With so much choice in the smartphone world, we thought we would help you out by highlighting a number of handsets in the £400 – £500 category. These are in no particular order and we have deliberately tried to include as many different manufacturers as possible. So, without further ado, let’s get started.
Apple iPhone SE (2020)
Currently the cheapest iPhone available, this is effectively a slightly updated iPhone 8. With a premium glass and metal build, 4.7” LCD screen and a 1821 mAh battery, the whole phone has a decidedly 2017 feel about it. The only new item in there is the A13 Bionic processor, although it is reported that this has even been throttled down. The single rear camera is probably the best single camera system available in a smartphone and will give you good shots in a variety of conditions. All in all, the SE (2020) is one for the Apple enthusiasts who want the brand for under £500.
Samsung Galaxy S10 Lite
The first of two Samsung phones on the list, the S10 Lite has a bigger 6.7” AMOLED screen than the S10 or the S10+. It has a triple array main camera consisting of a main wide, ultrawide and Macro as well as a 32MP selfie camera. Shipping with Android 10 and a 4500 mAh battery, the only negative thing you can say about it is that it has a plastic back, other than that it is good value for the price.
Xiaomi Mi Note 10
Like Samsung, Xiaomi has 2 phones on this list and the Mi Note 10 is the first. This handset was the first to boast a 108MP camera in the 5-lens rear array. The others being a 12MP telephoto with 2X optical zoom, 8MP telephoto with 5X hybrid zoom, 20MP ultrawide and a 2MP Macro – quite an impressive array. With all glass and metal construction it has a 6.47” AMOLED screen and a massive 5260 mAh battery. All quite impressive for a sub £500 price tag.
Released late in 2019, the 7T is an upgrade to the original 7. With a bigger screen (6.55”) with a 90Hz refresh rate, upgraded processor, bigger battery and Android 10 all improvements on its predecessor. It also has a triple array camera with a 48MP main, 12MP telephoto and 16MP ultrawide. So overall, the 7T proves to be a better bet than the 7 and a worthy entrant on our sub £500 handset list.
Sony Xperia 10 II
Sony have always been a leader in both screens and photography sensors – two vital elements of a good smartphone, so it is a surprise that they have never been a leader in the smartphone market. Part of this is down to the exterior design of the phones which are rather staid and behind the times. This is the case for the Xperia 10 II. It is very well specified with a 6” OLED screen, decent battery and a great triple rear camera array of wide, telephoto and ultrawide lenses. Premium built of glass front and back with a plastic frame, the whole thing is let down by a very old-fashioned look to the front with big bezels top and bottom. This is a shame really, as this would be an exceptional phone in the sub £500 category otherwise.
Samsung Galaxy A71
The Samsung Galaxy A range sits immediately below the flagship S handsets. During the last 12 months Samsung have been working hard on enhancing all the models in the A range to ensure a bigger share of the upper mid-range market. The A71 was released in Jan this year, only some 6 months after the original A70. The A71 still has the same excellent 6.7” AMOLED screen and good-sized 4500 mAh battery as the A70. But the processor has been updated to the Snapdragon 730 and Android 10 is on board along with Samsung’s own One UI 2 skin. The camera has been upgraded to a quad array with a 64MP wide, 12MP ultrawide, 5MP depth sensor and 5MP macro lens, a pretty comprehensive combination. Coming in towards the bottom end of the price range, this a great value phone with good specs and looks to match.
The Nokia 8.3 is one of only two phones on our list that is 5G and so warrants a mention for that fact alone. It is also claimed that it will be the first smartphone that is compatible with all existing 5G bands worldwide, a useful feature if you travel a lot. The phone itself has a large 6.81” LCD screen and is powered by a good sized 4500 mAh battery with the Snapdragon 765G processor. On the camera front, the rear array is a quad one with Zeiss optics. This consists of a 64MP main wide, 12MP ultrawide, 2MP macro and 2MP depth lens, this array supports both 4K and 1080p video. All-in-all a good package for a 5G phone under £500.
Redmi K30 Pro
Xiaomi sub-brand Redmi have also got a 5G handset onto our list. The K30 Pro is in fact the Redmi flagship, so to get any flagship under £500 is a bit of a coup. With a 6.67” Super AMOLED screen that is completely uninterrupted, because the selfie camera is on a motorised pop-up unit, it looks great from the front. Inside it is powered by the class leading Snapdragon 865 processor with the juice supplied by a hefty 4700 mAh battery that will fast charge in just over an hour. The quad camera array covers all the bases with a main 64MP wide, 5MP telephoto macro, 13MP ultrawide and a 2MP depth lens. Such a combination should provide a great range of images in all light types.
So, there you have it, our list of 8 great smartphones in the £400 – £500 price bracket. There is something there for everyone, but if you want to discuss your requirements and have a look at the phones first-hand, call into one of our stores, our friendly and expert staff will be pleased to help you.