Best smartphones for gaming

iPhone 5s

Following our review of the best tablets for gaming, and the comments that followed, we realised that a simple aggregate review score and a GPU benchmark were not enough to hail a device as “good for gaming”.

Cue round two, and our look at a bunch of smartphones and how well they stack up against each other based on gaming-relevant benchmarks.

What we have below is a table of 15 phones, graded according to 3DMark tests, AnTutu scores, GFX Bench FPS, and battery life tests, along with an overall aggregate review score form Engadget – because your phone has to do more than just play games.

Phone (processor unit) 3DMark – Graphics 3DMark – Frame Rate 3DMark – Physics Phone Arena – AnTuTu GFXBench Egypt HD 2.5 FPS GFXBench: Battery Life Engadget Avg. Review
LG G Flex (Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 2.3 GHz) n/a n/a n/a 36180 54 269 mins 83%
LG G Pro 2 (Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 2.3 GHz) n/a n/a n/a 28615 n/a n/a 88%
LG Optimus G Pro (Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 APQ8064T 1.7 GHz) 8784 39 9942 21303 28 n/a 88%
LG G2 (Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 2.3GHz) 18622 86.4 8569 35376 49 210 mins 87%
Motorola Moto X (Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro MSM8960 Pro 1.7 GHz) 13875 62.7 6646 18483 53.6 186 mins 88%
Samsung Galaxy S4 (Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 (APQ8064AB) 1.9 GHz) 11481 51.5 10002 24701 40.6 186 mins 88%
Samsung Galaxy Note 3 (Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 2.3 GHz) 13551 60.4 9917 31543 53.5 163 mins 87%
HTC One (Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 APQ8064T 1.7GHz) 11285 49.4 12331 23308 40.1 162 mins 92%
Apple iPhone 5s (Apple A7 1.3GHz – iOS 7.0) 12692 58.4 7197 N/A 53 116 mins 92%
ASUS Padfone Infinity (Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 2.2 GHz) 12636 58.2 12753 N/A 32.4 150 mins n/a
Google Nexus 4 (Qualcomm APQ8064 1.5 GHz) 11451 50.7 9953 16749 44 169 mins n/a
Google Nexus 5 (Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 2.3 GHz) n/a 58.7 n/a 26340 50.1 152 mins n/a
Sony Xperia Z1 Compact (Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 2.2 GHz) n/a n/a n/a 33468 54 207 mins 88%
Sony Xperia Z1 (Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 2.2GHz) n/a n/a n/a 30838 53 207 mins 88%
Sony Xperia Z Ultra (Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 2.2 GHz) n/a n/a n/a 29732 52 196 mins n/a

As you can see, the LG G Flex, LG G2, and Asus Padfone Infinity came up tops in multiple/single categories, while the Apple iPhone 5s fared well in the overall review score.

The Sony Xperia Z1 and Z1 Compact were not far behind, with the Z1 Compact tying for first in the GFX Bench Egypt test.

A note on the N/A values for some of the tests – our scores were taken form single sites that benchmarked and tested multiple phones. We decided against taking individual scores off phone review articles from multiple publications as this would lead to inconsistency when phones were ranked against one another. Unfortunately, some sites had not tested all the phones we featured at the time of publication, hence the omitted results.

So, what do you make of our analysis? Do you game on any of the above phones, and if so what is their performance like? Let us know in the comments and forum.

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