It is very difficult to choose a smartphone for games today. This is due to the fact that the gaming features offered to gamers are constantly increasing and updating. Nowadays, the quality of processors, graphics cards, operating systems is increasing exponentially. Their performance is also excellent. And so, it is often difficult to choose a gaming phone. Don’t worry. This ultimate gaming phone buying guide 2021 will help you to learn how to choose a gaming phone and what to consider when buying a gaming phone.
Are you in hurry? Want to buy a gaming phone without reading the buying guide of a gaming phone? Then, I recommend you to check out the list of Top 10 Best Gaming Phones 2021 made by our editorial staff.
If you are a professional gamer, then you may know that one can not feel the real gaming experience without gaming headphones. So, you must have the best gaming headsets 2021 for the best gaming experience. If you do not have the best gaming headphones, then learn the headphone technical specifications. Therefore, you will be able to choose the best gaming headphones/headsets.
What should you know about a gaming smartphone?
Mobile games belong to the category of energy and resource-intensive applications, which are characterized by a large number of graphic elements used in them. If ordinary office-type programs or applications for Internet surfing or viewing email content do not overload the system and the processor, then 3D-type applications will require high performance from all internal systems of the gadget. The processor, graphics subsystem, and memory should work at maximum acceptable values for them.
In addition, another requirement is imposed on a good gaming smartphone. This is the battery life of the gaming phone. Excellent battery life is provided by a capacious battery. Thus, a gaming smartphone must have a powerful battery. All the features of a gaming phone increase the cost of the phone. However, let me discuss those key characteristics that a gaming smartphone must meet.
Before jumping into the main section of this article, let us tell you that this is a special guide only for gaming phones 2021. But, if you are interested to buy an overall smartphone rather than a gaming smartphone, you can read the ultimate mobile phone buying guide 2021. Thus, you will be able to buy the right smartphone for yourself.
Operating System (OS)
The operating system can be called a platform. It takes one of the leading places in the classification of those components of a gaming smartphone that should be paid attention to. The developers often optimize their applications and software for the most common operating systems.
Currently, the market is dominated by three platforms: Android, iOS (iPhone), and Windows Phone. They are preferred by most buyers. BlackBerry is trying with all its might to compete with the other three operating systems, but so far in vain. Let’s take a quick look at the strengths and weaknesses of each OS.
Android Operating System
OS from Google is one of the most popular platforms for smartphones. Compared to iOS and Windows Phone, there is a much wider range of devices on this platform from a good number of manufacturers. If I talk about recent years, the share of smartphones based on the Android operating system has exceeded 70%. It is a very high figure.
Android is more open. It is called open-source software. It means smartphone manufacturers can more easily innovate on Google’s software. The source code of this system is quite easily available. And so, many software developers, enthusiasts, are actively trying to independently create certain applications. These applications are subsequently available to users.
Google Play is a branded store. You can download a fairly large amount of applications. Today, the number of software and various applications is more than 3 million.
However, there are lots of pros and cons of Android operating system. I have briefly discussed the advantages and disadvantages of the Android operating system here.
- A very large number of games, some of which can be purchased at a much lower price than from competitors
- The ability to work several applications at once in parallel (at the same time, there will be no system overload and requirements to remove those applications that are unnecessary)
- Support for the possibility of installing updates, with the help of which all the shortcomings that previously existed can be eliminated
- If open-source code falls into the hands of developers with little experience, then applications that are not optimized for working with this operating system may appear
- Some devices may experience compatibility issues
- In order for the games to work, the smartphone must have the highest quality and most productive hardware in terms of its power
iPhone Operating Syestem (iOS)
This operating system was developed by Apple. It is a good competitor for Android, despite the fact that it provides only one fully multimedia smartphone – the iPhone.
The pros and cons of iOS are:
- Very high-quality optimization of the entire operating system. And so, it can run games and get them smoothly working with a high speed of task execution
- Very stylish and user-friendly interface. There is no need to make additional settings
- A system of tests and certification is provided for each application. Thus, you can almost completely avoid problems in the compatibility of applications and the operating system
- The presence of its own branded store AppStore
- It is a closed nature operating system. It does not allow third-party specialists to take part in the development of applications. As a result, the number of those games and applications that are available to users is rather low, but their cost, on the contrary, is not the lowest
- The built-in memory of the gadget cannot be expanded. So, the devices of this company do not support external memory cards
Microsoft has acted as the creation of its own operating system for smartphones and tablets. The operating system of this manufacturer is still relatively young, and cannot boast of the same popularity as its competitors. In this regard, the number of those games that are available in the branded store Windows Phone is still not as large as that of competitors.
However, there are lots of pros and cons of Windows operating system. I have briefly discussed the advantages and disadvantages of the Windows operating system here.
