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 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.
Xiaomi has updated its low-cost workhorse Redmi series with the new Redmi 7. Compared to the Redmi 6, which was less than a year old, the Redmi 7 has a more powerful processor, bigger screen, and new plastic body with optional gradient designs, in keeping with current trends. This phone does seem to tick all the boxes in terms of matching or exceeding the features and specifications that other manufacturers are tempting buyers with right now. The price for the base model is very attractive, but we don't really see how the higher-priced variant, with just 1GB more RAM, makes a lot of sense.
The Redmi 7 is an all-rounder that doesn't have any one major headlining feature, but it does well at nearly everything. The 6.26-inch HD+ screen is immersive and will make media and games look good, even if it isn't the best. The 4000mAh battery is more than enough to get you through a full day. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 632 SoC did very well in our tests. The cameras are serviceable, and the rear 12-megapixel primary camera impressed us in daylight shots, but low-light performance was weak. Xiaomi also continues to stuff its MIUI skin and its own apps with ads, which can get very annoying.
Overall, the Redmi 7 is a very strong device that delivers solid performance and has no deal-breaking flaws, and offers fantastic value for money.
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 Asus ZenFone Max Pro M2 sports a big 6.26-inch display with a 19:9 aspect ratio. It is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 SoC and comes with multiple RAM and storage options. You get 3GB RAM with 32GB of storage, 4GB RAM with 64GB storage and 6GB RAM with 64GB of storage. The ZenFone Max Pro M2 is a dual SIM device with two nano SIM slots and has a dedicated microSD card slot. It supports 4G as well as VoLTE on both SIM slots. Asus offers a 5000mAh battery with this phone which helps it offer excellent battery life.
|Asus ZenFone Max Pro M2 Specifications|
|Display||6.26-inch, 1080x2280 pixels|
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 660|
|Rear Camera||12-megapixel + 5-megapixel|
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 Realme 2 Pro features a tiny 'dewdrop' notch on a 6.3-inch, full-HD+ display. The polycarbonate body feels sturdy and is comfortable to use. The rear fingerprint sensor is quick at authentication and face unlock is equally snappy. The phone is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 SoC and the top-end variant comes with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, which is expandable. ColorOS 5.2 offers plenty of gestures and shortcuts and is based on Android 8.1 Oreo. Gaming and app performance is good and the phone doesn't;t heat up too much. The rear 16-megapixel sensor shoot good stills and 4K video too, although low-light performance could be better. The 3500mAh battery doesn't support fast charging but offers enough juice to last a full day on one charge.
|Best Mobile Phones Under 10000 In India||Prices|
|Realme 5||Rs. 9,999|
|Xiaomi Redmi Note 7S||Rs. 9,935|
|Xiaomi Redmi 7||Rs. 7,498|
|Xiaomi Redmi Note 7||Rs. 9,999|
|Samsung Galaxy M20||Rs. 9,990|
|Asus ZenFone Max Pro M2||Rs. 9,999|
|Realme U1||Rs. 8,998|
|Realme 2 Pro||Rs. 8,999|