The best cheap and good phones you can buy right now

Top budget smartphones
Image source: Financialexpress

Selecting a flagship smartphone can be relatively straightforward, as you can expect exceptional performance regardless of your choice. However, these premium devices are often not within everyone’s financial reach and may not always be essential. Occasionally, an affordable phone can adequately meet your requirements without compromising on quality.

Therefore, if you’re in search of a budget-friendly handset, this article will provide you with a set of recommendations for picking an excellent mobile phone that aligns with your needs while costing about $200 or less. Naturally, we will explore noteworthy offerings from various manufacturers.

Things to consider when choosing a cheap phone

When considering the purchase of an affordable smartphone, there are several key factors to keep in mind. Personally, I emphasize three factors, but delving deeper, there are some minimum requirements that I consider essential when selecting a phone. While individual preferences may vary, I regard these as crucial:

  • Internal Storage and MicroSD Card Compatibility: Although you can still find devices with 32 or 64 GB of storage in the entry-level category, the industry is gradually moving towards higher storage capacities. It’s advisable to seek a phone with a minimum of 128 GB of internal storage. Additionally, having the option to expand storage with a MicroSD card is essential for flexibility.
  • At Least 4 GB of RAM: While some budget phones may still come equipped with 2 or 3 GB of RAM, it’s preferable to opt for a device with at least 4 GB of RAM. This ensures smoother performance, especially when multitasking or running multiple apps simultaneously.

  • USB-C and Rapid Charging: USB-C is becoming the standard for device connections in Europe, and it offers faster data transfer and charging speeds compared to the older MicroUSB. It’s essential to choose a phone with USB-C for convenience. Additionally, if fast charging matters to you, look for a device with a charger that provides at least 25 W, although it might be unnecessary if you usually charge your phone overnight.
  • Android Go or Lightweight OS: Many affordable phones come with less powerful processors. To ensure optimal performance, it’s advisable to select a device running Android Go or a lightweight version of the operating system. This will help maintain smooth performance without unnecessary bloatware or features that may slow down the device.
  • Main Camera with Good Resolution: More cameras don’t necessarily translate to better photography. Many budget phones include secondary cameras with low resolutions and subpar quality. Instead of focusing on the number of cameras, prioritize the resolution and quality of the main camera. A higher-resolution main sensor is often more beneficial for capturing quality photos.

These considerations should assist you in making an informed decision when choosing an affordable smartphone that meets your needs while avoiding unnecessary compromises.

Recommended Cheap Mobiles

Here is a list of affordable mobile phones that we recommend, arranged from the lowest to the highest price:

Redmi A2

Redmi A2

Released earlier this year, the Redmi A2 is the most budget-friendly offering from Xiaomi. Notably, it deviates from the brand’s standard by running Android without the MIUI overlay.

What sets it apart is its software, featuring Android Go without bloatware. This means it has a lightweight user interface and essential Google apps like Google Maps Go and YouTube Go. While these apps have fewer features than their standard counterparts, they provide the necessary functions and perform well.

In terms of performance, it’s modest and may not meet the minimum specifications mentioned earlier (with 3 GB of RAM and 32 GB of storage). However, if you’re seeking an affordable phone, it’s a viable choice.

Noteworthy features include a 3.5 mm headphone jack with FM Radio support, a 5,000 mAh battery, and an LCD screen with HD+ resolution. Among the budget mobiles listed, it’s the least recommended option, but it’s a solid choice if you’re looking for the most cost-effective smartphone.


Poco M5

Xiaomi continues to impress with its affordable offerings, and the POCO M5 is a prime example. While the POCO M5s may outshine it in certain aspects, I can personally vouch for the completeness of this standard model. Its Helio G95 chipset, although somewhat dated, remains one of the best choices for phones in this price range. With 4 and 6GB RAM options, it delivers strong performance, even handling demanding tasks without overheating – a common issue in phones with synthetic leather materials like the POCO M5.

The device sports a 6.58-inch LCD panel with a 90 Hz refresh rate, offering a good display. It’s comfortable to hold, and its 50-megapixel main camera performs well. However, the standout feature is its impressive battery life, lasting up to two days, even with heavy use. On the flip side, it takes nearly two hours to fully charge.

Samsung Galaxy A14 5G

Samsung Galaxy A14 5G

Priced at $150, the Galaxy A14 stands out as one of the most affordable options for recent Samsung phones. Notably, it’s among the budget-friendly 5G smartphones available in the market, a noteworthy consideration given that many alternatives remain restricted to 4G.

In terms of design, it draws inspiration from the high-end Galaxy S23, although with some clear distinctions. It features plastic materials with a textured back and noticeable bezels on the front. However, this aesthetic choice aligns with prevailing trends within its price range.

This mobile phone supports a maximum configuration of 6 GB of RAM and 128 GB of storage, which delivers strong performance for the average user seeking affordability. Notable features include a 50-megapixel camera and a 5,000 mAh battery. The only drawback is its limited fast charging capability, capped at 15 W.

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The device sports a 6.6-inch LCD panel that doesn’t boast outstanding specs, but it does offer impressive color calibration. Coupled with a quality speaker, it provides a satisfying audio experience for users.

