The Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 15,000 price band is hotly contested in India, which is no surprise since phones at this level can do nearly everything the average user might need. With a budget in this range, buyers in India have been able to pick up phones that are a step or two above entry-level, without the need to compromise on usability. You can get a big, high-quality screen, day-long battery life, quick charging, up-to-date software, and cameras that are good enough for everyday use. Other features you might find include 5G, stereo speakers, a high display refresh rate, or splash resistance.
We’re seeing a lot of new smartphones in India priced under Rs. 15,000 but buyers should be cautious because rising prices and ongoing component supply issues mean that you might not be getting the same kind of value that you might have been able to get a year or two ago. Manufacturers are keeping things fresh in terms of design and incremental value-added improvements, but don’t expect huge leaps in power, camera quality, or construction quality if you’re upgrading from a similarly priced phone that’s a few years old.
That said, here’s a list of some of the best phones to buy under Rs. 15,000 in India right now. All of these have been reviewed and scored by Gadgets 360, and we’ll help you find the best one for your needs whether you prioritise performance, battery life, camera quality, or design. Here are the best phones under Rs. 15,000, in no particular order.
Best phones under 15,000
|Phones under Rs. 15,000||Gadgets 360 rating (out of 10)||Price in India (as recommended)|
|Moto G51||8||Rs. 14,999|
|Infinix Hot 11S||8||Rs. 10,999|
|Redmi 10 Prime||8||Rs. 12,499|
|Realme Narzo 30 5G||8||Rs. 14,999|
|Oppo K10||7||Rs. 14,990|
|Redmi Note 10||8||Rs. 12,999|
|Redmi Note 10S||8||Rs. 14,999|
|Realme 9i||8||Rs. 13,999|
|Samsung Galaxy F22||8||Rs. 12,499|
The Moto G51 (Review) is a budget 5G smartphone, and has a few things going for it that make it special. Its body is made of polycarbonate but it is quite heavy at 208g. It has an IP52 rating against dust and water, which is uncommon. Software performance is smooth, largely thanks to the near-stock Android software, which only has a few Motorola-specific customisations and the 120Hz refresh rate display.
Gaming performance was a bit disappointing, and this is an area where the competition performs better. There are three rear-facing cameras and they do a decent job with daylight photos but perform poorly in low light. The battery lasts about a day and half with regular use. The G52 comes with a 20W charger, which takes about two hours to charge this smartphone to 100 percent.
Infinix Hot 11S
The Infinix Hot 11S (Review) is a gaming-focussed smartphone for those on a tight budget. It offers a high-refresh-rate display that gamers will appreciate, and a decent budget SoC that’s capable of some mid-level gaming. The plastic body has a glossy coating that feels cheap and is a smudge magnet. The display on the other hand is quite good at resisting fingerprints. The large display makes this phone a bit unwieldy, and one-handed use is next to impossible. The stereo speakers work well for gaming and are sufficiently loud. Battery life is excellent, and charging is quick too. This smartphone could be a good choice for casual users and those seeking a good gaming experience on a tight budget.
Redmi 10 Prime
The Redmi 10 Prime (Review) carries the family look and sports a big 6.5-inch full-HD+ display with 90Hz refresh rate. It has a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, a plastic frame, and a quad-camera system at the back.
This smartphone is powered by the MediaTek Helio G88 SoC, along with a 6,000mAh battery with support for 18W fast charging. Daylight camera performance was average, despite having a 50-megapixel primary camera. Low-light image quality was underwhelming, which was one of the main downsides of this phone. While it doesn’t have the same impact that its predecessor did, it does deliver better performance so if that’s important to you, the Redmi 10 Prime will suit your needs.
Realme Narzo 30 5G
The Realme Narzo 30 5G (Review) is a slim 5G smartphone with a good 90Hz refresh rate display, great battery life, and mid-level gaming performance. The cameras are a bit disappointing for both stills and video, and to make matters worse, there’s no ultra-wide camera. You get Realme UI plus several preinstalled apps that can spam you with unwanted notifications. Charging is a bit on the slower side. However, if you want 5G and you have a tight budget, the Narzo 30 5G is a phone to consider.
