There are a lot of great phones on U.K. store shelves today, but many either cost £700 or more to buy outright or are tied to expensive two-year contracts. That might be a way to get hold of the latest and greatest, but it’s certainly not for everyone. These days you don’t have to spend a fortune to pick up a great handset.
Read more: Where to buy phones in the U.K.| Best U.K. mobile network
So if you’re looking for a more reasonably priced phone under £500, this guide has you covered. Here are the best phones under £500 in the U.K.!
Editor’s note: We’ll be updating this list of the best phones under £500 regularly as new mid-range devices launch.
If you’re reeling over OnePlus’ decision to take on the big boys with the premium OnePlus 7 Pro then take a deep breath and remember we’ve still got the OnePlus 7!
Unlike the U.S. which has to make do with the OnePlus 6T as the “budget” OnePlus phone of choice, here in the U.K. we get all the 7 Pro’s core hardware upgrades on the regular OnePlus 7.
That includes the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 SoC, a 48MP primary camera sensor (backed by a 5MP depth sensor), Dolby Atmos stereo speakers, UFS 3.0, RAM Boost, Zen Mode, and gaming mode improvements.
Related: OnePlus 7 Pro vs OnePlus 7: All the major differences
Otherwise, you’d be forgiven for mistaking the OnePlus 7 for 2018’s OnePlus 6T as they both feature a near identical waterdrop-notched display, in-display fingerprint sensor, and overall design.
The headphone jack is still missing and waterproofing and wireless charging are nowhere to be found, but for £499 for the 6GB RAM model, it’s hard to argue with what the OnePlus 7 has to offer.
Not a fan of OnePlus’ muted design and spartan approach to software? Then you might want to check out the Honor View 20.
The Honor View 20 is an absolute beast with a sizeable 6.4-inch LCD display, Sony-made 48MP rear camera (f/1.8 aperture) with a 3D Time-of-Flight sensor, and a huge 4,000mAh battery, all powered by Huawei’s Kirin 980 chipset.
The View 20 also has an attention-grabbing design with its V-pattern on the rear glass and a display punch hole like Samsung’s Galaxy S10 series.
Originally available for £499 with 6GB RAM and 128GB ROM and now often found for around the £400 mark, the Honor View 20 joins the OnePlus 7 in offering flagship specs in the under £500 bracket.
Editor’s note: The Honor View 20 launched before the Huawei Android ban so future software updates are expected to be unaffected. That said, you should be aware of the circumstances and potential ramifications of the ban before parting with your money.
Xiaomi’s grand entrance into the U.K. in 2018 shook up the market by introducing a bunch of new high performance phones with surprisingly low price tags.
There are already plenty of Xiaomi phones under the £500 mark that would happily suit different budgets, such as the Mi 8, Mi 8 Lite, and various Redmi phones. We’re here for the best, however, and the Mi 9 is arguably Xiaomi’s best phone to date.
Read more: Xiaomi Mi 9 specs
The Mi 9 is a feature-packed device that can go toe-to-toe with any phone. It features a triple-lens camera which includes an ultra-wide lens, a gorgeous glass design, and speedy 20W charging.
The Mi 9 was one of the first phones to pack Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 855 processor and it offers a significant performance boost over Snapdragon 845 phones.
The Xiaomi Mi 9 costs £499, which is an absolute steal on paper. Just be aware that you’re only getting 64GB of storage which can’t be expanded.
What if you could get all of the great features of the Google Pixel 3 in a phone under £500? Say hello to the Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL.
These “lite” Pixel 3 phones have an almost identical camera to their premium siblings, which just so happens to be the Pixel 3’s best feature. Not only is the image quality phenomenal for a mid-range phone, you also get Night Sight, Super Res Zoom, Portrait mode, and every other one of the Pixel 3’s acclaimed camera features.
The Pixel 3a and the larger Pixel 3a XL also have headphone jacks, Active Edge for quick Google Assistant access, and a guaranteed three years of updates to Google’s ultra-clean software.
The Pixel 3a is priced at just £399, but if you want a slightly larger screen you can spend a little extra on the Pixel 3a XL for £469.
Samsung has gone all out refreshing its A series and one of the best new entries is the Samsung Galaxy A70.
Aside from that ultra-glossy rainbow finish, the Galaxy A70’s big selling points are its monster 6.7-inch Super AMOLED display and equally huge 4,500mAh battery that make it perfect for video- and social media-hungry shoppers. With 25W fast charging and MicroSD card support, there’s nothing stopping you from watching movies on the Galaxy A70 for hours.
Read more: Best Samsung phones you can buy right now: flagship, mid-range and budget models
With an in-display fingerprint sensor and that notched, almost bezel-less display, you might be wondering why the phone retails for £369 as standard. That’s because under the hood, the Galaxy A70 drops down from Qualcomm’s flagship processors to a Snapdragon 675. There’s also no IP rating for waterproofing, but you do get a headphone jack.
The Galaxy A70’s triple-lens camera also leaves a little to be desired, though the ultra-wide sensor is a welcome option for capturing more scenery in your shots.
Alternatively, if you really want a Samsung phone but want can’t live with the downgraded processor, you might be able to find the Samsung Galaxy S9 on a deal for below £500 if you shop around.
There are plenty of Nokia phones going for under £500, but the Nokia 8.1 is currently the best you can buy.
The phone comes with a dual-lens rear camera with Carl Zeiss optics, Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 710 SoC backed by 4GB of RAM, and a 6.18-inch LCD display.
This is also the phone for you If you’re a fan of timely updates. HMD Global has done an amazing job of delivering Android updates on time and Android One offers a clean and lean stock software experience.
If you want to save a little more money, the Nokia 7 Plus may be a little older but is still one of the best mid-range phones available.
12/06/2019 04:00 PM