$200 at Samsung

Finest telephone for beneath $200

Samsung Galaxy A14 5G

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$160 at Samsung


Finest for its cheaper worth

Samsung Galaxy A03S

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$100 at Amazon

Image of Motorola Moto G Play (2023)

Finest for battery life, however nothing else

Motorola Moto G Play (2023)

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Telephones that price beneath $200 have gotten extra useful than they had been up to now. The most recent telephones on this worth vary, just like the Samsung Galaxy A14 5G, are beginning to incorporate 5G assist for quicker information and NFC for contactless funds. Different telephones, like Motorola’s Moto G Stylus, have gotten higher media machines, offering stereo audio system to enhance audio high quality whereas together with cameras that take respectable photographs.

These cheaper telephones have noticeable trade-offs: They normally run slower than dearer telephones, and whereas they are going to normally ship with the newest model of Android, there is perhaps solely a brief window of safety replace assist. That final problem is especially necessary to remember when buying on this worth vary, because it’s dangerous to make use of a telephone that is not being protected towards safety vulnerabilities by its producer.

Whereas we would not contemplate any of those picks to be productiveness machines, these telephones are doubtless going to be extra helpful than you’ll count on for the value. Plus, a few of these gadgets would possibly find yourself being “free” when signing up with a telephone provider’s subsidization program — normally requiring a two-year dedication so as to get the price lined.

What’s the very best telephone beneath $200?

The $200 Samsung Galaxy A14 5G is our present high decide for the very best telephone beneath $200. That is largely due to its inclusion of 5G assist for quicker information, NFC assist for contactless funds, and a reasonably beneficiant software program and safety assist timeline in contrast with different telephones on this worth vary. Samsung can be offering two years of software program updates and 5 years of safety updates to the Galaxy A14 5G, making it a telephone that may be safely used for a number of years in the event you select to. 

Nevertheless we’re not loopy about its images, and if that is extra necessary to you than 5G, you must also check out the $200 Moto G Stylus for its higher digital camera high quality. 

In case you want a telephone that is even cheaper, we’re additionally maintaining across the $160 Galaxy A03S on this listing. That machine remains to be being supported by Samsung, however remember the fact that it has solely a tiny 32GB of space for storing.

Finest telephones beneath $200 of 2024

The $200 Samsung Galaxy A14 5G is without doubt one of the most useful telephones beneath $200 out there proper now. Despite the fact that it is at a budget-friendly worth, this Samsung telephone consists of 5G assist for quicker information and NFC for contactless funds utilizing Google Pockets. Whereas each of these inclusions are highlights for this worth vary, Samsung can also be planning to assist the Galaxy A14 with two years of software program updates and 5 years of safety updates, making it a telephone that can be secure to make use of for a number of years.

Nevertheless you must nonetheless remember the fact that the telephone does have trade-offs to hit its $200 worth. It has a colorless design, a slower processor and blended images efficiency. But regardless of its points, the options it does embody make it a straightforward advice in the event you’re shopping for the telephone outright or if it is supplied at no cost with a provider subsidy deal.

The $200 Moto G Stylus would not have 5G however as an alternative features a built-in stylus together with an honest 50-megapixel foremost digital camera. The Stylus did a pleasant job taking photographs whereas I used to be in a wide range of environments, together with indoors and outside. I significantly loved the telephone’s tackle Portrait mode, and it captured a transparent picture of the plant wall in CNET’s New York workplace that I take advantage of for picture testing. The 6.5-inch 720p show can also be capable of run at a constant 90Hz refresh fee, offering clean animations whereas navigating apps and studying web sites.

The telephone is in any other case let down by Motorola’s software program and safety replace coverage for its G sequence of telephones, overlaying just one software program replace and three years of safety updates. That, mixed with the shortage of 5G or NFC, imply that whereas it is an important selection for higher footage, there are a variety of the way this telephone may grow to be left behind because the years go. However in the event you’re planning on utilizing this telephone for less than two to 3 years, you might get a variety of worth out of this machine.

