10 Best SoftBank Phones in 2022 | Recommendations by Price

In this article, we will introduce 10 of the smartphones we recommend among the phones currently available for purchase from SoftBank.

SoftBank is one of the 3 largest mobile carriers in Japan, and they offer a wide variety of phones and phone plans.

However, with the sheer amount of different models, it’s hard to know what to choose.

This time, we have picked 10 different devices in each price range, from the low-end to the high-end.

Ranking Evaluations

  • Popularity and name recognition
  • Camera performance
  • Battery life
  • Display
  • Spec to price ratio

We will introduce them starting from the most expensive on the list. Choose which one best fits your budget.

Later in the article, we will also introduce SoftBank’s phone plans.

There is not much information provided in English, so we think that many people who are interested in SoftBank may be having some trouble.

Related article

If you’re interested in the best sim cards and phone plans in Japan, check out this article!

Table of Contents

10 best SoftBank phones in 2022

We will introduce the phones we recommend in order of most expensive to least expensive.

Let’s get started!

1. iPhone 13

Photo courtesy of SoftBank

The iPhone 13 series, the newest edition of the iPhone product line, was released on September 24, 2021, starting at 101,520 JPY.

In addition to the regular model, there is also the iPhone 13 mini, iPhone 13 Pro, and the iPhone 13 Pro Max.

If you don’t have any preferences for the different models, we recommend the regular model because of its balance of display size and functionality.

When you compare the iPhone 13 to the iPhone 12, the battery life has been improved. The 13 can last up to 2 and a half hours longer than the 12.

Additionally, the new “cinematic mode” camera function allows you to control the focus of your video, even if the subject is moving or changing a lot.

With the iPhone 13 camera, it is easy to shoot images with a genuine 3D effect. Check it out on SoftBank’s online store here.

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Phone modeliPhone 13
Price (Tax inc.)115,920 JPY
Screen size6.1-inch
Frame
dimensions
Height: 146.7mm
Width: 71.5mm
Depth: 7.7mm
Weight173 grams
Outer camera12MP wide
12MP ultra wide
Inner camera12MP wide
Memory64GB, 128GB, 256GB
ChipsetA15 Bionic
Battery3,240 mAh
Authentication
method
Face ID
Colors(PRODUCT RED), Starlight,
Midnight, Blue, Pink

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2. AQUOS R6

Photo courtesy of SoftBank

Sharp unveiled the new AQUOS R6 in May 2021. It’s being sold exclusively in Japan.

The AQUOS R6 comes with the first of its kind, a 1-inch camera sensor that can take higher quality pictures, and a new IGZO OLED panel that can produce vivid and bright colors while conserving power. Its main selling point is the size of the camera sensor, which is produced by the high-quality German camera manufacturer, Leica.

Its IGZO OLED screen claims to be the world’s first screen that can switch between refresh rates of 1Hz and 240Hz. Because it has a high-quality chipset that uses a lot of power, it conserves energy by lowering the refresh rate when still images are being displayed and goes up to 240Hz while playing games and watching videos for smooth viewing and playing experiences.

Even though the AQUOS R6 has a large outer camera, it only has one. It lacks telephoto and wide camera angles.

Overall, Sharp’s AQUOS R6 has an amazing screen and a gigantic outer camera sensor. Check it out on SoftBank’s online store here.

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Phone modelAQUOS R6
Price (Tax inc.)133,920 JPY
Screen size6.6-inch
Frame
dimensions
Height: 162mm
Width: 74mm
Depth: 9.5mm
Weight207 grams
Outer camera20MP
Inner camera12MP wide
Memory128GB
ChipsetSnapdragon 888
Battery5,000 mAh
Authentication
method
Fingerprint sensor
ColorsBlack, White

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3. Xperia 5 II

Photo courtesy of SoftBank

The Xperia phones series is Sony’s product line of devices that go against today’s traditional smartphone status quo. The Xperia 5 II is a tall and skinny phone with a powerful chipset and beautiful screen.

If you’re looking for something new, the Xperia 5 II is a great choice. It has a vivid OLED screen, and lots of manual camera settings to snap the perfect shot. It takes good photos and feels almost like a real Sony camera.

Because of its dedicated camera shutter button, the phone’s sides feel crowded with too many buttons with suboptimal placements for each. It also lacks wireless charging which is something that many have come to expect in phones around this price point.

Overall, the Xperia 5 II feels like a phone that comes with a whole camera attached. Find it from SoftBank here.

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Phone modelXperia 5 II
Price (Tax inc.)92,880 JPY
Screen size6.1-inch
Frame
dimensions
Height: 158mm
Width: 68mm
Depth: 8mm
Weight163 grams
Outer camera12.2MP wide
12.2MP ultra wide
12.2MP telephoto
Inner camera8MP wide
Memory128GB
ChipsetSnapdragon 865
Battery4,000 mAh
Authentication
method
Fingerprint sensor
ColorsBlue, Black,
Grey, Pink

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4. Google Pixel 6

Photo courtesy of SoftBank

The Google Pixel 6 is Google’s new flagship phone. Released on October 28, the Google Pixel 6 has brought on its own chipset, the Google Tensor. It has 2 storage options of 128GB and 256GB. The Google Pixel 6 Pro also comes with the same storage options as the standard model, with an additional 48MP telephoto camera among other better specs, of course at a higher price.

