Update Latest Phones 2021 Uk Review – Want to save money on your next smartphone? Forget the flagships and check out these great mid-range options
Today’s high-end smartphones are undoubtedly desirable; just look at the Samsung Galaxy S22 line or the latest iPhone series from Apple. But we don’t all have big holes in our pockets to burn – and the good news is that you don’t have to spend four figures to get a smartphone that combines top-notch performance with gorgeous design.
Update Latest Phones 2021 Uk Review
The latest mid-range smartphones not only look and feel just as stylish as their flagship counterparts, but can even outperform them in key areas. So, even if you’re considering a high-end phone, we suggest checking out a mid-range phone before spending the money.
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Here’s our guide to what to look for – along with our regularly updated picks for the best mid-range smartphones of 2022.
The Oppo Find X3 Pro is a stunning flagship with an impressive four cameras and a gorgeous mirror design. Our main criticism was that it was very expensive, but that was solved with this huge discount. Dropping from £949 to just £449, this saves you over 50% and brings the Find X3 Pro into the mid-range. Curris Was £949 Now £449 Buy Now
At its regular price, the Google Pixel 6 is a little too expensive to make this list, but the massive Black Friday sale knocked it off. Previously costing around £541 on average, it can currently be had for just £433. Amazon Was £541 Now £433 Buy Now
Another fantastic flagship that’s usually too expensive for this list, the OnePlus 9 Pro has seen a big price cut, putting it firmly in mid-range territory. The average price is usually around £695, but right now you can pick one up for £479, which is the lowest price ever. Amazon Was £695 Now £479 Buy Now
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When we talk about mid-range smartphones, we generally think of phones priced between £300 and £500. It’s true that the latest and greatest smartphones are getting more and more expensive – some foldable smartphones aren’t even close to £2,000 – so the middle of the market is, strictly speaking, a moving target. But our price category is the one to focus on, because here you will find the best price-performance ratio.
A 24-month contract keeps your upfront costs to a minimum, but if you sit down and calculate the total you’ll end up paying over those two years, you’ll almost always find that a SIM-free option comes out much cheaper. That said, it’s always worth checking for specials, as casual jobs can be very competitive. Another advantage of going SIM-free is that you can sell and upgrade your phone whenever you want and you don’t have to wait until the end of your contract – by which time your phone may be clearly out of date.
Everyone’s priorities are different – so it’s a good idea to find out what yours are. Is long battery life at the top of your wish list? Or are you more interested in better quality photography?
In all cases, we recommend looking at the phone’s internal specs: you’ll want a processor powerful enough to keep up with all the apps you’ll be using, now and in a year or two. While you’re at it, check to see if there’s enough internal storage as well. If it can be expanded with a microSD card, that could be a big bonus.
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The phone’s screen is also key – after all, this is what you’ll be looking at. You can find plenty of mid-range phones with screens that look great, but you can’t take that for granted, so read our reviews before you buy.
When we receive a phone for review, we subject it to various tests. The first is performance, where we use two apps in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store: Geekbench 5 and GFXBench. These comparison apps provide CPU and GPU processing results and let us see where the phone stacks up against the competition. The phone’s screen is tested using our colorimeter and DisplayCAL software, which measures the screen’s color accuracy and ensures maximum brightness and contrast.
Our internal battery life testing is done using video looped through the VLC app, with the screen set to 170 cd/m2 brightness and airplane mode on. We simply record where the video left off before the phone’s battery died. The cameras are tested in a wide range of lighting conditions, including landscape shots and indoor still life, and those shots are compared to similarly priced competitors.
If there’s one thing we’ve come to count on in the fast-paced world of smartphones lately, it’s that every time OnePlus releases a smartphone, it goes straight to the top of the value ladder. As OnePlus has been moving away from its budget roots lately, the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G is much closer to what we’ve come to expect from the Taiwanese company. It’s also pretty flawless for the price.
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There are sacrifices to be made to keep the price down (it’s well over half the price of the OnePlus 9), but for the most part, those cuts are made in the right places. The screen is flat rather than curved and doesn’t have an official IP rating, but that’s mostly up to you. Otherwise, the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G is just as good as phones costing hundreds more.
It’s a smart smartphone with tons of cameras and one of the latest 5G chipsets: the MediaTek Dimensity 900. But what’s perhaps most impressive is not only that it offers 65V fast charging (from zero to 50% in just 12 minutes), but the battery life is also phenomenal, lasting over 24 hours in our tests. Positives aside, the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G is the best choice for anyone put off by flagship prices.
Key specifications – Processor: 2.4 GHz MediaTek Dimensiti 900; Screen: 6.43 inches, 2400 x 1080; Camera: 64 MP, 8 MP (wide), 2 MP (macro); Storage: 128 GB; Operating system: Android 11
It may look like a relic, but the iPhone SE 3 (2022) is Apple’s best smartphone yet. Apple may prefer customers to spend more on the iPhone 13, but the iPhone SE 3’s lower asking price makes it a much more exciting proposition, and your wallet will probably breathe a sigh of relief in return.
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Although it’s more than half the price, the iPhone SE 3 (2022) uses the same fast processor as the iPhone 13 – the A15 Bionic – and its camera is also up to the task. The only gripe is that the battery is pretty short by modern standards, but that’s nothing a 20V fast charge can’t solve. The iPhone SE is also a good choice if you’re not a fan of these big-screen phones – the small 4.7-inch screen is perfect for one-handed use.
If you’d rather not spend silly amounts on the iPhone 13 and don’t mind sacrificing a few camera features and a smaller design, then the iPhone SE is absolutely the best Apple phone you can buy right now.
Key specifications – Processor: 3.23 GHz Apple A15 Bionic; Screen: 4.7″ 1334 x 750; Camera: 12 MP; Storage: 64 GB, 128 GB, 512 GB; Operating System: iOS 15
Here’s our pick of the best iPhone SE 3 (2022) deals right now: Affordable Mobiles is offering the 128GB version of the phone with 100GB of data for a whopping £30 a month on a two-year contract with no upfront payments. Snap it up quick to avoid disappointment. Budget mobile phones from 100GB data for £30 a month Buy now
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The Xiaomi Poco X4 Pro 5G is the perfect phone for budget-conscious buyers. The brand may still be a bit of an unknown in the UK, but the Poco X4 Pro 5G is incredibly good value for money, even beating phones costing double and in some cases triple the asking price.
The Poco X4 Pro 5G is an easy recommendation if you’re not comfortable handing over £700+ for the latest and greatest phones, it’s packed with all the best bells and whistles: it has a Full HD AMOLED display, a fast Qualcomm with 5G support. Snapdragon 695 chipset, large 108 MP camera sensor and solid battery life.
Its affordable price is of course its main attraction, but with so few compromises, the Xiaomi Poco X4 Pro 5G is a no-brainer if you’re looking for great value for money.
Key specifications – Processor: 2.2 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 695; Screen: 6.67 inches, 2400 x 1080; Camera: 108 MP, 8 MP (wide), 2 MP (macro); Storage: 128 GB, 256 GB; Operating system: Android 11
The Best Android Phones In The Uk To Spend Your Money On
After a year-long hiatus, Google’s affordable mid-range phone is finally back. It represents everything we’ve come to expect from the company lately
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