Top 5 Affordable Smartphones Under Rs. 10,000 in India
The entry-level segment of smartphones is primarily focused on two key aspects: large displays and long battery life. However, in 2023, manufacturers have started pushing boundaries by incorporating 5G connectivity and high-refresh rate displays. Despite these advancements, it's important to note that many budget smartphones released in 2023 or earlier struggle with delivering the basics effectively. Even the most highly-rated smartphones on our list often fall short in terms of camera quality and smooth-running software.
While many users prefer spending a little more to get a device from our sub-Rs. 15,000 guide, there are still numerous individuals who are transitioning to their first smartphone or purchasing their first-ever mobile phone. The Rs. 10,000 segment is also suitable for those who primarily need a smartphone for making calls (audio/video) or using basic messaging apps.
Our latest additions to this guide feature the Poco C51, the stylish Realme Narzo N53, and even the Lava Blaze 5G. Here, we present the best smartphones priced under Rs. 10,000 in India, reviewed and rated by Gadgets 360, listed in no particular order.
The Poco C51 stands out as the most cost-effective option on our list, starting at just Rs. 6,999. Remarkably, Poco has managed to include a generous 4GB RAM and 64GB internal storage even at this affordable price point. With a substantial 5,000mAh battery and a MediaTek Helio G36 processor, it possesses sufficient power to handle the underlying software.
While the Poco C51's price is exceptionally low for the entry-level segment, it operates on Android 13 Go Edition. Although it may not offer the smoothest software interface, it features a compact footprint that occupies less internal storage compared to the standard Android 13 OS. Additionally, it comes with lightweight apps that consume less space and run more smoothly. This device is ideal for individuals seeking a smartphone with extended battery life for making calls and running basic applications, as it can easily last for two days on a single charge with casual usage.
Realme Narzo N53
The Realme Narzo N53 is an entry-level smartphone that stands out for its stylish design and the inclusion of a 90Hz refresh rate display, which is quite impressive for this segment. While most budget smartphones prioritize delivering the basics, the Narzo N53 brings a refreshing focus on style and aesthetics.
Although the high-refresh rate display is not geared towards gaming, the phone's Unisoc T612 SoC provides sufficient power to run basic apps and ensure a smooth software interface. Realme achieves this by utilizing its Realme UI T-edition, which is designed to be less resource-intensive. However, it is worth noting that the device comes preloaded with a significant amount of bloatware and third-party apps. On the bright side, the Narzo N53 offers decent camera performance and boasts a 5,000mAh battery, delivering good battery life. Additionally, the bundled 33W charger ensures quick charging capabilities.
Lava Yuva 2 Pro
The Lava Yuva 2 Pro places a strong emphasis on its aesthetic appeal, much like the Realme Narzo N53. With its slim profile and iPhone-like rear camera module, it exudes a sleek and stylish look. The inclusion of a glass rear panel is also a rare feature to find in this price segment. However, it's worth noting that despite its slim profile, the phone remains fairly large with a 6.5-inch HD+ IPS LCD panel, which may not be suitable for individuals with small or medium-sized hands.
Underneath its sleek exterior, the Lava Yuva 2 Pro is powered by a MediaTek Helio G37 SoC, which performs adequately for basic everyday tasks but is not recommended for gaming. The software experience is decent, although the phone runs on Android 12, which is not the latest version. The interface resembles a stock Android interface, devoid of spammy notifications, although there are some preinstalled third-party apps. Additionally, the phone features a side-mounted fingerprint scanner for added convenience. Camera performance falls within average range for this segment, but the device is capable of delivering two days' worth of battery life.
The Realme C55 aimed to raise the bar higher than the Narzo N53 on this list, but unfortunately falls short in overall execution. While the device will be remembered as the only Android smartphone attempting to replicate the Apple iPhone 14 Pro's Dynamic Island feature, this endeavor failed to meet expectations as the built-in LED notification light turned out to be more practical. Despite its gimmicky features, the phone is equipped with a MediaTek Helio G88 SoC, which surprisingly lacks the power needed to ensure smooth performance of its Android 13 software.
Fortunately, the Realme C55 compensates for its shortcomings with a speedy 90Hz refresh rate display, a premium-looking design, and satisfactory daylight imaging. These features help justify its slightly higher asking price of Rs. 10,999.
The Moto E13, priced at Rs. 6,799, is the most affordable smartphone on our list, featuring Android 13 Go Edition and 2GB of RAM. Despite its budget-friendly nature, the phone boasts an ergonomic design and carries an IP52 rating, providing basic dust and water resistance.
For those opting for the 4GB RAM variant with the Unisoc T606 SoC, the Moto E13 delivers satisfactory software performance for everyday tasks, along with the added benefit of dual-band Wi-Fi. The device includes a Type-C USB port and FM radio. As expected from Motorola devices, the software experience is commendable, despite running on Android 13 Go Edition. Motorola's MyUX interface offers a decent range of customization options and ensures a relatively bloatware-free experience, aside from a few preinstalled third-party apps that can be uninstalled if desired. However, the battery life is only average and will last for a single day on a full charge.
Lava Blaze 5G
The Lava Blaze 5G stands out in this guide, receiving an overall good rating, albeit at a slightly higher price of Rs. 10,999. The phone impresses with its solid build quality, featuring a glass rear panel, and a convenient Type-C USB port at the bottom. It is equipped with a MediaTek Dimensity 700 SoC, which enables 5G connectivity. Although the software is based on Android 12, our experience with it was smooth and devoid of any noticeable lag. Additionally, the phone includes a reliable side-mounted fingerprint scanner.
In terms of camera performance, the 50-megapixel main camera excels in daylight conditions but delivers average results in low-light environments. Video quality is quite good, as the phone can capture 2K footage. With its 5,000mAh battery, the device easily lasts more than a day on a single charge. However, it's worth noting that the charging speed is relatively slow with the included 12W charger.