The under Rs.15,000 price point is crucial to the Indian smartphone industry since it is accessible to a lot of people. Over the years we have seen multiple manufacturers attempting to capture this segment by offering better cameras, faster processors, and better batteries. In order to be the best in this segment, manufacturers have flooded the sub-Rs. 15,000 price segment with a range of good smartphones.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 which was earlier exclusive to smartphones above Rs. 20,000 is now available under Rs. 15,000. You can also find mightier processors like the Qualcomm Snapdragon 675, and MediaTek Helio P70 at this price point, giving users powerful hardware at a bargain price.
Good camera technology has also trickled down to the sub Rs. 15,000 segment over the years giving people the option to capture good photos without paying a bomb for flagship devices. Some of the recent smartphones we have seen in this price point pack in as much as a 48-megapixel sensor. With so many options in the market, picking up a smartphone isn’t easy. But we’ve put together a list of the best phones under Rs. 15,000 for you. As usual, we've restricted ourselves to phones that have fared well in our review process.
The Redmi Note 10 isn't pathbreaking in terms of features and specifications for the sub-Rs. 12,000 segment, but it does cover all the bases and offer a few nice extra touches. It's slimmer and lighter than the Redmi Note 9, and debuts a new 'Evol' design language which makes it look quite smart. The 6.43-inch full-HD+ AMOLED screen is a major highlight, producing crisp details and colours that pop. You get a Qualcomm Snapdragon 678 SoC which is powerful enough for casual gaming as well as everyday tasks. Battery life is good enough to get you through at least a full day, and charging is quick. The cameras are quite ordinary, with the 48-megapixel primary one taking good shots in the daytime ad acceptable ones at night. The ultra-wide and selfie cameras are also serviceable, but the macro one is just for amusement. MIUI is still full of promotional content and ads, but the company promises to remove these with a future update.
The Realme Narzo 30 Pro 5G is currently the least expensive 5G phone in India with a starting price of Rs. 16,999. The all-plastic body has held up well so far, ergonomics are good, and it doesn't feel very heavy even though it weighs about 194g. The side-mounted fingerprint sensor works very well. All that's needed is a quick tap to unlock the phone. The display is a 6.5-inch full-HD+ LCD panel with good levels of brightness and colour saturation.
The Realme Narzo 30 Pro 5G runs on the MediaTek Dimensity 800U SoC, which has a built-in 5G modem, and is quite powerful and power efficient. Software on the Realme Narzo 30 Pro 5G is a bit of a letdown since it's still Android 10 and not 11, which is what many others are offering. Performance of the Realme Narzo 30 Pro 5G has been pretty solid as the SoC handles multitasking or demanding tasks such as gaming, pretty easily. Battery life is equaly good.
The cameras on the Realme Narzo 30 Pro 5G are your run-of-the-mill setup. There's a primary 48-megapixel camera, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide camera, and a 2-megapixel macro camera. The cameras perform decently but low-light performance is weak.
The bottom line is, if you're considering the Realme Narzo 30 Pro 5G, I'd recommend sticking to the base variant.
Motorola G30 was alongside the Moto G10 Power and is targetted at the budget segment in India. The Motorola Moto G30 has a new design, it has a 6.5-inch display with a dewdrop notch at the top. The frame of the Moto G30 is made of plastic and all the buttons are on the right side.Its volume buttons are higher, and the Google Assistant button is right on top, making it somewhat hard to reach, Motorola offers an IP52 rating for water resistance and the SIM tray has a rubber seal.
Motorola has picked the Qualcomm Snapdragon 662 SoC and offers 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. You can expand storage using the hybrid SIM slot. The Moto G30 has an HD+ display with a 90Hz refresh rate. It has a 5,000mAh battery and gets a 20W charger in the box. Motorola ships the G30 with Android 11 out of the box with a few customisations. The software is clean with no bloatware apps preinstalled on it. Battery performance too is good and the phone can go beyond a day and a half quite easily.
Motorola has equipped the Moto G30 with a quad-camera setup consisting of a 64-megapixel primary camera, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide angle camera, a 2-megapixel macro camera, and a 2-megapixel depth sensor.. Daylight photos clicked from the primary camera had good detail. The ultra-wide angle camera offered a wider field of view but at a loss in details.. the Macro camera lets you go close to the subject but was limited in terms of resolution. Lowlight camera performance was decent in regular mode with some loss in details in the shadows. Night mode was too aggressive making the image unusually bright with blown-out highlights. Video recording tops out at 1080p for the primary as well as the selfie shooter and had stabilisation.
The Poco M3 is a budget smartphone and is priced under Rs.15,000. It has a 6.53 inch full-HD+ display with a dewdrop notch at the top. It has a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, stereo speakers, and an IR emitter to control appliances. This smartphone has a triple camera setup at the back. It is quite well designed and looks far more premium than it is actually priced. The rear panel has a textured finish which helps keep fingerprints away.
The phone is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 662 processor and gets 6GB of RAM. There are two storage variants available, 64GB and 128GB. Storage is expandable via dedicated microSD card slot and it accepts cards up to 512 GB. It packs in a 6000 mA battery which is good for the price. It has support for 18W charging and gets a 22.5W charger in the box.
The Poco M3 is capable of handling day to day tasks and the battery managed to last for a day and a half. The big battery does help with battery life, but it takes over two hours to charge it completely. With 6GB of RAM onboard it is capable of multitasking very easily. You can play most games but with heavier games, it tends to get warm to the touch. You get a 48-megapixel primary camera, a 2-megapixel macro camera and a 2-megapixel depth sensor on the Poco M3. The camera performance was average overall with the phone managing decent photos in daylight but lowlight performance wasn’t impressive. The Poco M3 does click better photos with Night mode enabled, but it takes about four seconds to take a shot.
