Mid-range smartphones are extremely popular in India. There are two major aspects that differentiate the flagship and a mid-range phone – the camera performance and chipset being used.
From the past couple of years, we’ve seen companies trying to fill the bridge the gap between two segments with smart software implementations. And, thanks to the powerful SoCs from Qualcomm especially the 7 series, the mid-range segment performance has been taken to the next level. One thing you can expect from a mid-range device is good battery life, which even some flagship smartphone tend to lack.
Best phones under Rs 20,000
The list of the best value for money phones under Rs 20,000 offers a good display, a big battery with fast charging, great camera performance, and more. For the first time, we are also seeing high refresh rate displays trickle down to this segment.
Selecting a phone can still be a challenging task despite the plethora of options. While some companies may have the best specs on paper in a given price range, the lack of software optimisation can make those phones a poor option when compared to others.
In this guide, we have listed some of the best value for money smartphones available under Rs 20,000 in India. In case you’d like to explore the adjoining price segments, you can also check out our other compilations.
(Image credit: Aakash Jhaveri)Realme 7 Pro
Two steps forward, two steps sideways
Display: 6.4-inch, Full HD+ Super AMOLED | Processor: Snapdragon 720G | RAM: 6/8GB | Storage: 128GB | Battery: 4500mAh, 65W charging | Rear camera: 64MP + 8MP + 2MP + 2MP | Front camera: 32MP
Insanely fast charging
Super AMOLED display
60Hz refresh rate
Costlier than its predecessor
For starters, it is one of the cheapest phones with a Super AMOLED panel. You get a second-gen camera stack with a flagship Sony image sensor at the heart. On top of that, you get 65W Super Dat charge which can go from 0-100% in just 35 minutes. The Realme 7 Pro is currently the most well-rounded smartphone in the Indian market in the sub Rs 20,000 market.
It really blurs the line between budget phones and flagships with a beautiful AMOLED display, a premium hardware package, reliable cameras and market-leading charging capabilities. Even if more competition is just around the corner, the 7 Pro should be able to hold its own for a while in many aspects.
Check out Realme 7 Pro on Flipkart
Read our Realme 7 Pro review
Poco X2 (Image credit: Future)Poco X2
Weight: 208g | Dimensions: 165.3 x 76.6 x 8.8 mm | OS: MiUI 11, Android 10 | Screen size: 6.67-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 2400 | CPU: Snapdragon 730G | RAM: 6/8GB | Storage: 64/128GB | Battery: 4500mAh | Rear camera: 64 + 8 + 2 + 2MP | Front camera: 20MP
Very capable cameras
Poco is finally back to India, and this time, it tries to replicate the same success in the budget segment with the Poco X2. For starters, it is now the most affordable smartphone in India with a Snapdragon 730G chipset.
Not just that, it is also the cheapest phone with a 120Hz refresh rate display, with the closest alternative costing almost twice as much. This should combine well with the hardware and MiUI 11 optimizations for a very smooth experience.
Lastly, it also brings one of the most capable camera packages on any smartphone, with the new 64MP Sony IMX686 image sensor as the primary camera, and 8MP ultra-wide shooter, a 5MP macro lens and a depth sensor.
Topping it all off, the Poco X2 has a generous 4,500mAh battery with support for 27W fast charging.
Read our Poco X2 review
Buy from Flipkart
(Image credit: Realme)Realme 6 Pro
Weight: 202g | Dimensions: 163.8 x 75.8 x 8.9 mm | OS: Realme UI, Android 10 | Screen size: 6.6-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 2400 pixels | CPU: Snapdragon 720G | RAM: 6/8GB | Storage: 64/128GB | Battery: 4300mAh | Rear camera: 64MP + 12MP + 2MP + 2MP | Front camera: 16MP + 8MP
30W fast charging
Dual selfie camera
The Realme 6 Pro aims to be the best all-rounder in this segment, and pretty much succeeds at that. It has a smooth 90Hz display which is a rare find in this segment.
It is powered by the new Snapdragon 720G, which strikes a beautiful balance between performance, efficiency and thermals. It’s also the only one with a meaningful dual-selfie camera setup, bringing an ultra-wide sensor to the front as well. The rear cameras are extremely reliable too, and this is the only one with a telephoto shooter in this segment.
Buy the Realme 6 Pro from Flipkart
(Image credit: Redmi)Redmi Note 9 Pro Max
Weight: 209g | Dimensions: 165.5 x 76.7 x 8.8 mm | OS: MIUI 11, Android 10 | Screen size: 6.67-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 2400 | CPU: Snapdragon 720G | RAM: 6/8GB | Storage: 64/128GB | Battery: 5020mAh | Rear camera: 64 + 8 + 5 + 2MP | Front camera: 32MP
Impressive quad camera
Exceptional battery life
Ads in UI
The latest budget phone from the house of Xiaomi, the Redmi Note 9 Pro Max is a beast in all aspects. It retains the usual big display and big battery of the series and takes them to the next level to provide exceptional battery backup.
