If you’re eyeing up a new smartphone for 2023 but find yourself on a budget, you’ll be happy to know your options are far from limited. This well-researched guide combines the best phones under 300 AED without compromising features, quality, or performance. Get ready to unpack an array of phone options from industry giants like Samsung, Xiaomi, and Nokia to emerging contenders like Infinix and Poco, all offering fantastic value for your money.
Whether you’re a photography enthusiast, a gaming addict, or a multitasking professional, we’ve got you covered. Discover your ultimate pick in the world of affordable, high-performing smartphones.
Stepping into the realm of entry-level smartphones is the Samsung Galaxy A04. This 6.5-inch Android smartphone shines with a vibrant Infinity-V display, boasting a resolution of 720 x 1600 pixels. It’s an eye-catcher, available in Black, White, Green, and Copper. Running on Android 12 and the One UI Core 4.1 interface, the Galaxy A04 is powered by a MediaTek Helio P35 processor.
Depending on your needs, you can choose between the 4GB or 6GB RAM versions, with internal storage of either 32GB or 64 GB. If that’s not enough, you can always expand it with a microSD card. It supports 4G LTE, Wi-Fi, and GPS connectivity, ensuring you’re always connected.
- Enjoy an immersive viewing experience on the large 6.5-inch screen, perfect for movie streaming and web browsing.
- Capture detailed and high-quality photos with the 50 MP main camera.
- Benefit from long-lasting power thanks to its 5,000mAh battery.
- Optimise battery life with the phone’s AI power management.
- Experience enhanced audio with Dolby Atmos when using headphones.
- Use the Samsung Members app for diagnostics and optimisation of device performance.
Unfortunately, the reference material did not provide specific pricing information for the Samsung Galaxy A04. We recommend checking the official Samsung website or your preferred electronics retailer for current pricing details.
Our team has spent some time with the Samsung Galaxy A04 and observed the following. From a design perspective, the phone boasts an elegant symmetry, complete with a glossy back and curved edges. Photography enthusiasts will appreciate the 50MP main camera and 5MP front camera. What’s more, the depth camera feature allows for adjusting the background blur in portrait shots.
The battery life of the Galaxy A04 is impressive thanks to its 5,000mAh battery and AI power management features, which adjusts to optimise battery life. However, it should be noted that the Galaxy A04 does not come with a fingerprint scanner, relying instead on a face unlock feature for security. Additionally, it does not support NFC or has a gyroscope sensor.
Despite these minor drawbacks, the Samsung Galaxy A04 offers a solid, feature-packed option for those customers looking for an affordable, entry-level smartphone.
The Nokia 2660 Flip is a feature phone with 2.8-inch screen size and dual SIM capability, introduced to the market in July 2022. Weighing only 123g, it offers 128MB of storage and 48MB of RAM, paired with a microSDHC slot for expandable storage. It supports GSM, HSPA, and LTE network technologies. The display is a TFT LCD with a resolution of 240 x 320 pixels and is powered by the Unisoc T107 chipset and a 1.0 GHz Cortex-A7 CPU.
Its other features include a 0.3MP primary camera with an LED flash, a loudspeaker, and a 3.5mm jack for audio. It operates on a Li-Ion 1450mAh removable battery and comes in black, blue, and red colours.
- Compact and lightweight design, ideal as a spare phone or for basic communication.
- Stellar battery life with a 1450mAh removable battery.
- Dual SIM capability with both SIMs on standby for seamless communication.
- Expandable memory through a microSDHC slot.
- Affordability and simplicity of use.
The Nokia 2660 Flip is a budget-friendly option priced at $67.50 / £53.00 / €68.98 / ₹4,449.
As an owner of the Nokia 2660 Flip, I have experienced firsthand both the strengths and weaknesses of this device. On the positive side, the phone’s compact size and lightweight design make it very easy to carry around. Moreover, it’s a great backup or secondary phone due to its dual SIM capabilities that allow me to accept phone calls or texts on either SIM without needing to switch between them. Moreover, the battery life is impressive, often lasting much longer than my primary smartphone.
