Budget smartphones in India continue to evolve as manufacturers are now adding eye-catching features like dual cameras at the back, fast charging support, and a large display. In 2021, we saw some notable launches from brands like Samsung, Realme, Motorola, Infinix, and more though none of their budget phones under Rs 10,000 support 5G as of yet. These entry-level smartphones’ demand also accelerated as many across the country are still operating from home – whether for work or online classes. In case you’re wondering which budget phones gained an edge over competitors in 2021, here are the five best devices under Rs 10,000.
Before we proceed, readers must note that there’s no particular order for this list, and some of the devices featured here are based on reviews by our present and former colleagues. The prices of some phones mentioned here may also vary on e-commerce websites.
Nokia C20 Plus: Starting with the Nokia C20 Plus, the phone comes with a clean, no-frills design. The phone sports a 6.5-inch screen and may seem heavy to some users as it weighs 204 grams. We get a micro-USB port for charging, but the 3.5mm audio jack is definitely welcome. The phone has up to 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, but it largely remains the same across smartphones. The phone runs on Android Go meaning you can enjoy toned-down apps with minimum bloatware. The dual-camera system includes an 8-megapixel shooter and a 2-megapixel depth sensor. At the front, there’s a 5-megapixel camera. Its price in India starts at Rs 8,999.
Motorola Moto E7 Plus: Similar to Nokia-branded smartphones, Motorola also promises to offer a clean Android experience. The phone sports a similar 6.5-inch screen with a dedicated Google Assistant button on the side. Motorola has opted for a dual-camera setup that is placed right above the fingerprint scanner. The camera system includes 48-megapixel and 2-megapixel cameras at the back and an 8-megapixel shooter at the front. We also get Qualcomm Snapdragon 460 SoC, a large 5,000mAh battery that charges via the micro-USB port, and up to 4GB RAM. It is retailing at Rs 8,999, but it might not be the easiest phone to get online.
Samsung Galaxy F02s: Samsung is one of the most reliable brands in India, and the company enjoys a good market share in the country – sometimes neck-to-neck with Xiaomi. Its Galaxy F02s remains an interesting device as it is designed for entry-level smartphone users but still comes with triple cameras at the back. It comes with a large 5,000mAh battery that thankfully supports 15W charging via the USB Type-C port. We also get a 6.5-inch HD+ Infinity-V display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 450 SoC with up to 4GB of RAM, and 64GB storage. It costs Rs 9,499 in India.
Realme Narzo 30A: Earlier this year, Realme refreshed its budget Narzo series and the Realme Narzo 30A is the most affordable smartphone in the lineup. It is the only phone on the list to carry a 6,000mAh battery that also contributes to its bulky build. Thankfully, the large battery unit supports 18W fast charging via the USB Type-C port. At the back, we get a single 13-megapixel camera and at the front, there’s an 8-megapixel shooter for selfies. We also get a 6.5-inch HD+ display and an octa-core MediaTek Helio G85 chipset. Its price in India starts at Rs 8,999.
Infinix Hot 11S: When we reviewed the Infinix Hot 11S, we found it to be a great performer for its budget. A smooth display with fast performance, but the camera and XOS UI takes away from the overall experience. That being said, it sports a 6.78-inch screen – bigger than any phone on this list. We get MediaTek Helio G88, a 5,000mAh battery, and a 50-megapixel primary camera. To be fair, the phone costs Rs 10,999 but customers can still bring the price down with bank offers.
Honorary mention: That being said, there are some other phones in this bracket that still offer a decent performance but may lack a few things here and there. That includes Micromax In 2b and Motorola Moto G10 Power.
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