We learned a lot in 2020. About face coverings, about entertaining ourselves in our own homes, about staycations, and probably about making bread — or at least personally net carbohydrate profiteering off of someone who did. But in the realm of smartphones, one trend markedly stood out amidst a global economy (and frankly, just a globe) in turmoil: good, relatively inexpensive phones.
The OnePlus Nord, Galaxy S20 FE, and Google Pixel 4a shine brightest in the collective "value" Android smartphone cosmos right now here in the West, being from the three names most synonymous with the tech enthusiast circle in the handset space.
Samsung makes some of the priciest Android phones you can buy, but it also has options at basically every price point there is in the smartphone market and its low-end game is pretty strong. Case in point: the Galaxy A21. It's a very large phone at a price that's anything but, and today, you can get one for even cheaper than usual: $199.99, a savings of $50.
T-Mobile is updating its own-brand REVVL line of mid-range phones with three new entries, including a 5G phone that costs $400 at full retail. All of them are available from September 4 at T-Mobile on discount and, for the first time, at Metro by T-Mobile.
This story was originally published and last updated .
Samsung is best known for its big, powerful, and obscenely expensive phones. But what does $250 buy you in the Galaxy lineup these days? Getting your head wrapped around Samsung's budget offerings is an understandably difficult task given their confusing naming scheme and year over year model refreshes, but the Galaxy A21 is one of the latest price-conscious phones from the Korean manufacturer. It's available on a number of US carriers now, including Boost, which is the version of the phone we reviewed. While the A21 offers a large screen and decent battery life, the phone's overall performance and cameras (for the price) should give budget-conscious big-phone enthusiasts pause.
Xiaomi loves nothing more than releasing new devices. And usually, they're pretty solid phones that offer up good specs for the money. Today Xiaomi is announcing the new Redmi 10X pair of phones complete with 6.57-inch Samsung AMOLED screens, 30x digital zoom cameras, and dual-mode 5G connectivity.
LG originally wanted to present its 2020 lineup during MWC, but with the event canceled due to coronavirus concerns, the company has decided to release the update to its entry-level K series ahead of the designated show date. All three phones, the K61, K51S, and the K41S, will come with 6.5-inch screens, 4,000mAh batteries, a Google Assistant button, and a quad-camera array consisting of a "standard" lens combined with a super-wide, a macro, and a depth sensor. The K61 goes up to an impressive 48MP on the primary camera.
The Nokia 3.1 is a solid budget phone; in his review, Corbin said it was just about the only decent phone in its price bracket available in the States. Last week, we saw it become an even better deal at Best Buy, dropping from $160 to $140, and now it's even cheaper at $130.
Rumors have been building in recent weeks about a possible Android Go device from Samsung, and a new report suggests the handset is being tested in a few different regions around the world. Initial testing is said to have taken place in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh, markets you'd expect a budget Android Go phone to be targeted at, but it seems that the device is also being prepared for a launch across Europe, Latin America, and the rest of Asia.
Blu might not be the most famed of Android OEMs, but it does make some serviceable budget devices. If you're looking for a dirt cheap phone — maybe as a second burner handset for taking to festivals or something like that — Daily Steals has got some Blu models for as little as $35 right now. With our $10 coupon code that price can come down to just $25.
TCL briefly showed off its new line of Alcatel devices at CES. Simply named the 1-, 3-, and 5-series, each product line constitutes a portfolio that brings fingerprint sensors, 18:9 displays, and "flagship design" to devices that hit three distinct price points.