We round-up and review the best cheap 2017 phones that you can buy in the UK for under £200.
Nokia 3310 (2017)
It’s fair to say that the 2017 model has seen some notable upgrades over the original even though it’s still firmly entrenched in the realm of feature phone. The 2.4-inch WVGA colour screen is one such improvement as is microSD support (up to 32GB) and yes, there’s even a camera.
Sadly, despite online capabilities, it’s not a fully-fledged 3G handset but rather a 2.5G effort. Music lovers will appreciate the phone’s MP3 support, FM radio and standard 3.5mm headphone jack, whilst the replaceable 1200mAh will last you for days at a time, and unlike the original, it can be recharged via microUSB.
This affordable offering is a respectable re-imagining of a classic that costs less than £50 making it a great first phone or festival phone.
|Our review: Nokia 3310 (2017) Review|
|Release date: June 2017|
Motorola Moto G5
The Moto G family has established itself as one of the best places to pick up a premium Android smartphone experience without the price tag and this year’s Moto G5 is another all-round superstar. From the slick metal body to the insanely good 13-megapixel camera and pin-sharp 5-inch Full HD screen, there are tons of great features that everyone can enjoy.
With prices starting at just under £160, you get a slick-looking smartphone running the latest build of Android, a simple, easy-to-use interface and some smart actions dressed in on top, not to mention impressive battery life from that fast-charging capable 2800mAh cell.
|Our camera review: Motorola Moto G5 Camera Review|
|Our review: Motorola Moto G5 Review|
|Release date: April 2017|
Huawei P8 Lite 2017
We were a little thrown by Huawei’s decision to drop an upgraded P8 Lite in 2017 alongside the expected P10 Lite but it’s proved its worth by offering up style, power and versatility in a sub-£200 package.
It sports a sexy glass finish, more often tied to the design language enjoyed by flagship-class smartphones. There’s a fingerprint sensor on the back positioned beneath a 12-megapixel main camera that’s loaded with features and modes. On the software side, the company’s EMUI 5.0 is a big upgrade over the previous version, with automated optimisation tools to keep the phone feeling snappy for longer.
For the price, you also get a beautiful 5.2-inch Full HD display, up to 256GB microSD expandability support and up to two days of battery life per charge.
|Our camera review: Huawei P8 Lite 2017 Camera Review|
|Our review: Huawei P8 Lite Review|
|Release date: February 2017|
If battery life is your biggest concern, then Lenovo’s P2 is the obvious choice thanks to a whopping 5100mAh cell but what’s more is actually a decent smartphone overall too.
Aside from clocking in almost 72 hours of use per charge, the P2 is littered with premium touches like an all-metal build, fingerprint sensor and a Snapdragon 625 processor backed up by 4GB of RAM. The 13-megapixel main camera is a tour de force with its dual-tone LED flash, responsive phase-detection autofocus (PDAF) and up to 4K video recording on offer too.
|Our review: Lenovo P2 Review|
|Release date: January 2017|
Sony Xperia L1
Sony’s answer to the Moto G5, the L1 doesn’t offer water resistance like its most prominent rival or beefier handsets from its own brand but it does boast some of the nicest design work in an affordable smartphone.
The phone’s large 5.5-inch 720p display is not only gorgeous but nearly seamless, stretching to the fringes of the phone’s sides. Its media focus is compounded by room for microSD cards up to 256GB and the Android Nougat-based interface looks great and packs powerful features like split-screen multitasking too.
You also get Sony’s signature Stamina Mode to extend battery life and the pair of 13 and 5-megapixels cameras on the back and front aren’t too shabby either, especially for the price.
|Our camera review: Sony Xperia L1 Camera Review|
|Our review: Sony Xperia L1 Review|
|Release date: April 2017|
It took a while for the Honor 6A to launch in our neck of the woods after an original rollout in Asia some months earlier but we’ve deemed it worth the wait.
One of Honor’s most approachable mid-rangers, the new 6A which focuses its efforts on providing an up-to-date user experience with Android Nougat underpinning the latest 5.1 build of the aforementioned EMUI overlay. The phone’s also pretty light at 150 grams and offers up a 5-inch 720p HD display, reliable Snapdragon 430 processor and a 13-megapixel primary camera with PDAF.
|Our hands-on review: Honor 6A Hands-on Review|
|Release date: July 2017|
One of the first of a new breed to run our review gauntlet, the mid-range Android-powered Nokia 5 boasts great design and conservative performance for those looking for a stylish smartphone on a budget.
You get mod cons like NFC, a fingerprint sensor and Quick Charge fast-charging all wrapped up in a rounded metal body that comes in some interesting colourways. It’s also got a high-resolution 8-megapixel selfie snapper and great battery life, with the Snapdragon 430 SoC and 2GB of RAM being the only real cause for concern.
Nonetheless, it’s great to have the Nokia brand back in the smartphone game and with a capable lineup including the Nokia 5, we’re hoping they’ll remain on the scene for the foreseeable future.
|Our camera review: Nokia 5 Camera Review|
|Our review: Nokia 5 Review|
|Release date: August 2017|
Vodafone Smart V8
Time and again Vodafone has rewarded its customers with the offering of some seriously good value-for-money own-brand handsets and its 2017 lineup looks to be more of that same goodness.
Alongside the smaller, simpler Smart N8 is the new Vodafone Smart V8. It packs a sturdy metal build with a brushed finish and an incredibly rich software setup for the £160 price tag. It also rocks a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor, an attractive 5.5-inch Full HD display, a robust camera experience and runs on Vodafone’s suitably snappy 4G network. As we said in our full review, we just wish it wasn’t a carrier exclusive so more people could enjoy what Vodafone is offering here.
|Our camera review: Vodafone Smart V8 Camera Review|
|Our review: Vodafone Smart V8 Review|
|Release date: July 2017|