamless uninterrupted screen and a
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capable camera that can also double as
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basically the greatest selfie machine of
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all time
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well this is basically the successor to
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that
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so as you can probably imagine it’s a
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very good phone but it’s no longer one
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of the best
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simply because all they’ve done is taken
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last year’s zenfone 7 and given it a
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slight spec bump
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and that’s just not enough against
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companies who are really pushing
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still though i’m willing to bet that if
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you ever get to try this selfie camera
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it is so good that you have to smile
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alrighty you might remember my video on
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this guy the vivo x60 pro plus
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to be honest i’ve used a decent amount
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of vivo devices over the years
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and i’ve always liked them but i’ve
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never really loved them
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they kind of developed a reputation for
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a garish software overlay and crazy
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levels of skin beautification in the
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cameras
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but the viva x60 pro plus is the first
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viva phone i’ve used
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that understands sophistication did i
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just change my entire outfit to film one
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sentence
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maybe aesthetically it treads the line
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well between looking fashionable
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and looking like it means business and
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everything from the gaming performance
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to the camera performance
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is very close to the best you can buy
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and it helps that the camera is just
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super fun to use
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too it’s slightly let down by a mono
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speaker and
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middle of the line battery but that
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doesn’t stop me loving it
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number 13. this could be an unlucky one
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again
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[Music]
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fashion fruit it’s the iphone 12 pro
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this is a great phone but the reason
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that it’s not higher up on the list is
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that
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the way i see it it’s just an optional
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extra to the 12.
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it offers a few fairly minor features
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like a lidar scanner for better
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augmented reality
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and a two times telephoto lens i
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appreciate these but for the majority of
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consumers the only notable difference
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will be the extra storage it comes with
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the fact that it’s heavier and the fact
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that it has a matte finish
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it’s basically the iphone to get if you
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want to spend a bit more than the base
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but you don’t want to get the max sized
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one and that leads me
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onto the base iphone 12 because this
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phone hugely benefits by how similar it
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is to the 12 pro
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you know just before they launched i was
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using both these phones at the same time
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and i couldn’t even tell you how many
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moments i had where i’d pick one off the
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table
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use it for a good five minutes only to
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realize
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i picked the wrong one up this phone is
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just as powerful the screen is almost
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identical
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you still get all the same ios features
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it’s just
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200 cheaper the only reason this isn’t
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higher up on the list is that
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it only comes with a 60 hertz display
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versus 120 or
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the 144 we’ve started seeing now and it
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only starts with 64 gigs of storage
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which is going to end up being more like
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50 by the time you factored in the size
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of the operating system so still an a
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grade
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and just above that i would put samsung
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space flagships
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[Music]
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there we go the s21 and s21 plus are not
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the most exciting devices
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they don’t do anything particularly new
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or groundbreaking in fact in a lot of
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ways
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they’re a complete side grade from last
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year’s s20 phones
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but they bring in a lot of smaller
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quality of life improvements
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they’ve had a redesign that takes them
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from some of the worst looking flagships
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to some of the best in my books
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and in a bit of a surprise turn of
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events
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they’re cheaper than last year’s okay
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we’re in the top 10.
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and if you are enjoying this video then
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a sub to the channel would be
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mighty i realized that for the last
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month over 50
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of you watching have been subscribed so
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thank you
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this is the xiaomi me 11. it’s great
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it’s cheaper than the base s21
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in just about every region but the us
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and spec wise it’s more of a match for
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the galaxy s21 plus which is two hundred
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dollars more than that
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[Music]
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the best way to think about the mi 11 is
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there’s a high-end flagship all around
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with the best in-class display the only
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potential hurdle is xiaomi’s miui
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software skin which to be honest i like
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but i’ve showed it to enough people who
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don’t to know that
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not everyone does and just above the
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me11 is
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not today milo then we’ve got the
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oneplus 9
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now this phone had a bit of a rough
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launch i think what happened is that
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oneplus basically spent an entire month
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before it came out
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hyping up their collaboration with
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hasselblad giving us never-ending
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teasers about how it was going to
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revolutionize photography
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but then when the phones actually
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arrived hasselblad might as well not
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have been involved
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you couldn’t tell and so justifiably
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most reviewers came down
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pretty hard on this but a few weeks
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later i got a call from oneplus
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they said we watched your camera
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comparison we took your feedback on
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board
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and we’ve improved them don’t get me
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wrong this didn’t immediately make it a
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dream camera system
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but for its price now it is a good
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camera system and even without optical
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image stabilization
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it takes crisp smooth video plus of
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course being a oneplus phone
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you get fast bloat free software with
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guaranteed updates it’s a little more
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focused on exactly what the user needs
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with no unnecessary extras and because
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of this they’ve managed to keep to their
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tradition of staying
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more affordable than their competitors
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definitely a grade phone
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then we’ve got the oneplus 9 pro which
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is the 9’s more
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expensive counterpart and the reason
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it’s above it is that if you have the
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budget
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it’s worth it it’s basically the oneplus
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9 but with all those little bits that
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had to be trimmed
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put back into it it’s not quite an
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ultraphone but it is a fully fleshed out
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flagship
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and in my eyes the best flagship phone
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under one thousand dollars
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okay we can’t make a list of the best
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phones
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without including the pixel 4a it was
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google’s mid-range phone from 2020
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and i usually try and refrain from
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recommending last year’s options when a
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new one may well be around the corner
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but given that this is available now for
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299 dollars compared to
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3.49 it was launched at given that it’s
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only gotten better since it launched and
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the
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because it’s a google made phone it’ll
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most likely still get updates all the
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way till android 14.
