Best Phones in 2023 – Top Smartphones In UAE

Abbas Jaffar Ali
27 Min Read
Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra - the best phone of 2023 for the UAE
  • February 2023: The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra enters the top ten at #1 spot while the S22 Ultra moves to a lower position
  • January 2023: iPhone 14 Plus replaces the iPhone 14
  • December 2022: Huawei P50 Pro replaces Huawei P50 Pro

Buying a new smartphone can be very complicated, even in 2023. The sheer number of devices available from all sorts of brands, such as Apple, Samsung and Huawei, can overwhelm anyone and make the decision very hard. That’s where we set some guidelines to help you choose the best phone in the UAE for 2023.

The most important factor in deciding on a new smartphone is the price range, and if you are looking for the best phone, be prepared to spend some Dirhams and Dinars. If you’re more budget conscious, you should check out the best phones under AED 2000 or even the best phones under AED 1000. You should also keep an eye out on our best deals view page for all kinds of devices, including smartphones.

Once you have a budget in mind, the next decision is easier: iPhone or Android. If you know you want an iPhone, pick the latest model you can afford. If you’re in the Android camp- we have a list of the best Android phones to choose from. On the other hand, if the camera is the most important feature, then check out the best camera phones list. Some of us also want our phones to work out with smartwatches, so if you plan on using an Apple Watch, your only option is the iPhone.

But if you don’t care about any of that and really want the best phone, this list is for you. We have picked the smartphones that we believe are the best phones in the UAE for 2023 and have tested them in various features such as display, performance, battery life and cameras. We’ve also listed the key specs for each device, along with what the smartphone is good at and what could be improved.

Best Phones in the UAE for 2023

1. Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra is the first flagship smartphone of 2023 on this list and is setting up a very high bar for all upcoming phones. While it doesn’t look like a huge upgrade from last year’s Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra, Samsung has made all the right changes, starting with the new 200-megapixel camera that takes highly detailed shots during the day and beautiful ones at night. 

Samsung has also tweaked the design slightly, and the display is less curved now, which makes the phone fit better in your hand. The processor is faster this year while being more efficient on the battery, and the base model is now equipped with more RAM and capacity without getting a price bump. And yes, you still get the unmatched S Pen experience. Overall, the S22 Ultra might not have the best of everything from other phones on this list, but it is the most well-rounded phone, so it earns the top spot on our best phones for 2023.

Top Pick

Specs & Features

Weight: 234g | Thickness: 8.9mm | OS: Android 13 (OneUI 5.1) | Screen: 6.8” 1440 x 3088 pixels,, AMOLED, 120Hz | Processor: Octa-core Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 | RAM: 12GB | Storage: up to 1TB | Cellular: 5G, Dual SIM, eSIM | Rear camera: 200MP Quad Camera | Front camera: 12MP | Battery: 5000mAh, 45W Wired charging

  • Excellent performance
  • Great cameras
  • Superb battery life
  • Doesn't charge as fast as other Android phones
  • Not too big of an upgrade over the S22 Ultra
03/28/2023 11:52 pm GMT

Screen: The Galaxy S23 Ultra has a 6.8-inch OLED display with 1440 x 3088 pixel resolution and 120Hz refresh rate. If that sounds familiar, that’s because it is the same as last year’s model. However, the S22 Ultra still has the best screen of all smartphones we’ve looked at, so you’re not really losing out on anything. Having said that, I think Samsung could have pushed the refresh rate on the S23 Ultra to 144Hz to continue its dominance.

Performance: The Samsung S23 Ultra is powered by Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, which makes it the fastest Android phone currently available. But it doesn’t stop there, as these processors are custom-made “for Galaxy” with faster clock speeds on the GPU and performance core. That means the entire Galaxy S23 range will still be faster than other phones equipped with this chipset.

