Samsung has finally announced its Galaxy Note 20 phones, marking the latest entry in its S-Pen-toting flagship series. The phones are pretty solid on paper too, featuring flagship chipsets (in the US, at least), plenty of internal storage, OLED screens, and triple rear camera setups.
Like the idea of these super-sized phones but don’t want to spend a ton of cash? Maybe you just want to know if there are similar alternatives out there? We’ve rounded up the best Samsung Galaxy Note 20 alternatives on the global market.
1. LG V60
One of the better Galaxy Note 20 alternatives in the US has to be the LG V60. You’ve got the Snapdragon 865 processor, 5G connectivity, a 5,000mAh battery, and 128GB or 256GB of storage. The latter can be augmented via microSD card slot, which can’t be said for the vanilla Note 20.
Other noteworthy features include IP68 water/dust resistance, wireless charging, and yes, a headphone port. You can certainly do a lot worse for $800, making it $200 cheaper than the base Note 20 off-contract.
Our verdict: LG V60 review — LG’s best effort in years is worth a look
It’s not perfect though, as the phone lacks a telephoto camera (featuring a 64MP+13MP ultra-wide combo instead) and a high refresh rate screen. These are two features you’d generally expect from a flagship in 2020, but it’s still definitely a Note 20 rival in our book.
2. Samsung Galaxy Note 10 series
Now that Samsung’s Galaxy Note 20 range is out, you might want to keep an eye on deals for the Galaxy Note 10 family if you’re looking for a cheaper flagship with an S-Pen. Both phones feature OLED 60Hz panels, Snapdragon 855 or Exynos 9825 SoCs, a 10MP selfie camera, and flexible rear camera setups.
Long-term review: Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus one year later: Is it still worth buying?
In saying so, you should opt for the Note 10 Plus over the Note 10 if you can afford a little extra. The vanilla Note 10 misses out on a microSD card slot, a big battery (3,500mAh versus 4,300mAh in the Plus), faster charging, and screen resolution (FHD+ versus QHD+).
3. Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite
What if you want a Note experience but don’t quite have the budget for a flagship-tier phone? That’s where the Note 10 Lite comes in, making for one of the more compelling Galaxy Note 20 alternatives.
Samsung’s more affordable Note makes a few compromises compared to the flagship Note 10 and Note 20 family, such as the 2018-era Exynos 9810 processor, lack of wireless charging, and no significant IP rating. However, the phone delivers a flexible triple 12MP rear camera setup (main, 2x telephoto, ultra-wide), a 32MP selfie camera, and a 4,500mAh battery that’s bigger than the Note 9, Note 10, and Note 20.
It’s also worth noting that you’re still getting the S-Pen of course, while a 3.5mm port makes an appearance too. So if you like the idea of a Note, but don’t want to part with the headphone jack, this is something you might want to look at.
This isn’t the only more affordable stylus-toting phone, as the Moto G Stylus and LG Stylo family go even lower than the Note 10 Lite.
4. OnePlus 8 Pro
It used to be the case that the Galaxy Note series was the ultimate power user smartphone. It’s certainly still the case in many ways, but the OnePlus 8 Pro is also a major contender for the crown.
The Pro variant has plenty in common with 2020 Samsung flagships, such as flagship Snapdragon silicon, a 120Hz refresh rate (at QHD+ resolution too), IP68 rating, and 30W wireless charging.
What we thought: OnePlus 8 Pro review — What the OnePlus 7T Pro should’ve been
OnePlus’s flagship also offers a quad rear camera setup, featuring a 48MP IMX689 main camera, 48MP ultra-wide camera, 8MP 3x telephoto shooter, and a 5MP color filter camera that’s pretty much a gimmick. Those looking for a powerhouse phone with a slick take on Android can do far worse than this.
5. Samsung Galaxy S20 series
The S20 series also makes for a fantastic alternative to the Galaxy Note 20 duo if you don’t care about the S Pen. There are plenty of shared features between the two families, such as One UI, IP68 designs, wireless charging, and 120Hz OLED screens (with the exception of the vanilla Note 20).
Our review: Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra review — Too much of a good thing
Samsung’s standard Galaxy S20 is arguably a better buy than the base Note 20 too, owing to the aforementioned 120Hz support. It also packs a QHD+ screen and microSD expansion, which are both missing from the vanilla Note.
The Galaxy S20 Ultra might be the one to get if money isn’t an option and you want a cutting-edge experience. The Ultra variant is equipped with a 5,000mAh battery (bigger than the Note 20 Ultra), a 108MP main camera, and a 4x periscope zoom lens.
6. Apple iPhone 11 Pro Max
Yes, we’re an Android-focused website, but Apple’s iPhones are among the most popular smartphones and the iPhone 11 series was pretty darn great. The iPhone 11 Pro Max is perhaps the most suitable Galaxy Note 20 alternative in Apple’s stable, offering a similarly large screen, a long-lasting battery, water resistance, and wireless charging.
Our take: iPhone 11 Pro Max review — A no-brainer, if you like iOS
The iPhone 11 Pro Max might be almost a year old, but it still delivers a powerful A13 processor to ensure a speedy experience. Apple’s phone also packs a few other tricks, like a flexible triple rear camera setup (12MP main, 12MP 2x telephoto, and 12MP ultra-wide), Face ID, and the firm’s ecosystem of services. And the Cupertino company’s commitment to updates means it’ll receive the latest software years down the line.
There are a few notable features that are missing here, such as 5G, a high refresh rate like the Note 20 Ultra, and a fingerprint scanner. It also starts at $1,099 for the 64GB option, while the base Note 20 5G is $100 cheaper but doubles the storage.
If you want a phone with a big screen and are curious about Apple’s platform, this is the one to check out.
That’s it for our rundown of the best Galaxy Note 20 alternatives! Are there any other phones you’d recommend as rivals to Samsung’s new flagships? Let us know in the comments!
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