5 Features We Want Every Flagship Android Phone to Have This Year

In the battle for supremacy between Android and Apple iOS, we’ve seen some top-end features in smartphones that we only thought belonged to the fantasy world of sci-fiction. The smartphone space has advanced so much that it’s now possible to do online shopping, play games, watch movies, and even track packages via phone. We’ve seen some smartphones ship with a whopping 20+ Megapixel camera, while others are rocking a 4K display screen.

And just when we thought we’d seen it all, rumor has it that the next generation of iPhones will have support for augmented reality. So what does the future hold for Android? I don’t want to steer towards a debate of who is king between Android and iOS (of course I will be biased; I love Android), so I will get straight to the point: these are the top five features we want every flagship Android phone to have in 2017.

The current competition in the smartphone space cannot accommodate “mediocre” features, especially in flagship models. So these features are a must-have for any flagship Android phone.

64gb-internal-storage-android

What would a “selfie generation” want more than enough storage space to spoil themselves with those foodie and picnic photos. All those photos take up space, not to mention the videos, music, and other saved documents. And if you happen to have a smartphone capable of recording videos in 4K, that’s when you will know the importance of having a smartphone with a large storage space.

Each minute of 4K video may take up to 375 MBs. So you shouldn’t be surprised to see a five-minute video taking up over 1 GB of your storage space. Therefore, a 64 GB internal storage is a must-have for any flagship smartphone in 2017. This is the real smartphone war, and some of the top-end smartphones have already hit the 128GB mark. And it’s not only in smartphones. Demand for space has also transcended into flash drives. Kingston, for example, recently introduced a record-breaking 2TB flash drive.

android-excellent-camera

An excellent camera is a must-have for any flagship smartphone in 2017. And when I say “excellent,” I don’t only refer to the pixel count. We want to see out-of-the-box features that will differentiate 2015 phones from the current top models. In this case we want to see features such as Image Stabilization, Time Lapse and 4K rendering in smartphone cameras.

I believe iPhone 7 carries the Oscar when it comes to cameras due to its combination of features, HDR included. Right now, if you are looking at an Android phone with the best camera, you are choosing between Google Pixel and Samsung Galaxy S8. We want to see more Android manufacturers delve deeper into camera power, and HTC has proven that it can be done.

usb-type-c-android

USB type C has begun to appear in consumer electronics and has some cool features that you can’t find in older USB connectors. First, it’s small and powerful, but the magic is seen in its super-fast data transfer speed.

It can transfer up to 10 gigabits per second, courtesy of the zippy speeds of the latest version of the USB protocol. And on top of that, it is flexible, smaller, and reversible, so you can insert it either way. With all these cool features, it goes without saying why we need it in all upcoming flagship smartphones.

bluetooth-5-0-android

If you often connect devices or share media via Bluetooth, then you know it can be terrible. From connectivity problems to pairing issues, Bluetooth is just plagued with problems. However, with Bluetooth 5.0, everything is different and better. This version of Bluetooth delivers quintessential results in all respects. In fact, it has two times the speed, four times the range and eight times the data throughput of Bluetooth 4.0.

Bluetooth 5.0 also comes with other spectacular features such as the ability to connect more than one Bluetooth speaker to the same device. The Samsung Galaxy S8 is the world’s first phone to ship with Bluetooth 5.0. We want to see more flagship models shipping with this version of Bluetooth.

3d-touch-feature-android

This feature is only available on Apple phones, and I feel it should be introduced to Android phones to better compete with iOS. Samsung tried to replicate the function with the pressure sensitivity display in the Galaxy S8, but this is not enough to bring the competition to the iPhones. We hope more manufacturers will introduce similar features or a variation of them.

There is no limit to what smartphones can do, and based on the rate at which the Android ecosystem is evolving, you can never tell the direction of innovation. Samsung, for example, is rumored to be working on a foldable smartphone. Does this mean it will ditch its elegant edge design? Only time will tell. All we want to see are Android smartphones with top-notch features that will change the way we use them.

