Best-Rated Smartphones in Australia

Review the best new smartphones from Apple, OPPO, Samsung and Google on their user friendliness, battery and charging performance, camera quality, design, durability/longevity, value for money and overall satisfaction with Canstar Blue’s customer ratings.

See Our Ratings Methodology.

Most Satisfied Customers | Samsung

Samsung has been awarded top spot in Canstar Blue’s 2023 smartphone ratings, scoring an impressive five stars across all categories including overall satisfaction.

Fact Checked Fact Checked

How we rate smartphones

Our ratings compare a range of smartphones on customer satisfaction, as rated by Australians. It’s like asking a bunch of people which smartphone brands they think are best, but in one place rather than trawling through websites and other reviews.

Canstar Blue surveyed 1,357 Australians for their feedback on smartphones they’ve purchased in the last two years. This refers to new smartphones (not refurbished or second-hand devices) that were bought outright or on a phone plan.

  • The outcomes reported in these ratings are measured via accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics.

Survey respondents are asked to rate their satisfaction with their smartphone brand from zero to 10, with zero meaning extremely dissatisfied and 10 meaning extremely satisfied. Smartphone brand satisfaction is rated on the following criteria:

  • Overall satisfaction: measures consumer satisfaction with a smartphone brand as an individual score, NOT the combined total of all criteria.
  • User friendliness: the smartphone is easy to set up and use.
  • Design: the smartphone looks and feels good to use.
  • Durability: the smartphone feels sturdy and is able to handle general usage and portability with minimal damage.
  • Value for money: the quality of the smartphone is good enough, or exceeds expectations for the price paid.
  • Camera quality: the built-in cameras produce good results under a range of conditions and with a variety of subjects.
  • Battery and charging performance: the smartphone battery lasts well during usage and it is easy and efficient to charge.

The winning brand is the brand that receives the highest Overall satisfaction rating. All the scores from the Overall satisfaction criteria are then combined and averaged to determine the overall winner.

  • Overall satisfaction is asked as a specific question and represents an individual measure, not a combined total of all criteria.
  • When we cannot determine a clear winner from the criteria for the Overall satisfaction rating, we will then look at the other criteria measured in the rating.
    • The brand with the highest number of five-star ratings within the supporting criteria will become the five-star recipient in overall satisfaction, and therefore win the award. If a clear leading brand still cannot be determined from the supporting criteria, joint winners will be declared.

To qualify in the ratings results, brands must have received a minimum of 30 responses to be included. Therefore, not all smartphone brands in the market will be compared in this survey. Brands rated in this survey are listed below in order of best overall satisfaction.

  • Samsung
  • Apple
  • OPPO
  • Google

Find more information on our Most Satisfied Customers ratings.


Best smartphone brands in Australia

  1. Samsung
  2. Apple
  3. OPPO
  4. Google

Not sure which smartphone to buy? Check out our buying guide below.

1. Samsung

Ratings resultgalaxy-s22

Samsung took out the top spot for the first time in our ratings (beating out past winners Apple and OPPO) with its five-star performance across all categories, including overall satisfaction.

Editor’s notes

Samsung is arguably the king of the Android phones with a loyal customer base — and it’s not without reason. Each year the tech giant releases its latest smartphones, including the company’s flagship Galaxy S series, which continues to be one of the most popular premium phone ranges and consistently offers some of the best phone specs and features on the market.

Not only does Samsung produce one of the best premium smartphones on the market, but it also regularly releases a supporting range of smartphones including its foldable devices, the Galaxy Z series, along with its more budget-friendly Galaxy A series. No matter the type of phone you’re looking for, it’s likely Samsung will have something to suit your needs.

Read our reviews:

Buy the Samsung Galaxy S23 series phones


Phone Features Storage Size Price
Samsung Galaxy S23 phone in purple

Samsung Galaxy S23 5G

  • 6.1-inch display
  • Rear cameras: 50MP wide + 12MP ultra-wide + 10MP telephoto
  • Front camera: 12MP
  • 3,900mAh battery
  • Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor for Galaxy
  • Cream, Green, Lavender and Phantom Black colours
128GB $1,349 Shop now
Samsung Galaxy S23+ in black

Samsung Galaxy S23+ 5G

  • 6.6-inch display
  • Rear cameras: 50MP wide + 12MP ultra-wide + 10MP telephoto
  • Front camera: 12MP
  • 4,700mAh battery
  • Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor for Galaxy
  • Cream, Green, Lavender and Phantom Black colours
256GB $1,649 Shop now
Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra in green

Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra 5G

  • 6.8-inch display
  • Rear cameras: 200MP wide + 12MP ultra-wide + 10MP telephoto
  • Front camera: 12MP
  • 5,000mAh battery
  • Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor for Galaxy
  • Cream, Green, Lavender and Phantom Black colours
256GB $1,949 Shop now

Samsung phone plans

You can buy Samsung phones outright from a range of retailers (including direct from Samsung) or on a plan from several telcos. Samsung’s most popular devices, such as the Galaxy S and Galaxy Z series, are readily available on phone plans from the telcos, but you might find only a limited number of its cheaper devices will be available on a plan.

