Fortunately, nowadays the situation has improved a lot, with numerous quality Android phones and with everything you need to be able to open the most famous apps without problems. Let’s see together then the characteristics of a good budget Android smartphone and which models to consider for purchase.
READ ALSO: What to know before buying a new smartphone
Inexpensive smartphones with Android can be found in the price range between € 100 and € 200, beyond which we already find mid-range smartphones in which spending begins to become interesting. Before proceeding with a purchase, make sure that the economic smartphone chosen has at least the following characteristics:
- Screen: on low-cost Android devices, the screen usually does not have too high a resolution as on high-end models. Let’s make sure that the resolution is at least HD (1280 x 720 pixels) and the dimensions of at least 6 inches, so that we can get an adequate number of details for the most popular web pages and apps.
- Performance: that of low performance has always been the worst of the problems on cheap smartphones. Currently, it is advisable to buy only smartphones that have at least 4 GB of RAM and an octa-core processor, any manufacturer proposes it (rarely Qualcomm, more often Mediatek). In general, with these characteristics, the performance of an Android smartphone is good enough for calling, sending messages, reading mail, internet, Facebook etc.
- Internal memoryAnother big problem facing low-cost Android phones is internal storage. At present it is advisable to focus only on models with at least 64 GB of internal memory; the presence of a microSD slot to expand this memory can help minimally, but we consider that many apps are installed only in the internal memory and even if they can be moved some files will still remain accessible from the internal memory.
- Battery: another important chapter, but which could be influenced by the operating system and software customizations applied to the low-end smartphone; in any case it is better to focus on smartphones that adopt a battery of at least 4500 mAh, so as to be able to face a day with the smartphone.
- Camera: no matter how many megapixels you have the camera on cheap smartphones will always be of low level, good only for taking a few photos during the day (it will show all its limits in night photos). Some models also adopt good solutions, but if we want to take beautiful photos it is better to focus on more expensive models.
- Software e firmware: historically low-cost phones have never been supported by their manufacturers; many of these are selling low-cost mobile phones without anticipating future software updates. In recent years, Google has personally taken steps to keep many apps updated from the operating system, making system updates unnecessary in most cases. It is therefore okay to focus on phones with at least Android 10 installed, so as to have full support for the latest features.
- Biometric access: practically all smartphones have a fingerprint reader, so you can easily unlock the phone and also access banking or payment apps with a simple touch of the registered finger. Face recognition is also spreading at the low end, albeit heavily influenced by the quality of the front camera (not always up to par).
- NFC module: until recently it was not a feature to be taken into account, but with the spread of Google Pay and compatible stores, it is better to bet on a phone with NFC support, so you can pay with your contactless phone.
To these features are added those now ubiquitous on any phone such as Dual SIM support, support for LTE networks (5G for now is very rare in this price range), while phones with fast charging are also frequent even under € 200.
Best cheap Android smartphones
Despite the limitations, the new cheap Android smartphones are still good phones. Even if a low cost smartphone (from 100 to 200 Euros) may not be good for everyone, today it is easier to find bargains and, also thanks to Chinese devices, you can find great deals.
The cheapest phone we can bet on is the Realme Narzo 30A (€ 144).
This phone features a 6.5-inch HD + Display, octa-core processor, 4GB of RAM, 64GB of expandable internal memory, triple rear camera with artificial intelligence, 6000mAh battery, fast charging and Dual SIM support and Android operating system 10.
Another inexpensive smartphone that we can evaluate is the OnePlus N100 (145 €), the younger brother of the OnePlus NORD.
On this OnePlus we find a 6.52-inch HD LCD display, octa-core processor, 4 GB of RAM, 64 GB of expandable internal memory, Triple rear camera, 5000 mAh battery, 18W fast charge, Dual SIM support and operating system Android 10.
For those who love Samsung phones, you can bet on the Samsung Galaxy A12 (€ 181).
On this phone we find a 6.5-inch HD + display, octa-core processor, 4 GB of RAM, 128 GB of internal memory, 4 Rear Cameras, 5000 mAh battery, Dual SIM support, fast charging support and Android 10 operating system.
Do we want a complete phone with support for 5G technology? The best currently is the Xiaomi Poco M3 Pro 5G (187 €).
This smartphone boasts a 6.5-inch FullHD + screen, Dimensity 700 octa-core processor, 4 GB of RAM, 64 GB of expandable internal memory, 48 MP triple rear camera, Bluetooth 5.1, Dual Wi-Fi, NFC support, battery 5000 mAh, fast charging and Android 11 operating system.
The most powerful phone we can buy in this price range is undoubtedly the realme 8 (€ 195).
This smartphone looks like a mid-range phone, thanks to the 6.4-inch FullHD Super AMOLED display, octa-core processor, 6 GB of RAM, 128 GB of storage, 64 MP quad camera, 5000 mAh battery, fast charging 30W, Dual SIM support, NFC support and Android 10 OS.
Another interesting phone to view is the TCL 20L (€ 199).
This smartphone has a 6.67-inch HD + display, octa-core processor, 4 GB of RAM, 128 GB of internal memory, quad rear camera, 5000 mAh battery, cover and film included and Android 11 operating system.
After having analyzed all the features and seen the models offered we can say that today it is really worth buying a cheap Android smartphone, not only for those who need a basic mobile phone for calling, texting, emailing, browsing, Facebook, but also for playing the best games.
If we want to spend more than € 200 it is worth taking a look at the best android phones by price range and, to save money, discover the best Chinese smartphone brands, so you can choose only well-supported and powerful products.