Smartphone World Cup: Groups E and F

We have two more groups from our Smartphone World Cup today and we’ll publish the final two groups tomorrow. Also, we’ve closed voting on Groups A and B, the results from them are below (A in particular was quite a surprise).

Group E

The Apple iPhone 8 Plus has many improvements under the hood, but the shell dates back to 2014’s iPhone 6 Plus with small changes here and there like the switch to a dual camera. Looks can be deceptive, however. Since 2014, the iPhone has gained stereo speakers, IP67 water resistance, triple the RAM and, triple the CPU cores. And the dual camera, of course, which does zoom, portrait shots and 2160p at 60 fps.

A definite heavy weight, but hardly affordable. The Huawei Honor 10 meanwhile offers the premium Kirin 970 chipset of the P-series and it runs Android 8.1 out of the box. It has a capable dual camera of its own and its design is much more modern than that of the iPhone with its tall notched screen.

Apple iPhone 8 Plus
Huawei Honor 10
vivo V9
BlackBerry Key2

Apple iPhone 8 Plus Huawei Honor 10 vivo V9 BlackBerry Key2

The vivo V9 offers the big screen experience (6.3″, 19:9) and a premium metal and glass build at a reasonable price. It has a dual camera too, complete with 2160p video capture. Decent amounts of memory too, 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB storage, plus a microSD slot (which the Honor lacks). It’s one potential weak spot is the Snapdragon 626 chipset, which isn’t up to par.

The BlackBerry Key2 fills us with nostalgia – some of us haven’t had a phone with a hardware keyboard in 10 years. And the QWERTY isn’t even the only thing that gives the Key2 a unique look, the squared off aluminum body looks cool. The phone is pricey but modern with a dual camera and a Snapdragon 660 chipset with plenty of memory and a decently-sized 3,500 mAh battery.

As a reminder, you can vote once per day. The top two phones of each group will move on to the Round of 16 (the bracket is below).

Group F

The Nokia 7 plus offers the brand’s rock-smashing durability without breaking the bank. With Android One and 3,800 mAh battery, it makes many other mid-rangers sweat under the collar. The dual 12 + 13 MP camera bears the iconic Zeiss logo, same for the selfie cam.

Maker skins do have their fans and the Oppo F7 represents Color OS. And it’s one of the first phones with Helio P60, MediaTek’s AI-focused offering. It’s more affordable than the Nokia, but the rear camera might prove to be its downfall – there’s only one of it and it can’t capture 2160p video.

Nokia 7 plus
Oppo F7
Google Pixel 2 XL
HTC U12+

Nokia 7 plus Oppo F7 Google Pixel 2 XL HTC U12+

Having a single camera doesn’t stop the Google Pixel 2 XL as being widely regarded as one of the best shooters on the market. Who needs a secondary cam for bokeh effects when Dual Pixel AF and Google magic can do the same? Google has left Nexus-style pricing in the rear view mirror, but you do get goodies like water resistance (IP67) and stereo speakers (plus, we like the panda color option).

The U11+ could have been the Pixel 2 XL, but for one reason or another HTC is fending for itself. We only bring this up as the HTC U12+ now goes head to head with the pixel. It leads it with a newer chipset (Snapdragon 845) and HDR10 support for its screen (same size and resolution, but LCD instead of P-OLED). The U12+ rubs in its abundance of cameras in the Pixels face – it has a dual rear camera and a dual selfie camera.

Results from Group A and B

With a daily interest of just 17%, we viewed the LG G7 ThinQ as an underdog – the Redmi Note 5 Pro has 92%! The margin was razor thin, the LG won with just over 20 votes, but it’s still quite an upset. The Nokia 8 Sirocco looked like it had second place in its grasp (20% daily interest), but now it has to go home.

Group B wasn’t even close – the Xiaomi Mi 8 got over 70% of the vote and swept the floor with the other three. The Moto G6 Plus is a distant second with 15%.

The Round of 16 matches for these phones will become clear tomorrow when we close voting on groups C and D, the winners and runner-ups of which will face off against these four phones.