The sub-Rs. 15,000 smartphone segment is all about getting a few things right. Most smartphones can achieve decent daylight image quality from their cameras, battery life is generally excellent, and performance is good enough for casual gaming. A big differentiator here when compared to entry-level (sub-Rs. 10,000) smartphones, is design. It’s easy to find a good-looking smartphone or at least one that has a refreshing design, versus the basic look of entry-level smartphones.
Another add-on feature that has not completely taken over this segment is 5G connectivity. But with 5G already available with some operators in India, you can pick from a few 5G-enabled smartphones if future-proofing or faster connectivity is a priority. Other handy features one might find in this segment includes stereo speakers, splash resistance and high refresh rate displays.
So, here’s a list of some of the best phones to buy under Rs. 15,000 in India right now, in no particular order.
|Phones under Rs. 15,000||Gadgets 360 rating (out of 10)||Price in India (as recommended)|
|iQoo Z6 Lite 5G||8||Rs. 13,999|
|Moto G52||8||Rs. 12,999|
|Redmi 10 Prime||8||Rs. 12,999|
|Realme Narzo 30 5G||8||Rs. 14,999|
|Samsung Galaxy F22||8||Rs. 11,499|
|Redmi Note 10S||8||Rs. 14,999|
iQoo Z6 Lite 5G
The iQoo Z6 Lite 5G gets you reliable camera performance and a good-looking design at an attractive price. As its name describes, there are 5G radios as well, even though it’s just two 5G bands. iQoo decided to go with a 120Hz refresh rate LCD display which also makes this smartphone good for gaming. The combination of a Qualcomm Snapdragon 4 Gen 1 SoC and a large 5,000mAh battery also makes it good for entertainment as the bottom-firing speaker in our testing turned out to be sufficiently loud. While this phone seems to check all the right boxes, you need to keep in mind that it does not include a charger in the box. Also, its software experience isn’t the best in class.
The Moto G52 lacks 5G radios. This may be a problem for those looking forward to making the switch to 5G networks. The G52 is solely for those who have no plans to jump onto the 5G bandwagon right away but are more interested in value. With that in mind, the Motorola Moto G52 is focused on entertainment with a 90Hz refresh rate pOLED display, and stereo speakers with support for Dolby Atmos. The Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 680 SoC is not a beast, but it surely gets daily tasks done (along with some light gaming) and this is partly thanks to Motorola’s near-stock Android software. The phone also packs a large 5,000mAh battery and comes with a 33W charger in the box. While the phone looks attractive, it also packs an IP52 rating for mild dust and water resistance.
Redmi 10 Prime
The Redmi 10 Prime carries the family look and sports a big 6.5-inch full-HD+ display with a 90Hz refresh rate. It has a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, a plastic frame, and a quad-camera system at the back. This smartphone is powered by the MediaTek Helio G88 SoC, along with a large 6,000mAh battery with support for 18W fast charging. Daylight camera performance is average, despite having a 50-megapixel primary camera. Low-light image quality is also a bit underwhelming, which is one of the main downsides of this phone. While it doesn’t have the same impact that its predecessor did, it does deliver better performance so if that’s important to you, the Redmi 10 Prime will suit your needs.
We also reviewed the Redmi 11 Prime 5G which as its name implies, adds 5G to the mix, but you should go for this one only if 5G connectivity is high up on your list of priorities.
Realme Narzo 30 5G
The Realme Narzo 30 5G is a slim and stylish 5G smartphone with a 90Hz refresh rate display, great battery life, and mid-level gaming performance. The cameras are a bit disappointing for both stills and video and to make matters worse, there’s no ultra-wide camera. You get Realme UI plus several preinstalled apps that can spam you with unwanted notifications. That slim design surprisingly packs a 5,000mAh battery but charging is a bit on the slower side. However, if you want 5G and you have a tight budget, the Narzo 30 5G is a good phone to consider.
Samsung Galaxy F22
Samsung’s Galaxy F22 is a rather basic budget smartphone that goes big on battery life. It has a vibrant 6.4-inch 90Hz HD+ Super AMOLED display, but cuts down on everything else. The big 6,000mAh battery easily lasts two days, but takes a long time to charge. The camera performance is quite average for its segment, but daylight video quality is good, despite being limited to 1080p. The Galaxy F22’s design can be best described as practical, with a display that uses Gorilla Glass 5 for protection and a plastic unibody. The phone lacks 5G radios that are available in the newer Galaxy F23 5G, but if a vivid display and strong battery life are priorities, the Galaxy F22 fits the bill.
Redmi Note 10S
The Redmi Note 10S, despite being quite old, is still a solid offering in this segment. It has been replaced by the Redmi Note 11S (which adds 5G radios and 108-megapixel primary camera) which is priced higher. For an older device, it still packs a punch in terms of specifications and also has an IP53 rating for dust and water resistance. There’s a 6.43-inch AMOLED display with Corning Gorilla Glass 3. It has stereo speakers and an IR emitter, which are both uncommon on budget smartphones. The Note 10S packs a MediaTek Helio G95 SoC along with 6GB of RAM, and you can choose between 64GB and 128GB of storage. The phone does have a lot of preinstalled apps that occasionally push spammy notifications. Xiaomi offers a quad-camera setup on the Redmi Note 10S with a 64-megapixel primary sensor.