The 7 Best T-Mobile Smartphones to Buy in 2017

Pick out which T-Mobile phone is best for you and your budget

T-Mobile is a disruptive force in the cell phone market, and they have swelled their ranks with discontented customers from the other major providers. While T-Mobile’s fast LTE network and affordable prices make it a no-brainer for Americans living in urban areas, if you're living in rural spot you might be left with zero bars because coverage there still lags behind.

On the upside, the company also offers no-interest two-year payment plans, so you don’t have to fork over the full amount for the latest phone up front, and there's no data for watching videos and playing Pokemon Go. With so much to consider, here are the best phones currently available in T-Mobile’s impressive arsenal.

Samsung Galaxy S8
Courtesy of T-Mobile

The S8 packs a whole lot of phone into a delicate body — and it honestly might be more phone than the average user needs — but without contest, it’s our pick for the best Android phone out there today. For starters, it looks good. It’s tall and slim with rounded edges and a gorgeous 5.8-inch, 2,960 x 1,440-pixel display.

While its 12-megapixel, rear-facing camera isn’t a dual-camera like on the iPhone 7, it takes impressive photos even in low light and its front-facing eight-megapixel camera is ideal for selfies. It has a handy auto-focus feature, plus loads of other editing tools that let you perfect your picture. It shoots video in 1080p HD and you can even up-level to quad HD (1440p). The battery will last you comfortably through the day and Samsung claims that the long-term battery life beats that of the S7. Conveniently, you can charge it up wirelessly, though it’s a little slower than charging with the USB cable.

Its octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 (2.35GHz + 1.9GHz) processor crushes performance benchmarks, so your Android 7.0 apps will run faster than ever. Our one gripe is with the fingerprint sensor: It’s tucked away on the back of the phone next to the camera lens, which takes some getting used to. Despite this, it’s an impressive phone and the second you lay a finger on it, you’ll forget all about the fiery Note 7 fiasco. More »

iPhone 7
Courtesy of T-Mobile

The much-talked-about iPhone 7 takes a bold step into the future by removing the headphone jack, shipping instead with Bluetooth AirPods. (A Lightning-to-3.5mm dongle is available if you still want to use headphones with a cord.) As Apple is often the trendsetter on such design features, it will be interesting to see how soon other phone designers follow suit.

Of course, the absence of the headphone jack makes room for much more inside. A faster A10 Fusion chip with integrated M10 motion coprocessor features a four-core design, with two high-performance cores and two low-power cores that drain less power during everyday tasks. Combined with a much larger battery, Apple claims the iPhone 7 lasts more than two hours longer than the previous version. The newer version also brings a better camera into the picture, with a faster f/1.8 lens, optical image stabilization, four-color True Tone flash and wider color capture. That adds up to a solid step up from the iPhone 6S’s camera.

The 4.7-inch Retina HD display has 1334 x 750-pixel resolution at 326 ppi so your apps are visibly brighter. Perhaps one of the iPhone’s previously greatest downfalls — its lack of waterproofing — has been rendered moot as Apple has added water resistant features. Note it’s still not fully waterproof, so other devices like the Samsung Galaxy S8 still has it beat there. More »

LG V20
Courtesy of T-Mobile

Measuring 6.3 by 3.1 by .3 inches, the LG V20 is housed in a metal body made of the aluminum you’ll find in airplanes. That makes it MIL-STD-810G transit drop compliant, which means it can survive falls onto hard surfaces.

It has a 5.7-inch, 2,560 x 1,440 IPS panel, plus perhaps its most stand-out feature: an always-on 2.1-inch, 160 x 1,040 secondary display. The secondary display is located in the top-right corner of the main display and provides quick access to time, notifications and any apps you choose to pin there. It’s powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor and 4GB of RAM, which allows for fast multitasking and gaming while running Android 7.0 Nougat. You’ll also get three cameras: a 16-megapixel rear-facing camera with optical image stabilization, a secondary eight-megapixel rear-facing one that enables wide-angle shots and a five-megapixel front-facing one that also has a wide-angle mode. More »

Courtesy of T-Mobile

In all honesty, the Apple iPhone 7 and Samsung Galaxy S8 have pretty remarkable cameras. If you end up with one of those phones in hand, you’ll take impressive pictures. But if you’re on a tighter budget and don’t want to sacrifice a camera feature in your next phone, the LG G6 is a solid bet. It’s tall, slim and water-resistant (rated at IP68) and its 5.7-inch display takes up 80 percent of its face, meaning there’s very little wasted space. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 delivers fast performance and a 3,300mAh battery will provide long-lasting power, though unfortunately it isn’t removable like in previous versions.

On the back of the phone, the home button sits just below two cameras: a 13-megapixel shooter and a 120-degree wide-angle lens. You can easily switch between those two cameras as well as its five-megapixel front-facing camera that also has a wide-angle option. It comes with a great camera app called Square Camera that has some fun tools aimed specifically at Instagram power users. More »

iPhone SE
Courtesy of

The iPhone SE is the perfect phone for everyone tired of the phablet fad. It harkens back to a bygone era (2011) when phones could fit in pockets and be operated easily one hand. Although Apple went all-in on the large screen for its flagship product, they have also cornered the market on the four-inch screen with the iPhone SE.

Design-wise, the SE looks similar to the 5S, with flat sides and a matte finish. The phone uses the same powerful A9 processor and 2 GB RAM that is housed in the iPhone 6s, which means you get the exact same powerful speed for hundreds of dollars less. You also get a bright and colorful 1136 x 640 resolution. The 12 megapixel camera is barely a downgrade from the premium, and it captures gorgeous 4K video. The 1.2 megapixel FaceTime HD Camera is a pretty serious downgrade from other phones in the category, but it is adequate. More »

Samsung Galaxy S8+
Courtesy of T-Mobile

Is bigger always better? In this case, we say definitely. With what Samsung calls the “world’s first infinity display,” the S8+’s gorgeous 6.2-inch dual-curved QHD Super AMOLED display stretches from edge to edge for optimized viewing. But that doesn’t leave a lot of room for much else; Samsung has removed all physical buttons and we are more than OK with that.

It has two cameras: one 12-megapixel rear-facing camera that takes brilliant photos, as well as one eight-megapixel front-facing camera that captures all the selfies your heart desires. If you’re not in love with the fact that Samsung awkwardly stuck the fingerprint sensor just left of the rear-facing camera (hello, perpetually smudged camera lens!), you’ll be relieved to know you can alternatively unlock your phone with a face or iris scan.

Its octa-core Snapdragon 835 processor delivers speedy performance and it runs a version of Android 7.0 Nougat that Samsung has customized. The S8+ boasts an improved battery life, and while it might not be noticeable immediately, it certainly will be one year down the line when it retains about 95 percent of its original capacity. More »

Samsung Galaxy J7
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The pared-down version of the Galaxy is a bit pricier than other budget options, but the extra money is totally worth it. You get a huge 5.5” HD Super AMOLED screen and a 13-megapixel camera that takes better pictures than any other budget phone on the market (although it doesn’t have flash). The 1.5 GHz Octa-core processor is fast enough to handle all apps and browsing without lagging, and the phone has over 10 hours of battery life. Its biggest downside is that it only comes with 16 GB of memory, which is simply not enough in a world of memory-hogging apps and HD pictures. Luckily, the phone comes with an SD slot so you can upgrade memory if you need to.  More »

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