Best Cheap Smartphones For Under £100
Our list of the best smartphones available to buy with a budget of £100
A couple of years ago you had to fork out a significant amount to get your hands on a phone with a decent display, good performance and the ability to browse the internet. But the price of smartphones has decreased rapidly in recent times, meaning there are some true bargains to be had.
We’ve picked out the top 6 best smartphones that are priced under £100 (SIM-Free or on Pay As You Go). You’ll be pretty amazed at what you can get your for money. All the mobiles listed are available to buy in the UK and we’ll continue to update our list throughout 2014.
Anyway, enough talk and on with our list of the best smartphones available for under £100.
Nokia Lumia 520 – For newcomers and Windows Phone fans (£75)
Nokia’s Lumia 520 has recently seen its priced slashed and it can be picked up from various retailers for just £75. The 4-inch smartphone runs on the Windows Phone 8 platform, which is a very intuitive operating system.
For your money you get a dual-core processor, 5 mega-pixel camera, 8GB of storage and support for 3G. It comes highly recommended and is perfect for those taking their first steps into the world of smartphones and more experienced users alike.
Our Nokia Lumia 520 Review concluded that “"This is the most affordable of Nokia’s Lumia range so far. Its comfortable-to-hold curved body and colourful chassis are standout features. The display is only four inches, but still manages to be pretty sharp."
BlackBerry Curve 9320 – For QWERTY lovers (£59.99)
Those looking for a QWERTY smartphone should look no further than BlackBerry’s Curve 9320 which comes with a full keyboard. The other major strength of the 9320 is that it you get to enjoy the native version of the increasingly popular BlackBerry Messenger (BBM).
When it comes to specification it has a 2.44-inch display, 3.2 mega-pixel camera and a dedicated button for quick access to BBM. It’s a great messaging phone, but those looking to play games or stream multimedia files might be best to look elsewhere.
Our BlackBerry 9320 Review concluded that “The Curve 9320 is a great phone for social networking and has that dedicated BlackBerry Messenger button too. It does all you would expect of it, and at this price and with all its good features, it’s still a good choice."
Samsung Galaxy Fame - For Samsung Lovers (£80)
Samsung are one of the most respected and admired phone manufacturers in the world and the Galaxy Fame is a great little smartphone. Being able to get your hands on one of the Korean companies smartphones for under £100 is a selling point in its own right.
However, the Samsung Galaxy Fame is also a decent looking compact smartphone with a solid, if unspectacular, specification. It has a 3.5 inch display (320 x 480 pixels) and is powered by a 1GHz processor, has a 5 mega-pixel camera and a front-facing VGA camera.
There are better looking, better specced smartphones on the market, but the Galaxy Fame is a Samsung device and it supports NFC which is pretty rare in this price bracket. Read our Samsung Galaxy Fame Review here.
You can pickup the Samsung Galaxy Fame for £79.95 from the Carphone Warehouse.
Sony Xperia J – Best Looking (£90)
Sony’s Xperia J is arguably the best looking smartphone available for under £100. The specification of the smartphone isn’t too shabby either with a 4-inch display (800*480 pixels), a 1GHz processor and a 5 mega-pixel camera. It comes pre-loaded with the Android platform and is available in a choice of White or Black.
For the price you get a smartphone that looks way more expensive than its price with a solid specification. Our Sony Xperia J Review concluded “The Xperia J from Sony is one of the best-looking phones aimed at the mid-market at the moment. It has the design flare of the Xperia T but comes in at only half the price.”
Huawei Ascend G510 – Best spec, features and performance (£99)
Huawei might not have the fashionable appeal of the likes of Sony and Samsung, but the Huawei Ascend G510 has the best specification for a smartphone under £100.
The Android-powered mobile comes with a dual-core 1.2 GHz processor, 512MB of RAM and a 4.5 inch display (480x854 pixels). Unlike a lot of other smartphones the sub-£100 price bracket it also comes with a front-facing VGA camera and NFC support.
The design is basic and doesn’t catch the eye, but it’s not a bad looking smartphone. However, those looking for something aesthetically appealing might want to look elsewhere, but for everyone else it offers the best performance and feature-set you can get under £100.
LG Optimus L5II – Best all-rounder and our overall winner (£109)
We know the LG Optimus L5II costs over £100, but you might forgive us when you hear more about the smartphone. We just couldn't leave out such a great smartphone and it's only a couple of pounds over the limit.
LG's smartphone is a good looking mobile that comes with a solid specification and some great features. Its 4 inch display delivers a surprisingly impressive viewing experience, while it's 1GHz processor and 512MB deliver solid performance. And it also comes with a surprisingly decent 5 mega-pixel camera which takes very decent shots.
The Optimus L5 II comes pre-loaded with Google Android, which has been impressively tweaked by LG making the interface more intuitive and adding even more features. You don't get NFC or a front-facing camera as you do with the Ascend G510, but it's a better looking device with improved software.
Our LG Optimus L5 II Review concluded that “This is a smartphone that has loads of features and costs a tad over a hundred quid, and yet still offers a decent five-megapixel snapper and good performance.”
The LG Optimus L5 II is available to buy SIM-free on Amazon for around £110.
Do you agree with our choices of the best value smartphone for under £100? Or do you think we've left out some important devices? Let us know your thoughts by leaving a comment below.