When it comes to choosing the right smartphone, the task can be pretty daunting. More and more smartphones come to market every day, making the choice next to impossible unless someone is pointing you in the right direction. If you’re in the market for the best US Cellular phones, look no further. We’re here to round up the best Android phones you can buy on the nation’s fifth-largest mobile carrier.

Editor’s note: We will update this list of the best US Cellular phones as new devices launch.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9

Galaxy Note 9 - Best US Cellular phones

The Galaxy Note 8 was a beast of a phone, and the Galaxy Note 9 is somehow even better, and it may be the best US Cellular phone the carrier currently sells.

The Note 9 is still the big, S Pen-touting flagship we expect from the Note line. It has a 6.4-inch Super AMOLED display, Snapdragon 845 SoC, 6 or 8GB of RAM, a crazy 128 or 512GB of storage, as well as the same dual-camera setup we first saw on the Galaxy S9 Plus. It basically has the best specs you could want in a smartphone in 2018.

There are some upgrades worth pointing out. First, the battery. Samsung increased the battery from 3,300mAh in the Note 8 to 4,000mAh in the Note 9. Plus, the S Pen now supports Bluetooth, so you can actually do things like control your phone’s camera and control music with the S Pen’s button. It’s pretty awesome.

Editor's Pick

Finally, the dual-camera setup on the back might be the same as the S9 Plus, but the Note 9 can recognize what’s in a photo and automatically pick the best camera settings for each scene.

If you want the US Cellular phone version of the Galaxy Note 9, it will cost you. The carrier sells the 128GB version for $1000, or $16.65 a month for 30 months. The 512GB version costs $1,250 at US Cellular, or $24.99 over 30 months.

Specs

  • 6.4-inch Super AMOLED display with 2,960 x 1,440 resolution, 516ppi
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 or Exynos 9810 processor (depending on region)
  • 6/8GB of RAM
  • 128/512GB of onboard storage, microSD expansion up to 512GB
  • Dual 12MP rear cameras; 8MP front camera
  • 4,000mAh battery
  • Android 8.1 Oreo
  • 161.9 x 76.4 x 8.8mm, 201g

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Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus

Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus

The Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus are two of the best US Cellular phones on the network right now. Visually, they don’t look very different to the older Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus, but inside there are many differences. Both have the new Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, and both have Android 8.0 Oreo out of the box. Both also have 64GB of storage, but the 5.8-inch S9 has 4GB of RAM and the 6.2-inch S9 Plus has 6GB of RAM.

The biggest change comes in the camera department. The Galaxy S9 includes a single rear 12MP camera with a dual aperture. The main mode has an f/1.5 aperture, but you can activate the camera’s mechanical iris to close down over the sensor, offering an f/2.4 aperture for taking better pictures in bright daylight.

The Galaxy S9 Plus has the same 12MP rear camera and dual aperture mode as the S9, plus a secondary 12MP telephoto rear lens with a f/2.4 aperture. The dual lenses also give the S9 Plus a proper portrait mode in Live Focus. If you love to take slow motion videos, the rear cameras on the S9 and S9 Plus can do so at an amazing 960fps at 720p. Both phones also have a front-facing 8 MP camera with an f/1.7 aperture. 

These US Cellular phones are available now, with the S9 selling for $783 without a contract. However, you can get it for free if you sign up for the carriers’ Total Plan with Unlimited Plus Data. The S9 Plus is available for $909 without a contract or $13.65 a month for 30 months.

Specs

Samsung Galaxy S9

  • 5.8-inch Super AMOLED display with 2,960 x 1,440 resolution, 570ppi
  • Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 or Octa-core Samsung Exynos 9810 processor (depending on region)
  • 4GB of RAM
  • 64GB of onboard storage, microSD expansion up to 400GB
  • 12MP rear camera; 8MP front camera
  • Non-removable 3,000mAh battery
  • Android 8.0 Oreo
  • 147.7 x 68.7 x 8.5 mm, 163g

Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus

  • 6.2-inch Super AMOLED display with 2,960 x 1,440 resolution, 529ppi
  • Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 or Octa-core Samsung Exynos 9810 processor (depending on region)
  • 6GB of RAM
  • 64GB of on-board storage, microSD expansion up to 400 GB
  • 12MP rear camera and 12MP secondary camera; 8MP front camera
  • Non-removable 3,500mAh battery
  • Android 8.0 Oreo
  • 158.1 x 73.8 x 8.5 mm, 189g

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LG V40 ThinQ

LG V40 ThinQ sitting on a window showing home screen

LG’s V series has become an impressive contender in the last few years. The LG V40 ThinQ further refines and adds to what made its predecessors such great options. It’s the first smartphone with a total of five camera sensors (three on the back, and two on the front), but there’s more to why it’s one of the best US Cellular phones.

The LG V40 has a total of five cameras on board.

The rear camera setup features a standard 12MP camera, wide-angle 16MP camera, and telephoto 12MP camera. Around front are the standard 8MP sensor and 5MP wide-angle sensor. The second front camera also helps capture depth information for self-portraits.

