A person takes an image of a mountain with one of the best smartphones for videos and photography

The Best Smartphones for Videos & Photography (2021)

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Finding the perfect cell phone has never been harder. With such a competitive market, consumers have dozens of great choices when choosing a new device. Features like display, battery life, software and refresh rate could completely win over hesitant customers. Of course, camera performance is one of the most important factors when searching for a new smartphone. As technological advancements have made significant progress, cell phone cameras have become very impressive. With the ability to capture 4K videos and stunning photographs, some of the latest flagship devices boast some of the best mobile cameras of all time. If you’re looking for the best smartphone camera, we’ve got you covered. This post will discuss the best smartphones for capturing videos and photographs, as well as outline important information to consider when shopping for one.

Best Smartphone for Video – What to Know

All smartphones with camera lenses offer a video mode. Although manufacturers used to focus more on photography, there have been many significant developments for videos. This is largely due to the introduction of 4K resolution. While 1080p HD was considered the highest resolution for years, 4K is much sharper. That being said, what is the best smartphone for video?


Obviously, the best smartphone video experiences can capture 4K video. As the latest industry standard, it is currently the norm. If a new mobile device cannot film in 4K, it is considered outdated and behind the times. The strongest devices also include various perks like stabilization software, which reduces shakiness to keep your videos smooth. Overall, we feel as if the best devices combine meeting the industry standards with bonus perks consumers did not even consider. Here are our picks for the best smartphones for filming videos:


Best Smartphones for Taking Videos

iPhone 13 Pro Max

The iPhone 13 Pro Max is the strongest Apple device on the market. As the most expensive of their latest line of devices, the Pro Max is also the most powerful. The Pro Max boasts a better battery life, refresh rate, camera, storage and resolution than the other iPhone 13 models. However, what makes the Pro Max excel at taking videos is the introduction of Cinematic Mode. With this feature, videos taken on the device display unprecedented depth perception, as well as seamless focus transitions that resemble professional theatre productions. While Cinema Mode is available on all iPhone 13 models, the Pro Max is undoubtedly the best way to experience it. Its huge display allows for great playback and easier editing, ensuring your production is as stunning as possible. Since professional filming equipment is very expensive, Apple’s Cinematic Mode allows for beautiful videos in the palm of your hand. All aspiring filmmakers should keep the Pro Max on their radar, and experience Cinematic Mode for themselves.


Sony Xperia 1 III

Sony’s Xperia 1 III is a powerful smartphone that keeps filmmakers in mind. On top of 4K HDR recording, users can takes advantage of all kinds of exciting features. Their “CineAlta” user interface allows for videographers to easily navigate through framing guides, shutter speed, focus and more while filming. In addition, the Xperia 1 III can film up to 120 frames per second in slow motion, as well as eight different colour settings. Finally, the device has four different rear lenses and audio separation technology to ensure the most detailed audio possible is implemented into your production. Sony’s cell phone manages to stand above the competition due to its impressive capabilities and abundance of detailed features. No other company considered filmmakers more than Sony when making the Xperia 1 III.


Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G

As the latest flagship device from Samsung, the Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G also includes one of the best video taking experiences for an Android device. The device includes some highly impressive specs that directly compete with the industry’s latest smartphones. For starters, its 108MP primary camera and 100x time zoom can shoot detailed videos from all kinds of distances. Even more, the phone is capable of filming in 8K, a relatively new technology which not many devices are capable of handling. The Ultra 5G is also compatible with the S Pen, allowing for a simplified editing process after filming. The Super Steady feature reduces hand shaking and sudden jerks, resulting in a crisp video without any sudden movements. Finally, the phone’s state-of-the-art AI works in tandem with the device’s 6.9 inch resolution. More specifically, their Single Take AI adapts to the environment immediately, allowing for users to take cinematic videos with a single tap. Overall, the S21 Ultra 5G is a fierce competitor due to its stellar video camera and various advanced features. 

