Best value for money phones under Rs 20,000 in India

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Finding the best value for money phones under Rs. 20,000 has never been so easy and yet difficult at the same time. There are plenty of options out there from several manufacturers, providing you with some of the best specs at mid-range prices. With companies like Xiaomi, Motorola, Lenovo and now even Samsung trying to win the mid-range, customers could have never asked for more.

That said, selecting a phone can still be a challenging task despite the plethora of options. Several aspects like the hardware, software, optimisations and after-sales support still matter. While some companies can have the best specs on paper in a given price range, the lack of software optimisation can make those phones a poor option compared to others. 

In this post, we look at some of the best value for money options under Rs. 20,000. 

Xiaomi Mi A1

Weight: 165g | Dimensions: 155.4 x 75.8 x 7.3mm | OS: Android 7.1.2 | Screen size: 5.5-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 1920 | CPU: Snapdragon 625 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 64GB | Battery: 3080mAh | Rear camera: 12MP + 12MP | Front camera: 5MP

Best dual camera system on a budget

Google’s software with timely updates

Smaller battery

Derivative design

The result of Xiaomi’s partnership with Google, supported by the search giant’s Android One program is aimed at users who want a premium smartphone experience in low price. The Mi A1 reboots Google’s Android One program which was at first created for budget OEM’s so that they could give a great experience to users with the help of stock Android. With its reboot, Google has tweaked that a bit and will not focus on smartphone manufacturers that can give a good overall experience to consumers, both with hardware and software.

The A1 features a full HD 5.5-inch IPS display and is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 625 octa-core processor backed by 4GB of RAM and an onboard storage of 64GB which can further be expanded with the help of a microSD card. Mi A1 comes with dual camera setup and houses twin 12-megapixel camera modules, one wide-angle, f/2.2 aperture and the other one being a telephoto f/2.6 aperture lens. On the front, there is a 5-megapixel selfie camera as well. As the smartphone is a product associated with Android One, it runs on stock Android 7.1.2 with promised update to Android 8.0 Oreo. Mi A1 draws power from a 3,080 mAh battery which supports fast charging.

Read the full review:

Nokia 6

Weight: 149g | Dimensions: 154 x 75.8 x 7.85mm | OS: Android 7.1.1 Nougat | Screen size: 5.5-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 2160 | CPU: Snapdragon 430 | RAM: 3GB | Storage: 32GB | Battery: 3000mAh | Rear camera: 16MP | Front camera: 8MP

Premium design

Great camera performance

Slow to charge

Uncomfortable to hold in hand

The Nokia 6 entered the Indian market in June last year and got an impressive response from the fans with over 1 million registrations on Amazon for the first flash sale. In terms of OS, the phone will receive the latest Android Oreo update in the coming weeks.

While the other phones are easily available in the retail stores across the country, the Nokia 6 is exclusively being sold on Amazon India.

Read the full review: Nokia 6

Redmi Note 4

Weight: 165g | Dimensions: 151 x 76 x 8.5mm | OS: Android 6 | Screen size: 5.5-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 1920 | CPU: Snapdragon 625 | RAM: 2/3/4GB | Storage: 32/64GB | Battery: 4100mAh | Rear camera: 13MP | Front camera: 5MP

Power-packed performance

Good battery life

Limited to Android Marshmallow

Rear camera struggles in low light

The Redmi Note 4 has been a very successful launch for Xiaomi in India. With the Redmi Note 4, Xiaomi has continued to offer excellent value for money to its customers. While it had focused on specs with its previous phones, the company has started aiming for improved design and build quality. This shows in the Redmi Note 4 – the phone looks good, feels good in hands and is packed with power when it comes to mid-range smartphones.

LG Q6+

Weight: 149g | Dimensions: 142.5 x 69.3 x 8.1mm | OS: Android 7.1.1 Nougat | Screen size: 5.5-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 2160 | CPU: Snapdragon 435 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 64GB | Battery: 3000mAh | Rear camera: 13MP | Front camera: 5MP

Camera performance

Design and build quality

Battery life

Mediocre performance

The LG Q6+ is an upgraded version of the LG Q6 with additional memory and storage in the device. While the Q6 comes with 3GB RAM and 32GB internal storage, the Q6+ has 4GB memory and 64GB internal storage capacity. In terms of other specs, both the phones are similar. The highlight of the phone is its impressive Full Vision 18:9 display with Full HD+ resolution. This upgraded version will cost you extra Rs 3000 than the regular LG Q6.

