Best budget smartphone?

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BlueSwordM
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As always:

The best budget phone is the one you don’t buy.

What to do if your phone gets slow:

1. Empty your phone storage by backing up your photos/videos/files to your computer, and then erasing them on your phone.

2. Put your photos/vids on your microSD card.

Reason: The more your flash storage inside of your phone is filled, the slower that storage is, the slower the phone feels.

3. Replace your battery. Can cost between 20$-90$, but are 100% worth it.
4. Get rid of apps like Facebook, or Twitter.
Replace them with lighter apps like Swipe.

5. Uninstall apps you don’t need, or disable them.

6. Install this:
https://f-droid.org/

This for Youtube:
https://f-droid.org/en/packages/org.schabi.newpipe/

No ads, downloads possible. Perfect for mobile. Extremely fast too.
Just search for alternative apps here.

Last option: Buy a used phone, and replace its battery!

My very own high current Beryllium Copper springs Gen 3:
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/67401
Liitokala Aliexpress Stores Battery Fraud: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/60547

joechina
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wle wrote:
i got tired of trying to figure out all the android makers, models, years, versions, bugs, fixes…

what i did was get a 2016 iphone 6

it works well and was like $150 on amazon

wle

Easiest way is to focus on Android One devices or google pixel phones.
Then choose

M3CSL
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A long time ago I bought a Leagoo M8 Pro, after rooting it and getting rid of all pre-installed apps and services it is a great budget phone. I think I paid about 40$ US 2 years back.

Convoy S2+ 219b triple, Astrolux FT02, Maglite 3D, Solarforce L2t

tekwyzrd
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Swappa can be an option for bargains. I’m posting this via a really nice 8gb/128gb carrier unlocked oneplus 6 I got via swappa for a bit more than half of the original price. Nice upgrade from my 4+ year old 64gb oneplus one but the a/b partition scheme can be a pain to flash/recovery/root. Currently running havoc.

edit: some may not consider a $300 decrease in the price of a like-new phone a ‘budget’ option, I don’t consider a $100+ flashlight a ‘budget’ option. To each their own. My phone is my only internet access after at&t failure to provide reliable landline service (over a ten year period on average a month per year with no phone or dsl with no discount, paying for service not received due to water infiltration in the wires), and considering I have relied on my oneplus one for over four years after having it survive drops up to five feet to a concrete floor (in a hybrid case) I consider the op6 i’m using now, purchased for what I paid for my opo a bargain. Both the opo and op6 were rooted to give me options. I like being able to use my device as I choose. I use substratum, currently with swift black, and screen on time is excellent.

Nothing travels faster than the speed of light with the possible exception of bad news, which obeys its own special laws. – Douglas Adams

acab
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To me a budget phone would be an Android under 50 dollars. Medium price level would be 80-250, high at 300-550 and anything above is something I would probably not purchase. 1K for a phone in 2019 is unrealistic to me (but I do understand the appeal to own the latest and greatest).

mrheosuper
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to me budget phone is phone under $200, and xiaomi redmi note 7 is the best option here

if you want something higher, google pixel 3A is a winner

and go higher, basically all phone are the same

Forgot my pen

leftdisconnected
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I bought a 128GB Google Pixel 1 in “very good” condition on eBay in December 2018 for $170. It replaced a hand-me-down (free) iPhone 3GS from 2009 that still works fine, but which maxxed out at iOS 6 and thus won’t run modern apps.

That was a bit more than I originally intended to spend, but I wanted plenty of storage and no serious damage as I’ll be carrying this phone for years to come. In reality, I’m using only about 30GB of storage even with dozens of apps, but too much space is a good thing. The phone looks nearly new with only a small scratch on one corner. Screen is flawless, etc.

The original Pixel is still getting monthly Android updates as soon as they are released and I upgraded to Android Pi (9) after activating the phone. Performance is still great, though the Pixel 1 camera is not quite as nice as the one on Pixel 2/3. It’s still unbelievably good when compared with my old phone Wink .

It’s not perfect, by any means, but 6 months ago it was a good value for a phone that I didn’t have to root in order to get the latest operating system. If you don’t mind rooting a cheaper Android, then by all means go for it, but you will probably have problems and some of those problems may be unsolvable.