Camera: While the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra has an identical camera layout to its predecessor, you now get a new 200MP sensor with excellent performance. Photos taken at full 200MP resolution can crop quite clearly into distant objects. Nighttime photography has also improved with beautiful low-light shots, and so has the performance of the video camera. You still have the highly versatile zoom lenses at 3x and 10x, along with the ultrawide. The selfie camera has dropped from 40MP to 12MP but brings dual pixel technology for better selfies.

Battery Life: The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra has the same 5000mAh battery capacity as last year’s S22 Ultra; however, with a more efficient chipset, you are getting a lot more out of it. It managed to last almost two days on a full charge with moderate usage, which involved a fair bit of camera and 5G usage. Charging speeds of 45W on wired at 15W on wireless are good but far from industry-leading numbers from other phones in this roundup.

2. Apple iPhone 14 Pro Max

The iPhone 14 Pro Max is Apple’s highest-end phone and was our choice of the best phone in the UAE until the Galaxy S23 Ultra showed up. That could change when the iPhone 15 arrives, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t buy the iPhone 14 Pro Max- especially if you can find a good deal on it. It has everything a power user would want- a large and beautiful screen with high refresh rates, a processor that’s faster than any other mobile processor and a camera that can take stunning photos during day or night time. Let’s not forget the eco-system the iPhone offers as well as how polished mobile apps designed for it are. The iPhone 14 Pro Max is expensive, but it’s definitely worth it.

Also Great

Weight: 240g | Thickness: 7.9mm | OS: iOS 16 | Screen: 6.7” Retina, AMOLED, 120Hz | Processor: Hexa-core Apple A16 Bionic | RAM: 6GB | Storage: up to 1TB | Cellular: 5G, Nano-SIM, eSIM | Rear camera: 48MP Triple Camera | Front camera: 12MP | Battery: 4323mAh, 50% in 30 mins wired charging

  • Dynamic Island is delightful
  • Faster than any other phone
  • Excellent camera
  • Big and heavy
  • Slow to charge
03/29/2023 07:02 am GMT

Screen: The iPhone 14 Pro Max has a 6.7-inch OLED screen with a 1290 x 2796 pixel resolution, a 120Hz variable refresh rate and a very high peak brightness of 2,000 nits. New this year is an always-on mode that can show you notifications even when the phone is sleeping. Apple has also eliminated the notch on the top and instead, added a dynamic island with really cool animations to act as notifications or minimized apps.

Performance: The iPhone 14 Pro Max comes equipped with Apple’s latest A16 processor which smokes every other mobile processor. Combining that with the fast refresh rates of the screen and iOS optimisations gives you one of the fastest phones you can get.

Camera: The iPhone 14 Pro range takes a massive step forward with its 48 MP main camera. This allows the iPhone 14 Pro to take incredibly details shots, especially in ProRes mode. Apple has also improved the Ultrawide camera though the telephoto/optical camera remains the same as last year. The iPhone 14 Pro Max also ranks at the top of our best phone camera guide.

Battery Life: Apple spoilt us with battery life on last year’s iPhone 13 Pro Max, and the new iPhone 14 Pro Max is even better, offering a couple of hours of additional usage for easily getting a day and a half. Unfortunately, charging speeds haven’t improved and continue to remain on the lower side- both wired and wirelessly.

3. Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4

It took Samsung a few years, but the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 finally feels like a phone that can be used for just about everything. Samsung has improved the cameras on the phone, and the design is more refined than previous generations. You get the top specs and a phone that folds out into a mini tablet with a UI that handles the transitions beautifully.

