6 Android Flagships That Are Cheaper Than The 8GB iPhone 5c
Apple launched its new 8GB iPhone 5c in Europe this morning in an effort to boost disappointing sales figures — but there’s just one problem. At £429 ($712) in the United Kingdom, it’s still far too expensive for budget-conscious smartphone consumers.
In fact, there are a whole bunch of flagship Android-powered handsets with bigger displays and better specifications that you can get significantly cheaper. Here are six of the best.
Note: We’ve used U.K. prices throughout this piece because the 8GB iPhone 5c isn’t on sale in the U.S. yet, and we can’t be sure it will be later today. If it does and we get confirmation of its price tag, we’ll update this post.
LG G2 — £299 (Amazon)
The LG G2 made its debut last September — around the same time as the iPhone 5c — but in comparison, it delivers a much bigger bang for your buck. It’s widely considered one of the best Android smartphones of 2013, and there’s good reason for that.
In addition to its 5.2-inch 1080p display, the LG G2 features a blazing–fast 2.26GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor — Qualcomm’s flagship mobile processor of last year — 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage with a microSD card slot, and an impressive 13-megapixel camera with optical image stabilization.
All this for £129 ($214) less than an 8GB iPhone 5c? Yes, please!
Samsung Galaxy S4 — £319.60 (Amazon)
Samsung’s new Galaxy S5 might be right around the corner, but its predecessor is still very much a high-end smartphone. It sports a gorgeous 5-inch 1080p display with 441 pixels-per-inch, has a 2.3GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor and 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of storage with a micro SD card slot.
Like the LG G2, the Galaxy S4 has a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera capable of shooting 1080p video — though there’s no optical image stabilization — and it runs Google’s latest Android operating system with a whole bunch of handy tweaks, including the ability to run two apps side-by-side, and operate the touchscreen with gloves on.
It’s also compatible with Samsung’s Galaxy Gear smartwatch, and it has a built-in infrared blaster for controlling your TV.
Samsung Galaxy Note 3 — £399.99 (Amazon)
If you want an even bigger 5.7-inch display, then you can bag Samsung’s much-loved “phablet” for £30 ($50) less than an iPhone 5c. Like every other smartphone on this list, the Galaxy Note 3’s specifications blow the iPhone 5c’s out of the water.
In some ways, the Galaxy Note 3 is just like the Galaxy S4; it has the same 2.3GHz quad-core Snadpragon 800 processor, the same 13-megapixel camera, and the same IR blaster. But in places, it’s even better. It has 3GB of RAM, a massive 3,200mAh battery, and of course, that famous S Pen stylus that makes jotting down notes even faster when you’re on the go.
Put simply, the Galaxy Note 3 makes the iPhone 5s look like a kid’s toy. And yet it’s still cheaper.
HTC One — £364.99 (Amazon)
Thanks to its gorgeous aluminum design, the HTC One is still considered one of the finest Android-powered smartphones money can buy. Forget what you’ve read about HTC; its smartphones are no reflection of its financial situation — and a flagship device for under £365 is a steal.
The HTC One features a 4.7-inch 1080p display with 469 pixels-per-inch, a minimum of 32GB of storage, 2GB of RAM, and a 1.7GHz quad-core Snapdragon 600 processor. Like Samsung’s flagships, it also has an IR blaster built elegantly into its power button, so you don’t even know it’s there.
The One also boasts HTC’s trademark BoomSound speakers — the best stereo speakers you’ll find on a smartphone — and a 4-megapixel UltraPixel camera that works wonders in low-light.
Xperia Z1 Compact — £386.99 (Amazon)
The Xperia Z1 Compact is the newest smartphone on this list having launched just two months ago. It’s essentially an Xperia Z1 packed into a smaller form factor. It has a 4.3-inch 720p display with 342 pixels-per-inch, a 2.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of storage with a microSD card slot.
Other highlights include a 20.7-megapixel camera, and a dust- and water-resistant form factor. You can literally take this handset swimming for up to 30 minutes and it will be fine. Try doing that with an iPhone 5c.
This is a compact smartphone done right. Sony didn’t just use the Xperia Z1’s flagship design and then add midrange specifications to make it cheaper — like Samsung did with the Galaxy S4 mini, or LG with its LG G2 mini — it’s very much a high-end device for those who don’t need a massive display.
Nexus 5 — £279 (Amazon)
Because it’s a Google smartphone, the Nexus 5 is the cheapest smartphone on this list — but don’t let that price tag trick you into thinking this isn’t a flagship smartphone. It has a 5-inch 1080p display, a 2.3GHz Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, and an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera.
And because it’s a Nexus device, you’re going to get Android updates direct from Google as soon as they’re announced — without all the third-party tweaks that manufacturers like Samsung, LG, HTC, and Sony make. This is by far the best handset for Android purists.
So that’s just six Android-powered smartphones that are far greater options that the 8GB iPhone 5c — and there are plenty more. We also recommend you check out the Moto X (£306.53) and the Moto G (£158), which have received lots of praise since they went on sale last year.
While the iPhone 5c is just six months old, it is important to remember that its internals are taken from the iPhone 5, which is now 18 months old. Furthermore, 8GB or storage is extremely limiting in today’s world. Major iOS updates often weigh in around 3GB all by themselves, while the latest cutting-edge games can come just as close to that.
This makes the handsets above even more compelling alternatives given their cheaper price tags. Do yourself a favor and choose one of these over the 8GB iPhone 5c.