Unlocking the Best Alternatives to iPhone 15 Pro Max: A Guide for Tech Enthusiasts

The iPhone 15 line – and particularly the iPhone 15 Pro Max – is undoubtedly the best smartphone in smartphone land, ever, if you care for its vision of high performance, good design, simplicity of use and goodness (well, it is made in China…) The smartphone arrives to complete the Apple commonplace: four iterations one after the other, the first in January, the third in March, the second in April, and the 15 line in September. Each model of the 15 line this year is different and good in its own way. But Apple seems to have a design concept that does not appeal to everyone. Apple’s smartphones are inferior to their rivals in a number of ways. For those not completely enamoured with the vision of the great and good at Apple, a quick guide to the best smartphones that rival, and in many ways better than, the iPhone 15 Pro Max in every way, is in order.

Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra: The Ultimate iPhone 15 Pro Max Competitor

If you’re hoping to dethrone the iPhone 15 series, the best thing out there might be Samsung’s Galaxy S24 Ultra – its 6.8-inch display is much bigger and brighter than the iPhone 15 Pro Max, and it has an extra camera, which makes the zoom better. An S Pen is also included. This is a pro-grade phone that gives Apple a run for its money.

Pro Choices: Google Pixel 8 Pro and Pixel 8a

The best option we spotted was the Google Pixel 8 Pro, which brings together a really intuitive interface and fantastic photography in one pro-tuned handset, made by a company that has direct control over both hardware and software: a flagship Android phone made by Google – what’s not to love? In general, if you want a phone that brings the painlessly simple nature of the iPhone into the world of the very best photography kit, you’re unlikely to go far wrong with the Pixel 8 Pro.

On the other hand, the Google Pixel 8a is an option for people who want to spend less but get a good phone without sacrificing anything. A modern design and AI-driven features are built into the Pixel 8a, making it a great example of what we should expect from mid-range smartphones as manufacturers try to innovate on a shoestring budget.

OnePlus 12: A PRO Performer Without the Price Tag

The OnePlus 12 is a yuppie smartphone concept that undercuts the traditional luxury pricing strategy of high-end smartphones. Such an aggressively priced handset offers a larger and more vivid screen than even the iPhone 15 Pro, and its high-end camera systems and lightning-fast charging allow it to brand itself as a pro-grade smartphone that’s geared for the masses.

The Gaming Prodigy: Asus ROG Phone 8 Pro

Gamers will see the Asus ROG Phone 8 Pro as a revelation. Beginning with a clean slate, the ROG Phone series has been purpose-built for mobile gaming. It has a high refresh rate display, side-mounted shoulder triggers and tremendous battery life. This makes the Asus ROG Phone 8 Pro a serious rival for the iPhone for users who need outstanding gaming performance and experiences.

Exploring Alternatives: Beyond the iPhone Ecosystem

And even as Apple improves and innovates with each new iPhone generation, there’s a set of increasingly vocal tech enthusiasts and hardcore professional users who are looking for something that suits their exact use-case and preferences – whether it’s the display and photography quality of the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra, the software usability and image quality of the Google Pixel 8 Pro, the price-to-performance value of the OnePlus 12, or the gaming excellence of the Asus ROG Phone 8 Pro, there’s an ever-increasing number of smartphones that can give the iPhone 15 Pro Max a run for its money.

Embracing the PRO Mentality

When it comes to performance, camera quality, software experience or gaming capability, they not only compete, but in many ways reinvent what users can expect from a premium smartphone experience. The ‘pro’ spirit doesn’t mean you need to stick with a single brand or even a single platform – instead, it means you should look with a critical eye and know what device is best suited for your needs.

It lines up with how these devices differ from each other less and less as time goes on, leaving plenty of choices for consumers with discrete needs and tastes. From the hardcore nerd to the professional photographer to the productivity power-user to the die-hard gamer, there’s a pro alternative if you want an outstanding mobile computing experience.

Like virtually anything else you’ll ever buy, picking the best smartphone for yourself is deeply personal. It’s not just about brand loyalty: it’s about picking the device that will best match your lifestyle, workflow and serve as your portal to digital utopia with as little friction as possible — if that’s what you want, and as stylishly as possible, if that’s vital. The ‘pro’ devices covered here represent the best of what manufactures offer at the top end of the game, all chosen to illustrate the diversity of options that are open to anyone who is not an iPhone settler, that is, to anyone who wants to get to the other side of the river and see where it goes.

Jun 10, 2024
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