- Smartphones with this operating system can quite freely and easily cope with even the most difficult games. And it will not require the maximum possible values from the RAM and processor
- The latest version of the released operating system allows all devices to be combined into one family. In addition, since the version designed for the PC and the version on which the gadget works have a single 64-bit architecture, all data and games can be transferred quite easily from PC to mobile gadgets and vice versa
- It is a less popular operating system. So, its support base is still not strong enough
- The branded store of Windows Phone has less collection than its competitors
Central Processing Unit (CPU)
Games are quite resource-intensive applications. So, they require a sufficiently powerful processor in terms of performance. The architecture is based on hybrid chips for mobile devices. It includes a computing chip and a special graphics subsystem (SoC).
It is necessary to determine what is the operating frequency of the processor, its bit rate, architecture, and the number of cores. These parameters have a great impact on the gaming performance of the device. The higher all of the above parameters, the more power of the main, central chip.
If the processor is four or eight cores, then such a device is best used for 3D applications and games, as they can show high performance in them.
Another parameter that should be studied when choosing a particular smartphone is the bit depth of its processor. Almost all modern chips are built on a 64-bit architecture similar to a PC. This allows, in contrast to 32-bit, to use more resources and memory in order to perform certain tasks. As a result, the performance of such smartphones is also significantly improved. And thus, I can use more compatible mobile applications of a cross-platform type.
This means that if a game is created for a 64-bit chip, then it will work with the same quality on a smartphone, regardless of which gadget it is installed on. In addition, modern Android and IOS operating systems are 64-bit.
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Graphics Processing Unit (GPU)
An integrated video chip is a key element of a gaming smartphone. The graphics processing unit (GPU) is responsible for rendering textures. The crystal itself is a single unit with the central processing unit (SoC). Also, its own dedicated video memory is built into the graphics engine. And this chip itself is one with the main processor of the smartphone.
The Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) is a specialized circuit that focuses on generating images for a display device. Every modern mobile device has some form of a GPU to help generate images and graphics. It is an essential part of every modern mobile device. Without it, high-performance gaming would not be possible.
A good GPU can generally be identified as having a large memory bus, 64 bits or more, a high memory clock speed, and a good number of cores signify the power of a GPU.
The Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) is so important. Because it runs a game more efficiently. It makes them run better with improved resolution, or the number of frames per second (FPS). And thus, the game spins will be higher.
Modern Smartphone GPUs are capable of rendering 3D games and a lot of effects easily. It allows developers to do better research and more complex games as a result. The GPU also eases the workload for the CPU and makes your device more powerful, efficient, and faster.
Today, among manufacturers and users of gaming smartphones, the following brands of 3D-model graphics chips are considered the most popular: Mali GPU, Adreno, NVIDIA Tegra, PowerVR.
This graphics chip was built around two key processors, One is Qualcomm and another is Snapdragon. There are many advantages and disadvantages of the Adreno chip. The pros and cons of the Adreno chip are:
- It provides an excellent gaming performance. The processing power and processing speed of 3D textures are slightly higher compared to Mali GPUs
- It is an open-source suite of software tools for developers (API). Thanks to this feature, Adreno GPUs support the latest generation games with various Open GL versions as well as DirectX12
- It has sophisticated architecture and efficient load balancing. As a result, energy efficiency and less heating during operation
- Relatively high cost
- Optimization issues in some applications
- Low-speed texture processing
From the very beginning, the largest number of gaming smartphones is produced by Samsung. It builds its smartphones based on Mali chips. As a result, almost all developers of key high-capacity applications build their designs in such a way that they are the most optimal for use on Mali chips. It causes some kind of damage to the Adreno.
- The possibility of optimization when working with key cross-platform applications. As a result, such applications have practically no compatibility problems
- All chips manufactured by Mali operate at a clock frequency of 1 GHz, while analogs operate at a clock frequency of 400-650 MHz
- Graphics chips created by Mali can process 25-27 million pixels in one second. As a result, HD textures are rendered in a much shorter time period. Thus, I can talk about a high-performance rendering domain
- The number of shader-type cores is limited
- If I compare this chip with its counterparts, it can be noted that it has fewer computational-type clusters
- The Mali chip uses more power, which causes both the chip and the device to overheat (due to high clock-type frequencies)
If I talk about tests, the Mali chips are somewhat inferior to their counterparts produced by Adreno from the point of view of graphical testing. However, in games played on smartphones, such a difference is not seen.
Another type of graphics chip is manufactured by NVIDIA. This graphics system was built around SoC technology. And so, the memory controller, the central processor, and the actual graphics core were combined into one single crystal.
Users can have a good choice with the help of the available graphics capabilities. They can choose between the maximum possible performance and smoothness in the image of textures, their rendering. First of all, graphics cores based on NVIDIA have been tweaked to work on Android and Windows Phone devices. For those who use these operating systems, a wide range of applications are available to them.
If I talk about the shortcomings of this graphics system, then I can distinguish the fairly high heating of both the chip itself and the device in which it is installed. Moreover, it does not have a good optimization for some types of games.back to menu ↑
You need a pretty good display to have an excellent gaming experience. The quality of a display of a gaming smartphone depends on various parameters. For example, display type, the screen refresh rate, touch-sampling rate, frame per second (fps) rate, color accuracy, touch latency, and so on. All of these parameters will affect the gaming performance of your smartphone.