We also like the V40 ThinQ’s audio capabilities. The 32-bit Hi-Fi Quad DAC delivered the best-wired headphone experience on a smartphone, while the Boombox Speaker tech turns the phone into a mini speaker. Elsewhere, we also appreciate the V40 ThinQ’s support for wireless charging and Quick Charge 4.0. The phone even retains the 3.5mm headphone jack and IP68 certification of the older LG V30. Inside, the V40 has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, 6GB of RAM, and 64GB of expandable storage, along with a 3,300mAh battery. US Cellular sells the LG V40 ThinQ for $899.70 without a contract or $13.34 a month for 30 months under its payment plan (conditions apply).

Specs

  • 6.4-inch OLED FullVision display 3,120 x 1,440 resolution, 538ppi
  • Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor
  • 6GB of RAM
  • 64GB of onboard storage, microSD expansion up to 2TB
  • 12MP, 16MP, and 12MP rear cameras; 8MP and 5MP front cameras
  • Non-removable 3,300mAh battery
  • Android 8.1 Oreo
  • 75.8 x 7.7 x 158.7mm, 169g

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Apple iPhone XR/XS/XS Max

The Apple iPhone XR as depicted on stage during the Apple Event 2018.

We know we are an Android site, but it’s hard to leave this one off. Apple’s latest smartphones are among the best US Cellular phones. Apple’s current phones are the iPhone XR, XS, and XS Max. All three come with iOS 12 out of the box, as well as the company’s newest and fastest A12 Bionic processor inside. The iPhone XR is the new “mainstream” smartphone from Apple. It cuts corners by using an older 6.1-inch LCD display with a lower resolution, 3GB of RAM, an aluminum frame, and it only has a single rear camera compared to the twin rear cameras on the iPhone XS and XS Max. US Cellular has a starting price of $749 for the iPhone XR, but you can get it for free by signing up for one of the carrier’s plans — other conditions apply.

The iPhone XS has a 5.8-inch OLED screen, and the XS Max goes big with a 6.5-inch OLED display. Both also have twin 12MP rear cameras and a front 7MP camera, and Apple puts in 4GB of RAM as well. US Cellular sells the iPhone XS starting at $999 without a contract, or its payment plan starts at $16.65 a month for 30 months. The iPhone XS Max begins at $1,099 without a contract, and the payment plan method starts at $36.63 a month for 30 months.

Specs

Apple iPhone XR

  • 6.1-inch IPS LCD display with 828 x 1,792 pixels resolution, 326ppi
  • Apple A12 Bionic
  • 3GB of RAM
  • 64/128/256GB of onboard storage, not expandable
  • 12MP rear camera; 7MP front camera
  • Non-removable 2,942mAh battery
  • iOS 12
  • 150.9 x 75.7 x 8.3 mm, 194g

Apple iPhone XS

  • 5.8-inch Super AMOLED  display with 1,125 x 2,436 resolution, 458ppi
  • Apple A12 Bionic
  • 4GB of RAM
  • 64/256/512GB of onboard storage, not expandable
  • Dual 12MP rear cameras; 7MP front camera
  • Non-removable 2,658mAh battery
  • iOS 12
  • 143.6 x 70.9 x 7.7 mm, 177g

iPhone XS Max

  • 6.5-inch Super AMOLED  display with 1,242 x 2,688  resolution, 458ppi
  • Apple A12 Bionic
  • 4GB of RAM
  • 64/256/512GB of onboard storage, not expandable
  • Dual 12MP rear cameras; 7MP front camera
  • Non-removable 3,174mAh battery
  • iOS 12
  • 157.5 x 77.4 x 7.7 mm, 209g

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Moto G6 Play

motorola moto g6 - one of the Best US Cellular phones

The last model on our list of the best US Cellular phones is also the cheapest one. The Moto G6 Play is aimed at those looking for a budget-friendly device, as it costs just $90. It’s far from the most powerful phone you can get, but it can still handle tasks like browsing the web, watching videos, and checking social media with ease.

Editor's Pick

The phone sports a 5.7-inch HD+ display and packs the Snapdragon 427 chipset along with 2GB of RAM under the hood. It has a massive 4,000mAh battery, which should be good for up to two days of use. The Moto G6 Play also comes with a headphone jack, is splash-resistant, and features a nice design that makes it look way more expensive than it is.

Other specs and features include expandable storage, a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner, and Android 8.0 Oreo. Unfortunately, the U.S. version of the Moto G6 Play doesn’t have NFC.

motorola moto g6 play review design cameras

Specs

  • 5.7-inch IPS LCD display 1,440 x 720 resolution, 282ppi
  • Quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 427 processor
  • 2GB of RAM
  • 16GB of storage, microSD expansion up to 128GB
  • 13MP rear cameras, 5MP front cameras
  • Non-removable 4,000mAh battery
  • Android 8.0 Oreo
  • 154.4 x 72.2 x 9 mm, 175g

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That’s our look at our picks for the best US Cellular phones at the moment. Wondering what some of the other major U.S. carriers have to offer? Check out our other best lists.

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