We’re expecting big things from smartphones this year, and there are plenty of new models to get excited about.
Carl Pei’s start-up Nothing has finally launched its first handset, the Phone (1), which is on sale now, and up against mid-range rival the Pixel 6a. Meanwhile the OnePlus 10T will launch in early August, followed just a week later by Samsung’s next-gen foldables. Before long we’ll be back around in time for the iPhone 14 and Pixel 7, not to mention software upgrades like Android 13 and iOS 16.
From the first half of the year, the Samsung Galaxy S22, OnePlus 10 Pro, Oppo Find X5, and Xiaomi 12 series are all already on sale, and there’s even a new phone from Apple in the iPhone SE. That’s not even mentioning the new slate of foldables from Huawei, Honor, and Oppo, though those haven’t actually hit UK stores so far.
Read on to ensure your next smartphone purchase is not immediately followed by regret, tying you into an unnecessarily lengthy contract. (Remember that there is a chance you couldupgrade your contract early.)
Pro tip: As these new phones edge closer, the outgoing models will fall in price and you’ll be able to scoop up some great deals. If you’re not bothered about having the very latest tech, check out our take on the best phones you can buy today.
Best new phones coming out in 2022 and 2023
Asus Zenfone 9 – 28 July
Dominik Tomaszewski / Foundry
Asus announced the Zenfone 9 on28 July, and the launch is rolling out now.
This is another compact Android flagship phone, with a dinky little 5.9in display – though still packing 120Hz AMOLED tech. The Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 chip is no slouch either, and with RAM going up to 16GB this is a portable powerhouse. A big battery and gimbal-stabilised camera round out the set.
Here’s one we didn’t expect: HTC is returning to the smartphone market with the Desire 22 Pro, a mid-range handset designed for use with HTC’s Vive VR headsets. And yes, it is coming to the UK, with pre-orders open now and sales officially starting from 1 August.
The Desire 22 Pro is a mid-range phone with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 695 5G processor, 8GB RAM, and 128GB expandable storage.
But perhaps the best reason to get the Desire 22 Pro is how it cleverly can mirror its screen to the Vive Flow headset. The company uses Miracast to wirelessly show your phone screen on the headset, with HDCP 2.2 so it can also stream DRM-protected content from Netflix, Disney+, and other streaming services.
Motorola has confirmed that it’s working on an updated Razr foldable, which it will reveal in China on 2 August – though we don’t yet know if, or when, it will reach the UK.
This will be the third foldable Razr (the original was followed by a 5G version) and we’re hoping to see a streamlined design and upgraded specs that make it a true flagship competitor to Samsung’s offering.
OnePlus is working on another flagship for this year, and the company has now confirmed that the 10T will launch on 3 August.
There had been come debate about whether this was the long lost OnePlus 10 or a brand-new OnePlus 10 Ultra, but the company has now confirmed the 10T name, along with teasing the phone to press (including Tech Advisor) with packages of, well, tea. Both black and green tea, which probably tells you something about the phone’s colours too.
OnePlus hasn’t confirmed much about the phone’s actual specs beyond the fact that it will use the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1, but leaker renders like the one above suggest a similar design to the 10 Pro. We’re also expecting to see 150W charging – an upgrade from the Pro – though the camera and display will likely be slightly reduced in spec.
Nubia unveiled the Red Magic 7S and 7S Pro gaming phones in China earlier this year, before giving the Pro model a global release in late July. Pre-orders will start on 2 August, before going on sale officially from 9 August.
It’s very similar to the existing Red Magic 7 Pro, with a focus on the upgrade to the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 chipset, which should deliver improved performance and better battery life.
Otherwise you can expect the usual blend of high refresh rate display, top specs, fast charging, and middling cameras – though be warned, as the strange spec balance means the Pro model isn’t a clear-cut upgrade, and some users may actually prefer the cheaper regular 7 from earlier in the year.
The Z Flip 4 is almost certain to bring with it the larger Z Fold 4, also likely to launch on 10 August.
We don’t know for sure what to expect, but improvements to the under-display camera are almost certain – and rumour has it that the same camera may also appear on the phone’s outer display this time around.
Tweaks to the hinge and water-proofing have also been predicted, along with the usual spec and camera boosts.
The iPhone 14 may still be a while away, but we have our first leaks of what to expect from the next Apple flagship, which is likely to launch in September.
Renders based on leaks sourced by Jon Prosser reveal the alleged end of the controversial notch for the Pro models at least – supposedly replaced by a punch-hole camera, with the rest of the Face ID tech hidden under the display itself.
Round volume buttons return, while the camera lenses are now flush against the body – achieved in part by making the phone itself thicker.
Samsung has already released a Galaxy A23 in India, but it’s only 4G – and leakers say it’s working on a 5G model to get a wider release.
