Top 10 budget smartphones 2023


Here is a comparison of the best budget smartphones:

  1. Xiaomi Redmi 12 5G
  2. realme C53 128GB
  3. realme C55
  4. POCO M6 Pro 5G
  5. Xiaomi Redmi 12
  6. Tecno Pova 5 Pro
  7. POCO M6 Pro 5G
  8. vivo T2x
  9. Xiaomi Redmi Note 12
  10. realme C51

Please note that the list may be subject to change based on availability and regional differences.

If you’re looking for a cost-effective smartphone that doesn’t compromise on quality, you’ve come to the right place. At Cheki Bulls, we understand that not everyone wants to spend a fortune on their next phone. That’s why we’ve meticulously tested and reviewed numerous budget-friendly options. Below, you’ll find our carefully curated list of the top ten affordable smartphones, all priced at $250/£250 or less.

Our evaluations take into account crucial factors such as battery life, performance, camera capabilities, and software support. These aspects are often overlooked in cheaper phones, but we’ve made sure that our recommendations excel in these areas.

Currently, the Samsung Galaxy A14 stands out as the best budget phone on the market. It checks all the essential boxes and is readily available in the US, UK, and other regions worldwide. However, the remaining nine devices on our list offer unique combinations of features. From stylish designs to the inclusion of a headphone jack, there’s something to suit everyone’s taste.

Our selection includes phones from reputable brands like Samsung, Nokia, Xiaomi, Motorola, and Realme. We believe these manufacturers offer the best value for your money. For a detailed analysis of each model, be sure to read our comprehensive reviews.

Regardless of whether you’re purchasing for yourself or a family member, young or old, rest assured that there’s a budget-friendly phone perfectly suited to your needs.

Here is a comparison of the best budget smartphones:

  1. Samsung Galaxy A14 – Best overall


  • Sleek S23-inspired design
  • Long battery life
  • User-friendly software


  • Slow charging
  • Display not as good as rivals
  • Mixed cameras

Best Prices Today:
$134.97 at Amazon

The Samsung Galaxy A14 is the top choice for the best budget smartphone. It features a sleek design inspired by the S23, long-lasting battery life, and user-friendly software. However, it has slower charging speed compared to its competitors, the display quality is not as impressive, and the camera performance is average.

  1. Motorola Moto G62 – A close second


  • Well built
  • Clean Android 12
  • Strong battery life


  • Slow charging
  • Laggy performance
  • Average camera

The Motorola Moto G62 is a close second in the budget smartphone category. It is well-built, runs on clean Android 12, and has a strong battery life. However, it also has slow charging, laggy performance, and an average camera.

  1. Motorola Moto G23 – Premium look and feel


  • Elegant design and high build quality
  • Generous storage
  • Stereo speakers
  • Large, fast-charging battery


  • Slightly faded screen
  • Questionable wide-angle camera
  • Choppy haptics

The Motorola Moto G23 offers a premium look and feel at an affordable price. It has an elegant design, high build quality, generous storage, stereo speakers, and a large, fast-charging battery. However, its screen may appear slightly faded, the wide-angle camera may not meet expectations, and the haptics can be choppy.

  1. Nokia G60 5G – Buy on a subscription


  • Large display
  • Decent main camera
  • Solid battery life
  • Three years of OS support


  • Mediocre secondary cameras
  • 20W charging

Best Prices Today:
$378.00 at Amazon

The Nokia G60 5G is an excellent budget phone that offers a large display, a decent main camera, solid battery life, and three years of OS support. However, its secondary cameras are mediocre, and the charging speed is only 20W.

  1. Realme C35 – Best design


  • Crisp, colourful display
  • Bold design
  • Competent camera


  • Basic performance
  • Screen only 60Hz
  • Battery life below rivals

Best Prices Today:
$189.99 at Amazon

The Realme C35 stands out for its best design among budget smartphones. It features a crisp, colourful display, a bold design, and a competent camera. However, it has basic performance, a 60Hz screen refresh rate, and its battery life is not as impressive compared to other rivals.

  1. Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro – Best camera


  • Stunning display
  • Incredible value
  • Big battery


  • No OIS
  • MIUI not for everyone

Best Prices Today:
$269.00 at Amazon

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro offers the best camera among budget smartphones. It boasts a stunning display, incredible value, and a big battery. However, it lacks optical image stabilization and some users may not prefer the MIUI interface.

  1. Xiaomi Poco M4 Pro – Incredible value


  • First M series w/ AMOLED
  • Two-day battery life
  • Excellent camera


  • Thick and heavy
  • MIUI is clunky
  • Unreliable fingerprint scanner

The Xiaomi Poco M4 Pro offers incredible value for its features. It is the first M series phone with an AMOLED display, has a two-day battery life, and an excellent camera. However, it may be considered thick and heavy, the MIUI interface can be clunky, and the fingerprint scanner may be unreliable.

  1. Xiaomi Poco M4 Pro 5G – Great for budget 5G


  • 90Hz display
  • Great battery life
  • Affordable 5G


  • Average cameras
  • MIUI isn’t great
  • Only 4GB RAM in base model

The Xiaomi Poco M4 Pro 5G is a great option for those looking for budget 5G capabilities. It features a 90Hz display, great battery life, and affordable 5G connectivity. However, its cameras are average, the MIUI interface may not be everyone’s preference, and the base model only has 4GB RAM.

  1. Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 – Great all-rounder


  • Great display
  • Brilliant battery life
  • Value for money


  • MIUI still iffy
  • Lackluster cameras

Best Prices Today:
$164.95 at Amazon

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 is a great all-rounder that offers a great display, brilliant battery life, and value for money. However, some users may find the MIUI interface still lacking and the cameras may not be exceptional.

  1. Nokia G22 – Repair it yourself


  • Unique repairable build
  • Decent battery life
  • User-friendly OS


  • Slow and laggy performance
  • Unimpressive screen
  • Only two years of OS updates

The Nokia G22 is a unique budget phone that emphasizes repairability. It has a user-friendly OS, decent battery life, and a unique repairable build. However, it may suffer from slow and laggy performance, an unimpressive screen, and only receives two years of OS updates.


  1. Should you buy a budget phone outright?
    It is recommended to buy a budget phone outright and pair it with a great-value SIM-only deal. This allows for flexibility in upgrading to a newer model without the commitment of a contract.
  2. Should you buy a locked phone?
    When purchasing a budget phone, it is important to check if the phone is locked to a specific carrier. Locked phones may restrict the use of other SIM cards and require additional fees to unlock.
  3. What’s the best phone for a child?
    For younger children, an ultra-affordable phone with a decent-sized screen, long battery life, and durability is recommended. Additionally, good call quality is important. Glass-back phones should be avoided for younger children.
  4. Which phone is best for students?
    A more affordable phone is recommended for students. Consider whether a near-stock version of Android or a heavier skin is preferred. It is also important to prioritize the most important aspect of a phone and be willing to make compromises in other areas.

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