If you’re looking for an affordable phone for yourself or your kid, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get a reliable and efficient device. However, there are few options among the new models.
You’ll have to make some concessions compared to the world’s newer iPhone or Galaxy S22 Ultra. At this price point, you should also forget about iOS phones. Don’t expect the same quality of finish in terms of design, and forget little things like water resistance or wireless charging. Another trade-off is that performance on more intensive tasks (like playing 3D games or running multiple apps at the same time) won’t match the standards of high-end phones.
Still, for less than $500 you get the bare essentials: a battery that lasts all day, a fast enough processor to keep you waiting, and a decent enough camera, if not on the same level as high-end phones. . . . Here are two options from $330 to $450 that even leave a little headroom for a protective case, highly recommended.
Samsung A13: a battery that lasts for a long time!
For just $330, the Samsung A13 offers a large, bright 6.5 x 4-inch screen and a 5,000 mAh battery that lasts for a very long time.
In terms of performance, its MediaTek octa-core processor and 4 gigabytes (GB) of RAM let you surf the web and social media smoothly.
The main camera is also quite adequate. In broad daylight, you will have no problem getting clear and detailed photos. Obviously, the stronger the light falls, the more problems the device will have. This is completely normal for a phone of this line. The other two lenses, macro and depth sensor, are more secondary than anything else.
You also get a 90Hz display instead of the usual 60Hz. In other words, the screen refreshes at 90 frames per second instead of 60. Result: The phone will be more responsive when scrolling the screen or during any other interaction. It should be noted that some people do not notice this difference; so if you have the opportunity to test this feature in the store, it’s worth it.
As a bonus, Samsung has stores in Montreal, which may allow you to access in-store after sales support during the warranty year.
Motorola G Stylus 5G: little extras where it counts!
If you don’t have much gaming in your budget, the $450 version of the Stylus 5G from the Moto G line offers some nice extras.
The 6.8-inch screen is not only bigger, but also smoother. Indeed, the Stylus offers a refresh rate of 120Hz, which is more than the A13.
Motorola also offers a light and flexible version of Android, as well as a stylus for more precision, or even small handwritten notes from time to time!
Another option: contract devices
The Canadian cellular communication market is focused on the sale of the package. So the choice of unlocked phones at full price is small. So if contracts don’t bother you, check with your service provider who might be helpful. The back-to-school period, Black Friday and Christmas sales are often associated with very good deals in mobile telephony. Also visit stores that offer services from multiple providers; you will often find additional offers such as gift cards or free accessories.
For example, the Pixel 6a, recommended last year and now costing over $600, could cost you as little as $10 a month on top of your plan for two years. So the phone will go back to $240 which makes it a great deal.
If you find the following templates for $10 to $20 per month, know they are worth it!
Samsung S20/S21 or S20/S21 FE
iphone 12/12 mini
To see all the options and see if other phones fit your needs, check out our smartphone test results. Also check out our mobile plan comparator. Also, before you make your decision, learn how to choose the right smartphone with Protégez-Vous buying advice.