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There are a number of factors that go into a great smartphone, but what if you’re looking for a great video streaming smartphone?
Well, between battery life, internet connectivity and screen quality, there are quite a few factors at play. We sift through the contenders to bring you the best mobile devices for video streaming.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3
Featuring a price tag of R3799, the Chinese firm’s phablet (review) arguably offers the best value for money on the list. So what are you getting for your cash?
For starters, you’ve got a 5.5-inch full HD LCD display, which makes for a very pleasant viewing experience thanks to the large size and relatively sharp screen. Sure, it’s not as sharp and doesn’t use AMOLED technology like the Galaxy range, but it does have advantages.
For one, the drop in resolution translates into a better battery life and, when coupled with the gargantuan 4000mAh battery, the Redmi Note 3 outlasts the vast majority of phones. Two day battery life is very achievable with good usage as a result. Video playback on the Redmi Note 3 isn’t quite as long-lasting as the next smartphone, but it certainly gets close.
Otherwise, the capable Snapdragon 650 chip and 2GB of RAM means you’ve got a decent amount of oomph. Want to go even bigger? Then the Mi Max is available for R4799, bringing a massive 6.4-inch full HD screen, larger 4850mAh battery and the same horsepower as the Redmi Note 3.
Get this if: You’re on a budget but still want a powerful, long-lasting phone with a big screen.
Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge
The phone played video for about 12 hours straight when we reviewed it earlier this year, making for arguably the most impressive showing of the year right next to the following pick on the list.
It’s also one of the most powerful smartphones around, featuring a beefy Exynos 8890 processor and 4GB of RAM. So performance should be smooth in general. Throw in a super-sharp 2560×1440 display, using AMOLED technology for deep blacks, and you’ve got a great phone for video playback.
It’s also worth noting that, like all Android phones on the list, you can cast your videos to an HDTV if you’ve got a Chromecast or similar device.
Get this if: You want the highest quality screen, a phone that excels at everything and money isn’t a limiting factor.
Huawei Mate 8
This is all thanks to a large 4000mAh battery, which makes for long-lasting video playback as well. In fact, Andy Walker found that the phone dropped to 50% after seven and a half hours of using the battery benchmark – many phones don’t even last seven hours with the test.
Big screens are a bonus for video playback and the Mate 8 has one of the biggest on the list in the form of a 6-inch full HD LCD display. Driving the screen is the powerful Kirin 950 processor and 3GB of RAM, ensuring a good multitasking experience and smooth navigation. The screen isn’t the sharpest nor does it use AMOLED tech, but the combination of size and vivid colours makes for a good showing anyway.
Get this if: You want a massive screen and a massive battery, to boot.
Lenovo Moto Z
Technically speaking, we’re not only including the Moto Z, but also its Moto Mod hardware add-ons.
The Moto Z itself is a slender, powerful handset with a Snapdragon 820 chip, 4GB of RAM and a rather lush 2560×1440 AMOLED display. Its Achilles Heel though? Battery life, as it has a small 2600mAh battery on board.
Fortunately, the optional Moto Mod accessories make this a worthwhile purchase if you like video streaming. Why? Well, you can use the expensive Projector Moto Mod to (surprise) project your videos onto a wall, making it better for group viewing sessions than just having the phone.
Otherwise, the JBL Speaker Moto Mod is another standout pick, delivering much louder sound and 1000mAh of juice in the process. And if you’d like to augment the small battery, there are dedicated Power Bank Moto Mods too, offering around 2000mAh of power.
Get this if: You want a quality screen and don’t mind spending an arm and a leg on an ecosystem of multimedia-oriented add-ons.
Apple iPhone 7 Plus
On the hunt for a great video streaming phablet but don’t want Android? Well, you could be a hipster and opt for the dated Lumia 1520 or you could do the obvious thing and get the 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus.
The new Apple phablet doesn’t have as sharp a screen as the Galaxy S7 and Moto Z, nor does it have the deep blacks, but it does possess a “wider colour gamut” for more vivid colours. Additionally, the phone packs a screaming A10 processor and starts at 32GB of storage (plenty of space for downloading videos).
The iPhone also supports AirPlay to supported devices (such as the Apple TV streaming box), making for a simple experience if you’ve got the requisite accessories.
The only downside is that you’ll need to use Bluetooth/Lightning to connect audio accessories if you forget your Lightning to 3.5mm audio adapter at home.
Get this if: You don’t want an Android phone or are simply attracted to Apple’s ecosystem and user design.
Note: This article was originally tagged as a native article in the headline. We apologise for the error and have fixed the headline.