Top budget mobiles phones 2016
Sadly smartphone innovation isn't cheap – and most of it is reserved for high-end contract handsets. There is however such a thing as a good cheap smartphone, and ever so gently all those amazing features from the flagship devices are slowly trickling down to the budget phones.
Here's a selection of our favourite budget phones that cost under £200. If you're looking to pick up a decent handset for not much cash, these are the top cheap phones your money can buy - even on a budget.
1. OnePlus X
It can be difficult to get your hands on the OnePlus X because of the invite only system, but once you do you won't be disappointed.
It's not just an impressive spec either. OnePlus has created a gorgeous design for its new budget range and it's beautiful to hold. If you can go through all the pain of getting a phone from OnePlus, go for this one.
Read the full review: OnePlus X
2. Wileyfox Storm
Here you get an incredible 5.5-inch Full HD display, 32GB of storage and a stunning 20MP camera. Put in an 8MP selfie snapper and it's a very impressive set up considering it costs less than £200.
If you want high-end specs like OnePlus offers but don't want to fight tooth and nail for an invite, this will be the best choice for you.
Read the full review: Wileyfox Storm
3. Sony Xperia M4 Aqua
That said, this is still a cracking phone. It's the only one on the list you can take in the bath with you as it has IP68 waterproof technology that means it won't frazzle the internals.
There's also a great 720p 5-inch screen and some of the best battery life we've seen on a mid-range phone for quite some time. If you like Sony phones, this is the best you can get for under £200.
Read the full review: Sony Xperia M4 Aqua
4. Moto G (2015)
The 5-inch display is high quality despite being only 720p, the quad-core processor is adept at handling most tasks and it can be upgraded to the latest version of Google's Android.
This time it comes with 4G packed inside as well - but there's still no sign of NFC just yet, a big shame. But otherwise, it's a top notch smartphone.
Read the full review: Moto G (2015)
5. Acer Liquid Jade SWeight: 116g | Dimensions: 143 x 69 x 7.8 mm | OS: Android 4.4.4 | Screen size: 5-inch | Resolution: 720 x 1280 | CPU: 1.5GHz octa-core | RAM: 2GB | Storage: 16GB | Battery: 2300mAh | Rear camera: 13MP | Front camera: 5MP
Thanks to the octa-core processor and Acer's minimal software tweaks, the performance of the Liquid Jade S is simply stellar. Design is another major high point with the lightweight, curvaceous build resulting in a solid and comfortable in-hand feel.
That being said, there are still a few key areas where it suffers in comparison to other mid-range offerings, and as a result, the Liquid Jade S may not be at the top of everyone's wish list.
Read the full review: Acer Liquid Jade S
6. Sony Xperia T3
For one thing, this comes with an even bigger screen as well as a slim body that shows off some of the best Sony can do.
Even though the spec may not be as high as others on this list, the Sony Xperia T3 is one of the best all round packages you can buy right now.
Read the full review: Sony Xperia T3
7. Motorola Moto E (2015)
A whole host of new features have been added to the Motorola Moto E (2015) including 4G LTE connectivity and a decent – though not exactly premium design.
It also ships with Android 5.0 Lollipop, making it one of the cheapest smartphones to come with Google's latest mobile operating system straight out of the box.
The Motorola Moto E (2015) isn't quite as good as the slightly more expensive Motorola Moto G (2014) which, spoiler alert, appears later on in this list, but for the low, low price you'll be hard pressed to find a better smartphone.
Read the full review: Motorola Moto E (2015)
8. Nokia Lumia 735
Even if you're not too keen on plastering the internet with close up photos of your face, there's still a lot to like about the Lumia 735.
The 4.7-inch 720p screen looks particularly good, though the quad-core 1.2GHz processor and 1GB RAM sometimes strain compared to other budget smartphones when it comes to performance.
Barring the odd performance hiccup, the Lumia 735 is a decent budget smartphone that will appeal to the younger selfie generation.
Read the full review: Nokia Lumia 735
9. Wileyfox Swift
This phone comes with a smaller screen and slightly less powerful processor than the Storm, but it may be perfect for you if your prefer the design.
We especially liked the camera on the back, that's a 13MP shooter, as it comes out with some truly stunning images.
Read the full review: Wileyfox Swift
10. EE Harrier Mini
The best bit is you get 4G internet and access to EE's very exciting Wi-Fi Calling feature that means you can use your phones normal functions when you haven't got signal.
If you're on a Wi-Fi connection you can still ring up anyone you like. It's really smart and paired with some OK spec and a nice design, the EE Harrier Mini is one of our favourite budget phones right now.
Read the full review: EE Harrier Mini
Best of the restNot a fan of anything in this list? Here's a selection of our favourite budget phones that may be a better choice for you.
Microsoft Lumia 550
Vodafone Smart Speed 6If price is your main concern, the Vodafone Smart Speed 6 is a great choice that also packs 4G LTE connectivity and stock Android Lollipop software. It all comes for only £50, but you're restricted to the red network. There are issues as the camera isn't particularly great and the design doesn't really excite most people, but for that price it's difficult to complain.
- Read our review of the Vodafone Smart Speed 6
Honor 4XOne of our favourite phones from Chinese brand Honor may be a good choice for you as well. This comes with a 5.5-inch 720p screen, a 3000mAh battery, 13MP camera and Android Lollipop software with the aim to update to Android Marshmallow in the future. All of this costs £150, and it should be easy enough to find on networks as well as the official Huawei store.
- Read our review of the Honor 4X
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