The Infinix Zero 8i is a tall smartphone with a big 6.85-inch display with 90Hz refresh rate. It has got a dual selfie camera setup embedded in the top left corner. The Zero 8i isn't thick, and the curved sides make it comfortable to hold. Infinix has put the fingerprint scanner on the power button which is slowly becoming the norm these days even for budget smartphones. The positioning of the fingerprint scanner is convenient but I can't say the same about the volume buttons which are on the same side.
There is a selfie flash towards the top of the display, which is neatly hidden from sight. The Zero 8i is available in two colours, Silver Diamond, and Black Diamond. II found the Infinix Zero 8i to be a little too heavy, tipping the scales at 210g. It packs in a 4,500mAh battery and s capable of 33W fast charging but ships with an 18W charger in the box.
Infinix has picked the MediaTek Helio G90T processor. There is 8GB of RAM and 128GB of UFS 2.1 storage. You get a triple-slot tray on the Infinix Zero 8i to accommodate dual Nano-SIMs and a microSD card. The Infinix Zero 8i unlocks quickly while using the fingerprint scanner as well as the face unlock feature. The big display on the Zero 8i makes content engaging and I enjoyed streaming video on it. Stereo speakers would have enhanced the overall experience.
The Infinix Zero 8i has a quad-camera setup with a 48-megapixel primary camera, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera, a 2-megapixel depth sensor and a low-light sensor For selfies, there's a 16-megapixel primary camera and an 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera.
Daylight shots were average and managed decent detail. Shots from the ultra-wide-angle camera lacked detail and had a slightly different colour tone. Lowlight camera performance was average and it lacked detail. Night mode had a better output but fine grain was visible on zooming in.
If you are looking for a smartphone to game on, the Zero8i definitely has the performance. The camera performance isn't the best and it could have done with a slightly bigger battery.
The Realme Narzo 20 Pro shares the same design as the Realme 7. It sports a 6.5-inch 90Hz full-HD+ display with a camera hole in the top left corner which some might find to be distracting. The Narzo 20 Pro has a side-mounted fingerprint scanner placed on the power button. The volume buttons are moved over to the other side of the device, which makes them easy to hit.
The Narzo 20 Pro has a quad-camera setup and the back panel has a V-shaped pattern that shines when light bounces off it at the right angle Realme has used a 4,500mAh battery for the Narzo 20 Pro, consisting of two 2,250mAh cells, in order to enable faster charging. It supports Realme's proprietary 65W SuperDart charging, with a suitable charger bundled in the box. The Narzo 20 Pro weighs 191g which is acceptable given its size and the battery it packs in.
Realme has opted for the same MediaTek Helio G95 for the Narzo 20 Pro. It has two variants with 6GB of RAM with 64GB of storage, and 8GB of RAM with 128GB of storage, The Narzo 20 Pro gave me no reason to complain in everyday use. It was quick to load apps, and switching between them was a breeze. The fingerprint scanner and face recognition were quick to unlock the device.
The quad-camera setup on the Narzo 20 Pro consists of a 48-megapixel primary camera, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera, a 2-megapixel black-and-white portrait camera, and a 2-megapixel macro camera. the phone clicks 12-megapixel shots by default and had good dynamic range. Photos from the ultra-wide-angle camera had a lower resolution output. Close-ups were good, and the Narzo 20 Pro managed sharp results with a soft blur for the background. Portrait shots were decent.
Low-light camera performance was strictly average but switching to Night mode returned slightly brighter results.Selfies taken with the Realme Narzo 20 Pro were decent, and the output was smoothened. Video recording tops out at 4K for the primary camera, while the selfie camera can shoot up to 1080p footage. Daylight videos shot at 1080p had a mild shimmer while 4K footage wasn't stabilised.
The Realme 7 brings in three main upgrades over the Realme 6 — a new SoC, a bigger battery, and a new primary camera sensor. It features a mirror-split design, which creates some interesting patterns when light hits it. The Realme 7 is actually thicker (9.4mm) and heavier (196.5g) than the 6, due to its larger battery, and this is very noticeable in daily usage.
The Realme 7 is the first phone to debut with the MediaTek Helio G95 SoC. This is an updated version of the Helio G90T, which was seen in the Realme 6, but it's not a major upgrade. Performance is pretty satisfactory. The Realme 7 uses Realme UI, based on Android 10, which worked smoothly. Face recognition and the side-mounted fingerprint sensor are also quick. The Realme 7 is good with games too. Battle Prime looked great at the highest graphics settings and gameplay was smooth.
The Realme 7 gets a chunky, 5,000mAh battery and you can charge the battery fairly quickly too, thanks to the 30W Dart Charge fast charging.
The new primary rear camera in the Realme 7 offers a noticeable improvement in pixel-binned images, comapred to the Realme 6. It exhibits improved dynamic range and exposure, with better details too. Low light photos look cleaner too, with less grain. Shots captured using Night mode look more pleasing, compared to what the Realme 6 can produce. The Realme 7 can shoot videos at up to 4K, but without stabilisation. Colours are a bit on the warmer side.
|Best Mobile Phones Under 15000 In India||Price in India|
|Redmi Note 10S||Rs. 14,999|
|Redmi Note 10||Rs. 12,499|
|Realme Narzo 30 Pro||Rs. 14,999|
|Motorola Moto G30||Rs. 10,999|
|Poco M3||Rs. 10,499|
|Infinix Zero 8i||Rs. 14,999|
|Poco X3||Rs. 14,999|
|Realme Narzo 20 Pro||Rs. 14,999|
|Realme 7||Rs. 13,999|