Best Inexpensive Frameless Smartphones

Xiaomi Mi A2 Lite

The only model in the review, which is slightly «not up» to our stated passing score. The Mi A2 Lite screen occupies approximately 79.79% of the front panel area, but since in this price category with frameless smartphones, it’s quite sad, we decided not to find fault and round this figure to the nearest whole number. The device is interesting because it is produced under the AndroidOne program. At the same time, Xiaomi somehow managed to circumvent Google’s condition — not to equip such models with memory card slots. Moreover, Mi A2 Lite boasts a triple tray, i.e. you don’t have to make a difficult choice between a second SIM and the ability to increase the amount of built-in storage. The stuffing of the phone is suitable, it copes well with shooting video, and its Wi-Fi module can work in the 5 GHz band. Finally, the recommended smartphone demonstrates a very decent autonomy.

Main advantages:

  • «pure» Android;
  • there are no restrictions on storing images in the «cloud»;
  • good stuffing;
  • separate slot for a memory card.
Minuses:
  • does not support contactless payment systems;
  • The protective glass scratches easily.
Models in the line:
  • Xiaomi Mi A2 Lite

    — for model with 4/64GB memory

  • Xiaomi Mi A2 Lite 32GB
    — for the model with 3/32GB memory
  • Xiaomi Mi A2 Lite 32GB
    — for model with 4/32GB memory

9.4
/ ten
Rating

Reviews

On the one hand, we have good support for current OS versions. On the other hand, without a proprietary shell, functionality suffers, it takes time to bring some points to mind.

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Vivo Y81

Strictly speaking, this model does not fully meet our selection criteria, since its prevalence in the trading network cannot be called really wide. On the other hand, Vivo Y81 is officially sold in MTS showrooms and branded stores, so finding a recommended smartphone is not very difficult. The manufacturer’s website promises an 88% screen-to-body ratio, but the real figure is closer to 83%. The defining features of the device, we would include the absence of a fingerprint scanner and an LED event indicator, as well as the presence of a triple card tray and the ability to work on all LTE bands used by our telecom operators. As for the identification of the owner, the developers of the model decided to limit themselves to face unlocking. This technology is implemented well here — in difficult conditions, the backlight turns on, and its brightness is adjusted automatically.

Main advantages:

  • supports absolutely all important LTE bands;
  • both SIM cards in 4G networks work simultaneously;
  • good autonomy;
  • separate slot for a memory card.
Minuses:
  • low resolution with such a screen diagonal;
  • no fingerprint scanner;
  • no event indicator.

9.2
/ ten
Rating

Reviews

Good fast frameless phone. The battery lasts 2 days (viber, whatsapp, camera, a lot of calls). The camera is not great, but for the money…

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Alcatel 5V

Next in the ranking is one of the most affordable bezel-less smartphones with support for contactless payment technology. I am especially pleased that the corresponding module in Alcatel 5V works with all types of transport cards. The screen of the phone occupies almost 85% of its front surface. Naturally, the fingerprint scanner sensor is located on the back of the smartphone. However, the device can also be unlocked through face recognition. There is a dual main camera, for which the presence of an intelligent system is announced, designed to help with the settings when shooting various scenes, and even the possibility of using the Google Lens service in a vague future. Of the unpleasant features — in 4G networks, this smartphone can only work on the B3 and B7 bands, and there is also a combined card tray. And finally, be careful. The model without the letter ‘V’ in the name is a completely different device.

Main advantages:

  • full-featured NFC module;
  • good autonomy;
  • advanced settings for power saving modes.
Minuses:
  • does not support all current LTE bands;

  • hybrid slot for a memory card / second SIM card.

9.0
/ ten
Rating

Reviews

Very smart smartphone. It does not hang at all, does not heat up, keeps the battery perfectly. With average use — 2 days. Convenient and clear interface, good screen. The camera is also quite decent, with a blur effect on both the front and rear. The only downside is no sound.

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The best bezel-less smartphones in the mid-range price range

Honor 10

Our rating of the best representatives of an extremely small group of frameless smartphones with a front-mounted fingerprint scanner continues. Due to this design feature, it cannot boast of a record indicator of the “useful” area of ​​the front panel, although it fits within the framework we set (the screen share is slightly more than 80%). Since the recommended smartphone is the flagship of a well-known brand, it is simply due to its status to demonstrate excellent abilities in various “disciplines”, but we will note the main drawback of Honor 10. The already mentioned fingerprint scanner uses the ultrasonic authentication principle. Theoretically, it is more tolerant of wet, dirty and cut fingers, but in this case its implementation is far from perfect. Many phone owners note a large number of recognition errors, as well as fuzzy fixation of navigation gestures by the scanner.

Main advantages:

  • productive stuffing;
  • very high quality chamber part;
  • premium looks.
Minuses:
  • poor design of the fingerprint scanner;
  • support for memory cards is not provided;
  • no optical stabilization, moisture protection and mini-jack.
Models in the line:
  • Honor 10

    — for model with 4/64GB memory

  • Honor 10 128GB
    — for the model with 4/128GB memory

9.5
/ ten
Rating

Reviews

The lack of a scanner is compensated by face recognition. In most cases, when you take the phone in your hand or take it out of your pocket, it wakes up and unlocks in the face instantly — you don’t need to press anything. Works more stable than the scanner for me.

