This article is based on research, information and tips from mobile phone experts.
If you’re looking to buy a new smartphone but want to stay on budget, the phone market has made it easy to find an inexpensive device that still looks and performs like the high-end models from Samsung, LG, or Apple.
Here are our picks for the top 10 affordable smartphones available on the market.
1) Moto E4 Plus
While you can find smartphones in any price range, some are just better than others. If you’re looking for a solid Android phone with a big screen and a cheap price tag, look no further than Motorola’s Moto E4 Plus. This phone is an Amazon best-seller and it has more than 3,000 customer reviews. It also comes with two cameras (8 megapixels on the back and 5 megapixels on the front), 16 GB of storage space, and microSD card support. Motorola devices typically come unlocked—meaning they work with all carriers—and most cost under $200 without a contract or carrier agreement. This specific model sells for about $170 new; if you buy used from eBay or Craigslist, it should cost even less!
2) iPhone SE
The iPhone SE may be small, but it’s packed with power. It features a 12-megapixel camera and is Apple Pay enabled, so you can make secure purchases without pulling out your wallet. With an average user rating of 4.8 stars on Amazon, customers are calling it the best budget phone ever made (see reviews). And at $399 for 32GB or $499 for 128GB, it’s one of the most affordable iPhones to date. You can even get it in rose gold!
3) Honor 7X
This $200 smartphone looks more expensive than it is. With an octa-core processor, 3GB of RAM, and 32GB of storage—all in a sleek metal body—this phone is certainly worth considering if you want something higher-end on a low budget. It also comes with Android 8.0 Oreo pre-installed, meaning you can take advantage of all the latest features without having to wait for an update.
Its only drawback? The Honor 7X’s camera isn’t quite as good as those found on other similarly priced phones. If you don’t mind sacrificing a bit of photo quality, though, there are a few better options at this price point.
4) Honor 9 Lite
The Honor 9 Lite is a high-end smartphone on a mid-range budget. Packing features typically found in much more expensive smartphones, like facial recognition software and an ultrafast fingerprint scanner, there’s no doubt you can find better phones out there. But for just $250 USD, you're getting good value for money. It might not be as powerful as some of its counterparts but it's hard to deny how well it performs in daily use. Definitely worth checking out!
5) Samsung Galaxy J7 Prime
The Samsung Galaxy J7 Prime is an entry-level Android smartphone that comes with a reasonable price tag. It has an HD Super AMOLED display, which looks really good. The J7 Prime runs on a 1.6 GHz octa-core processor and it offers great overall performance for most tasks. Moreover, it has 16 GB of internal storage space, which you can expand up to 256 GB using a microSD card.
6) Nokia 3.1
This Android phone offers decent performance and battery life, as well as an easy-to-use stock build of Android. The camera could be better, but at $150 unlocked, it's hard to complain. This is one of our favorite phones you can buy right now if you want a reliable device without dropping a ton of cash on a flagship. When it comes to midrange phones, Nokia has always been one of our favorites—their devices are always reliable, dependable, and perform well under pressure.
7) Asus Zenfone Live L1
The Asus Zenfone Live L1 is a 4G LTE phone in our list of best Android phones under $100. Powered by a quad-core 1.3 GHz Snapdragon 415, there’s plenty of power to tackle your daily tasks and entertainment needs. The phone also has a 5-inch IPS display with Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection and 2GB RAM, which is great for watching movies or playing games at 720p resolution.
On paper, its camera setup sounds disappointing at 8MP on both sides, but photos look pretty decent in well-lit conditions. Overall, if you want an affordable smartphone with great battery life and performance under $100, then you should consider getting the Asus Zenfone Live L1!
8) Oppo A21
The Oppo A21 is a smartphone with almost all of today's modern necessities: It runs on Android 7.1 Nougat, and you can use it to check email, surf social media, or stream music. The camera comes with a 16-megapixel resolution, plus there's an 8-megapixel front-facing one. There's a 2,300mAh battery in here, which should give you more than enough juice for a full day of work—and even then it won't die overnight.
Plus there are three different storage options: 16GB of internal storage with 2GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage with 3GB of RAM, and 64GB of internal storage with 4GB of RAM.
9) LG Q6
For an affordable smartphone on AT&T, we recommend picking up LG's Q6, which has a 5.5-inch Full HD display, as well as 16GB of internal storage. You'll also get a 3,000mAh battery with support for fast charging to ensure you can quickly power up when needed. The device is powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 435 processor, and you have options for 2GB or 3GB of RAM depending on whether you choose a model with 16GB or 32GB of onboard storage space.
As an added bonus, LG includes an FM radio receiver in addition to compatibility with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa voice assistants.
10) ZTE Blade V8 Pro
The Blade V8 Pro offers a similar experience to last year’s Blade X9 Plus but for a lower price. It has an octa-core MediaTek processor, 4 GB of RAM, and 64 GB of internal storage, plus microSD card support. The dual-camera setup is 13 megapixels at f/2.0 and 2 megapixels at f/2.4 for depth sensing, and you get a 5.5-inch display with HD resolution (1,280 by 720 pixels). ZTE also says it has quick charging capabilities but doesn’t specify how quickly it works—which can be particularly helpful when you don’t have time to wait around all day to fill up your phone’s battery.
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
© 2022 Uzair Khan