The best upcoming phones in the UK this yearon May 26, 2023 at 10:28 Tech Advisor


2023 is set to be a big year for smartphones.

We’ve already seen launches from the Samsung Galaxy S23, OnePlus 11, and Xiaomi 13 series, with more set to come in the next few months. Then big names like the iPhone 15 and Pixel 8 are set for later in the year – not to mention key software upgrades in Android 14 and iOS 17.

We also know about the chipsets that will power most of those flagship phones: the MediaTek Dimensity 9200 and Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2. Both have now been revealed, with features including hardware-enabled ray-tracing for gaming and Wi-Fi 7 connectivity, and we’ve seen the first phones already, with plenty more to come throughout 2023 (though of course, it’s never too early for rumours about this year’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 launch).

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 could upgrade 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 2023


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Honor 90 – China launch on 29 May


Honor has already announced that its Honor 90 series will be unveiled in China on 29 May, with two phones confirmed so far: the 90 and 90 Pro.

The company’s numbered phones tend to sit at the upper-end of the mid-range market, verging into flagship territory. The UK got the 50 and 70, but skipped the 60 and 80, so based on that pattern we reckon a UK and European launch is probably on the cards for these models.

Specs are so far unknown beyond the promise of a 200Mp camera, but we’re expecting high-end Snapdragon chips and big batteries.

Read more about the Honor 90

Motorola Razr 40 – UK launch expected on 1 June

Motorola is expected to launch not one but two new versions of its Razr flip phone on 1 June.

These are rumoured to be called the Razr 40 and Razr 40 Ultra. You can see both above in a leaked image – with the Ultra the model on the left, with an expansive cover screen across the whole of the phone’s top side.

Both models are rumoured to come with vegan leather finishes and dual cameras, and the Ultra at least should pack a Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1, high refresh rate inner display, and some nifty new features thanks to that extra screen space outside.

Read more about the Razr 40 and 40 Ultra

Google Pixel Fold – On sale in the UK on 27 June


Google fully revealed the Pixel Fold at its annual I/O conference on 10 May, and you can pre-order the phone now, before it ships from 27 June.

Powered by the same Tensor G2 chip as the other Pixel phones, this packs a triple rear camera and a slim design reminiscent of the Pixel 7 line.

The big test will be how much Google has managed to use its control of the Android ecosystem to improve the still-iffy optimisation of apps for the big screen, which could make or break the Fold.

Read more about the Pixel Fold

Sony Xperia 1 V – On sale in the UK on 29 June


The Sony Xperia 1 V is finally official, and will go on sale in the UK on 29 June, though it’ll be expensive at £1,299.

The phone looks remarkably similar to last year’s Xperia 1 IV, but has had a few key upgrades. The big one is to a brand-new custom camera sensor for the main camera, though the jump to the latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset is certainly welcome too.

There have been a few other tweaks elsewhere, but the bottom line is more power and a better camera.

Get the latest on the Xperia 1 V

Xiaomi 13 Ultra – Expected on sale in the UK in Q2 2023


Xiaomi has finally revealed its souped up Xiaomi 13 Ultra – and this time the phone is set to come out internationally in the “next few months”, making it the first Ultra model to leave China.

The phone is all about that enormous camera, which features four 50Mp lenses: a 1-inch Sony IMX989 sensor for its main lens with variable aperture, with a trio of IMX868 sensors for the ultrawide, 3.2x telephoto, and 5x periscope lenses.

Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 performance, a 2600 nits peak brightness display, and fast 90W charging round out the flagship feature set, which make this one of the most powerful phones in the world right now.

Read more about the Xiaomi 13 Ultra, or read our 13 Ultra review to find out what we think after trying out a Chinese model of the phone

Realme GT 3 – Expected on sale in the UK in Q2 2023

Hannah Cowton / Foundry

Realme has officially announced its GT 3 flagship, which it revealed in late February and will go on sale in May or June.

The headline feature is 240W fast charging, also featured in the company’s China-only GT Neo 5 (which is, really, the same phone under a different name). Realme claims 30 seconds of charging can deliver two hours of call time, four minutes gets you half the battery back, and a full charge takes just under ten.

Beyond charging, the phone features a 144Hz AMOLED display, 50Mp camera, and a Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 inside, along with an unusual rectangular RGB light on the rear – next to the camera – for displaying notifications and alerts.

Read the latest on the Realme GT3, or read our GT 3 review to find out what we think from trying it out

Solana Saga – Expected Q2 2023


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.

Read more about the Solana Saga.

OnePlus Nord 3 – Expected Q2 2023


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.

Read more about the Nord 3

Nothing Phone (2) – UK launch expected in July

Dominic Preston / Foundry

Nothing has already begun teasing its second smartphone, which it says will be a “more premium” handset powered by the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 flagship chip, due to arrive in July.

That’s all we know for now, apart from its battery capacity of 4700mAh, but expect Nothing to keep teasing specs between now and the launch.

The big question is whether the company will update the phone’s outlandish design, or take the approach it used for the second-gen Ear (2) headphones and keep the aesthetic identical.