The following table shows a selection of 24-month 128GB Samsung Galaxy S23 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

2. Apple

Ratings resultsPurple iPhone 14

The consecutive 2021 and 2022 winner Apple slipped into second position behind its biggest competitor. It scored five stars for both user friendliness and design, four stars for durability, value for money, camera quality and overall satisfaction, and picked up three stars for battery and charging performance. Apple was the only brand in these ratings to not score five stars for value for money.

Editor’s notes

Apple is one of the few phone brands to release only one simple range of phones each year. Its standard iPhone range — with the iPhone 15 series its most recent incarnation — is one of the most hotly anticipated phone launches each year. While the price tag might be too high for some, iPhones are packed with the best of the best features Apple has to offer, and often boast some of the best and industry-leading camera systems on the market.

While its reputation is mostly built on its premium smartphone offerings, Apple also produces a more affordable iPhone SE with a slightly more budget-friendly price point and more simplified features. This makes the SE a great alternative for anyone looking for that unique Apple operating system, but without all the bells and whistles.

Read our reviews:

iPhone plans

Apple’s iPhones are available to buy from a range of retailers, including the Apple store. You can also buy your iPhone on a plan from the big three telcos — Telstra, Optus and Vodafone.

The following table shows a selection of 24-month 128GB iPhone 15 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.


Ratings result

OPPO Find X5 Lite in blackOPPO was runner up in our 2022 ratings and a past winner, but this time around it has dropped into third spot. However, the brand still racked up an impressive score with five stars for value for money, four stars across most categories including overall satisfaction, user friendliness, design, durability and battery and charging performance, and three stars for camera quality.

Editor’s notes

OPPO is a well-known brand in its home market of China, but has continued to grow its international presence over the years. It’s a brand known for innovative design, great features and reasonably affordable price points.

It’s perhaps best known for its range of budget-friendly devices — the A series — packed with great features at cheaper prices. OPPO also produces the more design-forward Reno series and the premium Find X series, which has positioned itself as a strong competitor to Samsung’s Galaxy S series in recent years.

Read our reviews:

OPPO phone plans

OPPO’s devices are available to buy outright from a range of retailers, while some devices may also be available to buy on a plan from some telcos. Typically the Find X series will be available from telcos, but some providers might not offer the full range.

The following table shows a selection of 24-month 256GB OPPO Find X5 Pro plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

4. Google

Ratings results

Google Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro in green colourways

Rounding out our 2023 smartphone ratings is Google, which scored its only five stars in value for money. It scored four stars for durability, camera quality and battery and charging performance, and scored three stars for user friendliness, design and overall satisfaction.

Editor’s notes

Google, much like Apple, keeps its phone lineups very simple with a small range of devices released each year under the Pixel name. Its Pixel phone combines both software and hardware to offer a powerful performance and intuitive user experience.

The Pixel devices are mostly priced on the premium end of the spectrum (but typically a bit cheaper than Samsung and Apple’s premium phones), however Google does release a more budget-friendly device which is still packed with great features. The most recent Pixel releases — both the Pixel 7 series and older Pixel 6 series — have been generally well received and showcase some of the tech giant’s most innovative features.

Read our reviews:

Pixel phone plans

Google’s Pixel phones are available to buy outright from a range of retailers (including the Google online shop) and you can also buy them on a plan from select telcos.

The following table shows a selection of 24-month 128GB Google Pixel 7 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

5. Other smartphone brands

There are many different smartphone brands on the Australian market, however not all brands quality for our ratings (based on the minimum sample survey size). This doesn’t mean these other brands aren’t worth exploring. The smartphone market is extremely competitive, and while many brands featured in this rating tend to produce premium smartphones, there are other brands offering devices at a range of price points, so it’s still worth exploring your options. Here are some other brands you may wish to look into.

