Not everyone has hundreds of dollars to spend on a phone. But, that doesn’t mean you’re willing to spend your hard earned money on a piece of crap, right? Well in today’s market, you can find a great device no matter how much money you have to spend. Here’s our list of the best cheap Android (under $300) devices you can get right now.
Huawei Mate SE
Huawei might have suffered some setbacks recently with the Mate 10 Pro, but it hasn’t stopped the China-based company from selling its phones in the US. One of the most compelling devices it offers is the $230 Mate SE.
The Mate SE features some high-end features like a 1080p 18:9 display, a dual rear camera setup, 4 GB of RAM, and 64 GB of storage.
The display is a 5.93-inch 1080p panel that reaches from edge to edge. You’ll have to get out your microscope to find the bezels here (okay, maybe we’re exaggerating a bit) and it makes the phone feel all that more premium. When you combine the power-efficient 1080p display with the generous 3,340 mAh battery, you’re in for some amazing battery life too!
The standard loadout for most flagship phones in 2017 and early 2018 has been 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of storage. That’s pretty generous and leads to some happy customers. But, Huawei went one step further and included these specs on the budget Mate SE. Not only do you get a ton of RAM and storage, but there’s a micro SD card slot to boot so you can add even more storage.
All-in-all, the Huawei Mate SE is one of, if not the best, cheap phone on the market today.
Motorola Moto G5 Plus
The Moto G5 Plus comes in at $299.99 full price but can routinely be found for less. The device is one of, if not the, best value on the market today with impressively good specs and great performance. Normally when you drop down in price, you’d expect to see some corners cut, but that’s not really the case with the Moto G5 Plus.
If you want great specs, the Moto G5 Plus delivers. The phone comes standard with 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of storage that can be expanded via microSD card. For today’s apps, you don’t really need any more than that. The phone also has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 which is an octa-core processor. There’s plenty of power here to run even today’s latest games.
On the software side, the device comes out of the box with Android 7.1 Nougat. An upgrade to 8.0 Oreo is also planned at some point. Motorola always scores big points with its approach to software. It goes with a Stock Plus approach where it relies on the simplicity and speed of stock Android with some smart improvements. If you’re looking for a Nexus-like software experience, Motorola doesn’t disappoint.
Xiaomi Mi A1
Xiaomi isn’t the biggest name in the United States, but that’s only because it has been focusing on foreign markets. What you may not know is that its one of the worlds largest Android phone manufactures. And that’s for a great reason. The company is able to produce fantastic phones and charge less than its competitors.
Case in point: The Xiaomi Mi A1. There are two variants of the device, Xiaomi’s version with its own Android skin and the Android One version. We’re going to focus on the Android One version today as it has stock Android and you can actually purchase it in the US, unlike Xiaomi’s other version.
The Mi A1 has 4 GB of RAM, 64 GB of RAM (expandable via microSD card) and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor. Those are the best specs you’re going to find at the $300 price point. Out of the box, the Mi A1 came with Android 7.1.2 Nougat but has already been upgraded to Android 8.0 Oreo. Google handles all of the software updates for the Mi A1 so you know they’ll be quick and very reliable.
Xiaomi Mi A1 purchase links: Amazon
Huawei Honor 7X
Here’s Huawei’s second entry onto our list, the Honor 7X. Honor is a sister brand to Huawei, but they both produce really solid phones. So far its devices have only been sold unlocked here in the states. With an estimated 80 to 90 percent of devices sold through carrier stores, its been hard for the company to gain a foothold in the country, but with great devices like the Honor 7X, that may be changing soon.
Huawei has picked up some momentum this year by releasing amazing devices like the flagship Mate 10 Pro which gained a spot on our Best Flagships list, and the Honor 7X which is firmly entrenched in the Best Cheap Device list. The device features an 18:9 1080p display, a 16 MP dual camera and a massive 3,340 mAh battery.
The Honor 7X also features the HiSilicon Kirin 659 processor. Huawei makes its own processors and the Kirin 659 is its excellent mid-range processor. It should be able to power through most any task while sipping power instead of gulping. Paired with 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of internal storage (expandable via microSD card), you have a winner on your hands.
Motorola Moto E4
The Moto E4 is one of the cheapest phones on the planet right now. The bare-bones device routinely comes in at the sub-$100 price point and serves as an excellent option for a teen or parent experiencing their first smartphone. It’s also an excellent option to purchase and throw in a drawer in case anything happens to your daily driver.
The Moto E4 comes with a 5-inch 720p display, 2 GB of RAM, and a rather massive 2,800 mAh battery. The relatively low resolution of the display and the large battery means that the E4 is a battery beast that will get you a full day of navigating with maps and snapping pictures while you’re on vacation.
If you’re worried about storage, don’t. The device comes with only 16 GB of storage internally, but you can add a microSD card to add another 128 GB of storage. That’s enough for all the books, music, and movies you could ever want to store on your device.
The Moto E4 isn’t going to win any awards for performance or design, but for around $100 it’s the perfect phone. It’s crazy to think what you can get for the price of a nice steak dinner in 2018.