Redmi Note 12 4G

Redmi Note 12 4G

Priced at about $160, the Redmi Note 12 4G is now an incredibly appealing option, especially when just a few months ago, it was considered quite expensive at $230. Today, it’s a mid-range smartphone available at a budget-friendly cost.

Under the hood, you’ll find a Snapdragon 695 processor, which continues to impress in terms of performance. You can choose between 4 to 8 GB of RAM and storage options of up to 128 GB internally, expandable up to a whopping 1 TB via a MicroSD card.

Among its features, the Redmi Note 12 4G shines with the best display in this selection. It boasts an AMOLED panel, measuring 6.67 inches diagonally, offering a refresh rate of 120 Hz and a FullHD+ resolution. This display is akin to what you’d find in its pricier counterparts, providing an excellent multimedia viewing experience.

While its camera system may not be groundbreaking, it does include a capable 50-megapixel sensor, which more than suffices for its price range. Additionally, it supports 33W fast charging, complementing its sizeable 5,000mAh battery, ensuring prolonged usage without frequent recharging.

Motorola Moto G23

The Motorola Moto G23, priced at about $170, was initially marketed at over £200 but has since seen a significant price reduction in recent months. This reduction makes it an excellent value proposition and one of the standout choices in the budget smartphone category, delivering a blend of design and specifications.

Starting with its design, despite the use of polycarbonate, it exudes a premium feel and is comfortable to hold. The device features a 6.5-inch screen with FullHD+ resolution and a 90 Hz refresh rate, providing fluid animations and an impressive viewing experience. The color calibration is excellent, and when paired with Dolby Atmos sound, it offers one of the best multimedia consumption experiences.

However, it’s worth noting that the outdoor brightness is a weak point, peaking at just 400 nits. The processor, a Helio G85, offers adequate performance for typical tasks like GPS navigation, social media, messaging, web browsing, and more, but it might not handle heavy usage demands.

The primary camera, while exhibiting some color processing limitations, delivers overall good photo quality that can be refined through editing. The device strikes a balance with its 5,000 mAh battery capacity and support for 30W fast charging, ensuring extended usage with swift recharging capabilities.



The OPPO A57s, available from $180, represents a compelling choice within OPPO’s lineup of affordable smartphones. While it doesn’t boast cutting-edge performance or camera capabilities, it maintains its distinctive design and offers reasonable hardware.

In terms of performance, it features a Helio G35 processor paired with 4GB of RAM, which, while not as powerful as some of its counterparts, should still provide a satisfactory user experience for everyday tasks.

One standout feature is its display, boasting a 6.56-inch LCD panel with FullHD+ resolution and 600 nits of brightness on paper. While it’s not the brightest display around, it does surpass the average in the low-end smartphone category.

The device is also equipped with a 5,000 mAh battery, and it supports 33W fast charging. Additionally, it comes with a 50-megapixel primary camera. Although it’s important to note that the number of megapixels alone doesn’t determine a camera’s quality, this lens should deliver good-quality images for various scenarios.

Realme C55

Realme C55 smartphones
Realme C55 Colors


The Realme C55, available starting at $200, represents one of the latest budget-friendly offerings from Realme, and it distinguishes itself with its ample internal storage, fast charging capabilities, and a robust 64-megapixel main camera sensor.

This device boasts a generous 256 GB of internal storage, which should more than suffice for most users. Additionally, it supports 33W fast charging, which is quite impressive for an entry-level smartphone. The 64-megapixel main camera sensor promises good photography capabilities.

Under the hood, it houses a MediaTek Helio G88 chipset, which, while not designed for demanding tasks, performs admirably in everyday activities such as checking emails, using social media, and watching videos.

The smartphone features a 6.72-inch display with a 90 Hz refresh rate and FullHD+ resolution. This combination provides a large, fluid panel with excellent image quality for watching TV shows and movies.

As for its software, it runs on Realme UI 4.0, the manufacturer’s custom user interface. Despite the occasional minor animation hiccup, it maintains a fluid performance and offers a range of customization options. It’s worth noting that while it’s not Android Go, it’s a streamlined and user-friendly experience.


Oppo A58 4G - best cheap smartphones

The OPPO A58 4G, starting at $240, stands out as one of the slightly pricier options in our recommendations. But it offers a combination of good looks and affordability. The device leans towards a mid-range design aesthetic, despite its plastic build and noticeable bezels on the front.

Powered by the Helio G85, the same processor mentioned earlier, the OPPO A58 4G benefits from a generous 6 GB of RAM, providing improved performance and reducing the likelihood of slowdown during multitasking. It also offers 128 GB of internal storage, which can be expanded using a MicroSD card.

The smartphone features a 5,000 mAh battery and supports 33W fast charging, putting it in a favorable position compared to its competitors. It’s equipped with a 50-megapixel main camera sensor. And while it won’t perform miracles, it does deliver more than acceptable results for a device in this price range.

The weakest aspect of the device is its display, although it’s not a major drawback. It sports a 6.72-inch LCD panel with a 60 Hz refresh rate, but it does offer FullHD+ quality, making it suitable for watching high-quality content, which is a critical function for daily video consumption.

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