BTW: Don’t get the original Pixel XL; it had screen problems.


The best “used” values are changing constantly as new phones come out and supplies of “old” phones come in and out of stock at refurbishers. The original Pixel is probably not such a great value today, but I’m mainly pointing out that used phones can be an excellent option if you do some homework and find a trustworthy seller. My next phone will likely be used as well.


The Pixel 3a appears to be a good value for a “new” phone and will probably be far more popular than the Pixel 3.


The OnePlus phones have traditionally been good values. They use near-stock Android and get rapid security updates, but:

  1. OnePlus 6 went upmarket slightly, but OnePlus 7 jumped upmarket substantially. The company has admitted that these will no longer be mid-tier phones Sad .
  2. Older OnePlus phones have maintained insane resell values, making used 4/5/6 models rather poor values.


Though all phones are untrustworthy to some degree, any phone that doesn’t get iOS or Android updates should be considered to be someone else’s; you should not do sensitive or financial activities on such a device. Cheap phones do not receive updates as a rule and even those that do may be updated more than a year after Google releases the patch; too late to help anyone.

I’ll also mention that a security research firm recently tested the 30 most popular “financial” apps from banks, credit card companies, etc and found that all of them, both iOS and Android versions, were insecure and poorly written. Some were worse than others, but none sufficiently followed industry standard security practices. They easily hacked into all of them.


Lastly and as others have noted, if your phone is slow, try removing the crap. My Pixel 1 is fast and smooth in Android 9, unless I add more than a couple of widgets to the screen. Widgets will kill performance like nothing else. If you don’t need an app, remove it. If you don’t use a screen icon or widget, remove it.

RobAllen

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Can i Skype?

Is the camera good enough to send high res photos of a product/problem?

Can i change the battery?

Can i store 200-300 gigs of drawings/data/photos?

Will i get good reception in poor areas?

Will i get all the 4G bands everywhere on the planet? At least most of the planet?

If i need Google earth, is the screen capable of high res?

Do i have a lot of screen real estate? Nothing less the 6”.

If not, to me it’s not budget, it’s junk.

My father has a large button phone that he uses to tell time and get an occasional call. He’s 101. His phone is 50 bucks.

Budget phones are defined by what ones needs are.

Super duper latest and greatest……don’t care, don’t need it.

What i always want but never get is a tough phone. I would be thrilled if they made a high end’ish phone with polycarbonate screen that i can overlay with a disposable, 5 buck glass screen protector.

Moses came from the mountaintop carrying a tablet. The Words were....WITH GREAT LUMENS COMES GREAT REPONSIBILITY.

wle
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used iphone 6 or 6s on amazon, $150 or so..

i hated the idea until i tried to wade through 10000000000 android models, features, bugs, versions, years, reviews, android versions, etc

wle

"You never have the wind with you - it's either against you, or you're having a good day."
    Daniel Behrman, "The Man Who Loved Bicycles".
It never gets easy, you just go faster.   
-Greg Lemond.
       ,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸

bmengineer
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Spartan wrote:

Can i store 200-300 gigs of drawings/data/photos?

Why on earth would you need that much storage, and what phone possibly overs 300 GB?

Find all my reviews of flashlights and more gear at www.bmengineer.com

BlueSwordM
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Well, that’s easy to store on a micro SD card.

That’s what he was implying: he needs a micro SD card slot in his phone.

My very own high current Beryllium Copper springs Gen 3:
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/67401
Liitokala Aliexpress Stores Battery Fraud: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/60547

wle
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megs maybe, not 300 gigs, that needs a hard drive
sounds like he wants a laptop/tablet with 4G for $100

"You never have the wind with you - it's either against you, or you're having a good day."
    Daniel Behrman, "The Man Who Loved Bicycles".
It never gets easy, you just go faster.   
-Greg Lemond.
       ,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸

acab
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While there are really large SD cards, the Android phones limit the maximum card size.
Most modern phones should accept 256 GB cards.

edit:
Specific phones support larger storage solutions, S9 has up to 400GB.