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i wouldn’t hesitate in still
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recommending it the pixel 4a
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should not be as good as it is no part
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of this phone’s spec sheet
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is impressive in 2021 but it’s just
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carried by phenomenal software
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not to mention it’s a really enjoyable
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size the bezels are nice and even
11:47
and it’s powerful enough that i don’t
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think you’ll be worrying about speed
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but as much as i do like the pixel i’d
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be lying if i said that that was the
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best compact phone you can get
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because that award goes to the zenfone
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8. you might remember how i
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completely grilled the way it looks in
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my full review and i stand by it
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but that doesn’t change the fact that
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like the iphone 12 mini
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this is a flagship phone through and
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through but unlike that phone
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this one has a great battery too this is
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pretty much the only small phone
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where the fact that it’s small has no
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negative consequences
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so this is an a plus in my books but now
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we’re on to the big boy phones
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in fifth place is the iphone 12 pro max
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it’s a phone that providing you have the
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budget and the palm size
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it’s an easy win i totally agree that
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it’s not the most exciting phone in the
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world
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but the reason that this is still the
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main phone i use on a day-to-day basis
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is that it’s supremely reliable the
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combination of ios levels of
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optimization
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with the best hardware you can get on an
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iphone means that if i want to post an
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instagram story
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i know it’s going to look good if i want
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to send a whatsapp voice note
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i know it’s going to sound good
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and the battery is going to reliably get
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me through any day i throw at it
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also this phone is so strong that it’s
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the first i’ve ever used caseless
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i’ve dropped this thing enough times and
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seen it come back unscathed enough
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times that i just don’t worry about it
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anymore the only two things that do
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sting a little are the fact that it’s
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distinctly uncomfortable to hold
13:13
and that it’s the only phone even close
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to this price bracket that doesn’t have
13:16
a high refresh rate screen
13:18
now slightly better than even that is
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why is samsung’s top end phone i think
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the galaxy s21 ultra is genuinely the
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most refined
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polished device they’ve ever released
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it’s a big visual upgrade over the s20
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ultra
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plus a long list of subtle corrections
13:34
which is exactly what that phone needed
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it’s taken it from incredibly capable
13:38
with mixed delivery
13:40
to incredibly capable with strong
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delivery i like the way it looks
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i like the way it feels and providing
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you’ve got a hand big enough to hold it
13:47
i have no reservations in recommending
13:49
it and that leaves us with the best
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overall flagship phone
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if money was no object and this award
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is going to the xiaomi me 11 ultra i
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could spend 15 minutes straight just
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talking about this phone
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actually that’s what i did a few weeks
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ago i’ll leave the video linked up here
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but fundamentally the summary is this
14:08
thing is a nuclear missile
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xiaomi looked at what samsung was doing
14:11
and built a phone squarely targeted
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straight at it
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it takes samsung’s best features and
