When it comes to entry-level smartphones, the main focus has always remained similar over the years. These smartphones have always been about big displays and battery life but not much else. But with better hardware, this focus has deviated a bit over time. Apart from delivering the basics, bigger displays and batteries also mean that the focus is now on entertainment. A quality speaker or stereo speakers are a welcomed addition at this price. HD displays are common, but full-HD displays are still rare. Basic gaming is also possible in this segment and surprisingly, you can find high refresh rate displays as well.
Our newest addition to the sub-Rs. 10,000 smartphone guide is the Infinix Hot 11S. Launched at Rs. 10,999, it recently received a price cut and is now available online at around Rs. 9,499. Here are the best smartphones in India under Rs. 10,000, in no particular order.
|Phones under Rs. 10,000||Gadgets 360 rating (out of 10)||Price in India (as recommended)|
|Realme C31||7||Rs. 9,999|
|Moto E40||7||Rs. 9,999|
|Infinix Hot 11S||8||Rs. 9,499|
|Micromax In 2b||8||Rs. 8,999|
|Realme Narzo 30A||8||Rs. 8,999|
The Realme C31 performs well as a daily driver for casual use. The phone looks modern and stylish and at first glance, it's tough to tell that it's actually a budget device. The 5,000mAh battery is also sufficient to deliver good battery life. While the SoC can handle basic multitasking and social apps, gaming isn't exactly its forte, which means you'll need to stick to casual games at best on this one.
The cameras on the C31 could've been better and we didn't like the fact that Portrait mode only works with human subjects. We think it's best if you get the higher RAM and storage variant of the Realme C31, instead of the base model, since that price difference is not much and it should offer better performance in the long run.
The Moto E40 is a decent budget offering Motorola in the sub-Rs. 10,000 segment. It offers acceptable hardware, and performance is adequate for causal use. The Unisoc T700 SoC chugs along just fine for everyday apps, but isn't going to be suitable if you often switch to more demanding tasks such as video editing. Heavy apps and games take a bit longer than usual to load too. Still, there are plenty of things to like about this phone, such as its 90Hz display, clean and bloat-free Android experience, and decent battery life. Its main shortcomings are slow charging and average camera performance, which are not out of the ordinary for a phone at this price.
The Infinix Hot 11S is a gaming-focussed smartphone for those on a tight budget. It offers a high-refresh-rate 90Hz full-HD display that gamers will appreciate, and a decent budget SoC that's capable of some mid-level gaming. The plastic body has a glossy coating that feels cheap and is a smudge magnet. The display on the other hand is quite good at resisting fingerprints. The large display makes this phone a bit unwieldy, and one-handed use is next to impossible. The stereo speakers work well for gaming and are sufficiently loud. Battery life is excellent, and charging is quick too. This smartphone could be a good choice for casual users and those seeking a good gaming experience on a tight budget.
The Micromax In 2b may not be a jack of all trades, but it is good at the basics, which increases its value over some competing smartphones. The phone's back is made of plastic but is practical in terms of design and does not gather fingerprints and smudges. Its display is sufficiently bright and shows decent colours, keeping in mind its entry-level price tag. The Unisoc T610 SoC in the phone turned out to be a decent performer, for a phone in this class. Camera performance was weak, but battery life and the software experience were very good, making this a strong contender in the segment.
The Realme Narzo 30A still offers good value for its current selling price. It has a body made of polycarbonate, but its textured back and square-shaped camera module looks fresh and it also comes with a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner. The display size is generous at 6.5 inches but it only has an HD+ resolution. The Narzo 30A is powered by the MediaTek Helio G85 SoC and comes with up to 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage.
You get a dual-camera setup on the Narzo 30A which delivers decent photos in daylight, but low-light camera performance is below average. If you like taking a lot of selfies, the Realme Narzo 30A will keep you happy. Its big 6,000mAh battery also helps deliver excellent battery life but it comes at the cost of the device being slightly big and bulky.