I don't do phone reviews much anymore, especially Android devices. What's to review? They're always faster than the last one with a better camera than the last one. With the smartphone market saturated now with Android devices (roughly 80% of market share) most phones are much like the others.
I'm making an exception though because I just may have found the best Android device ever and another phone that's the best for anyone who uses Google.
The LG VU20 is remarkable in many ways; its size, screen and cameras. That's all we really care about now right?
The screen is a tad larger than the iPhone 7-plus but it appears to be much larger because the screen goes all the way to the edges of the 5.7" phone. Watching a video on the VU20 is a treat, almost like watching on an iPad mini. The colors are as clear as they can be. I watched part of the Garth Brooks in Yankee Stadium concert on the Direct TV app and the quality of the picture was as good as any device I've seen.
The cameras are exceptional. Two cameras on the rear side. One is standard and the other is wide-angle which, if you've never compared the two, is a bonus for anyone serious about photos. Wide-angle shots of landscapes and group shots are much better but just like with many professional DSLRs, there is a bit of a bend on the sides of the shots. That doesn't always matter.
The front-facing camera (selfie) also has a wide-angle lens for better group selfies. Switching between one and another is a simple tap on the screen rather than needing to go through settings. Speaking still of the camera, for serious photographers who want more control the VU20 has an option for full-manual so users can set exposure, focus, depth of field etc.
If there is something I don't like about the VU20, there is no 'on/off button. You have to tap the volume button and tap the screen for it to wake up. There is a third button on the side of the phone where I expected the on/off switch to be but that button released the back plate. I found it frustrating because I couldn't remember and had to keep attaching the back plate everytime I hit the eject button.
The LG VU20 is available through AT&T.
Verizon has the exclusive rights to another brand new phone that Android fans have been crying for for months. The Pixel and Pixel XL are made by Google and all of the Google apps and features are loaded onto the phone natively. Google users will be particularly interest in the Pixel as everything you do on the phone has some degree of Android's ecosystem. Google has been touting the fact that Pixel users don't have to worry about running out of space on their phones because each photo is automatically sent to the cloud .
That can be true of any other smartphone but only if you download an app.
Another key feature of the Pixel is the availability and convenience of Google Now, the company's voice assistant (similar to Siri). Instead of tapping on the screen for Google, she's listening for her name to be called. Say "Okay Google..." and the phone wakes up and she (or he) will ask what you want or need. Of course I tried it out like most other people, asking "Okay Google, what is the weather forecast?" She will also tell you a joke, read a poem or look up and read every football score, if you ask her.
Android devices make up the largest percentage of smartphone sales and use worldwide and in the United States. Galaxy Note 7 smartphone owners still looking for the right device to replace their re-called smartphone would do good to look at these phones.