Honor 7X

Weight: 162g | Dimensions: 150.9 x 76.2 x 8.2 mm | OS: Android 6 | Screen size: 5.5-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 1920 | CPU: Kirin 655 | RAM: 3/4GB | Storage: 32/64GB | Battery: 3340mAh | Rear camera: 12+2MP | Front camera: 8MP

Premium build

Impressive camera

No USB Type-C

Limited storage options

Launched in December last year, the Honor 7X has proven to be a good option in the mid-range. Featuring a dual camera setup on the back, the Honor 7X features a good set of specs overall. The display and camera performance are both good when it comes to smartphones in this price range. The design is an another plus for the phone as it doesn’t feel inexpensive, thus making it a good, balanced option. 

Xiaomi Mi Max 2 

Weight: 211g | Dimensions: 174.1 x 88.7 x 7.6mm | OS: Android 7.1.1 Nougat | Screen size: 6.44-inch | Resolution: 1920 x 1080 | CPU: Snapdragon 625 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 64GB | Battery: 5300mAh | Rear camera: 12MP | Front camera: 5MP

Huge display

Long lasting battery

Mediocre front camera 

How big can a phone get for it to be called a tablet? We leave that to you, but if you’re looking for a phone with a massive display, the Xiaomi Mi Max 2 is the real deal. It comes with a 6.44-inch display and a big 5300mAh battery. Not just that, Xiaomi has also worked on its design which has helped the Mi Max 2 look  slick, just like a premium smartphone.

Moto G5S Plus

Weight: 168g | Dimensions: 153.5 x 76.2 x 8mm | OS: Android 7 | Screen size: 5.5-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 1920 | CPU: Snapdragon 625 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 64GB | Battery: 3000mAh | Rear camera: Dual 13MP | Front camera: 8MP

Upgraded full metal shell

Very good value

Significant camera shutter lag

Occasional app crashes

Rounding off the list is another device from Motorola, the recently launched Moto G5S Plus. While almost all other features of the Moto G5S Plus are same as the Moto G5 Plus, it comes with a slightly bigger screen, a dual camera setup and an improved front camera. You still get the smooth stock Android experience coupled with Motorola’s software optimisations.

Honor 9i

Weight: 164g | Dimensions: 156.2 x 75.2 x 7.5mm | OS: Android 7 | Screen size: 5.9-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 1920 | CPU: Huawei Kirin 659 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 64GB | Battery: 3340mAh | Rear camera: 16MP + 2MP | Front camera: 13MP + 2MP

Good display

Affordable price

EMUI 5.1

While other brands are focusing on the dual camera setup in their smartphones, Honor went a step further and launched Honor 9i with four cameras. It is the first phone with dual camera setups both on the back and the front. The phone is exclusively available on Flipkart where the e-commerce giant is offering a discount of up to 17,999 on the exchange of an old handset.

Oppo F5

Weight: 152g | Dimensions: 156.5 x 76 x 7.5mm | OS: ColorOS 3.2 based on Android 7.1 | Screen size: 6-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 2160 | CPU: MediaTek MT6763T | RAM: 3/4GB | Storage: 32/64GB | Battery: 3200mAh | Rear camera: 16MP | Front camera: 20MP

Punchy display

Good camera performance

Lacks fast charging

No NFC

Oppo recently extended its selfie series with Oppo F5 in India. The key factors of the phone include the Facial Unlock and the AI Beauty technology which is the first AI-based beautifying technology in the world as claimed by the company. It has a database of human faces from around the world which captures the details of the user on the basis of the skin tones, gender, age etc. thus giving the best selfies to the user. The phone also has the capability to identify 200 facial recognition spots while clicking selfies. It comes in two variants which are priced at Rs 19,990 and Rs 24,990 respectively.

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