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one-ups it in almost every aspect
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for the same price i wouldn’t say it
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completely invalidates samsung’s s21
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ultra
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i think this is still a nicer looking
14:25
phone i still think this has a more
14:27
consistent camera but for a true power
14:29
user you just
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can’t get more than this on a phone so
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what on earth can be better than that
14:34
well we’ve got two more phones and
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they’re not trying to be the highest end
14:37
phones you can buy
14:38
but they’re focused on value and their
14:40
value proposition is just so
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unbelievably good
14:43
that it makes you want to take a chair
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sit down and just have a think
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what are other companies doing so in
14:49
second place
14:50
is the redmi note 10 pro now for those
14:53
of you who don’t know
14:54
redmi is a spin-off brand of xiaomi who
14:56
have basically built a reputation for
14:58
one of the highest
14:59
spec to price ratios on the market so in
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this case we have a 108 megapixel camera
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a 120 hertz display 5020 million power
15:08
battery
15:09
and it’s 279 this thing is
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stupid levels of value it does have ads
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in the software but
15:16
you can turn them off and i mean look
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these are the kinds of photos i’m taking
15:19
on this phone
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it’s not even funny don’t get me wrong
15:23
you will know when you’re using it that
15:24
it’s not a thousand dollar flagship
15:26
but it outperforms its price so severely
15:28
that
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i’m gonna have to give this an a plus
15:31
plus in terms of value
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and that leaves us with number one the
15:34
most worth it phone of 2021
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and i guess by implication the most
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worth it phone to have ever released
15:42
it’s the poco f3 just like redmi poco is
15:46
yet another value-centric spin-off
15:47
company of xiaomi
15:48
but the difference with this phone is
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that it’s less about camera and it’s
15:51
more about
15:52
processing power so in this case for 350
15:55
you get a 120 hertz amoled display you
15:58
get
15:58
a 4 520 milliamp hour battery but
16:01
the kind of crown jewel here is a
16:03
snapdragon 870 chip
16:05
it’s not the absolute bleeding edge you
16:07
can get but it’s an overclocked version
16:09
of last year’s flagship 865. for this
16:12
price
16:12
that is ridiculous levels of performance
16:14
it makes the google pixel 4a look like
16:17
it belongs in a museum and while this
16:19
isn’t google pixel quality software
16:21
no amount of software is going to change
16:22
the fact that it’s twice as powerful
16:25
and i think what makes this phone
16:26
particularly impressive is the fact that
16:28
it takes more than a cursory glance to
16:30
even realize that it’s not a flagship
16:32
it still has a glass back it still has
16:34
decent haptics
16:35
and it’s just crazy that i can play the
16:37
most demanding games on the entire
16:39
android platform
16:40
at nearly their highest settings on a
16:42
phone that costs barely a quarter
16:44
of what the highest n1’s do and so the
16:46
poco f3 earns not just my best
16:48
affordable phone award but also my
16:51
overall best
16:52
value phone award if you wanted to go
16:54
even cheaper you can get the poco m3 pro
16:57
which is fantastic value or something
16:59
like the real me 8 for 200
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but my general recommendation is that if
17:04
you can try to spend a bit more
17:05
you will get a lot more okay couple of
17:08
things to mention here
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there’s been no lg on this list because
17:12
sad to say but
17:13
lg has finally left the smartphone
17:14
market there’s been no sony on this list
17:16
because at the time of filming they
17:18
haven’t quite launched their next xperia
17:20
1 mark
17:20
iii and also to be honest thus far i
17:23
have not tested a single sony phone that
17:25
i thought for a mainstream market was
17:28
better than the competition
17:29
but open to changing my mind on that in
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the future though and finally i decided
17:33
to keep foldables out of this video too
17:35
just because as a category of phones i
17:37
feel like they’re much harder to rank
17:39
under the same criteria okay here’s
17:41
something to think about for a second
17:43
your location your operating system
17:45
every hardware detail of the device
17:46
you’re on right now
17:47
as well as all your past browsing
17:49
history these are things that
17:50
you’d want to keep to yourself right
17:52
well this is how much information a
17:54
website immediately knows about you the
17:56
second you click on it
17:57
and to be honest if it’s a website you
17:59
trust then it’s fine
18:00
but there’s probably a fair few that you
18:02
visit that you wouldn’t want to know
18:03
this
18:04
and that’s where surfsharkvpn comes in
18:06
as far as i’ve seen it’s the most
18:07
affordable way to keep yourself
18:09
anonymous
18:09
it’s just over two dollars a month for
18:11
as many people and devices as you want
18:13
but there’s another perk
18:14
because you can effectively pick the
18:16
location that you want your device to
18:17
come from
18:18
i can for example pick the us and watch
18:21
us tv shows
18:22
you can effectively have the exclusives
18:24
for every single region
18:25
without leaving your home like if i want
18:27
to watch batman the dark knight
18:28
i just switch to canada and i can do
18:31
that so
18:32
check the link in the description and
18:33
use the code boss that’ll give you 83
18:35
off and an extra three months for free
18:38
if you enjoyed this video then do
18:39
consider checking out my zenfone 8
18:40
review
18:41
the best compact phone i’ve ever used or
18:43
for something a bit more chill
18:45
20 inventions that i think are
18:46
completely next level
18:48
thanks for watching my name is aaron
18:49
this is mr who’s the boss
18:51
i’ll catch you in the next one

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