This has been the decade of the smartphone, with 2019 ushering in new smartphone trends (or reinvented old ones).
While almost every manufacturer around the globe dipped its toes in the introduction of trendy smartphone technologies, the top smartphone innovations of the past year have been by Chinese companies.
Early this year, Samsung and Huawei competed for the coveted bragging rights of being the company with the first successful release of a smartphone with a folding screen. Samsung released the Galaxy Fold in April, but the phone had a ton of issues and was relaunched in September. Huawei’s Mate X was released in November to great reviews despite the hefty price tag. Motorola has also entered the foldable smartphone arena with a reinvented Razr phone with a flexible screen.
Once the trade mark look of Apple’s iPhone, the bezel design is gone for good following the Android trend of seamless full screens. Front cameras are now designed as “punch holes” or are located on a small notch. Samsung, Motorola, Vivo, Xiaomi and Honor have all released phones with the punch-hole design.
Losing the bezel paved the way not only for seamless full screens but also for better camera design. Vivo was the first smartphone manufacturer to feature a pop-up front camera in 2018. Other smartphones with the pop-up camera feature include OnePlus7T Pro, Xiaomi Mi 9T, Oppo Reno 2, Asus Zenphone 6, Samsung Galaxy A80, Realme X and the Honor 9X.
High-end smartphones now feature telephoto lenses with optical zoom for long-range shots, while periscope cameras have improved the zooming capabilities as well. The Huawei Mate 30 Pro promises high-resolution photos and 7680fps super-slow-motion video capture.
Wired charging is gaining speed and Chinese smartphone manufacturers are setting records. With developments in battery tech, Oppo even promises to launch a phone that can be fully charged in 15 minutes. Xiaomi, Realme, Vivo and Samsung have released mid-range phones featuring ultra-fast charging and ensuring better battery capacities for their smartphone designs./TISG