You're itching to get your hands on the new Nintendo Switch, but it probably isn't going to happen (in 2017 at least). But there are some great gaming handsets out there that are also phones (and therefore, you can totally justify spending your next paycheque on them). Here are a few of our favourites...

So you’ve read every review of the Nintendo Switch and are now convinced that you can’t survive another day without it. Playing Life of Zelda doesn’t feel (virtually) real anywhere else and the shape-shifting, part-console, part-handheld Switch has you a-twitch (let’s hope you didn’t get carpal tunnel syndrome from your six-hour stint playing at your mate’s last Saturday). 

You know what? We don’t blame you…

Switch has had great reviews all around and trended on Twitter for days at launch.

The neon red and blue handhelds are definite conversation starters and the very innovative clamp-and-go style makes it one to throw into the backpack and take everywhere. 

However, despite the revolutionary design, we have wondered whether you can get more for your money if you splash the cash on a phone – a phone you can use for texting and Instagramming and Pinteresting and taking pics (and, of course, making actual phone calls)…

Sounds out of the box? Well, it isn’t quite…

Hear us out.

If you use your Switch budget on a brand-new blower, you get not just absolute eye-candy for the money, but also the freebies that usually come with them. Why not go with a phone with an incredible display, superb battery power AND the kind of gaming ecosystem that will make the Switch cry into its sleeve? We’ve already matched them up with the best mobile games to boot.

Here are the four that should definitely be on your shortlist: 

 

Samsung Galaxy S8

This is a no brainer, really. We shouldn’t have to sell the newly announced Samsung S8 to you at all. After all, it has been the king of handsets this past year. 

Super-immersive display courtesy of the curved edges, fantastic battery life and a frankly outrageous pixel-per-inch ratio makes this the ultimate phone for gamers.

It still has the headphone jack output, so use with your favourite cans, but say goodbye to the home button. It’s not like we needed it anyway – pah.

The current S7 series were the first smartphones to support the Vulkan API and the lack of lag and battery drain on the games developed with the API are, frankly, obvious. You get a folder to put all games in so access can be regulated when friends borrow your phone as well as easy when you want to deep-dive in. We’re hoping the S8 will be no different.

And if you are a die-hard gamer, you will know how awesome it is that with both the S7 edge and the S8 you not only get to take screenshots while gaming but can also record gameplay to share with friends on YouTube! Pre-order yours here.

Lenovo P2

This phone will not be beaten on battery. No sir! The Duracell of smartphones has a 5100mAH battery, which means you can go for days without charging.

Add a Super AMOLED display on a large 5.5″ screen to that enormous battery and you have in your hands the perfect phone for gaming.

And the surprises don’t end there… The Lenovo P2 comes with 24W fast-charging functionality, so you can just juice it up super-quick between gaming sessions. 

The fast processor on the handset and the sweet bargain pricing mean that you can splash the cash on gaming apps once you get the phone.

 

iPhone 7 Plus gamingJen Barton

 

Apple iPhone 7 Plus

While the iPhone 7 Plus might not have the immersive curves of the Samsung S7 edge, it makes up for it with its A10 fusion chip, the first quad-core processor by the manufacturer.

The A10 chip gives the iPhone 7 Plus the arsenal to fight back in the race to be the ultimate gaming phone. It is helped along the way with the iOS App Store which has always been the favoured platform for game developers and the superior 1920 x 1080 resolution on the backlit LED screen…

Games might be a tiny bit more expensive than the ones on the Google Play Store but the range is enough to keep you occupied for months and years. Whether it is Super Mario Run, which released on iOS first, Real Racing 3 or even just Pokemon Go and Zelda Wind Waker, on the iPhone 7 Plus you can say bye-bye to juddering gameplay and frequent crashes.

The one to save for…

Sony Xperia XZ Premium MWCThree UK

 

Sony Xperia XZ Premium

A 4K display on a 5.5” screen with full HDR support and Snapdragon 835 under the hood… Sony showed off their highly anticipated XZ Premium handset earlier this year and it is a cracker.

With the same water-resistant body that set Sony’s Xperia range of smartphones apart from the competition, the XZ Premium comes with Remote Play on-board that lets you carry your gaming through from PS4 console to phone and then back to the console. All you need to do is hook your phone and PS4 to the same Wi-Fi connection and sync both devices via the PS4 app on your phone.

It is slated to release spring/summer this year.

So, which one will you choose?

By Sunetra Chakravarti