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7 great smartphones way cheaper than the new iPhone

7 great smartphones way cheaper than the new iPhone

Charis Brown September 14, 2018
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Image Credit: Dreamstime

Though you could spend as much as $1,449 for the newest iPhone XS, you don’t have to spend that much to get a decent smartphone. And though many cell phone providers such as Verizon and T-Mobile offer big discounts on the latest smartphones, these deals are often tied to monthly installment plans.

If you buy a phone outright without being tied to a monthly installment plan, the iPhone 8 (a better buy than newer iPhones, according to Consumer Reports) will still run you about $600 from a provider like Boost Mobile or $699 from the Apple store. And though the iPhone 7 is a great option for the features according to Consumer Reports, you’ll end up spending about $449 for one right now, or around $360 for a refurbished one, depending on the capacity.

But, there’s no need to spend that much! With the newest iPhone XS and XR models coming out, you’ll find all kinds of deals on refurbished models flooding the market that still have great features.

If stashing some cash is more your thing instead of buying the latest and greatest, here are a few smartphones that’ll get the job done, all under $200! (Note that due to variable or dynamic pricing, prices on these phones may fluctuate.)

RELATED: How to switch to a cheaper cell phone carrier

Great smartphones under $200

Moto G6 Play 32GB smartphone for $194.95

The Moto G6 Play is the less expensive cousin of the newest member of the Moto G family, the Moto G6.  Clark is a big fan of the Moto G line of phones since they work on all 4 major networks, so if you happen to need to switch providers to get a better deal or due to something else, you should be able to do so without a hitch. However, the Moto G6 Play is limited to GSM carriers such as AT&T and T-Mobile. TechRadar gives it an average review of 4 out of 5 stars, noting the “long-lasting battery” and a “surprisingly good screen.”


  • 5.7″ HD+ Max Vision display
  • 32 GB, 3 RAM
  • 1.4 GHz quad-core processor 
  • Android 8.0, Oreo, microSD, up to 256 GB
  • Non-removable Li-Ion 4000 mAh battery
  • 13 MP with phase detection autofocus (PDAF), /2.0 aperture camera

Another great option is the Moto E Plus 32GB smartphone for $169.99 which IS compatible with all major carriers, or you could drop down a step to the older Moto G4 or Moto G5.

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Huawei Honor 7X smartphone for $199.99

As the upgrade to the Honor 6X smartphone, Amazon is offering the Honor 7X smartphone for $199.99. This GSM smartphone receives good marks for the display, cameras and performance, though the battery may not be quite on par with other smartphones.


  • 16-megapixel primary camera and an 8-megapixel front camera
  • 1.7GHz octa-core HiSilicon Kirin 659 processor
  • 4GB of RAM with 32GB of internal storage, expandable up to 256GB via a microSD card
  • Android 7.0
  • 3340mAh battery

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Xiaomi MI A1 (64GB, 4GB RAM) unlocked smartphone for $191

TechRadar gives the Xiaomi Mi A1 smartphone a positive overall review and says it offers “a premium feel on a budget.” This collaboration between Xiaomi and Google brings consumers “a potential hydrogen bomb for the budget smartphone market” due to its hardware, software and design aesthetic.


  • Dual Main Camera: Wide angle lens 12MP and Telephoto lens 12MP
  • Chip: Snapdragon 625, octa-core 2.0GHz
  • Display: 5.5″ FHD 1920×1080, 403 PPI
  • Memory: 64GB ROM, 4GB RAM
  • Compatible with GSM carriers such as AT&T and T-Mobile

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BLU Life One X3 4G LTE 32GB unlocked smartphone for $129.99

Blu smartphones have been known for their affordability, but not so much their features. However, this Blu Vivo smartphone offers more processing power than previous Blu phones and a sleek 5.5″ display.


  • Vivid 5.5” Full HD curved glass display; premium metal design and fingerprint scanner
  • 5,000mAh Monster battery | 5V/2A Quick Charge
  • 13MP main camera with flash + 13MP front camera with flash
  • 32GB Internal memory 3GB RAM Micro SD up to 64GB; 1.3GHz Octa-core Mediatek 6753 processor with Mali-T720
  • 4G LTE, (1/2/3/4/7/12/17/28), 3G HSPA+ (850/900/1700/1900/2100)
  • US compatibility nationwide on all GSM networks including AT&T, T-Mobile, Cricket, MetroPCS, Straight Tal and others

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LeEco LE PRO3 unlocked 32GB smartphone for $140.90

You’ll find the 32GB version of the LeEco LE PRO3 phone starting at $140.90. This phone has great battery life and performance, but reviewers say it’s heavy and the camera is slightly lacking.


  • 5.5″ 1920×1080 IPS display
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 quad-core processor
  • 4GB RAM
  • 16MP main + 8MP secondary cameras
  • Fingerprint sensor
  • Quick charge 3.0 + USB Type-C port
  • 4070mAh battery
  • Android 6.0 (Marshmallow)

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Refurbished unlocked Samsung Galaxy S7 for $172.98

Buying refurbished can save you big! This refurbished unlocked 32GB Samsung Galaxy S7 is selling for $179.99 at eBay right now, and the seller Buy Spry offers free 30-day returns. According to the product description, this phone is in great cosmetic condition and has been professionally restored to working order by a carrier-approved vendor. It works on GSM wireless providers such as T-Mobile and AT&T.


  •  4K video recording
  • Accelerometer
  • Air gesture
  • ANT+
  • Bluetooth-enabled
  • Dual rear cameras
  • Fingerprint sensor
  • GPS
  • Internet browser
  • Music player
  • Near field communication
  • Speakerphone
  • Touchscreen
  • Wi-Fi capable

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Refurbished Apple iPhone 6 64GB unlocked smartphone for $164.95

This iPhone, though refurbished, saves you big on the cost of a new smartphone and offers a ton of storage space. Initially receiving an average 4.5-star review from TechRadar for its great design, better battery and improved keyboard, the iPhone 6 has come down quite a bit since it’s initial price of $750.


  • iOS operating system
  • Apple A8 64-bit. processor
  • 64GB RAM
  • 1334 x 750 resolution
  • LED-backlit widescreen Multi-Touch display with IPS technology
  • 4.7″ display
  • 1.2 megapixel, f/2.2 lens, BSI sensor, 720p video front camera
  • 8+ megapixel phase detection auto-focus, f/2.2 lens, warm LED flash, BSI sensor with 1.5 ultrapixels / touch focus, face detection, panorama, burst mode, auto HDR rear camera
  • 1080p HD can capture stills while recording video, 240 fps slow motion mode, time-lapse video, stabilization.

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eBay also has a refurbished 16GB iPhone 6 available for $134.99. See more deals on smartphones at eBay.

RELATED: The best cell phone plans and deals

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About this Deal Digger About this Deal Digger
Charis Brown is the Senior Deals Editor for Her favorite discount store is Nordstrom Rack, where she once bought something for $.01! She and her husband Justin paid off $27,000 of debt in 11 months and now live debt-free.
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