While luxury may appeal to all of us, it is not always possible to afford it. It is a bit of a nightmare how a Rs 40,000+ smartphone today is called a well priced or well within our budget smartphone. Smartphones have become an essential partners in our lives and an accessory that most of us cannot imagine spending too much time without. So, what if you are not willing to shell out big bucks or perhaps even one half of your monthly salary on owning a piece of screen that is susceptible to giving up on you at any given time but just want to fit in with the hip crowd? What if you rather would go and meet someone face to face and just use a phone to fix that appointment and no more? To help you fit in with the smartphone maniac crowd, here are the few phones you might want to consider. We have made it a point to list down all phones that are below Rs 15,000 as that is what seems to be the upper ceiling for those in the market for a budget phone. Here are our recommended phones:
Motorola Moto G
Touted by several as ‘The Phone’ to get if you are in the budget market, the Motorola Moto G is perhaps the most complete smartphone in this category. Not only do you get a very reasonable build quality and up to date specs such as a 720 P HD display, a Quad Core Snapdragon 400 SoC, 1 GB RAM but also a near stock Android like interface and the latest Android version i.e. KitKat 4.4 out of the box, something most of the Android devices do not offer in this range. The Moto G is also easily customizable thanks to the various skin shells that you can pick online. The only downside about the phone is that you can pick it only online from Flipkart, who are Motorola’s partners. You can pick the Moto G in either an 8 GB or 16 GB variant.
Nokia Lumia 625
If you are not an Android fan and would like some taste of the much sought after Cortana, Lumia 625 is the device to pick in this range. The Lumia 630 is on the horizon and while we are obviously not sure of the pricing on that, we like the added shutter button and capacitive buttons that the Lumia 625 brings. The device will get the Windows Phone 8.1 update when it releases, but if you are the kinds who like to tailor their devices, you can go ahead and install the developer preview version already. The phone is as snappy a device as you will get in the range and is perhaps one of the few devices which actually look and feel premium as compared to gross plastic some of the others serve. The Lumia 625 comes with a 4.7 inch display and has an internal memory of 8 GB which can be extended to 64 GB with a Micro SD card. Add in Nokia’s or now, Microsoft’s relentless support thanks to great service, the Lumia 625 has a lot going for it.
BlackBerry Curve 9720
If you are conscience only about checking your E-Mails and want a phone that is absolutely a no distraction device, then the BlackBerry Curve 9720 is a great pick. While the phone is not running the latest BlackBerry 10 OS, it is still a phone that does what it needs to do very well, and that is to bring you your E-Mails, give a long lasting battery and fantastic call quality with an unmatched Blackberry QWERTY keyboard. The keyboard is really useful if you are into typing long mails or having IM conversations from your device. If you are willing to extend your budget though, by a couple of thousand bucks, the Q5 is a very decent option too from BlackBerry. With a 2.8 inch screen and a pretty written off 5 MP camera and 512 MB of RAM, the 9720 is certainly not a spec monster. But, it is not supposed to be either given the use case.
The Nokia X is not an Android phone. Let’s get that straight. The device runs a forked Android version and is capable of running most Android apps, without supporting any of Google’s services. It is a strange device cause it really is meant for those who want to own their very first smartphone. However, since, most of the devices on this list were very close to the Rs 15,000 mark, we wanted to include something that would fit the pockets and budgets of everyone. We did not have a great experience of using the Nokia X but purely as a device for a backup or swapping an extra SIM in and getting an experience of Android, the Nokia X is a reasonable option. Other options like the Xolo Q700 exist too in this price bracket, but given the reputation and support of Nokia, we feel the Nokia X is a safer bet. Add in several deals that most E-Com players have around the Nokia X, you can actually drive a very decent bargain if you look around closely. The specs on the Nokia X include a 4 inch display with a 480×800 resolution, 512 MB RAM, a dual core processor, 3 MP Camera and 4 GB of internal storage.
If a large battery is what you dream about without compromising on stellar build quality and performances, then the Lenovo P780 is as good a phone as any you can find. With 4000 mAh battery, be rest assured that the device will last you all day and a lot more. With USB OTG, 5 inch HD display, the Lenovo P780 is a fine device for multimedia consumption. The 8 MP Camera on the device is one of the better ones in this class and the only major drawback is that the device runs on an older Android version, 4.2 to be precise with no promise of an upgrade. P780 is a dual SIM smartphone so would be really appealing for those who like to travel frequently and always have a SIM to spare.
We tried to cover all the aspects, including form factor, varied pricing, Specs, Operating Systems and use cases in our roundup of budget smartphones. To best of our knowledge, the above five smartphones made the best case for inclusion. Do you agree with our choices or have a recommendation of your own? Do let us know in the section below.