The phone’s design looks similar to this year’s other A-series handsets, and will apparently feature a rear quad camera and teardrop notch on the front. It’s even tipped to be powered by a MediaTek processor – so not one of Samsung’s own Exynos chips.
The next OnePlus mid-ranger is tipped to include an upgraded 150W charging spec – capable of a full charge in just 15 minutes – alongside a new Dimensity 8100 chipset and a larger, 6.7in 120Hz display.
The camera spec isn’t expected to change as much though, with the same 50Mp IMX766 main camera as the Nord 2, joined by an 8Mp ultrawide and 2Mp macro.
The X50 is the rumoured name for the next Nokia flagship, which we’re expecting to see some time this spring or summer.
Solid specs are thin on the ground, but point to a device at the lower end of the flagship range, with a Snapdragon 7-series chipset – though some think a Pro model with an 8-series chip may also be coming.
Honor has already launched the 70 series in China, but for now an international launch is “TBD”.
There are three phones in the series, all of which use the brand-new Sony IMX800 camera sensor. The exact specs vary between them, but all three phones feature big, curved OLED screens, fast charging, and powerful triple rear cameras.
October is Pixel season, so that’s when we’re expecting Google to unveil the Pixel 7 and 7 Pro – though the company has already teased the design, which you can see here.
After last year’s design overhaul there’s nothing quite so radical this time around, but patent applications suggest this could be the year we see the company adopt an under-display selfie camera, along with the second-generation of its Tensor chip.
This is a bit of a wild card – but leaked internal documents and bits of code suggest that Google may be working on a Pixel-branded foldable device. We thought it might launch in late 2021, but it now looks more likely to appear in October 2022 along with the Pixel 7 – though be warned that some other leakers think it’s been delayed to 2023.
Beyond the device’s existence there haven’t been many leaks with details of what sort of foldable device it will be, or what specs it will have, but we know a lot of people will be curious about a Google-branded folding phone with that Pixel camera.
Now that Huawei has released the P50 Pro worldwide, fans have started anticipating the Mate 50.
While these would normally have launched in autumn 2021, we’re now expecting to see Mate 50 phones some time in 2022. Expect a Chinese launch first, with Europe and the rest of Asia to follow a few months later – maybe.
Not much is known about the specs, but expect a 4G Snapdragon chipset, with top-tier display and camera chops to make up for slower signal speeds.
Rumour has it that OnePlus is working on its debut foldable phone, and we may see it arrive some time this year.
The phone is apparently based closely on the Oppo Find N – the two companies now share R&D, so that’s no real surprise – which means we can expect something like a 7.1in folding display, Snapdragon 888 chip, and triple rear camera including an ultrawide and telephoto.
The Solana Saga is the phone once known as the Osom OV1. It had been intended to launch as the debut phone from new start-up Osom, but re-branded after a partnership with blockchain company Solana to serve as a web3 handset.
Specs are high-end, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1, 6.67in OLED screen, 12GB RAM, and 512GB storage. Plus it has an additional ‘secure element’ to help keep financial information safe and secure during crypto transactions and when minting NFTs.
Samsung is almost certainly hard at work on the Galaxy S23 series, with three phones likely to launch in spring 2023.
Rumours point towards the debut of a 200Mp camera sensor – likely in the S23 Ultra – along with larger batteries across the board.
Of course the chipsets are likely to improve too, but there’s plenty of debate about whether Samsung will continue to use a mix of Snapdragon chips and its own Exynos hardware, or shift entirely to the Qualcomm silicon.
The Find X line is Oppo’s flagship series, and the Find X6 phones are expected to arrive some time in early 2023.
It’s too early for any real leaks on the flagship X6 Pro’s specs, but expect an upgrade to the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, tweaked Hasselblad cameras, and likely a redesign after two years of using a similar form factor.
The Pro will likely be joined by a streamlined Find X6 and a cheaper X6 Lite.
The Galaxy A53 sits at the heart of Samsung’s mid-range line-up – it’s basically the company’s core rival to the iPhone SE – so we’re confident we’ll see an A54 follow it up next year.
Specs so far are thin on the ground, but the render above is one of several imaging the improvements Samsung could be working on, borrowing spec and design elements of its flagships to trickle down to its more affordable hardware.
A folding iPhone has been rumoured ever since the first foldable display tech existed pretty much, but thanks to leaks and rumours we have pretty good reason to believe Apple is at least working on a foldable iPhone – even if it’s probably years away.
Apple is rarely the first to market with new tech, though given that Samsung has already released several iterations of its folding tech there’s a risk Apple will look backwards if it doesn’t follow suit until 2023 – though if it can perfect the tech in that time it may well be worth the wait.
Tech Advisor's Deputy Editor, Dom covers everything that runs on electricity, from phones and laptops to wearables, audio, gaming, smart home, and streaming - plus he's a regular fixture on the Tech Advisor YouTube channel.