Mobile phones have come a long way in the last few years and we’ve seen some incredible phones, like the iPhone 8+ and Galaxy Note 9, hit the market. But as the bar for top-end mobile phone performance has climbed higher and higher, so too has the price.
The latest flagship models are can set you back thousands of dollars, which makes them out of reach for many consumers who struggle to justify these costs. If you’re one of these consumers, don’t worry – we have good news.
Fortunately for those of us with a more modest budget, it’s not just the top-end phones that have seen huge improvement in the past few years. Phones have improved dramatically right across the board, from the lowest-priced budget phones to the most expensive, newest models. It’s now possible to get powerful smartphones with all the latest features on a budget.
To illustrate this, we’ve compiled a list of the five best phones for under $300.00 that you can get your hands on in 2018.
Without further ado, let’s get into it!
1. Xiaomi Redmi Mi A2 Lite
This phone takes our number one spot as it’s simply a great budget phone. It runs Android One and comes with 4G LTE, and it’ll set you back just over $300 Australian dollars.
You might have thought budget phones all come with low-resolution displays, but you’d be wrong. This used to be the case a few years ago, but now, budget smartphones frequently come with full HD displays – and the Xiaomi Redmi Mi A2 Lite is no exception.
It comes with a 19:9, Full-HD+ display and it also has a decent-quality dual-camera which takes pretty average photos. It’s not the fastest phone on the market, as you’d expect, but the performance is definitely usable and you’ll hardly notice any performance lag
It also comes with enough storage space for most people’s needs – 64GB. If you do need more, you can always buy a microSD card and add it to your phone for as much as 256GB extra storage space.
Overall, this is a great value phone.
2. Motorola Moto E5
This phone comes in at a close second on account of its price. It doesn’t offer as good performance or as many modern features as the Xiaomi, but the cost more than makes up for this.
At only $210 Australian dollars, this phone’s price tag makes it one of the cheapest budget phones that won’t make you want to throw it against a wall after a few days.
It’s got a slick design, attractive display, and it’s durable – what’s not to like?
It’s battery life also deserves a lot of praise as it’s much better than many other phones in a similar price range, and it even comes with a fingerprint scanner.
You could almost trick yourself into thinking this was an expensive smartphone – almost, but not quite.
3. Moto G6 Play
The Moto G6 Play costs around $300 AUD and takes our third-place spot on this list of the best budget Android phones in 2018.
Surprisingly, it’s almost as good as the other (more expensive) G6 smartphones but it has the added benefit of having an even better battery life. It’s also got some great features, such as a cool fingerprint sensor, headphone jack, and 18:9 display.
It has an attractive, well-made design which looks just as good as more expensive phones. Sure, it’s made from plastic and the build quality isn’t quite as good in terms of materials, but this isn’t as important of how it looks and feels in your hand.
4. EE Hawk
The lesser-known EE Hawk costs around $270 and is a bit of a dark horse in the budget smartphone market. When you consider the price tag, the build is pretty good and the Android software it runs on is clean and powerful.
In terms of performance, videos run without much lag but you’ll struggle if you plan on using it for gaming. The camera quality is also fairly low, so if Instagramming and taking photos is a priority, you might want to opt for a more expensive phone with a better camera.
There you have it – 4 of the best budget Android phones in 2018.
Some other budget phones that are good but didn’t quite make this list include: Honor 9 Lite, HTC Desire 12+, Nokia 5, Vodafone Smart N8, and Alcatel 3V.
There’s also always the option of buying a Chinese smartphone. These are phones from lesser-known Chinese brands that you won’t find in the UK in phone shops on the high street. You’ll have to source them online, which can cause issues down the line if your phone is faulty. However, if you’re willing to give them a shot, they’re typically much cheaper than the big-name brands on the UK high street. Chinese phones typically offer mid-range specification at budget prices.
It’s also sometimes cheaper to buy sim-locked phones than it is to buy unlocked phones. This is because network providers want your business and will offer better prices on sim-locked phones for their network as an incentive to get you to sign up with them. If you go down this route, you may able to get better value for money and keep phone costs as low as possible.
As a final tip for getting the best value phone for your money, try to get a sim-only contract and buy your phone separately. This way, you can avoid the high interest and marked up prices that come with getting a phone on contract and save yourself some money.
That concludes our guide to the best android phones that cost under au$300 in 2018 – I hope you enjoyed it! Happy shopping!