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Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S

This model convincingly proves that at least 82% of the area of ​​the front panel of a smartphone can be used to display information without any problems and it is easy to do without the notorious “notch” on the screen. It remains for us to wait until manufacturers, following the example of Apple, begin to massively use display matrices with a contact group on the reverse side in order to minimize the “chins” of communicators for their greater framelessness. True, in this case, you will have to look for a new place for the front cameras. By the way, this is the only component of Mi Mix 2S, in which its filling differs from the «insides» of the company’s flagship (Mi8). Top hardware platform, excellent camera part, wireless charging, design from a famous master — what else do you need for complete happiness? Unless the appearance of normal protection against dust and moisture.

Main advantages:

  • powerful hardware;
  • excellent cameras;
  • support for wireless charging technology;
  • spectacular design.
Minuses:
  • inconvenient place for the front camera;
  • no moisture protection;
  • memory cards are not supported.
Models in the line:
  • Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S

    — for model with 6/64GB memory

  • Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S 128GB

    — for the model with 6/128GB memory

9.5
/ ten
Rating

Reviews

A beautiful screen and an interesting front camera solution. At first it was unusual, now I have already adapted to turn the phone over so as not to inadvertently close the camera with my finger. Wireless charging is a must for me. There are no comments on it. And, of course, the device is smart from the word «ah».

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The best frameless top-level smartphones

One Plus 6

The next generation of “flagship killers” pleases brand fans with optical stabilization that has appeared, but disappoints with the lack of declared moisture protection and wireless charging. Apparently, these features of top models are still not a priority for OnePlus, unlike trendy bangs or a conditionally frameless screen (which occupies 83% of the front panel area here). Considering that Xiaomi is also trying to play in the same field, and with several interesting and diverse offers at once, it will not be easy to win the sympathy of potential buyers for OnePlus 6 smartphones. However, due to the combination of advantages, we gave preference to them. The sixth «one-place» has a better display, a better chamber part, a more convenient shell and more active support. But its price in official retail is not encouraging.

Main advantages:

  • top filling;
  • excellent display;
  • very worthy chamber part;
  • convenient shell with a lot of customization options;
  • continuous technical support.
Minuses:
  • does not support wireless charging technology;
  • the reliability of moisture protection is not declared;
  • overpriced «white» version.
Models in the line:
  • One Plus 6

    — for model with 6/64GB memory

  • OnePlus 6 128GB

    — for the model with 8/128GB memory

  • OnePlus 6 256GB

    — for the model with 8/256GB memory

9.5
/ ten
Rating

Reviews

The device is just amazing. The connection quality is very good. Gesture control works great, I got used to it in 5 minutes. The screen matrix from Samsung is very good. Unusually fast charging — in 15 minutes to 50%. Convenient button for switching sound / vibro / silent modes. Photos in auto mode are very good, close to the level of the iPhone 8+ and X.

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Samsung Galaxy S9+

Despite the fact that the Galaxy S9 surpasses the older model of the line by a whole percentage in terms of the “main” indicator for this review, we decided to nominate the plus version of the Samsung flagship. Still, her talents in terms of photo and video shooting are noticeably higher, and for the sake of framelessness alone, no one buys a device of this class. Just in case, we recall that it was the South Korean marketers who coined this term, meaning the curving edges of the screen. Let’s admit it — a chic screen, under which the most powerful hardware and an advanced chamber part with a variable aperture are hidden, and are surrounded by high-quality stereo speakers from AKG. Well, one more pleasant moment — the developers of the Galaxy S9 + have retained the ability to use memory cards. True, due to the second SIM card, but this is also pleasing. Especially, against the background of the total absence of even hybrid slots in almost all modern top-end smartphones.

Main advantages:

  • high performance hardware platform;
  • excellent display;
  • one of the best cameras for today;
  • high-quality sound path;
  • support for memory cards.
Minuses:
  • software prohibition of recording telephone conversations;
  • average autonomy;
  • high price.
Models in the line:
  • Samsung Galaxy S9+

    — for model with 64GB built-in memory

  • Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus 128GB
    — for the model with 6/128GB memory
  • Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus 256GB
    — for the model with 6/256GB memory

9.5
/ ten
Rating

Reviews

The most uncompromising flagship on the market, with huge capabilities.

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Apple iPhone Xs Max

We consider the cost of an iPhone under a hundred thousand to be completely inadequate, but 85% of the usable area is a weighty argument in favor of the presence of the iPhone Xs Max in the ranking of the best frameless smartphones. It is the versions with a larger screen diagonal, insofar as the models differ only in it, while the younger Xs has a corresponding figure of 81%. More precisely, there is one more fundamental difference — for the older novelty there is a Chinese hardware version with the ability to install two SIM cards. We specifically focus on this, because. support for eSIM technology, which appeared in the «regular» Xs, is absolutely useless for us. There are no other revolutionary innovations. Well, not to consider the ability of the phone to withstand immersion to great depths as such, and everyone has long been accustomed to the next increase in the level of performance of the filling or the quality of shooting.

Main advantages:

  • the most productive stuffing among today’s smartphones;
  • excellent ability to video and photography;
  • powerful image component.
Minuses:
  • very meager equipment for the money;
  • hardware support for two SIM cards is only available in the Chinese version;
  • prohibitively high price.
Models in the line:
  • Apple iPhone Xs Max

    — for model with 64GB built-in memory

  • Apple iPhone Xs Max 256GB
    — for the model with 4/256GB memory
  • Apple iPhone Xs Max 512GB
    — for the model with 4/512GB memory

9.3
/ ten
Rating

Reviews

I am satisfied with the phone, the screen is bombing, the battery holds, the performance is phenomenal, I did not notice any glitches.

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