Samsung’s Galaxy A03S at $160 (roughly £126, AU$240) may nonetheless be an important match for somebody on the lookout for the most cost effective attainable telephone that may deal with most important duties. The telephone’s 6.5-inch display, capped at 720p decision, is succesful for studying the information, watching movies and taking part in video games. Regardless of some efficiency lag discovered throughout our evaluate, the telephone is sweet at multitasking. However the telephone’s tiny 32GB of space for storing may refill quick, so in the event you’re contemplating this telephone, it might be worthwhile to consider increasing the storage with a microSD card.

The A03S, first launched final 12 months, is getting 4 years of safety updates, which means that there are nonetheless three left. It is much less clear what number of Android model updates are scheduled, and in contrast to the newer A14, it would not have 5G assist or NFC. Whereas these two advantages together with the A14’s 64GB of inside storage are value the additional $30 worth enhance, you possibly can nonetheless get some mileage out of the A03S in the event you’re merely on the lookout for the most cost effective Samsung telephone attainable.

The $170 Moto G Play’s greatest function is how its 5,000-mAh battery can stretch itself to 3 days of battery life. Nevertheless, past that, it is necessary to reveal that this machine is without doubt one of the extra irritating telephones for beneath $200.

The telephone’s MediaTek Helio G37 processor and 3GB of RAM had a difficult time loading apps, and its 32GB of area will get stuffed up shortly. The telephone does embody a microSD card slot for storage growth. Images was additionally constantly fuzzy, and the $160 A03S simply outdid the Moto G Play in my images check.

Regardless of releasing in 2023, the Moto G Play ships with Android 12 and can obtain just one software program replace to Android 13. It should additionally obtain three years of safety updates, which is customary for Motorola’s G sequence of telephones.

In the end, whereas I’m together with this telephone on the listing because of its long-lasting battery — which is presumably because of how underpowered this telephone feels — I’d sooner level you to some other telephone on this listing earlier than selecting the Moto G Play.

Each telephone on this listing has been completely examined by CNET’s professional opinions crew. We truly use the telephone, check the options, play video games and take photographs. We assess any advertising guarantees that an organization makes about its telephones. And if we discover one thing we do not like, be it battery life or construct high quality, we let you know all about it. 

We study each facet of a telephone throughout testing:

  • Show
  • Design and really feel
  • Processor efficiency
  • Battery life
  • Digicam high quality
  • Options

We check all of a telephone’s cameras (each back and front) in a wide range of situations: from outside beneath daylight to dimmer indoor locales and nighttime scenes (for any out there evening modes). We additionally evaluate our findings towards equally priced fashions. We run a sequence of real-world battery exams to see how lengthy a telephone lasts beneath on a regular basis use.

We take note of further telephone options, like 5G, fingerprint and face readers, styluses, quick charging, foldable shows, and different helpful extras. And, after all, we weigh all of our experiences and testing towards the value, so whether or not a telephone represents good worth.

Learn extra: How we check telephones

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Strive it before you purchase it: It is one factor to ogle over a telephone, but it surely’s one other to truly strive it out in a retailer.

Resolve on Android or iPhone: Do you have got a variety of iPhone apps and Apple subscriptions? Follow an iPhone. Likewise, in the event you’ve invested in a great deal of Android apps, you will need to keep on that aspect of the fence. In any other case, it is easy sufficient to modify platforms.

Choose crucial function: Is it display dimension? Digicam high quality? Battery life? This may assist slender down your selections.

Samsung Galaxy A14 5G vs. Motorola Moto G Stylus (2023) vs. Samsung Galaxy A03S vs. Motorola Moto G Play (2023)