8 comments

  1. meh;-) Some of these are just frills. You didn’t even cover the practical, like 2-3 day battery life.

    Give me a 3x+ optical zoom lens with OIS, front-firing speakers, digital TV Tuner with built-in recording/time shifting software, AM/FM radio that don’t require headphones. Also, something modular in design so I can stack (making the phone thicker) a large speaker, battery pack, mini-projector or even TB storage… among other niceties.

    IR would be nice to have too (remote controls). Oh yeah… sensors. Plenty of sensors of all kinds – I want my Star Trek, all-purpose, device.

    • I can almost agree with everything you asked for except for the tuners. Digital TV requires a decent antenna and I don’t think a phone is quite large enough to have an internal one. Plus no one will want the added bulk of the tuner circuit internally plus an external antenna. And it requires decent locating of the antenna, so unless you want to leave your phone in 1 spot all day a built in DVR is almost never going to get you a good recording. What we need is reliable and unlimited data and streaming can take care of your Television request.
      Same goes for AM/FM radio. First, the antenna for AM could be internal, but the demand for that as a feature is so low it’s not worth giving up internal space for it. Likewise the FM radio needs the headphone cord to act as it’s antenna,o you just aren’t going to get that either. Once again streaming media could take care of this requirement without the addition of any hardware to the phone.

      Everything else, like modular design, is cool.

  2. My list is a lot different than yours!

    1. My choice of operating system; fully open source and upgradeable. Preferably GNU/Linux, not Android/Linux.
    2. Long battery time, at the expense of a few millimeters of thickness, which is unimportant to me.
    3. Replaceable battery. I don’t care how thick it makes the phone.
    4. FM radio, using headphones (so I can have a decent antenna).
    5. Did I mention headphones?
    6. Upgradeable OS, that I can put any app I want on, and remove any I don’t want.
    7. Dual SIM slots.
    8. MicroSD card slot so I can have huge storage. And install apps on it, not on internal storage.
    9. WiFi calling that isn’t a kluge.
    10. CHEAP.

    My $70 Blu phone does most of this except for the OS.

  3. “Compete with apple” are you serious? When is CRapple going to compete with anyone? Wireless charging? External Storage? EXPANDABLE storage? How about WAZE support? Get serious “FANBOY” CRAPPLE is for those who can’t don’t want to be bothered learning how to use the epitome of smartphone OSs ANDROID. Fragmentation aside.
    Subjective aside, the real winner will whoever can come up with a battery that will support a bright screen, streaming music/videos and lasts all day every day. THAT will be the undisputed winner!

    • One slight problem Joel… Service providers have to have enough towers and bandwidth to support them so you’re not getting punted off and constantly searching for (better) service on another tower that’s out of range. Verizon being the largest in the US is currently having problems and are turning into AT&T during the iPhone explosion. Too many users, not enough infrastructure. They have zero plans on adding more 4G towers now that 5G is in sight.

  4. The difficulty is that not all people use phones the same way. A lot of the features iPhones have are things I don’t care much about, yet I couldn’t live without the customization options Android provides.

    Also, Android has the 3D Touch (horrible name, by the way) feature. If you don’t have it, you must have an older version. I have stock Android N on my phone, and, software wise, it provides all the features I need. As far as hardware goes, a better camera would be nice, but not if it’s going to make the price skyrocket.

  5. 1. Internal storage is nice, but that’s how the jack up the price… I want MircoSD card storage. I can add as much as I want.
    2. Replaceable Battery. I’ll buy a spare if I need. No matter how good it is, it’s going to wear out over time…
    3. Head phone Jack! Why get rid of it!?! Not everyone wants to drain their battery faster using BT.
    4. Decent camera is nice, but I would assume that most people that use the Flagship phones are the “selfie” type of people.
    5. Unlocked, Rootable OS. I don’t care if it’s Android or a Linux Distro. I paid for it, I want to be able to do what I want with it. If someone wants a plain, proprietary, phone for typical purposes, buy an iphone.

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