The Oppo K10 (Review) offers decent value thanks to features such as stereo speakers, macro camera, and IP54 rating. It delivers very good battery life, reasonably quick charging, a pleasing display, and snappy all-round performance. This is a 4G phone though, and 5G-ready alternatives are now common at this price level.
You get a 6.59-inch full-HD+ 90Hz display, 33W fast charging, 5000mAh battery, and Snapdragon 680 SoC. This phone runs Android 11 and there are some spammy preloaded apps. Performance is decent, except for heavy games. The 50-megapixel main camera captures pretty good photos in the daytime but results were weak at night. You get some interesting modes to play with in the camera app.
The Oppo K10’s biggest weaknesses are its poor video recording performance and the fact that it lacks an ultra-wide camera. If you’re not an avid photographer or videographer, then it could be a good option, and the base variant of the phone offers the best value of the two.
Redmi Note 10
It might not be the newest model on this list, but the Redmi Note 10 (Review) has a slick design and plenty of features to boast about considering its starting price of Rs. 12,499. To keep costs down, Xiaomi has gone with a 48-megapixel primary rear camera, joined by an 8-megapixel ultra-wide camera, 2-megapixel macro camera, and 2-megapixel depth sensor. You get the Qualcomm Snapdragon 678 SoC plus up to 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage within our budget. The 6.43-inch full-HD+ Super AMOLED screen is a big draw, and the 5000mAh battery doesn’t make this phone too heavy.
The Redmi Note 10 is a good workhorse, and MIUI 12.5 promises to reduce spam and bloatware. There are newer models, but the price still makes this one worth considering.
The Realme 9i (Review) has a 90Hz 6.6-inch full-HD+ display with Asahi DragonTrail glass for protection. It’s powered by the octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 680 SoC and runs Android 11. It’s powered by a 5000mAh battery and supports 33W fast charging. Performance is good enough for day-to-day use and gaming at medium settings, but the screen doesn’t get bright enough to be seen clearly under sunlight. You do get stereo speakers and a headphone jack.
There’s a 50-megapixel primary camera, a 2-megapixel macro camera, and a 2-megapixel B&W camera. There’s a 16-megapixel front camera. Photos taken in the daytime looked good but didn’t have the best detail. HDR was handled well. Low-light shots were grainy and underwhelming. Although older, the Realme 8i is also still worth considering at this price level, as you might prefer the balance of features and performance it offers.
Samsung Galaxy F22
Samsung’s Galaxy F22 (Review) is a rather basic budget smartphone that goes big on battery life. It has a vibrant 6.4-inch 90Hz HD+ Super AMOLED display, but cuts down on everything else. The big battery easily lasts two days, but takes a long time to charge. The camera performance was quite average for its segment, but daylight video quality was good, despite being limited to 1080p. The Galaxy F22’s design can be best described as practical, with a display that is made of Gorilla Glass 5 and a plastic unibody. If a vivid display and strong battery life are priorities, the Galaxy F22 fits the bill.
Redmi Note 10S
The Redmi Note 10S (Review) is a slightly more powerful version of the Redmi Note 10 and both these devices look identical. It has a 6.43-inch AMOLED display with Corning Gorilla Glass 3. The Redmi Note 10S has stereo speakers and an IR emitter, which are both uncommon on budget smartphones. The Note 10S packs a MediaTek Helio G95 SoC along with 6GB of RAM, and you can choose between 64GB and 128GB of storage. It runs MIUI 12.5 on top of Android 11. It does have a lot of preinstalled apps that occasionally push spammy notifications. The Note 10S has a 5,000mAh battery and comes with a 33W charger in the box.
Xiaomi offers a quad-camera setup on the Redmi Note 10S with a 64-megapixel primary sensor. Daylight shots were average but oversharpened, and distant objects appeared blotchy. Close-up and macro shots looked better. Low-light shots appeared flat and grainy but Night mode helped. Overall, the Redmi Note 10S is worth buying over the Redmi Note 10 if you want better performance.