The best Android phones in 2019 at $500 and below

The best $500 Android phones

So far, several Android OEMs have unveiled their flagship phones. Talk of Samsung, LG, Huawei, OnePlus, and so on. What this means is that their outgoing models have now received massive price cuts, something that greatly favors bargain hunters. But then again, why go for a 2017 or 2018 flagship phone when the same amount or even a much lesser amount can earn you a decent midrange with the latest software and sometimes even better battery life? Well, the choice is yours.

So, let’s check out some of the best Android phones that are now available in the regions of $500.

Related:

Google Pixel 3a XL

Google-Pixel-3a-XL

The Pixel 3a XL is Google’s trump card to capture the mid-range budget audience. Yes, there are several aspects where the phone had to skimp on but the camera is not one of them. The 12.2-megapixel camera is powered by Night Sight and it even gives flagship phones a serious run for their money. The Active Edge side squeeze feature that activates Assistant and the OLED screen are among a few other features that make this phone great.

Specs
  • 6.0-inch 18:9 (2160 x 1080) OLED display
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 670 processor
  • 4GB RAM
  • 64GB non-expandable storage
  • 12MP main camera
  • 8MP front camera
  • 3,400mAh battery
  • Android 9 Pie
  • Extras: Bluetooth 5.0, Titan M security chip, 18W fast charging via USB-C, Active Edge sides, Night Sight, Rear-mounted fingerprint scanner, 3.5mm audio jack, etc.

One factor still remains, the Pixel 3a XL has been brought to us by the custodians of Android OS which means Google is personally invested in this phone. Priced super competitively at $479, no other phones except those from the Pixel family will be receiving updates as fast as the Pixel 3a XL.

Buy Google Pixel 3a XL

OnePlus 6T

OnePlus-6T-smartphone

This spot would have easily been occupied by OnePlus 6, but now that the new OnePlus 6T is among us, getting hold of the former is already an uphill task. Yes, the phone costs over $500 ($549 to be precise), but if you can go all the way, you can for sure grab the base model of this handset with zero regrets to follow afterwards.

Specs
  • 6.41-inch 19.5:9 FHD+ AMOLED display
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor
  • 6GB RAM
  • 128GB non-expandable storage
  • Dual 16MP + 20MP main camera
  • 16MP front camera
  • 3700mAh battery
  • Android 9 Pie
  • Extras: Bluetooth 5.0, USB-C, NFC, In-display FPS, Face unlock, etc.

With OnePlus 7 almost here, these might be the last days you can actually purchase the OnePlus 6T, so make the most of it.

Buy OnePlus 6T

RelatedOnePlus 6T software update news

Huawei P20 Pro

Huawei-P20-Pro-Android-9-beta

Even with the Huawei P30 Pro here, its predecessor, the Huawei P20 Pro, is still one of the best phones to have graced the smartphone market to date. Following its launch, it immediately became the photography king, even overtaking the then king, the Google Pixel 2, to the throne. This is not just because of the impressive tri-lens camera on the back, but also because of the effort Huawei put into the hardware specs and software of the device. Don’t even get us started on the design because it’s easily unmatched with its gradient colors.

Specs
  • 6.1-inch 18.7:9 FHD+ OLED display
  • Kirin 970 chipset
  • 6GB of RAM
  • 128GB of non-expandable storage
  • 40MP + 20MP + 8MP main camera
  • 24MP selfie camera
  • 4000mAh battery
  • Android 8.1 Oreo, upgradable to Pie and Q
  • Extras: Bluetooth 4.2, USB-C, IP67, fast charging, NFC, no 3.5mm audio jack, front-mounted scanner, etc.

It gets even better now that the Huawei P20 Pro can be had for much less than the launch price, where Amazon has it going for $560, but the unfortunate bit is that you can’t use it on CDMA carriers like Verizon, Sprint and U.S. Cellular.

Buy Huawei P20 Pro

Related: Huawei P20 Pro software update news

Honor View 20

Honor-View-20-4

If you want to break out of the monotonous world of notches on a budget, the best start is the Honor View 20. Picking up from where its predecessor left off, the View 20 rocks a premium glass build and houses high-end hardware specs matching the likes of Huawei Mate 20 and Mate 20 Pro, but skimps on one or two aspects to keep the price checked.

Still, the View 20 is one of the best flagship killers this 2019, coming in with a huge battery, a massive 48MP camera, a 3D ToF sensor, and runs the latest Android 9 Pie out of the box, but this time you get Magic UI 2.0 skin on top and not EMUI 9.0, although the difference is negligible.

Specs
  • 6.4-inch 19.5:9 FHD+ (1080 x 2310) LCD display
  • Kirin 980 processor
  • 6GB or 8GB RAM
  • 128GB or 256GB non-expandable storage
  • Dual 48MP + 3D ToF main camera
  • 25MP in-screen camera
  • 4000mAh battery
  • Android 9 Pie
  • Extras: Bluetooth 5.0, USB-C, Rear-mounted scanner, Super Charge, NFC, IR port, etc.

The View 20 isn’t officially sold in the U.S., but Amazon has the International model priced at $500, but it only supports networks like AT&T and T-Mobile and not the likes of Verizon and Sprint, so take note of that before making your purchase.

Buy Honor View 20

Related: Honor View 20 software update news

Samsung Galaxy S9

Samsung-Galaxy-S9

Samsung’s latest masterpiece, the Galaxy S10, is available at about the same price the Galaxy S9 launched back in 2018. For obvious reasons, the two can’t share the same price tag and even though Samsung has also discounted the S9 on its official online stores, other retailers have much better deals in place.

