Six of the best budget smartphones

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Published: Saturday 7th March 2015 by The News Editor

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As the mobile technology world gathered in Barcelona this week for Mobile World Congress, one notable trend was the shift away from smartphones that can do just about everything to a focus on those that do the essentials well. Here are six top budget devices:

Browse easy

Asus ZenFone 5 LTE Smartphone – £199 from very.co.uk

A handset with an impressive visual display, this sports a top-end processor to cope with multiple tasks. A decent enough 8GB internal memory, eight megapixel rear camera with auto-focus and an LED flash with a two megapixel at the front for selfie indulgence and video chats. A decent handset for getting onto the 4G high-speed mobile superhighway.

Brit brand

Trooper2 5.0 – £89.99 from kazam.mobi

This handset boasts dual SIM card capability for your roaming freedom, and presents your Android-powered apps on a very decent 5 inch display. The five megapixel snapper is good and a standard self-facing VGA camera will do an adequate job on the selfie front. This new brand has an array of other offerings in its range and is home-grown, so well worth your support.

Silver surfer

Amplicomms PowerTel M9000 Amplified Smartphone – £129.99 from hearingdirect.com

The extra-large icons, intuitive menu and large, easy-to-read display text make this a superb choice for an older generation wanting to be included in the digital revolution. Ready installed with a music player, calendar, email and internet browser, this handset is a breeze to get to grips with. The M9000 boasts super-clear sound, very loud volume level and an extra loud ringer together with an SOS ringer on the rear that can be programmed to call or text up to three numbers with a pre-recorded message.

Budget restrictions

Motorola Moto E – £59 from tesco.com

This tough piece of kit has hard-wearing Gorilla Glass and a water-resistant splash guard giving it plenty of durability. The handset runs on Android with access to a million and more apps running through the impressive dual-core processor. Inside is a five megapixel camera backing up to a very decent 4GB memory which is expandable up to 32GB via a MicroSD card – storage space to satisfy all.

Colour option

Nokia Lumia 630 – £99.99 (SIM Free) from carphonewarehouse.com

So there are restrictions using this piece of kit but, despite only having access to Windows apps, this handset running their 8.1 software is actually is a very decent option. With the newly introduced and extremely intuitive digital assistant Cortana inside, it is really fun to use too. All round, a very decent budget option but the lack of front-facing camera might annoy some.

Jam packed

Huawei Ascend Y550 – £109.95 (SIM Free) from carphonewarehouse.com

A stylish enough handset with features in abundance, the Y550 is 4G enabled too and so punches well above its price tag with pricier options. The battery life impressed us most and with a five megapixel camera and two megapixel selfie taker, the Chinese manufacturer is seemingly setting out to lead the budget end of the smartphone arena.

App of the Week

Zedge – Free on iTunes and Google Play

If your ringtone is of the more embarrassing or bland preset variety, it’s time up to the ante. This superb app lets you search thousands of ringtones and notifications sounds as well as a heap of wallpapers, so you can personalise your mobile and change these elements easily and often.

Top 10 bestselling apps

1. Minecraft by Mojang

2. The Chase by Barnstorm Games

3. The Lost Fountain by Mediacity Games

4. Tipping Point by Barnstorm Games

5. Blackthorn Castle by Lone Wolf Games

6. Plants vs. Zombies by PopCap Games

7. Terraria by 505 Games

8. Five Nights at Freddy’s 2 by Scott Cawthon

9. Geometry Dash by RobTop Games

10. Plague Inc. by Miniclip.com

Top 10 free apps

1. Panda Pop by SGN

2. Crossy Road by Hipster Whale

3. Red Wrecker by Kevin Bradford

4. Spotify Music by Spotify

5. Candy Crush Saga by King

6. FIFA 15 Ultimate Team by Electronic Arts

7. BBC iPlayer by Media Applications Technologies Ltd

8. Subway Surfers by Kiloo

9. Circle by FreeSoil

10. ITV Player by ITV

(Both charts courtesy of www.amazon.co.uk)

Copyright Press Association 2015

Published: Saturday 7th March 2015 by The News Editor

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