EE Pocket-lint Gadget Awards 2018 nominees: Best Mid-Range Smartphone

The Pocket-lint Gadget Awards will be taking place in November, celebrating the nominations across 18 categories from smartphones and tablets to games and cameras. All of the devices and products nominated have been reviewed by us in full over the last 12 months and there are some excellent contenders. As usual, we will be diving a little deeper into each category, giving you a run down of the nominations and why they have been shortlisted.

Here we are looking at the best of the mid-range smartphones, following on from best smartphones yesterday, while the other categories will appear in separate features over the next couple of weeks.

Pocket-lintAsus Zenfone 5 Lead image 1

Asus Zenfone 5


Vote for the Asus Zenfone 5 | Read the full review


On paper the Asus Zenfone 5 is a well equipped mid-price smartphone. Design-wise, the Zenfone’s iPhone XS-like exterior is generally a success, yet small quirks such as the fingerprint scanner’s high position and so-so software experience hold it back from achieving greater things. Overall, the Zenfone 5 is a solid backbone mid-price smartphone from which Asus can evolve and progress.

It gets enough right to make it worthy of consideration, but with Honor, Moto and Nokia all knocking on Asus’ door (often for less money), it’s also got its work cut out.

Honor 10 review image 1

Honor 10


Vote for the Honor 10 | Read the full review


The Honor 10 offers heaps for its asking price, cementing its position as one of the best affordable flagship phones available – the likes of which ought to draw away some potential OnePlus 6 customers who are lured in by Honor’s spangly two-tone design. Where the Honor 10 gets things right, it gets them really right. For a sub-GBP400 phone it looks fantastic, is a pleasure to use thanks to the elongated screen aspect ratio, there’s heaps of power on board to make light of any task, while the dual camera setup and AI Camera make photography easy.

You’ll struggle to find a better phone at this price.

Pocket-lintHonor Play review image 1

Honor Play


Vote for Honor Play | Read the full review


In the last few years it’s OnePlus that’s ruled the affordable flagship roost. The Honor Play, however, is available in the UK and Europe for an amazing GBP279 and EUR299 respectively. That’s an incredible price that undercuts OnePlus by approaching two hundred quid.

With its massive screen, great overall performance, exceptional battery life, considered design and crazy-good asking price, the Honor Play doesn’t just put itself into a competitive spot, it wipes the floor with its competition.

Pocket-lintHuawei Mate 20 Lite review image 1

Huawei Mate 20 Lite


Vote for the Huawei Mate 20 Lite | Read the full review


One look at the Mate 20 Lite’s neat and tidy exterior design would suggest it’s a great phone. It’s let down by context: the Honor Play is GBP100 cheaper and that phone is far more powerful and stable and we’ve had issues with its performance too. On face value the Mate 20 Lite is a perfectly acceptable mid-tier phone though.

Dig a bit deeper, and a series of small issues chip away at its initial impression but it’s got a solid design, significant battery life and dual cameras for a good price.

Motorola Moto G6 Plus review image 1

Motorola Moto G6 Plus


Vote for the Motorola Moto G6 Plus | Read the full review


The Motorola Moto G6 Plus is the best of the G series, representing a considerable shift for the series and push towards premium. It offers aplenty. There’s a dual camera, fast-charging, an 18:9 aspect ratio screen, modern glass design, fingerprint scanner, and decent battery life to boot (far better than the G6, we found).

The power boost compared to the standard G6 also puts this phone in a much more comfortable position.

Pocket-lintNokia 7 Plus Review image 1

Nokia 7 Plus


Vote for the Nokia 7 Plus | Read the full review


The Nokia 7 Plus is one of Nokia’s biggest phones, physically. And, arguably, one of its most important phones. By embracing the 18:9 aspect ratio, the 7 Plus delivers that modern display.

There’s plenty of power for the price, while battery endurance is respectable and fast-charging certainly useful. The pure Android One software is also great to use and it’s all matched with a great dual camera combination. This is one of the most affordable 2x zoom smartphones on the market and, generally speaking, it delivers a solid experience, providing more than cheaper dual-lens systems that only offer bokeh modes.


Voting in the 15th annual EE Pocket-lint Awards is now open, so you can let us know which one of the great phones above you think should win the Best Mid-Range Smartphone award for this year and give us your verdict on all, or some, of the other tech across the 17 categories.

Winners will be announced at the exclusive event in London on 13 November in association with EE.

Voting closes on 2 November.

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