  • Alcatel
  • Motorola
  • Nokia

  • Optus
  • Realme
  • TCL
  • Telstra

Compare more products featured in our Most Satisfied Customers Awards

Smartphone buying guide

Smartphones are an important necessity for most of us, making our lives simpler and communication easier, so if you’re in need of a new phone, it’s a hard purchase to put off. Of those surveyed, 56% purchased their phone outright, 27% purchased their new phone on a plan and 15% upgraded to a new phone with their current phone plan. 

While some brands remain competitive with cheaper and more affordable phones, Aussies are still paying a lot for their smartphones. The average price paid by those who purchased outright was $913, while those who bought their phone on a plan are paying $87 per month on average.

Not only is price an important factor, but brand can be a make or break for some. 57% of those surveyed stated that they always buy the same brand of smartphone — and 57% of THOSE respondents did so because they think the brand they use is the best.

However, with each year comes a slew of phone releases and upgrades, which can be overwhelming for some. Of those surveyed, 32% said they had researched and/or compared brands and/or models before purchase, while 20% compared specs of models of the same phone lineup.

Pros and cons of smartphones

While it’s pretty much an essential item for most of us to have, there is still a lot to think about before purchase. Here are some pros and cons you might wish to consider.


  • Wide range of quality devices to choose from at range of price points
  • Features and devices to suit certain needs (such as gaming, content creation, etc)
  • Technology is improving with each year


  • Cheaper devices might compromise on features and technology
  • Premium devices rather expensive to buy, especially if you prefer buying outright
  • Buying on a plan from a telco can lock you in to one provider for 12, 24 or 36 months

Types of smartphones

Not all smartphones are created equal. While they all typically follow the same formula — touchscreen functionality with built-in cameras, cellular and internet connectivity — there’s a wide range of smartphones on the market at any given time and they can vary greatly in price and features.

There are plenty of cheap and budget-friendly phones on the market, but just because it has a cheaper price tag, doesn’t mean it’s a bad phone. Often brands will use more simple features, such as a more basic camera setup, a more basic screen (resolution and materials), lower refresh rate and perhaps more simple or slightly older technology such as a basic or older processor.

These phones can be a great alternative for anyone who doesn’t want all the flashy extras and simply needs the basics such as internet access, calls and simple photo taking. These days, the technology in smartphones is so good that cheaper phones available today might be of a better quality, and have better quality cameras, than premium phones of several years ago.

Some smartphones might also be designed for a specific user. There are some phones on the market specifically focused on mobile gaming, with more powerful processors and bigger batteries. While other phones, such as foldable phones or phones with a stylus, could be aimed at multitaskers and people who tend to use their phones for work and/or study purposes.

There are also devices that include photography and videography features that are useful to content creators and photography enthusiasts, and indeed 17% of those we surveyed cited camera quality for the main reason they purchased their phone.

It’s important to consider what you need from your smartphone. If you want a device with only the basics and don’t take too many photos, you might want to look at a budget-friendly handset, while anyone who regularly enjoys mobile gaming might want a phone designed to withstand the intensive usage. Just because a phone has all of the ‘best’ features and flashy extras, doesn’t mean it’s going to be the best phone for you.

How much do smartphones cost?

Smartphones can vary greatly in price. You can find cheap and basic smartphones around the $100-$200 AUD price mark, while the most expensive phones can cost well over $1,000 and even $2,000 AUD.

Often the technology and storage size (in the case of premium devices) will determine how much you pay for a device. Companies like Apple and Google will focus most of their attention on producing premium smartphones with the best technology currently available, however they can also repackage parts of this technology, and perhaps tech used in some older devices, to create a more affordable alternative.

Keep in mind that going for a cheaper smartphone might mean you need to compromise on some features and that the performance of the device might not be as quick or seamless as a premium device.

Which smartphone should you buy?

Choosing a smartphone to buy can be complicated and confusing, especially considering the sheer amount of phones released each year. Even if you have a clear picture of which brand or operating system you want, it can be hard to distinguish between models, and you might even fall into the trap of buying the more expensive phone just for the sake of it.

However, taking a more considered approach to buying a smartphone could help you find a device suited to your needs and save you some money along the way.


Perhaps the first point of call is to set yourself a realistic budget for how much you’re willing to spend on your phone. Considering some phones can cost upwards of $1,000, buying the most premium phone could be out of reach for some.

Even if you opt to buy on a phone plan and split your device costs over 12, 24 or 36 months (depending on the telco you buy through), that monthly cost could still be expensive, so consider it as part of your weekly budget and whether you can afford the device repayments and cost of the bundled plan. Telcos will usually require you to bundle with a postpaid phone plan for the duration of your repayment period and these plans can be more expensive than some SIM-only plans.

