Top phones under $500

    With the launch of its iPhone 12 lineup final 12 months, Apple has discounted a couple of of its older fashions, together with lowering the 2018 iPhone XR to $500. That pricing tier has been standard of late, and plenty of big-time cell phone-makers are providing nice new telephones in that vary. One of them is Google’s new Pixel 4A 5G, which joins the Pixel 4A from August.With so many telephones hitting the market, folks on a good finances have extra choices to select from. Further, along with the brand new ones, there are many dependable choices from 2019 and 2020 nonetheless obtainable. The better part: All of them price about $500 or much less. And regardless of their low costs, finances telephones are getting extra superior and pack options akin to a premium telephone, like superb cameras, quick processors, numerous inside storage, nice entrance digital camera (for selfies!) and the newest software program options. Further, if you happen to’re keen to purchase an unlocked telephone, your selections grow to be even broader.

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    Check out the listing beneath of the very best telephones underneath $500 (which we’ll be updating recurrently), and skim CNET’s critiques. Note that we have linked to the unlocked model of every telephone, and they need to run on a lot of the huge 4 US wi-fi carriers, except specified in any other case.

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    Best low cost telephones to attempt now


    John Kim/CNET

    With a four-year hole between the 2020 iPhone SE and the earlier one, Apple packed its newest finances telephone with a bunch of upgrades. That contains wi-fi charging, higher digital camera specs and water resistance. (Unfortunately, for wired headphone customers, it would not have a headphone jack.) If you are in search of a brand new iPhone however need to save as a lot cash as doable, the $399 (£419, AU$749) iPhone SE is your greatest guess for an inexpensive telephone choice.

    Read our Apple iPhone SE (2020) overview.

    Angela Lang/CNET

    If you need an inexpensive 5G telephone, the Pixel 4A 5G is a worthy consideration. Available for $499 (£499, AU$799) handset has a strong battery life, implausible twin rear cameras and sturdy software program help from Google. 

    Sarah Tew/CNET

    In addition to its most important Galaxy S20 telephones, Samsung has a extra cost-conscious A collection line of telephones. This 12 months it launched the Galaxy A51 5G, which has 4 cameras together with a selfie digital camera, an in-screen fingerprint sensor and expandable reminiscence. CNET reviewed the non-5G model that goes for $399, although we have seen it go on sale for as little as $280.

    Read our Galaxy A51 overview.

    Patrick Holland/CNET

    The $445 One 5G is without doubt one of the greatest, most inexpensive 5G telephones obtainable. This low cost smartphone choice has a complete of six, sure six, cameras, a 90Hz high-refresh charge show and fast-charing expertise. It’s obtainable now within the US on AT&T and on Verizon at a later date.

    Read our Motorola One 5G overview.

    OnePlus Nord N10 5G

    James Martin/CNET

    OnePlus is increasing its extra inexpensive “Nord” household of telephones with the launch of the Nord N10 5G. Available in Europe and North America at a later date, the telephone prices £329, which is about $430 or AU$590. Though it would not have wi-fi charging or an in-screen fingerprint reader like higher-end OnePlus telephones, it does have a 90Hz show, a headphone jack and 5G. Read our OnePlus N10 5G overview.


    Available now on AT&T and Cricket, the Okay92 is a competitively priced 5G telephone that includes a 6.7-inch show with skinny bezels and a hole-punch digital camera on the entrance. It’s powered by a Snapdragon 690 chipset and a 4,000-mAh battery. In addition to a 16-megapixel front-facing digital camera, it has 4 different cameras on the again: a 64-megapixel commonplace shooter, a 5-megapixel wide-angle digital camera, and two different cameras for depth sensing and macro photos. Read our LG Okay92 first-take.

    Angela Lang/CNET

    Released in August, Google’s Pixel 4A prices $349 (£349, AU$599). The 5.81-inch Google Pixel telephone solely is available in one coloration (black) and one measurement (as in there is no Pixel 4A XL in contrast to previous years). This Google Pixel includes a headphone jack, a barely bigger display screen and a much bigger battery than the Pixel 4 and 128GB of storage proper off the bat.

    Read our Google Pixel 4A overview.

    Josh Miller/CNET

    The iPhone XR could also be two years previous, however second to the SE above, it is one of many most cost-effective iPhones you will get new from Apple. Currently beginning at $499 (£499, AU$849) off-contract with 64GB, it includes a 6.1-inch LCD show, a 12-megapixel rear digital camera and the A12 Bionic processor. It’s additionally appropriate with Apple’s newest iOS 14 software program replace.

    Read our Apple iPhone XR overview.

    Angela Lang/CNET

    Although the Galaxy A50 got here out final 12 months (and is the predecessor to the A51 telephone talked about above), it is nonetheless an amazing telephone for $350. This Samsung telephone has a 6.4-inch AMOLED display screen, an in-screen fingerprint reader, entrance going through digital camera for selfies and a headphone jack.

    Read our Samsung Galaxy A50 overview.

    Angela Lang/CNET

    When it debuted final 12 months, the OnePlus 7T was a powerful flagship system. It’s now obtainable for $350 at T-Mobile, which is a superb deal for a telephone with a 90Hz show, a strong triple-rear digital camera array and a zippy efficiency.

    Read our OnePlus 7T overview.

    Sarah Tew/CNET

    If you are in search of a less expensive Note 20 different, the Moto G Stylus includes a stylus that you could retailer contained in the telephone together with a built-in Notes app to assist with productiveness. Currently priced at $200 from Motorola, the telephone additionally options triple-rear cameras, 128GB of storage and a strong 4,000-mAh battery.

    Read our Moto G Stylus overview.

    James Martin/CNET

    It’s been two years since its launch, however the Galaxy S9 continues to be worthy of consideration. Discounted at about $400 to $500 from Samsung and different retailers, the Android telephone is water-proof, has wi-fi charging, expandable storage and a headphone jack. Plus, its curved OLED display screen show lends the telephone a modern-day look that also endures.

    Read our Samsung Galaxy S9 overview.

    Sarah Tew/CNET

    The Moto G Power is a tad cheaper than the G Stylus at $180, but it surely packs a strong 5,000-mAh battery. During our testing, it lasted a powerful 4 days with no cost. The telephone has three rear cameras (one in every of which is a macro lens), a 6.4-inch show and expandable reminiscence.

    Read our Moto G Power overview.

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