The iPhone launches might be done and dusted, but October is still set to see some very interesting phone launches, as brands try to literally cash in on festive cheer. Some of the leading brands will be showcasing new devices this month, across different price segments. On the anvil are phones that could redefine photography, phones that could make foldable affordable, fan-friendly versions of flagships and even a new colour edition of an old favourite.
If you are looking to invest in a new phone in October, here are five phones well worth keeping an eye out for:
Google Pixel 8, Google Pixel 8 Pro
Release date: October 4
It is that time of the year when Google takes the wraps off its new Pixel flagships. Early October will reveal both the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro in their final avatars. Not much is known about the specs of the devices, although they do seem to be sticking to their very distinct, camera-bar-on-the-back design, with the Pixel 8 being the slightly smaller of the two.
Both phones are expected to be powered by the G3 Tensor chip from Google. The Pixel 8 is rumoured to be coming with 8 GB RAM while its Pro Bro will get 12 GB RAM and also a higher resolution display. The biggest attraction of the devices, of course, will be their cameras, with a lot being expected from Google’s latest take on computational photography wizardry, especially in the area of zoom. Super fast charging is still not expected, but if well-marketed and competitively priced (rumours place the 8 Pro at close to Rs 85,000 and the 8 at Rs 65,000), these devices could see the Pixel finally turn the commercial success corner.
Vivo V29, Vivo V29 Pro
Release date: October 4
It might not make headlines as often as some other brands, but Vivo has risen to the top of the Indian smartphone market through devices that are a very good blend of style and performance, topped off with superb cameras (especially the selfie ones). The Vivo V29 series is all set to follow this tried and tested formula. The V29 Pro will come with very classy looks and is expected to come with a MediaTek Dimensity 8200 chip.
As always, there is a camera twist to the V series phone plot, and the V29 Pro is expected to come with a very good 50 MP main sensor with OIS on the back and more significantly, a 50-megapixel selfie camera with eye autofocus that should attract content creators. We are also expecting a curved display and super fast charging, although the battery might not be the largest. The non-Pro avatar will be a toned-down version with a slightly less impressive camera setup and a less powerful chip but is said to sport a curved display as well, and crucially is expected to come with a much lower price tag.
As of now, the Vivo V29 Pro is expected to be priced in the vicinity of Rs 40,000 – Rs 45,000, while the Vivo V29 will come with a price tag between Rs 30,000 – Rs 35,000.
Samsung Galaxy S23 FE
Release date: October 4
Although it was released in early 2023, Samsung’s Galaxy S23 series remains the benchmark for premium Android flagships. It is all set to get a more affordable avatar in October in the form of the Samsung Galaxy S23 FE. The FE series stands for Fan Edition and if rumours are to be believed, there is a lot for Samsung S series fans to love here. The phone is expected to come with a 6.4-inch Dynamic AMOLED 2x display with 120Hz refresh rate, similar to the one seen on the Galaxy S23 series and a very good 50-megapixel main camera with OIS as well as a superb 12-megapixel telephoto sensor.
Although its back is said to be carbonate, the phone is expected to come in attractive shades and could be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 or 8+ Gen 1 processor, with plenty of RAM and storage, although some rumours also claim that Samsung might use an Exynos chip to keep prices down. Speaking of which, the most attractive feature of the phone could be its price – imagine the Samsung S23 premium experience at Rs 49,999 – Rs 54,999.
OnePlus 11R Red Variant
Release date: During Amazon Great Indian Festival sale (starting October 8)
OnePlus has a reputation for coming out with special editions of its devices, and this October will see its bestselling OnePlus 11R get the special edition treatment. In essence, this is going to the OnePlus 11R, with a similar configuration – a 6.74-inch curved AMOLED display with 120 Hz refresh rate, a still-very-good Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor with lots of RAM (some say this edition will come with 16 GB RAM), a similar flagship level 50 megapixel main sensor with OIS and a 16 megapixel selfie camera, and a 5000 mAh battery with 100W fast charging.
So what is new, you might ask? Well, a whole new colour. If rumour is to be believed the OnePlus 11R Solar Red will come with a red back made of vegan leather giving it a very unique look and texture. The camera unit will remain jet-black, though. We hear the colour is inspired by characters from Genshin Impact. Will it add a whole new dimension to the device? Going by OnePlus’ excellent track record in design, it well could. Especially as this special edition is not expected to be priced higher than the original phone, which retailed for Rs 44,999.