The star of the show is the new camera array, sporting a 64MP primary camera and an 8MP ultra-wide shooter. Along with a new processing algorithm, there’s also a ton of shooting modes and a very comprehensive manual mode too.
Buy from Amazon
(Image credit: Samsung)Samsung Galaxy M31s
Display: 6.5-inch FHD+ | Processor: Exynos 9611 | RAM: 6/8GB | Storage: 128GB | Rear camera: 64 + 12 + 5 + 5MP | Front camera: 32MP | Battery: 6,000mAh, 25W fast charging
The successor to the vastly popular Galaxy M31, the Galaxy M31s is a mid-range phone from the house of Samsung. You get a 6.5-inch Super AMOLED Infinity-O screen with Full HD+ resolution. It is powered by the Snapdragon 9611 chipset. That is paired with up to 8GB of LPDDR4X RAM. There is a massive 6,000mAh battery pack with support for 25W fast charging over USB Type-C. It also supports reverse charging via Type-C to Type-C cable that’s included in the box.
On the camera front, you get a quad-camera stack with a 64MP f/1.8 primary camera, followed by a 12MP ultra-wide shooter with a 123-degree field-of-view, a 5MP depth sensor for portraits and a 5MP macro lens. Selfies are handled by a 32MP camera. The fingerprint scanner is now embedded within the power button on the right.
Check out Samsung Galaxy M31s on Amazon
Read our Samsung Galaxy M31s review
(Image credit: Realme)Realme X2
Weight: 183g | Dimensions: 158.7 x 75.2 x 8.6 mm | OS: Android 9.0 Pie with ColorOS 6.0 | Display: 6.4-inch Super AMOLED | Resolution: 2340 x 1080 | CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 730G | RAM: 6/8GB | Storage: 64/128GB | Battery: 4,000mAh | Rear camera: 64MP + 8MP + 2MP + 2MP | Front camera: 32MP
Reliable 64MP quad-camera
Lots of shooting modes
ColorOS 6 can be a little heavy
Building upon everything that was good in the XT, the Realme X2 brings upgrades across the board without pushing the price by a lot. You get a Snapdragon 730G inside, for the first time at this price, along with up to 8GB of RAM. The reliable 64MP quad-camera setup returns with a few more tricks up its sleeve now such as Video Portrait mode, ultrawide video recording, ultra-steady video and 960fps slow-motion.
The 4,000mAh battery inside is sufficient to last a day, and 30W VOOC charging will take care of the rest. One of the best budget smartphones to buy in India right now. Pricing starts at Rs 17,999.
Check out Realme X2 on Flipkart
(Image credit: motorola)Motorola One Fusion Plus
Weight: 210g | Dimensions: 162.9 x 76.4 x 9.6mm | OS: Android 10 | Screen size: 6.5-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 2340pixels | CPU: Snapdragon 730G | RAM: 6GB | Storage: 128GB | Battery: 5000mAh | Rear camera: 64MP + 8MP + 5MP + 2MP | Front camera: 16MP
Near stock Android
Not very fast charging
With the launch of the Motorola One Fusion Plus recently, Motorola took us all by surprise with its aggressive pricing. Also, another surprise was the Snapdragon 730G chipset instead of vanilla Snapdragon 730. The device is backed by a 5,000mAH battery and 15W fast charging via Type-C port.
The Motorola One Fusion Plus comes with a full-screen 6.5-inch Full HD display with 91% screen to body ratio. You get a 16MP pop-up camera . Over at the rear you get a 64MP quad-rear cameras setup with an 8MP ultra-wide camera followed by a 5MP macro and a 2MP depth sensor.
It runs on Android 10 OS and features Moto display and Moto actions like Quick capture, three-finger screenshot, screenshot toolkit, flip for DND, Pick up to silence, and Media controls.
Buy Motorola One Fusion Plus on Flipkart
Best smartphones under Rs 20,000
DevicePriceRealme 7 ProRs 19,999Poco X2Rs 17,499Realme 6 ProRs 17,999Redmi Note 9 Pro MaxRs 18,499Samsung Galaxy M31sRs 19,499Realme X2Rs 17,999Motorola One Fusion PlusRs 17,499
With the lockdown restrictions slowly easing out, we expect brands to resume their product launch cycles. On the horizon, the Realme X3 series is a notable contender under Rs 20,000.