However, there are certain limitations. For instance, the inability to enable flip-to-answer calls and the lack of certain features like Wi-Fi and NFC can be inconvenient at times. The absence of a touchscreen also means that you’re entirely dependent on the physical buttons for navigation. Despite these drawbacks, the Nokia 2660 Flip serves its purpose well as a basic, budget-friendly feature phone.
The Xiaomi Redmi 9A is a budget smartphone aimed at consumers in developing countries. Its impressive specifications include a 6.5″ HD+ display and a MediaTek Helio G25 processor. It comes with either 2GB or 3GB of RAM depending on the model. The device runs on Xiaomi’s custom software, MIUI 12, which boasts a plethora of features and customisation options.
Additionally, the phone has a single bottom-firing speaker, a headphone jack, and supports FM radio. The Redmi 9A sports a plastic back cover with a radial pattern and a stylish strip located under the camera module, and you can get it in three colours: Carbon Gray, Sky Blue, and Ocean Green.
- The Xiaomi Redmi 9A is a great entry-level smartphone for those upgrading from older flip phones or feature phones.
- The device’s 5000mAh battery offers long-lasting usage and supports 10W fast charging.
- The phone comes with MIUI 12, which has a user-friendly interface and regular updates.
- Despite being a budget smartphone, it still manages to deliver decent camera quality with a 13MP rear camera and a 5MP front camera.
The Xiaomi Redmi 9A is available at an affordable price point of $99. The base version of the Redmi 9A comes with 2GB of RAM. However, upgrading to a 3GB RAM version is available for an additional price of $10. This pricing makes Redmi 9A an exceptional choice for those looking for budget-friendly smartphones.
Talking from personal experience, the Redmi 9A has its pros and cons. On the bright side, it offers impressive battery life with a 5000mAh battery that can easily last a full day of heavy use. However, the display quality could be better, with washed-out colours and poor colour accuracy. The phone manages to perform basic daily tasks but struggles with graphics-intensive games.
It also lacks a fingerprint scanner and uses an older microUSB charging port instead of a newer, more efficient USB-C. Despite these shortcomings, the Redmi 9A offers quite a lot for its low price, making it a compelling choice for those in need of a budget smartphone.
Launched in August 2021, the Nokia C1 2nd Edition Blue is a sleek and compact smartphone with a weight of just 154g and a thickness of 9.3mm. It’s built on Android 11 and has 16GB of internal storage, expandable via a microSDXC slot. The device offers a clear visual experience with a 5.45-inch TFT LCD boasting a resolution of 720 x 1440 pixels. As for its performance, the Nokia C1 2nd Edition Blue is powered by a Unisoc SC7731e chipset and a quad-core 1.3 GHz Cortex-A7 CPU.
When it comes to photography, this smartphone is equipped with a 5MP main camera that includes features like LED flash and 720p video recording capabilities. The front camera also offers a 5MP resolution and an LED flash for bright and clear selfies. In terms of connectivity, the Nokia C1 2nd Edition Blue supports Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.2, and GPS.
However, please note that it does not support NFC and uses a micro USB 2.0 port. The device comes with a 2500mAh removable battery, dual SIM support, accelerometer, and proximity sensors.
- Affordable and budget-friendly
- It runs on Android 11
- 16GB of internal storage expandable via microSDXC
- 5.45-inch TFT LCD
- Features a 5MP main and front camera
- Supports Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.2, and GPS
- 2500mAh removable battery
- Supports dual SIM
While we have yet to determine the exact price point for the Nokia C1 2nd Edition Blue, its basic features and specifications position it as a budget-friendly option. It offers a great balance between affordability and functionality, making it a suitable choice for those in search of a straightforward, cost-effective smartphone.
On a personal note, we appreciate the affordability and software performance of the Nokia C1 2nd Edition Blue. However, it’s important to mention that there have been reports of the phone being slow and having network issues. Given its features and pricing, there may be better choices for heavy multitasking or demanding tasks. Still, it is a decent option for those looking for a simple, budget-friendly device.