Specs
  • 5.8-inch 18.5:9 QHD+ AMOLED display
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor
  • 4GB RAM
  • 64GB expandable storage, up to 256GB
  • 12MP main camera
  • 8MP front camera
  • 3000mAh battery
  • Android 8.0 Nougat, upgradable to Pie and Q

For a device that was voted one of the best in 2018, you can’t go wrong, especially when you can get a new one for as low as $500 at the link below.

Buy Samsung Galaxy S9

Related: Samsung Galaxy S9 software update news

Huawei Honor 10

Honor-10-07

Huawei took the world by storm by unveiling the world’s first smartphone with three camera lenses on the back. However, this is only true for the Huawei P20 Pro, but the standard P20 has two lenses on the back. It is this standard Huawei P20 that the Honor 10 takes after, coming in with mostly the same specs and features, but also dropping a number of them in order to hit the right price tag. The Honor 10 is not officially available in the U.S., but you can still ship in one through Amazon at just $335.

Specs
  • 5.84-inch 19:9 FHD+ LCD display
  • Hisilicon Kirin 970 processor
  • 4GB RAM
  • 64GB or 128GB non-expandable storage
  • Dual 16MP + 24MP main camera
  • 24MP front camera
  • 3400mAh non-removable battery
  • Android 8.1 Oreo, upgradable to Pie and Q

Buy Huawei Honor 10

Related: Honor 10 software update news

LG G7 ThinQ

This-LG-G7-deal-makes-it-a-better-buy-than-OnePlus-6T-Zenfone-5Z-and-Honor-10-title

Like last year and the year before it, LG was at this year’s MWC event to unveil a new smartphone, this time the LG G8 ThinQ. As a result, the price of its predecessor, the LG G7 ThinQ, has fallen drastically, but nothing has changed about the quality of the phone you are getting.

Now going for $450, the G7 ThinQ packs flagship specs from yesteryear, meaning you get one of the best-performing handsets with guaranteed regular software updates, including Android Q, has a top-of-the-line camera, and decent battery life, among other flagship goodies.

Specs
  • 6.1-inch 19.5:9 QHD+ LCD display
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 chipset
  • 4/6GB of RAM
  • 64/128GB of expandable storage (up to 2TB)
  • Dual-lens 16MP + 16MP main camera
  • 8MP front camera
  • 3000mAh battery
  • Android 8.0 Oreo, upgradable to Pie and Q
  • Extras: Bluetooth 5.0, NFC, IP68, MIL-STD 810G, USB-C, 3.5mm audio jack, 32-bit Hi-Fi QDAC, Quick Charge 3.0, Wireless charging, rear-mounted scanner, Face unlock, NFC, HDR10, Dolby Vision, Boombox speaker, etc

Buy LG G7 ThinQ

Related: LG G7 ThinQ software update news

Motorola Moto Z3

Motorola-Moto-Z3

Well, despite being a 2018 release, the Motorola Moto Z3 comes with flagship specs from yesteryear thanks to a hardware configuration that resembles that of the Moto Z2 Force, but housed in a body resembling that of the Moto Z3 Play. This combination means that Motorola had to outrightly price the Moto Z3 like a depreciated flagship handset from yesteryear, which is why it can be had for just $480.

Specs
  • 6.01-inch 18:9 FHD+ AMOLED display
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor
  • 4GB RAM
  • 64GB expandable storage
  • Dual 12 + 12MP main camera
  • 8MP front camera
  • 3000mAh battery
  • Android 8.1 Oreo
  • Extras: Bluetooth 5.0, USB-C, NFC, Face unlock, side-mounted scanner, fast charging, water-repellant coating, Moto Display, Voice, Actions, etc.

The major issue with the Moto Z3 is its availability, where the device is limited to Verizon Wireless. If you are on the Big Red, you can even grab the 5G Moto Mod and turn your Moto Z3 into a 5G phone without spending over $1000 on Samsung Galaxy S10 5G.

Buy Moto Z3 (Verizon Wireless) 

Related: Moto Z3 Pie update news

Sony Xperia 10 Plus

Sony-Xperia-10-Plus-10

Sony Xperia 10 Plus is the latest midrange device from Sony and as usual, the Japanese company has something unique. The standout feature of the Xperia 10 Plus is the supertall 21:9 display screen that becomes the first on a mobile phone, but that’s not everything this phone has in store.

The addition of a telephoto lens on the Xperia 10 Plus may just be the game changer here, but unfortunately, its let down by the rather small battery unit compared to the display screen. Speaking of, those who love big-screen devices will for sure enjoy the massive 6.5 inches of display real estate, be it for gaming purposes, watching videos or reading stuff.

Specs
  • 6.5-inch FHD+ 21:9 LCD screen
  • Snapdragon 636 processor
  • 4GB RAM
  • 64GB expandable storage, up to 512GB
  • Dual-lens main camera: 12MP (wide-angle, f/1.8 aperture, PDAF) + 8MP (telephoto, f/2.4 aperture, PDAF, 2x optical zoom)
  • Single-lens selfie camera: 8MP (wide-angle, f/2.0 aperture)
  • 3000mAh battery
  • Android 9 Pie
  • Extras: Bluetooth 5.0, USB-C, NFC, 3.5mm audio jack, Side-mounted scanner, 18W fast charging, Gorilla Glass 5, etc.

The Xperia 10 Plus can be had for $430 via the links below and the best part is that it works on all major U.S. carriers, including Verizon Wireless and Sprint.

→ Buy Sony Xperia 10 Plus: Amazon, Best Buy, B&H

Note: This article will be updated regularly to remove aging models and replace them with newer flagships available at about $500.

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