Best Budget Smartphone of the Year
The new breed of budget performance smartphones stole the show in 2015, with practically every Android manufacturer worth its salt launching devices in the sub-Rs 7,000 segment. Only a select few made our shortlist though.
Reigning budget king Xiaomi’s Redmi 2 Prime might have made a late-entry this year, but was still a solid device. The beefed up variant of the Redmi 2 offers double the RAM and storage, and holds the distinction of being the first Xiaomi smartphone to be made in India. Related read: Xiaomi Redmi 2 Prime review
MEIZU is Xiaomi’s biggest competitor in China, so it’s no surprise that the brand launched a rival offering in India. The m2 is a spunky little smartphone with smooth performance and good battery life, and is equipped with MEIZU’s proprietary mBack home button which responds to both physical and capacitive touch. Related read: MEIZU m2 review
The Moto E was 2014’s star budget baby, and while the second-gen version of the device might come up short on core specs compared to the competition, it's still a very compelling option for users who want a trusted brand. Dual-SIM slots, a stock version of Android and an array of accessories for customisation swayed a significant number of users in its favour. Related read: Motorola Moto E 2nd-gen review
Xiaomi wasn’t the only one to out beefed-up variants of its budget smartphones. Lenovo’s popular A6000 was succeeded by the A6000 Plus, which was the first device in its price range to offer 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage, among other impressive specs. The popular smartphone sold 100,000 units within 15 minutes in its first flash sale. Related read: Lenovo A6000 Plus review
Micromax’s sub-brand YU took an aggressive stance with the Yuphoria, which matched the Xiaomi Redmi 2 Prime spec-for-spec. The smartphone is one of the most affordable devices to run CyanogenMod, and stands out in this segment with its stylish metal frame and Saturn ring camera module. Related read: YU Yuphoria review
And the award goes to...
The Xiaomi Redmi 2 Prime gets our vote in this category for its sharp display, reliable performance and excellent cameras, not to mention the ready availability in both online and offline channels. Coming in at a close second is the YU Yuphoria, which is a great alternative for geeks with its CM12 operating system.