The Infinix Smart 6 Plus is a budget-friendly smartphone launched in July 2022. With a sizable 6.82-inch IPS LCD and a brightness of 440 nits, it provides a decent viewing experience. It is available in two models – with 3GB RAM and 64GB internal storage, but also has a dedicated slot for expandable storage. It offers basic but functional photography capabilities with an 8MP primary camera, a 0.3MP depth lens for the rear, and a 5MP selfie camera.
The phone operates on the Android 12 OS (Go edition) and is powered by a MediaTek MT6762 Helio G25 processor. It also has an impressive battery capacity of 5000mAh. Available in two colours – Tranquil Sea Blue and Miracle Black, it features a sleek design with a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor.
- Equipped with an integrated fingerprint reader, proximity sensor, and ambient light sensor for a seamless user experience.
- Features an accelerometer for accurate motion detection.
- It comes with dual SIM capability, allowing flexibility in managing personal and professional contacts.
- It possesses fast charging capabilities and a long-lasting Li-Po 5000 mAh battery, ensuring prolonged device use.
- It offers good value for money and is suitable for everyday tasks like internet browsing, using social media apps, and photography.
The Infinix Smart 6 Plus is very reasonably priced at approximately $100 (or 7,999 in India), making it an affordable choice for many smartphone users.
The Infinix Smart 6 Plus offers a number of advantages. It is equipped with an octa-core processor and PowerVR GE8320 graphics, allowing for smooth multitasking and decent gaming performance for its price range. Its large 6.82-inch display with a 720 x 1600 pixels resolution provides a good viewing experience. However, there may be better choices for users looking for a device capable of handling heavy gaming or demanding tasks.
The Poco C40 is a budget-friendly smartphone from Xiaomi’s sub-brand, Poco. Sporting a generous 6000mAh battery and powered by an exotic JLQ JR510 processor, it’s a device that aims to cater to your digital needs. Whether you prefer Power Black, Coral Green, or Poco Yellow, the C40 comes in a shade that suits every personality. The device features a 6.71-inch IPS display with a 1650 x 720 pixels resolution, assuring you of clear visuals.
It comes in two configurations: 32GB storage with 3GB RAM and 64GB storage with 4GB RAM. On the software front, it runs on Xiaomi’s MIUI 13, based on Android 11. For those moments worth capturing, the C40 is equipped with a 13MP dual camera setup on the rear and a 5MP front camera.
- Large 6000mAh battery capable of providing more than a day’s power with moderate usage
- Support for various Bluetooth codecs for high-quality audio
- Equipped with an IPS LCD with Corning Gorilla Glass for added protection
- Despite heavy use, the device doesn’t heat up and maintains a comfortable temperature below 37°C
The Poco C40 caters to smartphones in the budget market with a price tag below 200 Euros. Depending on the storage and RAM configuration you choose, the price varies slightly. Despite its affordability, the performance and camera limitations might make you pause and consider other alternatives in the same price range.
From our experience, the Poco C40 has its share of peaks and valleys. The massive battery life is a definite advantage, lasting over 20 hours in our Wi-Fi test. The support for various Bluetooth codecs also means you can enjoy high-quality audio with compatible headphones. The IPS LCD with Corning Gorilla Glass protection is another benefit, ensuring your screen stays scratch-free.
However, the phone’s performance could be better at times, with noticeable lag and stuttering during regular use. The camera performance also leaves much to be desired, with issues like blown-out highlights, flat colours, and focusing trouble. The lack of NFC support for mobile payments can be a deal-breaker for some. Plus, the device comes loaded with a bunch of pre-installed apps and bloatware, which may need to be removed to free up storage space.
The Xiaomi Redmi A1 is a budget-friendly smartphone designed to fit into any lifestyle. With a simple yet elegant design, this phone boasts a plastic back and a textured finish to ensure a secure grip on the device. It features a 6.52-inch HD+ LCD with a unique water drop-style notch that houses the selfie camera, giving the screen a clean and modern look.
Powered by a MediaTek Helio A22 processor and 2GB of RAM, the Redmi A1 may not be a powerhouse, but it gets the job done. It operates on Android 12 Go Edition, a leaner version of Android developed for devices with lower-end hardware.
In terms of camera capabilities, it’s equipped with an 8MP primary shooter enhanced with AI capabilities for vibrant colours and a 5MP front camera. The device also boasts a long-lasting 5000mAh battery that supports fast charging with the 10W charger.
