Best budget smartphone?

Very satisfied with my Moto G6. As is my father with the G5 that I bought him a couple of years ago.

Purchased the twin-sim expanded memory Amazon UK special (4gig RAM, 64 gig main memory, nfc, has a magnetometer, great GPS performance, not using e.g. some iffy MTK chipset.

Dual standby, so second SIM only gets GSM, but they can be quickly swapped over in the menu. Suits me, second SIM is only for back-up where my primary 3G/4G network is unavailable.

US network costs surprise me. Here I pay £18 for unlimited calls, texts, 30 gig data including tethering, no roaming call or data charges anywhere in EU and many many other countries including US. I could have totally unlimited data (over 1 terabyte/month) for another £2, and it is extremely fast.

PAYG can cost as little as 3p/min, 2p/text, 1p/megabyte.

Good camera, battery life, RF sensitivity, Amazon warranty, no questions asked. Clean Android 8, update to 9 promised by the summer. Decent silicone cover and basic screen protector in the box.

Finger print sensor extremely useful.

£180 including UK 20% VAT.

Considered the G7, on pre-order then, but it offered little more, bigger, and they moved the fingerprint sensor to the back. Accessories not then available, but by now suppliers should be tooling up.

No, they are not “Lenovo crap”. They are very decent, always have been.

After asking the same question on another forum (for my teenage daughter), there was only 1 clear choice/answer - Xiaomi A2 lite dual sim. Currently it’s in transit.
Most reviews seem to give it the edge over everything else in the price bracket - £130 for the 4/64gb from eglobal central.

Check out the Pocophone F1. It’s a monster flagship and a flagship killer. Pretty useless for me (or TMobile users) but if the reception specs suit you, it’s a heck of a phone for the money. About $270 USD.

Kimvoli is a great site too. Scroll down and check out the reception area because Chinese phones are not universal. Check that you have ALL the bands from your carrier match.

Less popular brands have solid prodcuts but PLEASE check what cell bands your provider uses. I would have loved a Huawei or Nokia but only the most expensive options have all the bands for T-Mobile’s network. I am not willing to trade coverage for talk or data for a slightly better screen or camera.

Excellent shock and waterproofing is a big plus for someone as clumsy as me too, some of the budget options make big concessions in these areas.

TMobile is like Freedom up here. If you don’t have all the bands, you land up with 3g and spotty reception.

BTW….you have the Samsung S8 active. Heck of a phone for rough service.

That’s what I chose for my gf too. Its size is acceptable even for women, good specs for general use (4/64GB, 4000mAh battery), AndroidOne etc.
It’s quite ridiculous that nowadays it’s almost impossible to find a normal sized phone because everything is similar to a pizza-peel in size. 3.5 audio jacks and notification LEDs are also getting rare.

I picked up Moto G6. So far so good. Poetic Justice case. I like the double chop to turn the light on.

I got my Moto G6.

I sent this message to the seller:

"I received the phone today.

The phone is not new.

There are a bunch of deep scratches, or rather gouges, on the left side of the phone."

Beer opener phone? Lol

Honor 8X. Smooth and very fast. Amazing display compared to any Xiaomi phone.

I’m still using a Moto G4. Purchased unlocked and will work with any carrier. When the time comes, it will be another Moto.

Try twist for the camera.

Other camera apps are available to get the best from it. It is quite good.

Fingerprint sensor very good. One of the few accepted by by online banking people here. As well as NFC for cardless payments. Not that I trust it that far yet, passwords still for me. Meanwhile it unlocks or locks the phone instantly. Very useful.

People really need to be careful about saying this. I nearly purchased a phone for T-Mobile prepaid that would have left me on 3G data in most of the US because it didn’t have the majority of their bands. It was not even a very old or a “budget product line phone.

There is a significant difference in what frequencies are supported from some brands since although there phones can usually be unlocked they are intended for certain service providers.

I like the twist for the camera. But don’t use the fingerprint thing.


I think Freedom up here and TMobile have the same frequencies. If you are missing one of them, you got problems.

Samsung tends to throw all the frequencies in their universal phones like the A5, A8 and now, the A9. Chinese phones are hit and miss at the best of times.

how much are you willing to pay for a smart phone?


200ish a year sounds about right, i guess. So 600 plus it better last at least 3 years, and we know that doesn’t always happen.

I returned the damaged Moto G6, and got my money back.

I ordered a brand new G6, only to learn that the volume during phone calls is not very loud on the G6.

I will return the G6 and get a Moto E5 Play.

I know that phone is loud enough.

(I'm kinda hard of hearing and I need a loud phone.)

It's a shame, too, because other than that, the G6 is very nice.

i bought my daughters an unused Samsung A9 Pro (2016 version) for less than $200. 6” SUPER AMOLED FHD. snapdragon 652 cpu. 5000 mah battery.
im still using my 6 years old LG NEXUS 5. the point is, buy something of known brand as their manufacturing quality is higher. they will serve you well far longer than newer chinese throwaways.

the latest chinese craze now is the flagship killer Xiaomi Pocophone F1 for less than $250. if you like 18:9 screen ratio, fast snapdragon cpu, high ram (6 GB)… this phone is for you

im sticking with the old 16:9 screen ratio.

Yes and 1. I looked at those Chinese phones like Ulefone, or ZTE, Xaomi, Elefone, etc that had crazy low prices and good specs, but you give up some things if you get one. If you are in the USA then Chinese smartphones are a a bad idea. You run into issues with security because you may not get ota Android updates or patches from your carrier or phone manufacturer. There might be connectivity issues as well, like not utilizing all of the wireless bands available from your carrier. You might get some like the LTE or HSPA bands but not all, like the highest bandwidth frequencies. Tech support and warranties are useless. Plus, these phones don’t usually have things like water resistance or micro SD card support or are limited to micro USB. In addition, the cameras aren’t great in the sub-$350 phones, no oiS, 4k video or 60fps 1080p despite them having 2 or 3 cameras. You need to spend $400 to get that quasi-flagship levels of performance. You might as well get something like a Moto G7 that costs $350 and doesn’t give up much in terms of features vs. Price. That, or get something like a 2018 flagship phone like a Galaxy S8+ for around $350. I got a nearly unused Note 8 for $385 on eBay that crushes the Chinese phones for around that price.

So the moral of the story is… get a mainstream phone from a reputable company based in the US.