There's absolutely no doubt about the camera quality of flagship smartphones released in 2018, in terms of both the rear and front shooters. That is why it's equally important to put emphasis on both cameras when testing the image quality of a mobile device.
DxOMark aims to do just that with the release of its first-ever selfie test protocol for front cameras along with the first results of its selfie testing. The scores are based on several factors including color accuracy, contrast, focus, sharpness, exposure, noise, and more.
A total of 12 smartphones ranging from entry-level to flagship models have been tested, with Samsung's Galaxy Note9 and the Google Pixel 3 emerging at the top with a tie overall score of 92. Trailing behind those selfie camera beasts were the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3, iPhone XS Max, and Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus in that particular order. You can see the full ranking below.
While the Pixel 3 and Galaxy Note9 achieved the same score, DxOMark noted that Google's latest flagship device excelled in terms of focus capability while Samsung's bet led the pack for exposure and color. When it comes to noise level, DxOMark noted some trade-offs made by both companies, thus:
"Image results from both cameras are excellent, but the Google puts a lot of emphasis on texture and detail and therefore accepts some noise in Pixel 3 images, while Samsung engineers have opted for a cleaner image and made some sacrifices in terms of fine details."
For selfie photos alone, the Pixel 3 scored the highest while the Galaxy Note9 attained the top spot for selfie video. DxOMark claims that it conducted the tests in both objective and subjective ways under controlled settings. But at the end of the day, these are just tests and your buying decision should depend on your shooting requirements and budget.