- Minimalist, ergonomic design for easy handling and use.
- Clean, bloatware-free software for a smooth user experience.
- A bright, HD+ LCD for enjoyable media viewing.
- Long battery life, with the ability to power through at least two days.
- Affordable pricing makes it a great entry-level option for smartphone users.
The Xiaomi Redmi A1 is competitively priced at Rs 6,499, making it a solid choice for those on a budget. It competes well with other devices in the sub-Rs 7,000 range, offering a blend of quality, performance, and affordability.
Our experience with the Redmi A1 has mainly been positive. We appreciate its minimalist design, which gives it a clean, modern aesthetic. The software is also praiseworthy, thanks to being free of unnecessary bloatware. Battery life is another strong point, easily lasting for a few days on a single charge.
On the flip side, the camera performance leaves room for improvement. While it produces decent shots in well-lit conditions, it struggles in low-light scenarios. Performance-wise, the device could be more impressive, considering its hardware limitations. However, considering its price range, these are compromises that a potential buyer might be willing to make.
The Infinix Hot 20i is a great smartphone which hit the market in October 2022. It offers a 6.6-inch IPS LCD with a 720 x 1612 pixel resolution for a sharp, bright viewing experience. This device runs on a MediaTek Helio G25 processor and PowerVR GE8320 GPU, providing smooth performance. You can expect 2-6GB RAM and 64-128GB internal storage, expandable with a microSD card.
In terms of its camera capabilities, the Hot 20i boasts a triple camera setup at the back, with a 13MP primary camera, a 2MP depth sensor, and a 0.3MP light sensor. The front features an 8MP selfie camera.
It operates on Android 12 or Android 12 (Go edition) with the XOS 10.6 user interface, which is easy to navigate. As for connectivity, it supports 4G/3G/2G networks, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth 5.0. It’s powered by a 5000mAh battery and supports 10W wired charging. You can get this device in four colour options: Wilderness Black, Luna Blue, Energy Green, and Sunset Gold.
- Ample screen size with clear display
- Expandable storage options
- Triple camera setup with 13MP main camera
- Sturdy 5000mAh battery
- Runs on Android 12 or Android 12 (Go edition) with XOS 10.6 user interface
- Support for 4G/3G/2G networks, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth 5.0
- Available in four colour options
- Security system with fingerprint technology
Unfortunately, we were not provided with specific pricing information for the Infinix Hot 20i.
As with any device, the Infinix Hot 20i has its strengths and weaknesses. On the one hand, the device’s performance and features have been appreciated by users. It offers robust security with its default security system and fingerprint technology. The speaker quality makes it suitable for both calling and playing music. It also supports the 3.5mm jack technology. The 5000mAh battery capacity is robust enough for all-day use.
Conversely, some users have reported dissatisfaction with its gaming capabilities and network connectivity issues. Additionally, it doesn’t have fast charging technology and doesn’t support 5G or NFC. However, considering its reasonable price point, these drawbacks may be a small compromise for the great features it offers.
Wrapping up our deep dive into budget-friendly phones, it’s clear that finding a suitable gadget under 300 AED is a matter of balancing your individual needs with your financial constraints. Each of the brands of the phones discussed in this article offers a unique set of features and performance capabilities, opening up a world of options for consumers with varying preferences.
From the advanced Samsung Galaxy A04, the compact Nokia 2660 Flip, to the budget king Xiaomi Redmi 9A, and even the feature-packed Infinix Smart 6 Plus, there’s certainly a phone for everyone at every price point.
Picking the perfect phone ultimately depends on your priorities. Whether you’re looking for phones with an impressive camera, long battery life, or a large, immersive display, these budget-friendly smartphones deliver a host of features that were once exclusive to high-end devices.
Always remember that the price tag doesn’t necessarily dictate quality. Some of the most affordable mobile devices can punch well above their weight, offering a blend of style, performance, and practicality.
So, whether you’re dipping your toes into smartphones for the first time or looking for a backup phone, the market is rich with options that won’t break the bank. The choice is yours!