The best phones under $300 in 2023

The best phones under $300 - updated December 2022
Cheap phones have been getting better lately, decreasing the need to spend a thousand or more dollars on a decent smartphone. To have a cheap phone no longer comes with big trade-offs. That's because phone brands have been competing in the entry-level segment as hard as they do with flagships, and everyone wants to make the phone with the best value ever. Still, you should be very careful as to which phone you go for. Most of these don't excel in every aspect, and you better choose wisely and according to your daily needs.

So if you are on a budget and looking for a phone under $300, don’t worry. There are some pretty good options to choose from. Make sure to check out our list of the best Android phones as well. Here we go.


Motorola Moto G Stylus (2022)


Motorola Moto G Stylus 5G (2021)
7.9

Motorola Moto G Stylus 5G (2021)


The Good

  • Attractive, lightweight design
  • Decent camera setup
  • Ergonomic stylus
  • Excellent battery life

The Bad

  • Dated 60Hz display
  • Rudimentary speakers
  • No NFC
  • Not the greatest value

This is another phone that retails for $299. In comparison with the OnePlus Nord N200 5G, the Moto G Stylus is a newer and fresher take on the budget phone. It has a 6.8-inch LCD screen with FHD+ resolution. The processor is a MediaTek Helio G88, coupled with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage.

The Moto G Stylus… of course has one – a stylus I mean, and it also has a 16MP punch-hole selfie shooter located in the left corner of the screen. On the back, there is a quad-camera system with a 50MP main camera, 8MP ultrawide shooter, and a 2MP macro and a depth sensor.

The Motorola Moto G Stylus (2022) has kept the headphone jack and card slot. Battery-wise, the phone has a 5,000mAh battery, which is pretty big. Android 11 is present on the Moto G Stylus (2022), with an expected update to Android 12 soon.

TCL 20S


TCL 20S

TCL 20S


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This is the newest phone on this list and also one of the best in terms of value. The TCL 20S retails at $249 and offers a big, 6.7-inch LCD display with FHD+ resolution and a punch-hole 16MP selfie camera located in the middle.

The 20S has a Snapdragon 665 processor, coupled with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage for the base variant. On the back, there is a quad-camera system consisting of a 64MP main shooter, 8MP ultrawide camera, 2MP macro, and 2MP depth sensor.

Just like with the previous phones on the list, this one has a headphone jack and expandable storage as well. Another strong point the TCL 20S has going for itself is that it has a large 5,000mAh battery. The TCL 20S runs Android 11 out of the box.

OnePlus Nord N200 5G


OnePlus Nord N200 5G
8.2

OnePlus Nord N200 5G


The Good

  • Gorgeous, lightweight design
  • Large, clear 90Hz display
  • Excellent battery life
  • 5G on a budget

The Bad

  • Mediocre cameras
  • Occasional performance hiccups
  • No mute switch like on more expensive OnePlus phones

The newly released Nord N200 phone has a pretty good design, a nice 6.5-inch display with FHD+ resolution, and a chunky 5,000mAh battery. This phone retails for $239, making it very affordable.

The Nord N200 also comes with 5G connectivity, a rare feature in this price segment. Its processor is a not to be underestimated Snapdragon 480 with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. Its only downside is its camera setup. This phone has a 13MP main shooter, which isn’t bad but isn’t great either. A MicroSD card slot and a headphone jack are present on the phone. We recommend the Nord N200 to anyone who prefers 5G and design over camera quality.

Samsung Galaxy A32 5G


Samsung Galaxy A32 5G
6.5

Samsung Galaxy A32 5G


The Good

  • The battery life is top notch
  • The headphone jack is not extinct here
  • There is a Micro SD card slot
  • There is 5G support
  • The main camera records up to 4K 30fps
  • The front camera is decent

The Bad

  • The display is cheap and of older technology, its quality and resolution are bad
  • The glossy plastic back is a scratch and fingerprint magnet
  • Lack of optical image stabilization on the camera
  • Night mode photos come out noisy
  • The display does not get dim enough in low light

This budget offering from Samsung retails for $279 and has a 6.5-inch HD+ TFT display. While the resolution of the Galaxy A32’s screen is a bit disappointing, it helps make this phone one of the best in terms of battery life, with its chunky 5,000mAh battery.

A quad-camera system is located on the back of the A32 5G, consisting of a 48MP main camera, 8MP ultrawide, 5MP macro, and a 2MP depth sensor. The front teardrop-style selfie shooter is a 13MP unit.

The Galaxy A32’s 5G capabilities are a strong point when considering which phone on this list to buy. The phone is powered by MediaTek’s Dimensity 720 5G processor, coupled with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage for the base version. Surprise, surprise, this phone also rocks a headphone jack and a memory card slot. The A32 5G runs Android 11 out of the box, but is upgradable to Android 12. This makes this phone from 2021 still pretty up to date.

Motorola Moto G Power (2022)


Motorola Moto G Power (2021)
7.4

Motorola Moto G Power (2021)


The Good

  • Good value
  • Excellent battery life
  • Solid build

The Bad

  • Middling performance
  • No NFC
  • Only one year of software updates

Last but not least, the Moto G Power retails for $299 for the 128GB version, which is pretty affordable for such big storage. The Moto G Power features a 6.5-inch HD+ LCD display with an 8MP punch-hole selfie camera and a 90Hz refresh rate.

A triple-camera system is located on the back, with a 50MP main shooter, a 2MP macro, and a depth sensor. The Moto G Power’s power (see what I did there?) comes from a MediaTek Helio G37 processor coupled with 4GB of RAM. This processor isn't very powerful, so if you're after performance, you better consider some of the other options on this list.

Just like the other phones here, this one has a headphone jack and expandable storage. A 5,000mAh battery keeps the lights on. The large battery unit and efficient processor of the Motorola Moto G Power make it one of the longest-lasting phones on this list. Android 11 is present on the Moto G Power (2022).

Conclusion


These were the best phones for less than $300. Of course, some compromises have to be made for a phone to fit in this price range, but nowadays, you compromise on a lot less than you used to in this price category. The best overall is definitely the Moto G Stylus (2022), with its great performance, cameras, screen, and battery life. TCL's new offering should also be on your shortlist, while OnePlus and Samsung offer excellent value. Keep in mind that there are lots of upcoming budget models and we will update this pick regularly, so stay tuned!

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