Choosing an inexpensive smartphone is often a more difficult task than a flagship, the choice between which actually boils down to several popular models from different brands. In today’s reality, this is accompanied by additional difficulties, because in the Ukrainian market, due to a full-scale war, accompanying inflation, and supply restrictions, the choice remains quite limited.
While planning this material, I had the idea to make a selection of 10 models in the price category up to UAH 12,000, but in fact, I managed to collect only five. The main factor in the choice was several important, in my opinion, specifications at once. First, I looked at models no older than 2022, with a processor of Helio G99 level or better, with 8/128 GB of memory, a Full HD+ screen, and a battery of at least 5000 mAh.
Of course, all these specifications had to be included in the price tag no higher than UAH 12,000, and among the models I chose from brands known to Ukrainian consumers. So, let’s look at the list itself.
The Motorola smartphone that we recently reviewed, offers a good price/performance ratio. Users can count on a 6.6-inch P-OLED screen with a Full HD+ resolution and a refresh rate of 120 Hz, as well as a good level of performance with a Helio G99 processor and 8 GB of RAM. The cameras in the Moto G72 are represented by 108 MP wide-angle, 8 MP ultra-wide-angle, and 2 MP macro modules, and all of them have electronic stabilization. Therefore, you can count on good shots during the day, but it is quite difficult to shoot with a smartphone at night. But the 5000 mAh battery allows you not to remember about charging for the whole day.
An inexpensive smartphone that is very similar to the Moto G72 in terms of characteristics, but with a brighter design and a smaller 6.4-inch Super AMOLED Full HD+ display with a refresh rate of 90 Hz. The smartphone is also built on the MediaTek Helio G99 platform with Mali-G57 MC2 graphics, 8 GB of RAM, and 128 GB of internal memory, which can be expanded with microSD cards. The set of cameras here is simpler, Realme 10 offers two main modules: a 50-megapixel wide-angle (f/1.8, 27mm, 1/2.76″, PDAF) and a 2-megapixel depth sensor. The front camera is 16-megapixel. Built-in 5000 mAh battery should provide a good level of battery life, and Oppo SuperVOOC fast charging at 33 W allows you to recharge the battery from 0 to 50% in 28 minutes.
Redmi Note 12 5G
The popular line of smartphones from Xiaomi was replenished with a large number of models even last year, one of which is just right for the parameters of this selection. Redmi Note 12 5G is equipped with a 6.67-inch AMOLED Full HD+ screen with a frequency of 120 Hz, a Snapdragon 4 Gen 1 processor with Adreno 619 graphics, 8 GB of RAM, and 128 GB of built-in memory, as well as a microSD card slot. Like the Moto G72, this budget smartphone offers three camera modules: 48-megapixel wide-angle (f/1.8, PDAF), 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle (f/2.2, 120˚, 1/4″), and 2-megapixel macro. The front camera of the Redmi Note 12 5G has a 12-megapixel camera. The battery life of the model is provided by a 5,000 mAh battery that can be charged with a power supply of up to 33 W.
OnePlus Nord CE 3 Lite
One of the newest and most expensive models in this selection from the OnePlus company, which was introduced in the spring of this year and offers a 6.72-inch IPS screen with a resolution of 2400×1080 pixels, a Snapdragon 695 5G processor with Adreno 619 graphics, 8 GB of RAM, 128 GB of built-in memory with the possibility of expansion thanks to the microSD slot. Formally, the OnePlus Nord CE 3 Lite has three main camera modules, however, in fact, the user can only count on a 108-megapixel wide-angle (f/1.8, 1/1.67″, PDAF), while the other two – a 2-megapixel macro and a 2-megapixel depth sensor – are only suitable for limited shooting scenarios. Like the other models in this selection, the smartphone has a 5000 mAh battery, but a much faster 67W charger, which is able to charge the battery from 0 to 80% in just 30 minutes.
An inexpensive smartphone from Oppo offers a 6.59-inch IPS display with a resolution of 2412×1080 pixels and a frequency of 90 Hz. It is built on the Qualcomm platform with a Snapdragon 680 processor and Adreno 610 graphics. In addition, the model offers 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB of built-in memory with the possibility of expansion with microSD cards. Formally, the model offers two main cameras, but if the first module here is 50-megapixel (f/1.8, 27 mm, PDAF), then the second is only 2-megapixel and is used as a depth sensor for portrait photography. The front camera is 16 megapixels with an aperture of f/2.0. The battery in the Oppo A96 is also 5000 mAh with support for 33 W charging.
Choosing an inexpensive smartphone: summary
As this selection shows, in this price category you can generally count on models with a good set of specifications with processors and RAM that should provide a comfortable level of performance. In addition, the smartphones in the selection offer high-quality displays with a relatively high resolution to ensure a clear picture. However, it is worth noting that the number of cameras in these models is more of a marketing move that allows you to place more lenses on the back panel, but this does not at all indicate better quality or wider shooting capabilities.