The best budget Android phone for 2024

One of the best things about the Android ecosystem is the availability of truly affordable phones for as little as $150. By comparison, the cheapest iPhone is based on a dated design and starts at $429. However, picking the right one can be a bit tricky, as reducing the price of a phone can sometimes result in too many trade-offs. So to give you a hand, we tested a bunch of the most popular options and put together a list of our favorite cheap Android phones.

How low should you go?

We tend to define a budget phone as costing between $150 and $350. Any lower and the device runs the risk of suffering from too many compromises, and above that, you cross over to pricier midrange handsets (if you’re open to spending more, we shouted out a couple of our favorites at the very end of this guide).

But for those with a little wiggle room, there are some things to consider. For example, a child may be better off with a cheaper device, especially if it’s intended mainly for emergencies or texting parents (and not social media). On the higher end of this price spectrum, sub-$350 phones have come a long way thanks to improved performance, better cameras and nicer displays. This makes them a viable alternative to premium flagships, even if you have the freedom to spend more.

What to look for in a budget Android phone

When it comes to affordable devices, you get what you pay for. Most phones in this price range are made out of plastic, though the fit and finish of a specific model can vary a lot based on price. A bright screen is also important. Typically you’ll get LCD panels with a 60Hz or 90Hz refresh rate, but some phones may have OLED screens with increased color saturation. Long battery life is critical as well, so we tend to favor devices with larger power cells of around 5,000 mAh. In this price range, performance can vary a lot, so look for devices with at least 8GB of RAM and processors that can deliver stutter-free visuals. It’s also important to consider support length, as periodic operating system and security updates can extend the longevity of your device, which will save you money in the long run.

This article originally appeared on Engadget at https://www.engadget.com/best-budget-android-phone-160029327.html?src=rss

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