Expensive smartphones are often more interesting from a feature and specification viewpoint, but the real volumes flow in the budget segment. With mobile data becoming more affordable, many more Indians can now afford to get onto the smartphone bandwagon. These days, even affordable smartphones come with all of the features you’d expect to see on more expensive devices, including high-resolution screens, good cameras, fingerprint sensors and 4G connectivity. We’ve put together a list of some of the best affordable smartphones - priced at under Rs. 10,000 - that you can buy today.
Although there have been some interesting recent launches such as the Realme 3, some of best options in this price category have been around for a few months already. We’ve compiled a list of the best smartphones you can buy today at under Rs. 10,000, which includes options from brands such as Asus, Nokia, Honor, Lenovo and Infinix, to name a few. We’ve restricted this list to phones priced at between Rs. 7,000 and Rs. 10,000, and have been reviewed by us here at Gadgets 360.
Take a look at our picks for the best phones under Rs. 10,000 below.
The Realme 3 Pro is the company's latest flagship, designed to take on the Redmi Note 7 Pro from Xiaomi. It features some new colours options and the same small notch and slim bezels as its predecessor, the Realme 2 Pro. The 6.3-inch full-HD+ IPS display produces vivid colours and is very legible under direct sunlight. You also get two Nano-SIM slots and a dedicated spot for a microSD card.
This is currently the only phone under Rs. 20,000 to sport the recent Qualcomm Snapdragon 710 SoC. It's an efficient chip built on the 10nm fabrication process and features a better GPU compared to a Snapdragon 675, which shows in benchmarks and games. The phone is available in two variants -- 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage and 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, which is what we have. ColorOS 6 is based on Android 9 Pie, which runs smoothly and also gives you plenty of shortcuts and gestures.
App and gaming performance is very good. The phone doesn't heat up during regular use and even with gaming, barely gets warm. The main 16-megapixel sensor captures detailed landscapes and macros under good light. The secondary 5-megapixel sensor is also good at edge detection. At night, images are generally soft but the Nightscape mode helps in bringing out better detail in objects. Videos can be recorded up to 4K resolution but without stabilisation. Finally, the 4045mAh battery will last you a full day on one charge and a VOOC 3.0 fast charger is bundled in the box.
The Realme 5 features an updated crystal pattern on the back and retains the polycarbonate build and lamintaed plastic back panel of its predecessor. The phone has is a little heavy at nearly 200g and features a big 6.5-inch HD+ display. The low resolution isn't a huge issue as colours and brightness are still quite good. The Realme 5 has a slot on the side for two Nano-SIM cards and a dedicated slot for a microSD card.
It runs on ColorOS 6.0.1, which features a flatter and simpler looking interface, closer to stock Android 9 Pie. You get a bunch of cutomosation options too such as gestures and shortcuts. The phone is powered by a Snapdragon 665 SoC and comes in three varaints. The top-end version which we reviewed has 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. App and gaming performance is good and the phone doesn't heat up too much.
The Realme 5 has four cameras at the back, which is the first phone to have such an arrangement under Rs. 10,000. Besides the primary camera and depth sensor, Realme has also added a wide-angle and a macro lens, which are useful. The 13-megapixel selfie camera also has electronic stabilisation for videos. Overall, the cameras perform well under good light but struggle to capture good detail in low light.
The Realme 5 has a 5000mAh battery, which easily lasts for a day and half or even more on one charge. Unfortunately, fast charging isnt supported. Overall, the Realme 5's base variant (3GB of RAM, 32GB of storage) offers the best value at Rs. 9,999 but even the 128GB version at Rs. 11,999 is still good value, considering the overall package.
The Redmi Note 7S is a budget smartphone from Xiaomi that sits between its Redmi Note 7 and Redmi Note 7 Pro. Xiaomi has kept the design identical, hence it is hard to distinguish between these three smartphones. The Redmi Note 7S has a 6.3-inch full-HD+ display with Corning Gorilla Glass 5 for protection. We liked that the display had good viewing angles and was bright enough to be legible when outdoors.
Xiaomi has opted for a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 SoC to power the Redmi Note 7S and it does deliver a lag-free experience. Our unit had 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage, a lower variant with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage is also available at a lower price.
Just like other Xiaomi smartphones, this too runs on MIUI. Our unit was running MIUI 10.3 on top of Android 9.0. There are a few customisations that are useful but we also encountered spammy notifications. The camera setup is different compared to the Redmi Note 7 as it gets a 48-megapixel primary sensor and a 5-megapixel depth sensor. At the front, it has a 13-megapixel selfie shooter. Overall, the Redmi Note 7S offers good camera performance.