At present, Super AMOLED displays are the best display for gaming. They are the clearer display with high contrast level. Their reaction speed is also fast.
Gaming phones’ displays must have a good screen refresh rate and touch-sampling rate. Otherwise, the smartphone may lag while gaming. A 144 Hz screen refresh rate and 300Hz touch-sampling rate is recommended for quality gaming display.back to menu ↑
Ram and Rom
Almost all games have one requirement. The gaming smartphone must provide sufficient resources for the application to work normally.
There are two types of memory. One is permanent and another is temporary (its second name is operational). Permanent memory is used to install and store applications on it. The operational one fulfills its role when an application is launched and is running. If a smartphone is bought in order to play different games with it, the built-in memory on it must be at least 64 GB, and the value of the RAM must not be less than 4 GB. But, 6 GB ram is recommended for a quality gaming experience. In addition, you need to pay attention to whether the smartphone supports external SD cards.
Now I am going to tell you an interesting thing. When it comes to choosing a gaming smartphone, then you should pay attention to what operating system is installed in the smartphone. Games will require more memory and better performance of the built-in processor on Android applications. If the devices are installed on the operating system iOS, it is enough to have simple memory and processor parameters. This difference is due to the fact that these operating systems are optimized in different ways.back to menu ↑
The design of your smartphone does not affect your gaming experience directly. But, the smartphone that is specially designed for gaming can enhance your gaming experience. In fact, the manufacturers who produce gaming smartphones are now focusing on the design of smartphones. They try to design the phones so that the gamers can easily have a quality experience.
The latest gaming phones of Lenovo, Asus, and other brands have a unique design. These designs give extra benefits to the gamers.back to menu ↑
Battery capacity is another important parameter to consider when choosing a gaming smartphone. The battery life of the smartphone will depend on the battery capacity and how optimized the entire system is. The minimum optimal value for the battery will be a battery with a capacity of more than 3000 mAh. If a smartphone has exactly these qualities of a battery, it will be able to work offline for three to nine hours when playing games.
In addition, the type of matrix built into it and the brightness of the screen can also affect the battery life. Besides, the matrix made with AMOLED technology is the most energy-efficient in comparison with its competitors.
Since the highest-quality operation of a gaming smartphone requires extremely productive types of a graphics system, in the next section of the article it is necessary to highlight the question of which smartphone will be the best in terms of the video chip built into it.back to menu ↑
A good charger is also very important for gaming smartphones. Otherwise, once you have finished the maximum portion of the charge of your battery capacity, it will take a longer period to refill the battery. Believe me, if the charging speed is very slow, you will be too much bored.back to menu ↑
Excellent users’ experience depends on some features of a smartphone. These features can significantly affect its operation. You need to pay attention to those key features to have a better user experience. So, in particular, if I talk about the key parameters, on which a potential user should rely, then this should include:
- The smartphone should be lightweight. Its optimal value is up to 160 g
- The screen of a smartphone has a great impact on user experience. The optimal value of smartphone screen sizes is 5 to 5.2 inches. However, some people prefer to use large-sized screen
- At present, people prefer to use frameless model. The presence of narrow frames around the display itself provide better user experience
- Smartphones look smart when it is thick enough. So, try to choose a phone which has minimum thickness
- You may do not like to use a phone with broken-screen. So, protective glass is very important factor. Try to choose a smartphone that has a good protective glass
If you connect elements of external peripherals (Joysticks, Keyboards, Gamepads, etc) to a gaming smartphone, this will expand the existing capabilities of this smartphone.
In order to connect something of the external peripheral elements, special cables are used. One side of these cables provides the ability to connect via the micro USB interface. On the other side, it has a standard USB input. At the same time, it is possible to connect peripherals with the help of such cables in the form of:
- Keyboards and other devices
If I are talking about connecting a device to a monitor, then a MicroUSB-HDMI cable will be used here. The demand for such connectivity is now growing more and more. Because the ability to play on the big screen using only a smartphone is a dream of many gamers.back to menu ↑
Choosing a gaming phone may be difficult. But, you will be able to overcome the difficulties after reading this phone guide 2021. However, let me summarize those main technical characteristics that should attract attention in the first place when choosing a gaming smartphone.
Before making a purchase, you need to decide on the main characteristics:
- At first, pay attention to the OS and its version. Always try to buy the latest version
- Then, choose the CPU and GPU. The best option would be a processor with six cores or more than six cores and the minimum clock speed should be 3.5 GHz to 4.0 GHz
- I will recommend to choose at least 6GB ram for gaming phone
- Display has a great impact on your gaming experience. The screen refresh rate and touch sampling rate should good. Otherwise, you will have a poor gaming experince
- You should also pay attention to other things like battery capacity, charging speed, design, usability, etc to enhance your gaming experince
Hopefully, you enjoyed the guide and are now able to choose a gaming phone for yourself. You can leave a comment in the comment section for further queries. I will reply to your questions as soon as possible.