The Pixel 6 is a powerful, value-priced phone. It takes great photos with its wide and ultra-wide lenses even at night. It has a powerful chip with awesome AI photo editing features like action mode. Its design and dual color backs look great.

The Pixel 6 does not have a telephoto zoom lens, which is included on the 6 Pro. If you want to take pictures of things far away, go for the Pro.

Overall, we think that the Google Pixel 6 is a great phone at a great price, starting on SoftBank’s online store here at 85,680 JPY.

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Phone modelGoogle Pixel 6
Price (Tax inc.)85,680 JPY
Screen size6.4-inch
Frame
dimensions
Height: 158.6mm
Width: 74.8mm
Depth: 8.9mm
Weight207 grams
Outer camera50MP wide
12MP ultra wide
Inner camera8MP wide
Memory128GB, 256GB
ChipsetGoogle Tensor
Battery4,614 mAh
Authentication
method
Fingerprint sensor
ColorsSorta Seafoam,
Stormy Black,
Kinda Coral

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5. ZTE Axon 10 Pro 5G

Photo courtesy of SoftBank

Released March 27, 2020, the ZTE Axon 10 Pro 5G is regarded as a midrange 5G android device. It can connect to high-speed 5G networks, and has a high-end Snapdragon 865 5G chipset.

The 6.4-inch EL screen is said by reviews to be vivid and bright. With the high-end chipset and battery that supports quick charging, heavy use and gaming should be no problem. ZTE has done a great job creating a quality device that still holds up almost 2 years later.

The in-screen fingerprint sensor was said to have some trouble with recognition. In tests, the cameras struggled in low-light settings.

Overall, if you’re looking for a phone that you can use high speed 5G speeds with a long-lasting battery and nice screen, consider the ZTE Axon 10 Pro 5G from SoftBank here.

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Phone modelZTE Axon 10 Pro 5G
Price (Tax inc.)72,720 JPY
Screen size6.4-inch
Frame
dimensions
Height: 159mm
Width: 73mm
Depth: 7.9mm
Weight176 grams
Outer camera48MP wide
20MP ultra wide
8MP telephoto
Inner camera20MP wide
Memory128GB
ChipsetSnapdragon 865
Battery4,000 mAh
Authentication
method
Fingerprint sensor
ColorsBlue

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6. Google Pixel 4a (5G)

Photo courtesy of SoftBank

The Google Pixel 4a (5G) is a year old and is now considered an old model. But, it has many of the same features as the Google Pixel 5 at a great value price.

The best part of the Google Pixel 4a (5G) is its combination of 5G support and price. It has the same cameras as the Pixel 5, and the inner selfie camera is a punch hole, making the screen 6.2-inches without being too heavy. The battery life is said to last over 24 hours with mild usage.

If you’re an intense mobile gamer, reviews have said that the Pixel 4a (5G) doesn’t fare well with larger games. To save manufacturing costs, it only comes in black. If you are struggling with choosing a color for your phone, this could be a plus. Check it out here on SoftBank’s website.

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Phone modelGoogle Pixel 4a (5G)
Price (Tax inc.)57,600 JPY
Screen size6.2-inch
Frame
dimensions
Height: 153.9mm
Width: 74mm
Depth: 8.2mm
Weight168 grams
Outer camera12.2MP wide
16MP ultra wide
Inner camera8MP wide
Memory128GB
ChipsetSnapdragon 765G
Battery3,885 mAh
Authentication
method
Fingerprint sensor
ColorsJust Black

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7. OPPO Reno3 5G

Photo courtesy of SoftBank

Released on June 31, 2020, by OPPO, the Reno3 5G is being sold on SoftBank’s website currently for 55,440 JPY. The OPPO Reno3 is a mid-range device, aimed at customers who want fast 5G speeds.

The cameras that are included on the OPPO Reno3 5G have handshaking correction pro mode, which is supposed to help photos be more clear in action shots. There are 4 outer cameras and a 32MP inner camera that’s perfect for taking selfies. The cameras are top-notch and will take high-resolution photos.

If you don’t care about cameras and pictures, the Reno3 5G may not be for you. Reviews have said that this is not a phone with high processing power, and struggles to handle heavy workloads.

If you need an everyday phone with awesome cameras, consider the OPPO Reno3 5G from SoftBank here.

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Phone modelOPPO Reno3 5G
Price (Tax inc.)55,440 JPY
Screen size6.5-inch
Frame
dimensions
Height: 159mm
Width: 72mm
Depth: 7.7mm
Weight171 grams
Outer camera48MP wide
8MP ultra wide
2MP black and white
13MP depth
Inner camera32MP wide
Memory128GB
ChipsetSnapdragon 765G
Battery4,025 mAh
Authentication
method
Fingerprint sensor
ColorsMisty White

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8. AQUOS sense5G

Photo courtesy of SoftBank

AQUOS is Japan’s Sharp Corporation’s shot at cracking the domestic smartphone market. Released in early 2021, the sense5G is an affordable 5G compatible option available only in Japan.