Xiaomi has managed to pack in a 4,000mAh battery in the Redmi Note 7S which offers good battery life. The Redmi Note 7S is a good smartphone but you can consider the Redmi Note 7 and the Asus ZenFone Max Pro M2 as direct alternatives. If you don't mind spending a little extra, you can consider the Redmi Note 7 Pro.
The Galaxy M30 is Samsung's offering in the sub Rs. 15,000 segment and sports a Super AMOLED display. We liked the full-HD+ panel which was crisp and got bright enough when outdoors. Powering the phone is a Samsung Exynos 7904 SoC which offers acceptable performance for the price. The processor can handle light to medium tasks but warms up under load. It has 4GB RAM and 64GB of storage. It has a dedicated microSD card slot which helps expand storage by up to 512GB. There is a triple camera setup at the back which clicks good photos and so does the selfie camera. We weren't happy with the fact that this smartphone shipped with Android Oreo with Samsung Experience UI on top instead of One UI with Android Pie. The 5000mAh battery offers good battery life.
|Samsung Galaxy M30 Specifications|
|Display||6.40-inch, 1080x2340 pixels|
|Processor||Samsung Exynos 7904|
|Rear Camera||13-megapixel + 5-megapixel + 5-megapixel|
The Redmi Note 7 features a glass front and back with Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection on both sides. The phone feels incredibly premium, especially for its starting price of Rs. 9,999. The 6.3-inch LCD display produces decent colours and brightness level is also very good.
The Redmi Note 7 has a dewdrop notch, a notification LED in the chin and a hybrid SIM slot. It’s powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 SoC which offers very good app and gaming performance. MIUI 10 still spams you with a lot of ads and promotions but you can disable most of them.
The rear 12-megapixel camera on the Redmi Note 7 captures usable daylight shots but the AI can make colours look unnatural. Low-light camera performance isn’t stellar and so is the video recording, but the selfie camera shoots decent images.
The 4000mAh battery on the Redmi Note 7 will last you a full day on a single charge and there’s fast charging support too, however that charger doesn’t come bundled in the box.
The Samsung Galaxy M20 is Samsung's attempt to take on Xiaomi, Realme, Honor, and Asus in the fiercely competitive low-cost market. It offers specifications that are good enough to match these rivals, plus a very modern all-screen look with a waterdrop-style notch. The Exynos 7904 processor was designed specifically for the value segment in India, and works quite well. The display is large and crisp, and battery life is very good. However, the cameras are just mediocre, and Samsung's UI is riddled with spammy ads and notifications. The Galaxy M20 will appeal to Samsung fans who are looking for great value.
The Realme U1 features a plastic body with a laminated back, which looks very nice. It also has a tiny 'dewdrop' notch and slim bezels on the sides. The phone supports dual 4G VoLTE and there's a dedicated slot for a microSD card too. The phone is powered by a MediaTek Helio P70 SoC, which offers very good app and gaming performance. ColorOS 5.2 also feature two new apps called ORoaming and Smart Scan, which are handy. The front 25-megapixel camera captures detailed selfies in daylight but struggles in low light. It's the same for the rear camera too. Battery life is very good as the 3500mAh battery easily lasts a full day on a single charge.
The Honor 10 Lite is a budget offering from the Chinese smartphone maker. It sports a big 6.21-inch display with a 91 per cent screen-to-body ratio. It is powered by a HiSilicon Kirin 710SoC and has 4GB of RAM with 64GB of storage. The higher variant of this phone offers 6GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. The Honor 10 Lite is a dual SIM device with support for dual 4G as well as VoLTE, the hybrid SIM slot also allows storage expansion upto 512GB. It has a dual camera setup at the back which consist of a 13-megapixel primary camera and a 2-megapixel depth sensor. At the front it has a 24-megapixel selfie shooter that is positioned in the dewdrop notch. It has a 3400mAh battery and has a 10W charger in the box.
|Best Mobile Phones Under 10000 In India||Prices|
|Realme 3 Pro||Rs. 9,999|
|Realme 5||Rs. 8,999|
|Xiaomi Redmi Note 7S||Rs. 8,999|
|Samsung Galaxy M30||Rs. 9,999|
|Xiaomi Redmi Note 7||Rs. 9,790|
|Samsung Galaxy M20||Rs. 9,999|
|Realme U1||Rs. 8,438|
|Honor 10 Lite||Rs. 8,499|