In the first of a new series, ThaiTech looks at some of the best budget Android phones available in Thailand right now.
Of course the idea of something being budget or low cost is subjective from one person to another but we’ve tried to look at phones that offer good value for their specs and features and that are available for less than 10,000 Baht.
In the coming weeks, we’ll cover phones available for less 5,000 Baht, as well as other mid to high end offerings, right up to the leading flagship devices.
We chose to cover phones priced under 10,000 Baht first as there is so much choice of handsets that fall into this segment.
It wasn’t all that long ago that you had to shell out a small fortune to buy a smartphone with quality specs and the latest features.
And while the very latest top of the range smartphones still command a top of the range price, there are still plenty of options for people who are looking for a good phone that won’t break the bank.
Given that the average lifespan of a smartphone is around 22 months (that’s if you’re lucky) then there is a strong argument to say that the days of shelling out for a flagship device are all but coming to an end, especially if you are of the opinion that you will replace your phone in less than two years anyway.
Here is our round of the best Android phones for under 10,000 Baht.
Motorola Moto G Turbo
While Motorola is already rumoured to be about to announce the latest version of the Moto G, the Moto G Turbo, which was actually released globally towards the end of 2015, has just become available in Thailand and is currently on sale exclusively through TrueMove for 8,290 baht.
The Moto G Turbo is IP67 dust and water resistant and includes Motorola’s 13MP Quick Capture camera alongside its 5MP front facing selfie shooter, is 4G ready and runs as close to stock Android as you will find outside of Google’s Nexus series.
It also has a fingerprint scanner and the 5 inch display has a resolution of 720×1280. It is powered by a 1.5GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 processor and comes complete with 2GB of RAM. There’s 16GB of internal storage which can be expanded to 128GB via MicroSD. It also has a fairly powerful 2470 mAh non removable battery.
Asus Zenfone 2 Laser [ZE601KL] or Asus Zenfone 2 Selfie [ZD551KL]
The Asus Zenfone 2 was arguably one of the best Android smartphones of 2015 and built up quite a following among posters in Thaivisa’s technology forum.
Asus has just released a whole load of new versions in its Zenfone series, the pick of the bunch being the Zenfone Zoom [ZX551ML] which is the premium model in the range at 16,990 baht.
However, coming in under 10,000 baht, you have two good options in either the Asus Zenfone 2 Laser [ZE601KL] or Asus Zenfone 2 Selfie [ZD551KL], both of which are similarly priced and both have almost identical specs, the main difference being the Laser has a 6.0 inch display compared to the 5.0 inch display on the Zenfone Selfie.
Both phones offer 3GB RAM, with 16GB of internal storage which you can expand to 128GB via MicroSD. They are powered by a 1.5GHz Snapdragon 615 Octa core processor and also include a Corning Gorilla Glass full HD display. The phone’s run Android 5.1 alongside the Asus ZenUI and include a 3,000 mAh battery.
Both phones are available from JayMart online and in store.
Asus Zenfone 2 Selfie [ZD551KL] – 7,990 Baht
Asus Zenfone 2 Laser [ZE601KL] – 8, 290 Baht
Arguably the stand out Android device available under 10,000 baht.
This all metal dual SIM handset from Huawei, which the company is hoping will kick start mass sales in the US and Canada offers great value and solid range of specs.
The phone boasts a 5.5 inch full HD display and is powered by a quadcore Snapdragon 616 processor, with 3GB RAM and 16GB of storage, expandable to 128GB via MicroSD.
It also has a 3,000 mAh battery, runs Android 5.1 with Huawei’s EMUI on top and includes a very speedy fingerprint scanner. It also comes with a pretty decent 13MP primary camera and 5MP camera on the front.
While Huawei’s OS isn’t to everyone’s liking, the lack of an app drawer is a problem for some, the GR5 is still a solid option at 7,990 Baht.
Launched back in March the Oppo F1 is an all metal handset that looks strikingly similar to the iPhone 6S.
Oppo says the F1 is a photography focussed device and includes an 8MP front facing camera with an aperture of f/2.0, while the 13MP primary camera offers and aperture of f/2.2 which Oppo says ensures great shots in low light.
It also includes a 5 inch HD IPS display, that has nice tapered corners and which is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 4.
It is powered by a 1.2 GHz Snapdragon 616 processor and comes with 3GB of RAM. There is also 16GB of internal storage which can be expanded to 128GB with a MicroSD card. It runs Android 5.1 and features a non removable 2500 mAh battery.
Oppo F1 is available now for 8,990 baht.
Samsung Galaxy J7 (2016)
Samsung’s latest budget to mid range offering is the Galaxy J7.
The J series is actually one of Samsung’s best selling and is credited with helping the company maintain its presence as a market leader by winning over many young first time or price conscious buyers in emerging markets such as Thailand and India.
The J7 comes with a 5.5 inch super AMOLED display with a 1.6GHz Octa core processor, 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage expandable to additional 32GB via MicorSD.
Its 13MP primary camera comes with autofocus, LED flash and an aperture of f/1.9, while the 5MP front facing camera also has LED flash.
It also has a powerful 3,000 mAh battery which Samsung says will offer up to 23 hours talk time.
The Samsung Galaxy J7 is available now for 8,900 baht, while the slightly smaller, but similar spec’d 5.0 inch Galaxy J5 is on sale for 7,900 baht.
Lenovo Vibe K4 Note
The lightweight plastic 5.5 inch Lenovo Vibe K4 Note is powered by a 1.3 GHz Mediatek MT6753 processor with 3GB RAM and 16GB of internal, expandable to 128GB with a MicroSD card.
There is a 13MP camera, with autofocus, phase detection and a dual LED flash on the rear alongside the fingerprint scanner, while the 5MP front facing camera should be more than capable for taking those selfies.
The Vibe K4 Note also includes a 3,300 mAh battery which is the best out of the phones featured here.
It runs Android 5.1 with Lenovo’s Vibe UI.
If battery performance is your thing, then at 7,590, the K4 Note could be a good option.
There were a few other phones that came pretty close to making the list.
First up, if you’re a Windows diehard then the new Microsoft Lumia 650 is the one to get if you are looking for a phone under 10,000 baht.
As for other budget Android devices, the ZTE Nubia Z9 mini is worth checking out, as it has recently been reduced to 6,990 baht from 9,900 baht.
An honorable mention also goes to the SONY Xperia M4 Aqua, which looks great and is a solid budget option from Sony’s Xperia range.
There are bound to be some phones you think should have made the list. If you think we’ve missed that should be included, let us know in the comments below.