UPDATE: Thanks to a price drop for one of the smartphones in our list, we’ve added in a new device into this buyer’s guide. We’ll continue to add any smartphones that are worth considering in this price bracket.
Now that we’ve discussed each and every smartphone on the list, here’s a table that should help you come to a decision. With the sheer amount of available devices in the market today, viewing smartphone specs side-by-side should give you an idea of the strengths and weaknesses of each model.
If you’re thinking of getting a smartphone to game, you’d probably be best served with a flagship processor, or one of the newer, upper-midrange processors like the Snapdragon 7xx SoCs. Most of Qualcomm’s processors also come paired with Adreno GPUs, which lend to a better overall gaming experience. And if you’re a real powerhouse of a user with media consumption, it’s always useful to have a big battery sustaining your device, along with a headphone jack—something like the Mi Max 3 or the Huawei Y Max, perhaps.
Or maybe you’re looking for something that’s really user-friendly and intuitive to use. You might consider one of the devices above that is on Android One, which comes without any bloatware—this helps create a cleaner, more minimalistic experience as a whole. Or maybe your priority is photos—don’t make the mistake of assuming that more MP = better photos.
Standout performers for photos are the Mi MIX 2S, the Mi 9T, or the Mi 9 SE, while those that take selfies regularly can consider the Samsung Galaxy A50, or even Oppo’s F11 Pro. You’ll get a better idea of what’s good and what’s not from our reviews section.
I’ve also listed the build of each device in the table above, although sometimes, plastic doesn’t really feel all that bad. Perhaps it’d be best if you could get your hands on an actual unit before purchasing something, as everyone has their own preferences.
And of course, it’s important to get a device that supports the latest versions of Android so that you can get the latest security patches and updates, which translates to a longer lifespan for your device in general. All the devices above are running on Android Oreo and above, with most of them supporting the Android Pie update. We’ll have to see which devices get Android Q, however.
And of course, don’t forget to weigh in the storage capacities of the phones, or displays. A quick guide to smartphone displays: generally speaking, AMOLED displays look a lot more vibrant with better contrast, making them ideal for video-watching and the like. They also offer better visibility in bright environments, and you can even extend your battery life with dark/night mode settings, although that depends on usage patterns as well. You won’t find many in this price bracket, so devices like the Mi 9T or the Samsung Galaxy A50 have pretty great displays for the price.
And if you still can’t make a decision even after going through everything twice (or thrice), read on to find out what our favourite choices are from the guide above.