Best Foldable

Specs & Features

Weight: 263g | Thickness: Unfolded 6.3mm, Folded 15.8mm | OS: Android 12L (OneUI 4.1) | Screen: 7.6”, AMOLED, 120Hz, Cover 6.2" AMOLED 120Hz | Processor: Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 | RAM: 12GB | Storage: up to 1TB | Cellular: 5G, Dual SIM, eSIM | Rear camera: 50MP Triple Camera | Front camera: 4MP under display | Battery: 4400mAh, 25W Wired charging

  • The best foldable phone for most people
  • Excellent inner display
  • Improved camera
  • Foldable tech still unproven
  • External screen still too narrow
03/29/2023 05:37 am GMT

Screen: Samsung continues to refine the display tech and aspect ratio with the Galaxy Z Fold series. This year’s model focuses more on the external display, making it slightly wider for better usage. The folding screen continues to be massive at 7.6 inches with AMOLED technology, 1812 x 2176 pixel resolution and 120Hz refresh rates for a butter-smooth experience. Although a stylus is not included, you can purchase an S-Pen separately to use with the Fold.

Performance: The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 updates the processor to the fastest one available at launch- the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1. You get the same memory and storage options as last year, which are 12GB RAM and 256GB to 1TB storage. You also get 5G support and dual SIM support along with Bluetooth 5.2 and Wi-Fi 6E.

Camera: The cameras on last year’s fold were strictly ok, and Samsung has rightly improved upon that. The main camera is now 50 MP f/1.8 which is a big improvement over last year’s 12 MP model, especially in nighttime photography. You also get the ultrawide camera as well as an improved zoom lens to shoot at 3X. The selfie camera is still under the display and not the best.

Battery Life: There’s not much change in battery tech on the Galaxy Z Fold 4 from last year’s model. You still have a 4400 mAh battery with 25w charging- it’s fine and should get you through a normal day, but not much beyond that.

4. Apple iPhone 14 Plus

The new iPhone that most people will get will be the iPhone 14 and you have two options- the regular iPhone 14 as well as the larger iPhone 14 Plus. . Because there isn’t a whole lot that different from last year’s model, we think most people should go for the larger iPhone 14 Plus so, at least, if feels newer. The larger display size also allows for a larger battery- Apple claims the iPhone 14 Plus has the longest battery life of any iPhone it has ever released.


Weight: 203 g| Thickness: 7.8 mm| OS: iOS 16, upgradable to iOS 16.2 | Screen: Super Retina XDR OLED, HDR10 | Processor: Apple A15 Bionic (5 nm)| RAM: 6GB| Storage: 128/256/512GB | Cellular: LTE / 5G | Rear camera: 12 MP (wide), 12 MP (ultrawide) | Front camera: 12 MP (wide) | Battery: Li-Ion 4323 mAh, Wired, PD2.0, 50% in 30 min, 15W wireless (MagSafe), 7.5W wireless (Qi)

  • Excellent battery life
  • Great performance
  • Good cameras
  • Low screen refresh rate
  • Specs not a huge improvement from iPhone 13
03/28/2023 10:48 pm GMT

Screen: While there isn’t much difference in the screen technology on the iPhone 14 compared to its predecessor, you at least get a larger size. The 6.7-inch retina (1284 x 2778 pixel) display is a great-looking screen but lacks the high refresh rates that are present in every other phone in this roundup.

Performance: The iPhone 14 Plus has the same processor as the iPhone 13 Pro. You may think that you’re getting an older processor, but in reality, it’s the second fastest processor on any mobile phone, bested only by Apple’s latest A16. Apple has increased the RAM on this year’s model to 6GB while storage sizes remain the same as t128GB, 256GB and 512GB.

Camera: The iPhone 14 Plus has a similar camera to last year’s model, but you should be able to get slightly better nighttime shots with it this year. The 12 MP main camera is accompanied by a 12 MP ultrawide camera on the back and a 12 MP selfie camera on the front.

Battery Life: Because of the larger size of the phone, you also get a bigger battery with the iPhone 14 Plus. In fact, Apple claims it to have the longest-lasting battery out of any iPhone the company has made.

5. Huawei Mate 50 Pro

Huawei continues to push forward with its latest release- the Huawei Mate 50 Pro. As expected, the phone packs an excellent camera system with a variable aperture on the primary camera and a periscope-based optical lens. There’s also the new super-tough Kunlun glass that survived our walnut challenge. Like other Huawei phones, the Mate 50 Pro lacks Google’s Services, and Play Store, which could be a blessing for some, but Huawei has put in a lot of work on its App Gallery that offers most of the important local apps.

