The gap between high-end flagships and affordable alternatives is closing down every year. Sure, you may not get features like wireless charging, NFC, and a telephoto lens with your average $250 smartphone, but it can still perform better than you can imagine. We’ve been testing all the budget smartphones across the spectrum, here are our picks for the top 5G smartphones you can buy for under $250 in USA.
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Motorola One 5G Ace
|Display||6.7-inch IPS LCD|
Motorola One 5G Ace is a midrange smartphone from 2021, but a price tag of $168 makes it a solid deal two years down the line. The Snapdragon 750G chip on this smartphone is still a stellar SoC for gaming and holds up pretty well two years later. If a good display is a non-negotiable aspect while buying a smartphone, the 6.67-inch FHD+ display on Motorola One 5G Ace will certainly not disappoint. The triple camera array consists of a 48MP primary shooter, an 8MP ultrawide lens, and a 2MP macro lens. You get 2-day battery life on the One 5G Ace with its 5,000 mAh unit. With
Samsung Galaxy A14 5G
|Display||6.6-inch PLS LCD|
We reviewed the Samsung Galaxy A15 5G as soon as it came out and were very impressed with the range of features it had to offer at such an affordable price. It may very well be the best 5G phone on a budget. Samsung has decided to go for a uniform design language for all its products across different price categories. This means that the Samsung Galaxy A15 5G features the same vertical camera layout as the flagship S23. The PLS LCD display on this smartphone has a very smooth and satisfying touch response that is hardly matched by any of its competitors. In our review, we were also surprised by the versatile gaming and camera performance of this smartphone.
OnePlus Nord N300 5G
|Display||6.56-inch IPS LCD|
|Chipset||MediaTek Dimensity 810|
There’s a lot to like about the budget-friendly OnePlus Nord N300 5G. The 6.56-inch IPS LCD display has a refresh rate of 90Hz and offers a good touch response. You also get Android 12 out of the box, which can be updated to Android 13. The MediaTek Dimensity 810 SoC is a decent SoC in this price range. The dual rear camera setup consists of a 48MP primary lens and a 2MP depth sensor. The 16MP selfie camera takes good-quality shots that are social media-ready. The 5,000 mAh battery can easily last all day, and if you’re looking for a fast-charging smartphone, the 33W wired charging on this device will certainly impress you.
TCL Stylus 5G
|Display||6.81-inch IPS LCD|
|Chipset||MediaTek Dimensity 700|
As you may have already guessed from the name, this smartphone comes with its own stylus. You can get the TCL Stylus 5G for as low as $258 from the Verizon store. The 6.81-inch LCD display has a screen-to-body ratio of 90.2%. You also get a dedicated microSD slot on this smartphone. The MediaTek Dimensity 700 SoC is a pretty decent midrange chipset, that can handle basic gaming along with other everyday tasks. The 4,000 mAh battery can easily last an entire day.
Samsung Galaxy A23 5G
|Display||6.6-inch PLS LCD|
|Chipset||Snapdragon 695 5G|
The Samsung Galaxy A23 5G is currently listed at $299.99 on the official website, but you can get it for as low as $214.90 on Amazon. The smartphone rocks a PLS LCD display with an impressive 120Hz refresh rate. It comes with Android 12 out of the box that can be quickly upgraded to Android 13. Powering this device is the Snapdragon 695 SoC. The Quad camera unit at the back comprises a 50MP primary lens with OIS, a 5MP ultrawide lens, a 2MP macro camera, and another 2MP depth sensor. The 8MP selfie camera upfront takes decent shots as well. 25W wired charging support is not the fastest around, but it does a decent job.
Motorola Moto G Stylus (2021)
|Display||6.8-inch IPS LCD|
|Chipset||Snapdragon 480 5G|
If you have to have a stylus with your smartphone, the Motorola Moto G Stylus is another great option along with the TCL Stylus 5G. This smartphone is powered by the Snapdragon 480 5G processor, which may not be the best in its category anymore but still delivers a rock-solid performance on this device. You can use the stylus on this device to highlight text, jot down notes, edit pictures, and even create art. The Moto G Stylus sports a quad camera setup with a 48MP main camera that takes pretty good shots. The 6.8-inch Max Vision FHD+ display is another big highlight of this smartphone. This display is ideal for streaming content across all platforms.
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These are the best 5G smartphones you can get for under $250 in USA. If you can spend a little extra, you can get some excellent deals on certain midrange smartphones as well. For instance, last year’s Google Pixel 6A is constantly fetting discounted, and you can get it for as low as $299 on certain occasions. If you’re looking for a great deal, we’d suggest looking out for these discount offers.
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