Popular YouTuber MKBHD coined a phrase a few years ago that has proven itself very true up to the present. “Cheap phones are getting good and good phones are becoming cheaper.” Across all price categories, phones have started to become a dime a dozen and ironically they’re more closely matched than ever. To make your choice a bit easier, we will be compiling the top 5 phones under each price category (that we think is significant) and analyzing their strengths. Let’s get started with the sub 10K INR category now, shall we?
5. Asus ZenFone Max Pro M1
I fully understand that this phone is over a year old, but consider this. Back when it came out last year, it was priced at around 15k for the 4GB RAM variant. Guess how much it costs now? 9000 INR. This price makes this phone an intense value for money proposition. Compared with the other Snapdragon 400 series and Mediatek powered phones in this price category, the SD 636 on this phone is quite a gem. Add to that a near vanilla stock Android experience and GCam support out of the box, and you have yourself quite a deal.
4. Samsung Galaxy M20
Sure, Samsung has struggled in the past with giving us a solid budget phone. They’ve always skimped on essential sensors or overpriced their overtly basic phones. The Galaxy M20 aims to change that and to an extent it does!
Samsung has played to its strengths here and concentrated on what they do best… an intuitive user interface and great cameras. With Samsung’s OneUI on board, the M20 has a very snappy user experience and the Exynos 7904 used here is by no means a slouch and snips at the heels of its Snapdragon competitors. A major factor contributing to the M20’s addition to the list is its versatile camera performance which gives stiff competition to the other phones mentioned here.
3. Asus ZenFone Max Pro M2
This was quite a tough call. On one hand, I know there’s another Asus phone on this list and on the other hand, this phone’s 3GB RAM variant is an intense value for money proposition. It carries over all the strengths (including the behemoth 5000 MAh battery) of the Max Pro M1 and manages to improve on them in every possible way. With great cameras and smooth gaming performance (courtesy of the SD660), this phone is truly a steal at 10K INR. The only trade-off you’ll need to make is in terms of storage and RAM, but the Max Pro M1 is a suitable alternative if you absolutely have to max out your RAM.
2. Redmi Note 7S
Xiaomi’s Redmi Note 7s is a complete no-brainer. Premium glass design, Snapdragon 660, the best cameras in the segment and the customizability of MIUI all rolls into one delicious Kati roll. There’s not much else to say about this phone. Xiaomi has absolutely nailed the pricing and the feature set with the Note 7s at a fantastic 11,000 INR. Obviously, this is 1000 rupees higher than the specified budget category, but it is an intense value for money offering that just can’t be missed!
1. Mi A2
Surprising? Well not for us! When the Mi A2 launched last year it seemed to be an overpriced dud when compared to the flamboyant Poco F1 that costed just a shade more. However, just like fine wine, the Mi A2 has aged quite beautifully. The pricing is absolutely spot on at a meager 9,999 INR for the 4+64Gb variant making this an absolute steal! Xiaomi’s offering undoubtedly offers the best software experience here on this list! With Google’s Android One program support, the Mi A2 offers you the goodness of stock Android with assured updates for another 2 years. Cameras on the Mi A2 are no slouch either with Camera2Api support out of the box for GCam ports. Qualcomm’s SD660 runs the show here and essentially kills it with the level of smoothness and performance it offers with stock Android on board.
Do you agree with our list? Make sure to comment on which phone you’d add or swap out on this list and give us your 2 cents! We’d be happy to hear from you!