Best Mobile for Photography – What to Know

We are currently living in a “golden age” of smartphone cameras. Although photography used to be such a complicated procedure, it is now easier than ever before. After pointing and shooting, we can then immediately view our image, zoom, crop and edit it to our heart’s content. The best mobile for photography is one that takes exceptionally high-quality images, while allowing for a simple and intuitive user experience.


Typically, camera performance is measured through a megapixel count. Most users expect that a higher megapixel count equals a superior camera. However, this is not necessarily the case. A higher megapixel count means that the image will remain sharper when printing, expanding or zooming in on the image. Regardless, a camera with a lower megapixel count could take equally sharp images, they just won’t look as crisp when blown up. Although megapixels are important to some extent, it truly depends on how you plan on sharing your images. That being said, let’s explore some of the best smartphones for photography currently on the market:


Google Pixel 5

When Google first introduced the Pixel back in 2016, their impressive camera technology stunned the tech world. Since then, their cell phones have only improved and expanded upon their previous models. Today, the Pixel 5 offers one of the strongest mobile cameras of all time. The Pixel 5 has dual camera lenses at 16MP and 12.2MP, which is considerably lower than competitors. However, images captured on the Pixel are consistently very sharp, and remain so upon zooming and editing. Furthermore, they were among the first to introduce essential features such as Portrait Mode and Night Sight. Other Pixel features like Motion Photos and Social Sharing make taking images impressive yet simple. With the launch of the new Pixel 6 on the horizon, we can expect another device from Google that will take the smartphone camera world by storm. 


OnePlus 9 Pro

OnePlus is starting to garner attention as one of the best Android phone manufacturers currently working. In addition to an attractive design, rapid charging and 120Hz refresh rate, their new OnePlus 9 Pro also boasts a highly impressive camera performance. The 9 Pro contains three rear cameras, with a 48MP main lens and 50MP ultrawide lens. In addition to impressive zoom capabilities, the camera excels at capturing rich and colourful photographs at all kinds of angles. Their powerful ultrawide camera allows for stunning landscape and perspective shots, which directly compete with the latest flagship devices from other Android manufacturers. If you’re in search of a powerful Android phone with a beautiful camera, consider the OnePlus 9 Pro. We can guarantee that OnePlus phones will only increase in popularity over the following few years. 


Huawei Mate 40 Pro

Huawei’s phones have recently gained significant attention due to their highly impressive cameras. With the Mate 40 Pro, they continue to impress. The phone’s design and display is very sleek, with a round camera wheel around the rear containing the device’s three lenses. The device’s 50MP camera works alongside the 12MP periscope and 20MP ultrawide lenses to deliver stunning photographs. The Mate 40 Pro can capture bright, vibrant photographs from far distances. Further, their camera is one of the best for all kinds of lighting conditions. Their night sight and low light settings allow for crisp, high-quality photographs even without proper lighting. It even includes a moon photography setting for fans of astronomy and astrophotography. Overall, the Mate 40 Pro camera is efficient and innovative. Its high-quality performance combined with its numerous features results in one of the best mobile camera experiences money can buy.



Hopefully, you should now have an idea of what to look for in a smartphone camera. Whether it be high-definition videos or stunning photographs, there is a perfect device waiting for you. When searching for a new phone, try to keep this article in mind. Although companies may try to tempt you with high resolutions and megapixel counts, remember that there are other important factors at play. By doing so, we are certain that you will find a great phone with an ideal camera.


Finding a new phone can be fun, but it can also bring a lot of unwanted stress. No matter how hard we try, it is often impossible to shake the feeling that we could have found a better offer at a lower price. Fortunately, Planhub offers several resources to help reduce the stress of finding a new cell phone. For starters, our detailed page on phone brands lets users browse through all the latest smartphones on the market. Feel free to use this feature to read up on the prices, specs, pros and cons of all newly released smartphones. Finally, our mobile plan searching tool searches the internet for all the best phone plans based on your personal needs and geographic location. Users can quickly find the cheapest, most valuable phone plans from anywhere in the country. By using both these features, Canadians should be able to find a brand new device paired with a phone plan that perfectly matches their needs. No matter what your telecom needs may be, Planhub is always here to lend a hand. 


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