Weight: 205 | Thickness: 8.5 mm| OS: EMUI 13 | Screen: 6.74 inches, OLED, 120Hz | Processor: Qualcomm SM8475 Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 4G (4 nm)| RAM: 8GB | Storage: 256GB/512GB | Cellular: LTE | Rear camera: 50 MP (Wide), 64 MP (Periscope Telephoto), 13 MP (Ultrawide)| Front camera: 13 MP (Wide), TOF 3D (Depth/Biometrics sensor)| Battery: Li-Po 4700 mAh

  • Incredible camera system
  • Tough Kunlun glass
  • App Gallery improving by the day
  • No 5G cellular
  • Lacks Google Play

Screen: The Huawei Mate 50 Pro has a 6.7-inch OLED display with curved sides, tiny bezels and a resolution of 1212 x 2616 pixels. The screen quality is excellent, with brilliant colour reproduction and a fast 120Hz refresh rate.

Performance: The Huawei Mate Pro is powered by the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor, which is not the latest CPU but fast enough. We didn’t find any performance issues using the phone as a daily driver. The lack of 5G does prevent it from touting the fastest download speeds.

Camera: Huawei has always been brilliant with cameras, and the Mate 50 Pro is no exception. It takes stunning shots, be it day or night.

Battery Life: The battery capacity on the Huawei Mate 50 Pro isn’t the largest we’ve seen compared to other phones, but thanks to software optimizations with EMUI, we managed to get a full day out of it. Charging speeds are decent at 66W wired and 50W wireless charging.

6. Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4

Specs & Features

Weight: 187g | Thickness: Unfolded 6.9mm, Folded: 17.1mm | OS: Android 12 (oneUI 4.1) | Screen: 6.7” FHD+, AMOLED, 120Hz, Cover: 1.9" | Processor: Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 | RAM: 8GB | Storage: up to 512GB | Cellular: 5G, Dual SIM, eSIM | Rear camera: 12MP Dual Camera | Front camera: 10MP | Battery: 3700mAh, 25W Wired charging

  • Good battery life
  • Flexible camera modes
  • Cute design
  • Older camera tech
  • Front screen could be bigger

Screen: The 6.7-inch flexible display has a 1080 x 2640 pixel resolution and looks great. The AMOLED screen has a fast refresh rate, and while the crease is visible, you stop noticing it after some time.

Performance: Equipped with the latest Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor, the Galaxy Z Flip 4 is fast to use. You have 8GB RAM and up to 512GB storage to get all things done. 5G is also supported for the latest cellular connectivity.

Camera: Samsung hasn’t upgraded the cameras on the Galaxy Z Flip 4, which is a shame however you get a lot more flexibility with screen positions in using the cameras now.

Battery Life: Samsung has improved the battery life on the Galaxy Z Flip 4 compared to its predecessor, and you can now easily get a day. Charging speeds aren’t the fastest, but it’s good enough.

7. Xiaomi 12


Specs & Features

Weight: 179g | Thickness: 8.2mm | OS: Android 12 (MIUI 13) | Screen: 6.28” FHD+, AMOLED, 120Hz | Processor: Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 | RAM: up to 12GB | Storage: up to 256GB | Cellular: 5G, Dual SIM | Rear camera: 50MP Triple Camera | Front camera: 32MP | Battery: 4500mAh, 67W Wired charging

  • Small flagship Android
  • Fast and power-efficient Snapdragon processor
  • Fast Charging
  • Secondary cameras aren't great
  • Display is only FHD+
03/29/2023 07:28 am GMT

Screen: The Xiaomi 12 comes with a 6.28″ AMOLED with 1080 x 2400 pixel resolution, which supports 68 billion colours, has a 120Hz refresh rate and is rated for Dolby Vision and HDR10+ with a peak brightness of 1100 nits. Visibility in bright light is good; colours are rich and crisp.