BlueSwordM
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All phones with SDXC card slots can support SD cards of up to 2TB.

That means any decent phones after 2012 supports microSD cards of up to 2TB.

My very own high current Beryllium Copper springs Gen 3:
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/67401
Liitokala Aliexpress Stores Battery Fraud: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/60547

UDO
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Welcome to 2019 – no need for hard drive, you can get 256GB brand name card for around 30$. Storage is really cheap nowdays, well except for iphone users.

lumenzilla
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Just purchased a Redmi 6A for around US$84 and pretty sufficient for my daily activities.
Haven’t tried to play any game though..

AgentSteel
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UDO wrote:
Welcome to 2019 – no need for hard drive, you can get 256GB brand name card for around 30$. Storage is really cheap nowdays, well except for iphone users.

Yep. Problem is storage can fail. Be sure to do regular backups Innocent

Flashlights, blades & beer
Let’s stay relatively optimist!

klrman
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Not sure if it is a good budget smart phone but I got for my wife a free Samsung Galaxy A5 2017 brand new..  Seems to be pretty decent after I removed all the bloatware, turned off mobile data, turned off all notifications except for incoming calls etc.  The only thing I don't like is that the phone is  the Canadian version and they disabled the FM tuner.  Would have been nice to have it working without using any data.  Searched around and not convinced installing a new global rom would fix it as I have read never ending issues with this phone trying to do that.  

raccoon city
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After years of having a smart phone, I thought I would call up Consumer Cellular and set up my voice mail.

The man on the phone tried to call my mom's phone, and he couldn't, so he told me to do a factory reset on both phones.

I did, and after doing so, I lost just about all the data on my phone, and my mom lost just about all of her pics on her phone and all of her texts.

I don't know who I was talking to at Consumer Cellular, but he gave very bad advice.

Now I know that you have to backup your data first, and you'll still lose all of your texts.

I didn't have a lot on my phone, but having to start over again is annoying to say the least.

 

My voice mail is set up, and Consumer Cellular can now call my mom's phone, but it was still horrible advice.

If someone tells you to do a factory reset on your phone, do some research first, and take the necessary precautions to limit data loss.

Jerommel
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I.m.o. a decent 2nd hand Samsung S5 is perhaps the best deal.
Make sure to do a factory reset BEFORE you start using it.
Lord knows what mess is on there when you buy a used one.
A micro SD card is a good idea too. For me 32 GB is more than enough.

The only draw back is the age and wear of the battery, but you can get a new one if necessary.

hank
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https://duckduckgo.com/?q=chinese+phone+security

among much else, turns up

[quote]Secret Back Door in Some U.S. Phones Sent Data to China …
https://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/16/us/politics/china-phones-software-sec...
Nov 16, 2016 The Chinese company that wrote the software, Shanghai Adups Technology Company, says its code runs on more than 700 million phones, cars and other smart devices….

How to Stay Safe from Adups Spyware on Budget Android Phones …
https://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/kryptowire-adups-news/
Aug 1, 2017Chinese Android software transmitted personal data including text messages, call details, and contacts from tens of thousands of phones.,,,

Jerommel
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Yes, i’ve heard similar things… Laptops, even military equipment…

Reminds me of what happened to me a couple of days ago.

I was petting the (my mom’s) dog, saying “hey, doggie”.
And her phone was close by, and the phone said: “He’s a good boy.” and played a dog barking….

My mom thought it was hilarious,
i was a little freaked out by it…
I guess it must have been some stupid app that caused this, but who knows?

Since then i turn off the Wifi on my phone (and of course the data transmission via the cellphone network) when i don’t need it.
But guess what happens when i turn it on?
It’s busy transmitting a bunch of data back an forth, making it next to impossible to do anything else until it’s finished.

You know the slogan:
“Make 1984 fiction again!”

BrightKen
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Recently purchased a 1 year old 64 gb Samsung Galaxy S8 on Craigslist for $60 with a cracked screen. Had the screen replaced at $75 and added a 128 gb micro SD card.

Looks like Samsung will not issue any updates to the S8 but I think $125 for a S8 seems to be a good deal.

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