Best Camera Phones for 2021 and Digital Storage Tips for Photos

Person holding smartphone, taking picture of people at a table
Photo by: Askar Abayev, Pexels

If you’re searching for smartphones with the best cameras, then use the following list and reviews posted below as a guide. What you read about here doesn’t mean you have to run out and buy something new and expensive because what’s ranked number one for someone else may not meet your needs.

Benefit from the research even if you’re looking to buy a less expensive model than the ones that are listed.

But what makes a quality smartphone camera?

The pixels and sensor are key.

Remember, getting the phone is only part of safeguarding your memories. Storing photos safely for a lifetime is essential.

Pixels and Sensor

Bigger pixels allow the sensor to capture more light. In an excellent article on The Smartphone Photographer, the sensor is described as “a device that is made up of light-sensitive photosites (also called pixels) that capture light photons as they enter the camera. The camera’s image processor takes this light information from the sensor and uses it to recreate an image of the scene.”

If that sounds too technical, here’s a good analogy. Pixels are like buckets used to catch rainwater. The bigger, the bucket then the more rainwater is collected.

A link to the article as well as the Smartphone rankings are at the end of this post.

So now, what are the best camera phones for 2021?

It took browsing a few different sites to get the answer.


Smartphone Ranking Sites

The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G ranks #1 on PC Mag, TechRadar and Digital Camera World.


It’s best for Super Zoom, according to PC Mag.

TechRadar says that the S20 didn’t deliver on its promises, but the S21 definitely does. One of the features is that it has two telephoto cameras which is a “move that’s unheard of on phones.”

The sensor and megapixels come into play for the review on Digital Camera World: “The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra has an impressive 108MP sensor – a megapixel count that most of the best professional cameras are nowhere near!”

So here’s a list that’s subjective, of course:

  • Samsung Galaxy S21 ranging from $ 899 to $ 1199
  • Apple iPhone 12 (ranked 2nd on both PC Mag and Digital Camera World) $1099
  • Huawei Mate 40 Pro is ranked 2nd by TechRadar $1079 to $1218
  • Google Pixel 5 $699
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra $849
  • Samsung Galaxy S10 5G $450
  • OnePlus 9 Pro $1069
  • Google Pixel 4a $349
  • Apple iPhone 12 mini $699
  • Sony Xperia 5 II (listed on PC Mag as “best for the pros.”)
  • Huawei P40 Pro $ 899
  • iPhone SE (2020) $449


How Will You Store Your Pics?

Once you’re armed with your favorite camera phone, you’re ready for action. But as you snap away, the images are going to pile up on your phone and your social media profiles and—then what?

You can have the greatest camera phone known to humanity, but you also need a strategy to store your photos or else they’ll be hard to find and end up forgotten.

Photo by Caleb Fisher on Unsplash

As a photo coach, I advise my clients to choose the images they like the best, upload them to a digital album that’s easy to create, and then relax, knowing that the digital storage space that I have them use will be available for a lifetime, plus 100 years.

Camera technology and camera phone technology has changed drastically during my years helping clients organize and safeguard their memories.

And storage options have changed, too.

I’ve always searched for the best products to use and I will say one thing for certain: using Google and social media sites like Facebook and Instagram aren’t long-term storage strategies.


They can change the Terms of Service at any time.

Do you realize how quickly the Internet changes every few years or even every year?

Also, the tech companies can suspend your account and you might never be able to log back into it.

There are companies that specialize in converting and storing media but you, the consumer, might get your files back in formats like DVDs or thumb drives that aren’t accessible.

I guide my clients to forward-looking companies that provide them a safe space to store their pictures. How can I be so sure?

Because my clients have ownership of their online space for decades to come, which is why I say that I can Safeguard Your Memories.


May I Help You?

A private session with a client
Melody Whitehead showing client a photo organizing strategy

Here are areas where I can assist:

  • Converting old media to digital storage
  • Giving you a method to organize your photos
  • Showing you how to store your images, or memories, in online photo albums for the next 100 years or longer

My goal is to help you enjoy peace of mind with products and services. It’s like having photo insurance.

Contact me to share your needs so you can learn more.


Further Reading

Know the Challenges and Solution for Digitally Storing Old Photos, Videos


Here’s the article link mentioned above and the guides to phone rankings:


The Smartphone Photographer: 7 Key Differences Between a Good Phone and a Bad One


The Best Camera Phones for 2021 | PCMag


Best camera phone 2021: our top smartphone picks | TechRadar


The best camera phone in 2021 | Digital Camera World

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