Looking for a new phone for a loved one this Xmas? But don’t love them that much to get them an iPhone X! Seriously, there are some really good Android smartphones out there. Chris Price look at his top 5 budget smartphones for different types of user, including gamers, elderly and the social media obsessed
For the social media obsessive
Alcatel A5 LED light-up approx. £169
Billed as the ideal phone for social media fan, the Alcatel A5 LED light-up (pictured above) is the world’s first interactive LED-covered smartphone. The LED cover is customisable, meaning you can create and design your own LED cover patterns and themes, selecting different colours for different apps and contacts. For example you can set it to flash green lights for WhatsApp messages, blue for Twitter and yellow for SnapChat. The light shows can be set to music too! Other features include a 5.2inch HD display with 13 megapixel rear camera and 8 megapixel front facing camera. The Alcatel A5 LED is available at Carphone Warehouse SIM free.
For the elderly
Doro 8030 approx £109
A 4.5inch 4G smartphone for the over 65 market, the Doro 8030 would make a great Xmas present for an elderly relative. Although it’s an Android phone Doro has built its own user interface over the top which uses verbs to drive the user’s required actions, rather than icons. So for example rather than relying on the user to search for a specific application icon it uses actions such as ‘Call’, ‘View’ or ‘Send’ and then prompts the user with ‘Who’ or ‘What’. Other useful features for the elderly include loud sound, Hearing Aid Compatibility and a soft touch coating for a better grip. Doro’s cloud enabled app My Doro Manager is pre-installed, allowing trusted family members and friends to provide the user with help and support using the phone remotely, without being physically present. Available from Amazon here.
For the heavy user
Honor 6A approx £169
Chinese company Huawei’s sub-brand has been making some pretty decent phones of late. The Honor 6A is no exception. It’s one of the cheapest in the range (the Honor 9 recently won Best Mid-range phone at the T3 awards) but looks much more expensive, thanks to a classy metallic back. Another bonus is an exceptional battery life from the mighty 3020mAh battery inside. This means you should easily be able to get at least a day’s charge from it even if you’re on the phone most of the day! The 13 megapixel rear camera with phase detection is pretty decent too. The only downside is the phone’s 720p display isn’t the best while the lack of fingerprint scanner means no Android Pay. Available here for £169.
For the gamer
Motorola Moto G4 smartphone approx. £149
Available in either black or white, the Motorola Moto G4 features a dual SIM feature (white version only) so you can make and receive calls on two different numbers. Given its price tag, the G4 certainly boasts an impressive spec including 5.5 inch Full HD display and 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 617 octa-core processor making it pretty good for gaming. Cameras are high quality too for a phone of this price. The 13-megapixel rear camera features dual LED flash, 4x digital zoom and ultra-fast f2.0 lens for high-quality photos even in low light while the 5-megapixel front-facing camera comes with a wide-angle lens for group selfie shots! 16GB memory is provided as standard but this can be expanded with a microSD card up to to 128GB. The Motorola Moto G4 is available from here.
Nokia is back under new ownership (HMD Global) and a new range of phones. While you can of course get much cheaper than the Nokia 5 (the new 3310 non-smart phone will set you back just £49), this model still represents excellent value for money. It’s also one of the best looking phones at this price point. Featuring an all metal body, it comes with a 5.2 inch display as well as a fingerprint scanner on the front for added security – a rarity at this end of the market. Available in various colours, including blue, black, silver, white and copper, it sports a solid, if somewhat unspectacular, 13 megapixel camera. And while battery life isn’t the best in this category, it’s certainly as good as an iPhone!