Sometimes, you need a new phone that won’t break the bank. Fortunately, there are several affordable handsets that still provide good service, excellent power, and a variety of fun features.
Today, let’s break down our top picks for the seven best cheap phones in 2023 that you can find at retailers like Amazon and Best Buy or from cell providers like Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile.
Samsung Galaxy A54
Samsung’s Galaxy A54 is easily one of the best budget phones you can buy. With a 6.4-inch screen and your choice of 6 GB or 8 GB of RAM, however, this Android phone is far from a less-than-stellar device. With up to 256 GB of storage plus a handful of excellent cameras, there's a lot to like about this affordable handheld device.
For example, it has a well-improved 50- megapixel main camera, enabling you to take photos of your friends, family members, and adventures anytime you like. Meanwhile, the phone benefits from excellent battery life, especially when considering this device's adaptive refresh rate. Expect only have to recharge it once every other day or so.
The Exynos 1380 processor is also decent, though not incredible (but remember the asking price). The phone only way 7.1 ounces and features a 50-megapixel main camera, a 12-megapixel ultra-wide camera, and a five-megapixel macro camera. In summary, this affordable phone can do it all.
Google Pixel 6A
You may also wish to consider the Google Pixel 6A. Cheaper than the Pixel 6, this budget phone is much easier on the wallet.
While it doesn’t have the best battery life, it’s $100 cheaper than the next most affordable Google Pixel phone, featuring a bright OLED display and Smart Tensor G1 chip with a stellar camera set.
The 12.2-megapixel main camera and 12-megapixel ultra-wide camera enable you to snap photos anywhere, anytime. There is 6 GB of RAM combined with 128 GB of storage space to ensure that the Pixel 6A has enough power to play any app or game you have while leaving enough space to store videos and photos for a long time before transferring them off.
On the downside, there’s also no denying this phone doesn’t have the longest shelf life. Android OS support for it will be gone by 2025, yet it is still a good choice for a short to medium-term handset. Like many Google Pixel phones, this handset comes with AI-powered efficiency tricks “under the hood,” like on-device translation and the Magic Eraser photo editing tool.
Google Pixel 7A
If you’re in the market for a budget smartphone that is a little better for long-term use, consider the Pixel 7A, which is a little more affordable than the Pixel 7 Pro. It has an upgraded sim and chip compared to the 6A, the Tensor G2, providing even more responsiveness and value for money. The display is bolstered by a 90 Hz refresh rate, ensuring you can watch your media comfortably, even if the light around you is very bright.
For less than $500, you'll enjoy a set of improved cameras, such as a 64-megapixel main camera on the back of the phone and a 13-megapixel ultra-wide camera. The 13-megapixel front camera rounds out the set. All of the cameras take advantage of the fact that the phone has a large sensor to allow you to shoot photos even in lowlight environments.
Wireless charging support is included, and you’ll enjoy the Photo Unblur mode, which helps you clean up your photos to ensure they are crystal clear. In the end, it's a stellar, affordable Google phone for fans of Google functionality and operating systems but who also don't want to break the bank. It even comes with 5G connectivity.
OnePlus Nord N30
Maybe you’re in the market for a cheap phone from a secondary provider. The OnePlus Nord N30 is a stellar choice, in that case, as you can get it for under $300. It has a pretty good-sized screen at 6.72 inches, and everything is powered with a Snapdragon 695 5G CPU. Snapdragon offers good performance and streamlined functionality, especially because the phone comes with 8 GB of RAM.
It also comes with 128 GB of storage space, which can be expanded later on. The camera suite is pretty extensive for an affordable phone, including a 108-megapixel main camera, a 2-megapixel depth camera, a two-megapixel macro camera, and a 16-megapixel front camera. Unfortunately, the camera performances can be hit or miss, and there’s no ultra-wide lens to speak of.
That said, the phone does benefit from a fast 120Hz refresh rate for the AMOLED display, keeping your media viewing smooth and steady. The fast charging speeds are also excellent, and the battery lasts for 12.5 hours when the display is in adaptive mode. That means sacrificing the 120hz display for a slightly lower refresh rate, but that’s far from a big downside.
Apple iPhone SE
The Apple iPhone SE is a 2022 device that's still a great cheap phone for 2023. It may not be a flagship phone, but it’s an excellent budget smartphone or mid-rand phone at many retailers thanks to its security updates, price tag, and powerful specs.
It features a 4.7-inch LCD display and an A15 Bionic chip, known for its overall performance and value for money. This is actually the same processor you can find on iPhone 13 phones and the iPhone 14, and it's far superior to what you can find on most Android devices.
Magic Fusion, Smart HDR 4, and Photographic Styles are just a handful of the photography tools and controls you can enjoy when you purchase this phone. They work well with the 12-megapixel rear and seven-megapixel front cameras. There isn't a night mode, however.
That said, the Touch ID feature is excellent for security-minded buyers, as it allows you to quickly lock your device while remaining certain that a thief won't be able to get into your handset. The phone overall only weighs a little over 5 ounces, and it’s one of the most affordable options on the market.
Just note the unfortunately large bezels, which diminish the usable space of the already small screen.
TCL 30 V 5G
TCL's 30 V 5G phone is a very cheap phone for Verizon customers. It doesn't have the best RAM, only 4 GB, but it does come with 128 GB of storage and a Snapdragon 480 5G CPU, which is pretty good considering the price point. The display is also quite generous in size, measuring 6.67 inches.
When you buy this phone, you'll enjoy an extremely long battery life of around 12 hours in addition to the big display. The phone overall is compatible with the Verizon C-Band 5G network, offering pretty good connectivity across the country. Of course, this does mean you’ll need to stick with Verizon exclusively for several years.
That said, keep in mind that the performance is nothing to write home about, and you may find that the phone lacks the bells and whistles compared to other affordable handsets.
Motorola Moto G Stylus 5G
Don't forget the Motorola Moto G Stylus 5G, a fantastic budget phone for note-takers and students. It has a 6.6-inch display and is powered by 6 GB of RAM with a Snapdragon 6 Gen 1 chip. As a result, it’s fast, snappy, and great for a variety of apps and work.
The cameras are less than stellar, as they don’t always focus on your target properly. You can also only expect one Android OS update in the future. On the plus side, it comes with a built-in stylus.
While it isn’t as impressive as the S Pen from Samsung, it’s still perfect for editing photos and jotting notes. The camera system is decent, and you’ll find that the 2-day battery life makes this one of the best Android phones, even compared to high-end devices.
On top of that, it has pretty good battery life, clocking in at well over a day on a full charge. The slender design will also be perfect for putting in a pocket, a purse, or even a backpack if you are a student on the go. It comes with ample storage, 256 GB, but you can expand that later on if you need even additional room for files, apps, and more.
Try Navi Today
Any of the above mobile phones should be perfect for your needs, particularly if you are a bit strapped for cash and need a handset for a low price. Yet each phone has distinct advantages and disadvantages. You may not know which is precisely suitable for your preferences.
Navi’s Phone Navigator could be just what you need to make a final decision. Our detailed service will help you find the perfect phone based on your carrier network, your budget, what you like in terms of phone features, and so much more. Give it a try today!