The combination of midrange chipset and large battery leave this phone lasting for a long time. It’s a phone that’s great for making calls, sending texts, and general everyday use.

It doesn’t have fast charging abilities, and a few reviews have said that the phone gets very hot and unresponsive after prolonged use. Sharp will repair the phone for free if you experience any of these problems, which seems to happen only on a few models. Most reviews after repairs have said that the phone works great.

If you’re a light smartphone user, check out the AQUOS sense5G on SoftBank’s website here.

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Phone modelAQUOS sense5G
Price (Tax inc.)43,200 JPY
Screen size5.8-inch
Frame
dimensions
Height: 148mm
Width: 71mm
Depth: 8.9mm
Weight178 grams
Outer camera12MP wide
12MP ultra wide
8MP telephoto
Inner camera8MP
Memory64GB
ChipsetSnapdragon 690
Battery4,570 mAh
Authentication
method
Fingerprint sensor
ColorsLight Copper, Black
Olive Silver

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9. arrows U

Photo courtesy of SoftBank

Released in June of 2019, Fujitsu’s arrows U is a budget phone that gets the job done. Like the AQUOS sense5G and other phones at this price point, it’s good for light users and might struggle with heavier users.

Perfect for smartphone beginners, its simple UI is easy to navigate. Its screen is said to be bright and responsive. For those who do not use their smartphone very often, this device is sold at a low price and has a lot to offer. It’s fully water and dust-proof, rated IPX5, IPX8, and IP6X.

A few reviews have talked about the poor battery, and how it drains very fast during usage a few months after purchase. But, keep in mind that all phones may have similar problems and sometimes require repairs.

Fujitsu’s arrows U has great value for a low price phone, check it out on SoftBank’s online store here.

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Phone modelarrows U
Price (Tax inc.)21,984 JPY
Screen size5.8-inch
Frame
dimensions
Height: 149mm
Width: 72mm
Depth: 8.8mm
Weight166 grams
Outer camera13.1MP wide
5MP ultra wide
Inner camera8MP
Memory32GB
ChipsetSnapdragon 450
Battery2,880 mAh
Authentication
method
Fingerprint sensor
ColorsBlue, White,
Black

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10. Redmi Note 9T

Photo courtesy of SoftBank

The Reimi Note 9T is a great budget phone with 5G capabilities. Its performance is better than some phones at higher price points.

Xiaomi’s Redmi Note 9T is one of the cheapest 5G phones on the market right now. It has decent triple cameras and a quick side-mounted fingerprint scanner. The battery life is great, and battery tests have it lasting on average a day and a half. With the correct lighting, the camera can take great photos worthy of being uploaded to social media.

Despite having 3 cameras, the phone lacks optical zoom and ultra-wide mode.

The Redmi Note 9T is an overall good phone for people who are light phone users. Check it out on SoftBank’s website here.

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Phone modelRedmi Note 9T
Price (Tax inc.)21,600 JPY
Screen size6.5-inch
Frame
dimensions
Height: 162mm
Width: 77mm
Depth: 9.1mm
Weight199 grams
Outer camera48MP wide
2MP macro
2MP depth
Inner camera13MP
Memory64GB, 128GB
ChipsetDimensity 800U
Battery5,000 mAh
Authentication
method
Fingerprint sensor
ColorsNightfall Black,
Daybreak Purple

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How to buy SoftBank phones

There are two ways to purchase a SoftBank phone: online or in-store.

The price is cheaper on the online store, as the 3,000 JPY administrative fee is waived.

The online store is only in Japanese. However, in stores, you can ask for an English interpreter for free when you make a reservation in advance.

If you aren’t comfortable with making a large purchase in Japanese, definitely make a reservation and shop in-store. If you want to save some money and are comfortable with Japanese, the online store will be more convenient.

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The various SoftBank phone plans

SoftBank has a few contracts that you can sign up for when you purchase a phone.

If you’re interested in things like unlimited data, the Merihari Unlimited plan, the Mini Fit Plan Plus, international calling, international SMS, and international roaming data fee, check out this article.

If you want to compare other SIM cards that we recommend, check out the article we wrote that compares SIM card plans from the top carriers in Japan, like SoftBank, with some from carriers that recommend.

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If you need affordable cell phone service with English support

If you’re looking for an affordable phone plan that can be used in Japan, consider Sakura Mobile.

Features of Sakura Mobile’s long-term SIM card plan:

  • 4GB and 25GB Plans from 2,980 JPY/month
  • docomo’s fast 4G LTE network
  • Full English support 7 days a week
  • Online order and next day shipping
  • Japanese phone number

For more information take a look here.

Related Article

Are you looking for smartphone plans that you can use in Japan? Here’s an article comparing SoftBank to the top mobile carriers in Japan. Check it out!

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