Performance: Under the hood, the Xiaomi 12 comes with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor and is supported by 8 or 12GB of RAM. You also get up to 256GB UFS3.1 storage. Put together, and these lead to a very powerful flagship that can handle any task you throw at it.

Camera: The camera on the Xiaomi 12 is 50MP wide with a 13MP ultra-wide and a 5MP macro sensor. While it doesn’t get the same triple 50MP treatment as its elder sibling does, the camera setup on the Xiaomi 12 is a very capable one. Content creators out there can record up to 8K video as well as 4K at 60fps HDR10+ footage. Photos from the 50MP wide lens come out crisp and have natural colours.

Battery Life: The ‘small’ Xiaomi 12 packs a massive 4500mAh battery inside. You get 67W charging (with the charger in the box), which gives you a full juice up from 0 in under 40 minutes. Not just that, if you have the right wireless charger, you can also charge it up with up to 50W wireless charging.

8. Motorola Edge 30 Ultra


Specs & Features

Weight: 198.5g | Thickness: 8.4mm | OS: Android 12 | Screen: 6.67” FHD+, P-OLED, 144Hz | Processor: Octa-core Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 | RAM: up to 12GB | Storage: 256GB | Cellular: 5G, Dual SIM | Rear camera: 200MP Triple Camera | Front camera: 60MP | Battery: 4610mAh, 125W Wired charging

  • First 200 MP camera we've tested
  • Crazy fast charging speed
  • Excellent performance
  • Secondary cameras could be better
  • Motorola isn't know for fast software updates
03/29/2023 05:12 am GMT

Screen: The Motorola Edge 30 Ultra has a 6.67-inch curved P-OLED display with a blazing-fast 144Hz refresh rate and a peak brightness of 1250 nits along with 1080 x 2400 pixel resolution. While it looks great, we would have preferred a less curved display as that helps prevent accidental touches.

Performance: Motorola went for the fastest components available for Android at launch, which means you get the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 with 12GB RAM and UFS 3.1 storage of 256GB. Other markets are getting higher storage versions, but the Middle East only has the 256GB model.

Camera: The Motorola Edge 30 Ultra comes equipped with a 200 MP camera which is the first we’ve seen on any phone. This allows it to take incredibly details photos. Night-time performance is also pretty good using pixel binning. While the telephoto camera isn’t the best, you can technically just crop from the 200 MP image for better results. You also get a 50 MP ultrawide and a 60 MP selfie camera.

Battery Life: The Motorola Edge 30 Ultra may not have the highest capacity battery, but it charges ridiculously fast. Motorola bundles a 125W charger in the box, which is fantastic and can get you a full day with just 7 minutes of charging. Wireless charging speeds are also very fast at 50W.

9. OnePlus 10 Pro


Specs & Features

Weight: 201g | Thickness: 8.6mm | OS: Android 12 (OxygenOS 12.1) | Screen: 6.7” QHD+, AMOLED, 120Hz | Processor: Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 | RAM: up to 12GB | Storage: up to 512GB | Cellular: 5G, Dual SIM | Rear camera: 48MP Triple Camera | Front camera: 32MP | Battery: 5000mAh, 80W Wired charging

  • Fast performance
  • Nice big screen
  • Fast charging
  • Good but not great cameras
  • Not a massive update over previous gen
03/29/2023 04:17 am GMT

Screen: The OnePlus 10 Pro has a massive 6.7-inch display with a fast 120Hz variable refresh rate and 1440 x 3216 pixel resolution. Colour production and brightness levels are also great.

Performance: The one area where the OnePlus 10 Pro does not disappoint is performance. The phone flies with the latest processor and tons of RAM with fast storage.

Camera: Continuing its partnership with Hasselblad, the OnePlus 10 Pro improves cameras over its predecessor but not by a massive amount. You get pretty good pictures but not as good as some of the other flagship phones.