Samsung Galaxy A14 5G Moto G Stylus (2023) Samsung Galaxy A03S Moto G Play (2023)
Show dimension, decision 6.6-inch FHD+ LCD show, (2,408 x 1,080 pixels), 90Hz 6.5-inch IPS LCD; 1,600×720; 90Hz refresh fee 6.5-inch HD+ LCD (720×1,600 pixels) 6.5-inch IPS TFT LCD; 1,600×720 pixels; 90Hz refresh fee
Pixel density 399 ppi 269 ppi 269 ppi 269 ppi
Dimensions (inches) 6.6 x 3.07 x 0.36 in. 6.41 x 2.9 x 0.36 in. 6.5 x 2.9 x 0.3 in. 6.58 x 2.95 x 0.36 in.
Dimensions (millimeters) 167.7 x 78 x 9.1 mm 162.8 x 73.8 x 9.2 mm 165.8 x 75.9 x 9.1 mm 167 x 77 x 9.4 mm
Weight (grams, ounces) 204 g (7.19 oz.) 202 g (7.13 oz.) 202 g (7.13 oz.) 203 g (7.16 oz.)
Cellular software program Android 13 Android 13 Android 11 Android 12
Digicam 50-megapixel (foremost), 2-megapixel (macro), 2-megapixel (depth) 50-megapixel (foremost), 2-megapixel (macro) 13-megapixel (broad), 2-megapixel (depth), 2-megapixel (macro) 16-megapixel (foremost), 2-megapixel (macro), 2-megapixel (depth sensor)
Entrance-facing digital camera 13-megapixel 8-megapixel 5-megapixel 5-megapixel
Video seize 1080p at 30fps 1080p at 30/60 fps FHD (1920×1080 at 30fps) 1080p at 30 fps
Processor MediaTek MT6833V MediaTek Helio G85 Octa-core processor MediaTek Helio G37
RAM/Storage 4GB + 64GB 4GB + 64GB; 4GB + 128GB 3GB/32GB 3GB + 32GB
Expandable storage Sure Sure As much as 1TB Sure
Battery/Charger 5,000 mAh 5,000 mAh (15W charging) 5,000 mAh (charger not included, doesn’t assist wi-fi charging) 5,000 mAh (10W charging)
Fingerprint sensor Aspect Aspect Aspect Rear
Headphone jack Sure Sure Sure Sure
Particular options 5G-enabled, NFC, 15W charging Stylus, Moto Gestures 3-day battery life, Moto Gestures, Auto Smile Seize, Portrait Mode

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Are cheaper telephones value it?

Telephones which might be beneath $200 simply give attention to the necessities, which suggests you will should make some compromises. You can make telephone calls, textual content, video chat, browse the net and run most Android apps on these gadgets. However you should not count on NFC for cell funds, 5G connectivity or — sadly — a lot included space for storing.

Nevertheless, these telephones in any other case perform nicely and could possibly be what you are on the lookout for if all you want is an effective communication machine. In addition they embody options which might be turning into more and more tougher to seek out in dearer telephones, similar to an included charger within the field, a headphone jack on the telephone and a microSD card slot for including extra storage.

That mentioned, in the event you’re discovering that your telephone wants transcend fundamental communication, chances are you’ll need to contemplate telephones which might be beneath $300 or telephones beneath $500, in the event you can increase your price range.

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What about telephones which might be even cheaper, like beneath $100?

Telephones beneath $100 do exist, however they normally include important compromises.

As an example, the TCL 30 Z is without doubt one of the least expensive Android 12 telephones out there, at $70. Although we have not examined this telephone, I’ve seen that it makes use of the antiquated micro-USB port for charging.

Most different Android telephones and wi-fi headphones, even these within the price range worth vary, now use USB-C for charging, which means you would possibly end up scrambling for a charger in the event you misplace it. The telephone can also be getting just one main software program replace to Android 13 and two years of safety updates, which is brief however corresponding to some telephones bought beneath $300.

We have not reviewed any flip telephones not too long ago, however anybody on the lookout for a tool made particularly for telephone calls needs to be well-served by most out there choices. Flip telephones assist 4G alerts and — extra importantly — HD Voice for clearer voice calls. Some flip telephones even assist fashionable apps like WhatsApp and the Google Assistant, albeit in a extra restricted method in contrast with how these providers perform on a smartphone. The Nokia 2789 Flip, as an illustration, is a flip telephone operating on the model’s KaiOS, which helps downloadable apps and providers.

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