Read more about the Nothing Phone (2)

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 & Z Flip 5 – August 2023

Samsung has formed a habit of releasing its Z Flip foldables in August each year, so that’s when we’re expecting to see the Z Fold 5 and Z Flip 5.

The Flip 5 is expected to see some big changes, with the above leaked design suggesting a much larger external display is on the way.

By contrast, the Fold 5 will likely be more of the same, though both phones should benefit from improved hinges and the latest Snapdragon silicon.

Read more about the latest Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Galaxy Z Flip 5 rumours

iPhone 15 – September 2023

The iPhone 14 Pro

Dominik Tomaszewski / Foundry

Apple hasn’t confirmed anything about the iPhone 15 yet, but based on the company’s track record we’ll almost certainly see it in September.

Early rumours suggest we’ll see the new Dynamic Island design extended to the regular models this time around, while the Pro Max may be re-branded the iPhone 15 Ultra and come with some extra upgrades including a revamped telephoto camera.

Both Pro/Ultra models may also get a new customisable ‘action’ button, though the long-rumoured move to haptic volume buttons has reportedly been scrapped.

Get the latest on the iPhone 15

OnePlus foldable – Q3 2023


Rumour has it that OnePlus is working on its debut foldable phone, and the company has now teased that we should see it revealed in Q3 2023, with some rumours pointing to August specifically.

Leakers now think there may be two phones, based closely on the Oppo Find N2 and Find N2 Flip – the two companies now share R&D, so that’s no real surprise. That means we can expect something like a 7.1in folding display, flagship Snapdragon chip, and triple rear camera including an ultrawide and telephoto on the larger model.

As for names, right now people point to ‘OnePlus V Flip’ and ‘OnePlus V Fold’, but of course it’s all speculation for now.

Read our round-up of the OnePlus foldable rumours for the latest hints.

Asus Zenfone 10 – Expected in Q3 2023

The Zenfone 9

Dominik Tomaszewski / Foundry

Asus usually updates its flagship Zenfone line in the summer, so this year we’re expecting to see the Zenfone 10 launch some time in Q3.

What we’ve heard so far from leaks is a little surprising: Asus apparently intends to give up the compact form factor that made the Zenfone 9 so unique, and revert to a larger display in line with other high-end phones.

That will come with perks if true: a bigger battery and upgraded cameras, perhaps even a 200Mp main camera.

Read more about the Zenfone 10

Google Pixel 8 – October 2023

OnLeaks / Smartprix

Solid rumours about the next Pixel flagship phones are thin on the ground right now, but it’s a pretty safe bet that we’ll see them arrive in October 2023 – after all, every Pixel flagship so far has launched in October.

Google’s next Tensor chip should power the phone, and otherwise expect new camera features and reportedly an infrared temperature sensor in the Pro model. And maybe finally some faster charging?

Get the latest on the Pixel 8

Microsoft Surface Duo 3 – 2023/24

The Surface Duo 2


Microsoft has so far released two iterations of its unusual dual-screen foldable device, and we’re expecting the Duo 3 to follow them up some time either in late 2023 or early 2024.

It’s too early to say exactly what to expect, beyond the obvious: better specs, a refined design, and more polished software. Rumours have pointed to an end to the dual-screen design and a shift to a classic foldable form factor, but that would be a first for Microsoft.

The Duo 2 has come on leaps and bounds since its launch though, so we’re optimistic that Microsoft can pull off something special here.

Read the latest on the Surface Duo 3.

Samsung Galaxy S24 – Expected in February 2024

The Galaxy S23 series

Dominik Tomaszewski / Foundry

Samsung updates its flagship S-series like clockwork every February (or thereabouts) so we think we’ll see the Galaxy S24 turn up in February 2024.

It’s too early to say what’s coming, though an upgrade to the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 is likely. Rumours point to a faster refresh rate in the Ultra model too, and maybe tweaks to the telephoto.

Get the latest Galaxy S24 rumours

iPhone SE 4 – 2024

The iPhone SE (2020)

Dominik Tomaszewski / Foundry

Apple seems to be on a biannual release schedule for its budget-friendly iPhone SE, so after 2020 and 2022 models we’re not expecting to see the next iteration until early 2024.

The biggest question mark is around whether Apple will finally jump to a full-screen design for the phone, ditching the Home Button for good – and in turn if that will mean including FaceID in the SE for the first time.

It’s worth noting that some rumours have said the SE 4 has in fact been cancelled, so there’s a risk we won’t see it at all.

Read more about the iPhone SE 4.

Foldable iPhone/iPad – 2024/25

Dominik Tomaszewski / Foundry

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 – or iPad, which has begun to look more likely.

Various analysts have predicted that we’ll see the tech appear first some time in 2024, though the year after remains a possibility. While many had hoped for a bendy iPhone, more recent reports suggest Apple may test the water with a larger folding iPad, with longer to wait for an actual phone – though if it can perfect the tech in that time it may well be worth the wait.

Check out all the foldable iPhone rumours so far.

Budget smartphones, iPhone, Mid-range smartphones, Smartphones

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