Battery Life: The OnePlus Pro 10 has a massive 5,000 mAh battery and very fast wired and wireless charging. That combination means that you’ll seldom run out of juice.

10. Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

The Samsung Galaxy S22 was our favourite smartphone of 2022 until the iPhone 14 Pro Max was released. Following the release of the Galaxy S23 Ultra, we have moved it lower on this best phone list but haven’t removed it. It’s still an excellent phone and has a good 108-megapixel camera as well as S-Pen support. And you can’t find a better screen than the one on the S22 Ultra. Add to that some great performance and battery life, and you have an excellent phone that stands the test of time.


Specs & Features

Weight: 228g | Thickness: 8.9mm | OS: Android 12 (OneUI 4.1) | Screen: 6.8” QHD+, AMOLED, 120Hz | Processor: Octa-core Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 | RAM: up to 12GB | Storage: up to 1TB | Cellular: 5G, Dual SIM, eSIM | Rear camera: 108MP Quad Camera | Front camera: 40MP | Battery: 5000mAh, 45W Wired charging

  • Incredible cameras and zoom
  • Excellent S Pen
  • Beautiful screen
  • Battery life could be better
  • Charging could be faster
03/29/2023 05:47 am GMT

Screen: The Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra has a massive 6.8-inch OLED display with curved sides. While similar to last year’s model, Samsung has improved the brightness on the display, but besides that, it’s still the slightly curved sides with a sharp 1440 x 3088 pixels resolution and a smooth variable refresh rate of 120Hz.

Performance: The Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra uses the fastest processor available at the time of its release- the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1. It also has 8GB or 12GB of RAM and storage options from 256GB to 1TB. You also get 5G and dual SIM support along with Bluetooth 5.2 and Wi-Fi 6E.

Camera: There are four cameras on the back of the Galaxy S22 Ultra to get you that perfect shot. The main 108MP camera has an f/1.8 aperture great for nighttime photography as well as videos. You also get two telephoto cameras at 3X and 10X optical zooms while digital zooming allows you to go 100x. There’s also a 12MP ultra-wide camera and a 40MP selfie camera.

Battery Life: With a massive 5,000MAh battery, the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra should last you a full day and then some. You also get fast 45W wired charging which, while not the fastest, is fast enough to get you from 0 to 100 in an hour. There’s also support for 15W wireless charging and reverse wireless charging.

Best phones FAQs

Which is the best phone for 2023?

The newly released Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra currently takes the top spot as the best phone for 2023. The iPhone 14 Pro Max was the previous topper and is now mow moved to the second position in this best phones list.

Which smartphone is right for you?

There’s no right answer that fits everyone’s needs. If you’re looking for a foldable phone, the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 is great, or if you’re looking for an affordable phone, you might like something Xiaomi has to offer. On the other hand, if you want the best iPhone then look no further than the iPhone 14 Pro Max.

What are some important features to consider when buying a mobile phone?

The first thing you need to do is set a price range for yourself and once you have done that, decide between an iPhone or an Android. Once you have that nailed, look at the screen size you are comfortable with and the camera quality if you want to take good photos.

Which phone device has the best cameras?

The best camera phone is the iPhone 14 Pro Max at the moment. You can four picks in our roundup of best camera phones list.

Is this list for the best smartphones or all phones?

Almost all phones sold nowadays are smartphones, and we consider a phone to be a smartphone by default. If it’s not a smartphone, we will specifically call it a feature phone. For this list, we have only considered smartphones.

Which phone has the best performance?

The iPhone 14 Pro Mac with the Apple A16 processor is the fastest phone and offers the best performance.

Why is there no Google Pixel on this list

Google does not officially release the Google Pixel line of phones in the Middle East, so you don’t see a Google Pixel phone on this list. However, you can find the Google Pixel on our Best Android Phone and Camera Phone lists.

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