Brand and operating system

When comparing smartphones, you might wish for a certain brand or operating system, especially if you’re familiar with and comfortable using one brand/OS over others. While there are two major operating systems (Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android which is used on most other devices), there are still differences between how some Android devices operate, so you might also have a preference of brand even if you’re looking at an Android phone.

Features and specs

Once you have a general idea of how much you’re willing to spend, and whether you have a specific brand or operating system preference, it’s time to compare the phone’s features and specs.

Consider how you mostly use your phone. Do you watch a lot of videos? If so, you might want to look into a phone with a larger and/or high-quality screen. If you prefer to go headphone-free, you might also want to look into devices with a focus on quality built-in speakers. For keen mobile gamers, you’ll want to look at gamer-specific phones or phones with top-quality processors and big batteries. If you take a lot of photos, you’ll probably want to compare phones with great camera specs and a range of photography features.

While it might be tempting to want the ‘best’ features, being more realistic about your needs and how you mostly use your phone could save you some money. For instance, if you’re comparing premium devices such as iPhones or Samsung Galaxy S devices, and you don’t take too many photos, you can save a bit of money by going for the standard flagship model (such as the iPhone 14 or Samsung Galaxy S22) rather than the ‘pro’ version (such as the iPhone 14 Pro or Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra).

Keep an eye on sales or opt for the previous year’s phone model

If you’ve got a particular phone in mind, it might be worth waiting for big sales periods to pick up a bit of a discount on your device. Many brands, retailers and telcos offer discounts on devices throughout the year, especially during big sales events like Black Friday.

Another way to save money is to go for the older version of a device. This could mean that instead of buying the phone released this year, you pick up the model released the previous year (if there is still stock available). Considering many phone releases offer incremental updates to the predecessor, having a phone with technology that’s a year old might not even be noticeable.

If you’re not in desperate need for your new phone, and you have your eye on a certain model, it might even be worth holding off the upgrade until the brand releases its new device and drops the price of the phone you’ve been looking at.

Where can you buy smartphones?

There are several options for buying your new smartphone. You can buy your phone outright from retailers, and some device manufacturers may have a retail and/or online store where you can buy your phone. Some telcos also offer smartphones which are usually available to buy on a phone plan (the handset bundled with a phone plan), although some telcos also offer the option to buy your device outright. Here are some of the retailers and telcos offering smartphones.

  • Amazon Australia
  • Apple store
  • Big W
  • Bing Lee
  • Harvey Norman
  • JB Hi-Fi
  • Mobileciti
  • Optus
  • Samsung store
  • Southern Phone
  • Target
  • TeleChoice
  • Telstra
  • The Good Guys
  • Vodafone
  • Woolworths Mobile

There is a lot to consider when buying a smartphone and it can be a much more complicated process than buying any other piece of technology. It’s important to set a realistic budget and compare a range of phones to see what kind of value for money is available to you and to find a phone that best suits your needs.

About our technology experts

Utilities Editor: Tara Donnelly


This page was written and is regularly updated by Canstar Blue’s Utilities Editor, Tara Donnelly. Having spent years writing for and editing telco comparison websites, she’s an expert in all things phone & internet, including phone plans and how to find the best deal for your family. She loves to highlight the next best phone deals, while also flagging the things you need to be aware of. Tara also acts as a spokesperson for Canstar Blue.
Meet the Editorial Team

Samantha Howse: Consumer Research Specialist

Sam Howse Research Specialist

Samantha Howse is Canstar Blue’s Consumer Research Specialist, coordinating the consumer research program behind our customer satisfaction awards across Canstar and Canstar Blue in Australia and New Zealand. Sam has earned a Bachelor of Business (Marketing) from Griffith University and, with seven years in market research and 2 years in marketing, she is experienced in survey design, implementation and analysis, coupled with an understanding of marketing principles and best practice.

Meet the Research Team

Frequently Asked Questions

Canstar Blue surveyed 3,000 Australian adults across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have purchased a brand-new smartphone in the last 2 years – in this case, 1,357 people.

Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then by mean overall satisfaction. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.

Here are past winners of Canstar Blue’s Most Satisfied Customers – Smartphones ratings:

  • 2022: Apple
  • 2021: Apple
  • 2020: OPPO
  • 2019: OPPO
  • 2018: OPPO
  • 2016: Apple

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