Best Smartphones Under Rs.12,000 (August 2019)

by | Jul 26, 2019

If you are looking for a smartphone above Rs.10,000 and you can’t extend your budget to Rs.15,000, then the best option is to go for a smartphone under Rs.12,000.

The sheer variety and competition in this segment are massive in India and almost every phone manufacturer launch a product in this price range.

So, which is the best smartphone under Rs.12,000?

Who offers the best value for money as well as build quality?

Let’s find out here.

Best Phones Under Rs.12,000

1. Redmi Note 7SOverall Best Pick
2. Realme 2 ProRunner-Up Pick
3. Nokia 6.1 PlusBest Build Quality
4. Samsung Galaxy M20 Best Reliable Smartphone
5. Infinix Hot 7 ProHonorable Mention

1. Redmi Note 7S

redmi-note-7s
Overall Best Pick
  • Quick charge 4 support
  • 48MP + 5MP dual rear camera
  • USB Type-C port

Redmi Note 7S is the Xiaomi’s successor to the much-touted Redmi 7 which brought some premium features right into the hands of people scouring the market for an affordable feature-packed smartphone.

The Redmi Note 7S comes with internals which totally blows the competition out of the scene and is priced very competently under Rs.12.000.

Design and Build Quality

The Redmi Note 7S shares the same design principles from the previous Redmi phone released in the Indian market.

The Redmi Note 7S features a glass sandwich design at the front and rear protected with the latest gorilla glass 5.

The shiny back panel reminds us of the Honor phones off late, which is always a good thing because those phones looked so stunning.

The fit and finish of this budget Android smartphone are on par with its competitors and Xiaomi has not done any visible cost-cutting in terms of build quality.

Display

The Redmi Note 7S features a large 6.3-inch FHD+ panel with a resolution of 2340 x 1080 pixels.

This dot notch display has a screen to body ratio of 81.4% and has minimal bezels on all four sides.

As we’ve already mentioned, the display is covered with corning gorilla glass 5 for protection from accidental scratches and dents and an additional p2i splashproof protection.

This IPS LCD display delivers visuals with excellent colour quality and brightness levels.

This is probably one of the best displays you can get your eyes on in the sub. Rs.10,000 budget category.

Processor and Performance

The Redmi Note 7S is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 processor. This processor comes preloaded with deeper AI integration which results in overall better performance.

Be it gaming or multitasking, this processor breaks no sweat to deliver you with a pleasant usability experience.

Games like PUBG and Fortnite run smoothly on medium settings without any lags or stutters in between.

Being a glass bodied smartphone, the phone doesn’t get noticeably hot while playing games or watching videos in a stretch.

The 4GB RAM variant comes with 64GB of internal storage and an option to increase the memory up to 128GB by the hybrid SIM slot.

Camera

Optics is where this smartphone from Xiaomi blows excels when compared with its competitors in the same price range.

The Redmi Note 7S smartphone has a whopping 48MP+5MP rear camera setup with support for AI mode and phase detection autofocus.

The front shooter is a 13MP camera with an aperture size of f/2.0 for better low light selfies.

The 48MP sensor outputs 4 images of 12MP each and stitches it together to deliver photos with great details and colour accuracy.

Miscellaneous

This phone supports connectivity features such as dual VoLTE. You can use two 4G sims simultaneously without any glitches.

All standard set of sensors are available on this device including an infrared emitter for using the phone as a remote to your home appliances.

And yes, there is a 3.5mm headphone jack to plug in your favourite earphones.

Battery Life

Redmi phones seldom skimp on battery capacity and same is the case with the Redmi Note 7S.

This device from Xiaomi comes with a generous 4000mAh Li-Po battery that will last for about two days on moderate to heavy usage.

Verdict

The Redmi Note 7S is the best smartphone you can get your hands for a budget under Rs.10,000 in the Indian market as of now.

With its 48MP camera sensor and a very colour accurate display, spending Rs.12,000 on this gadget is well worth every penny you’ve earned.

R
Excellent build quality 
R

AI-assisted dual camera

R

Long battery life

Q

Hybrid SIM slot

Q

Brittle glass construction

Q

Heavily modified Android UI

Specifications

Operating SystemAndorid 9.0 Pie
RAM4 GB
Internal Memory64 GB
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 660
Camera48MP+5MP Rear, 13MP Front
Battery4000 mAh
Display6.3-inch FHD+

 

2. Realme 2 Pro

realme-2-pro
Runner-Up Pick
  • Suited for low light photography
  • Budget gaming device
  • Elegant design

Realme had created a wave in the Indian smartphone industry by launching the Realme 1 which competed against the Xiaomi Redmi Note 5.

After this, they launched the less impressive Realme 2 which was a real letdown from the original model.

However, with the new Realme 2 Pro, the company has a winning recipe that combines performance and features that meets at an aggressive price point of less than Rs.12,000.

Design and Build Quality

The Realme 2 Pro has followed the footsteps of its elder sibling, the Oppo F9 and has a dewdrop inspired design.

The body of this smartphone is made of glossy plastic and has an interesting light reflective coating on top that makes this phone even more attractive in the daylight.

The screen upfront is protected by Corning Gorilla glass. The buttons feel very tactile and responsive.

The phone still comes with an outdated micro USB port which we feel is a serious letdown for a mid-2018 gadget.

Display

The display on this updated Realme 2 pro is a large 6.3-inch full HD+ panel that comes with an interesting aspect ratio of 19.5:9.

The main USP of this device is the water drop shaped notch that houses the front camera.

This looks very special and makes the phone stand out from the crowd of notched display smartphones in the market.

The display is bright and the contrast levels are excellent. The colours pop out from the screen, thanks to the cartoony nature of the custom skin Color OS.

The Realme 2 Pro is one of the best phones with a large screen to body ratio in this price segment.

Performance

The Snapdragon 450 on the Realme 2 was a disappointment for many.

But this time around, the company has released its mistake and included a Snapdragon 660 SoC that delivers excellent performance in the mid-range segment processor market.

The apps load faster and the multitasking is well within your reach no matter how many apps you have running in the background.

This phone has the Adreno 512 GPU inside, which will unleash the gamer in you.

This smartphone comes with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage.

Camera

The Realme 2 Pro has a dual camera in the rear that constitutes the 16MP primary sensor with an aperture size of f/1.7.

The secondary sensor is a 2MP depth-sensing unit for portrait mode photos.

In the front is a 16MP sensor that has AI-based portrait and beautification modes for better selfies.

Being an f/1.7 sensor, the low light photography is much more possible since this camera can gather much more light than a typical f/2.2 sensor.

Battery Life

The Realme 2 Pro comes powered by a 3500 Li-ion battery. It is sufficient for this smartphone to last for over a day comfortably with moderate to heavy usage.

The SoC inside supports fast charging. However, the supplied charger is a standard charger.

If you want to juice up the device quickly, you’ll have to invest in a Quickcharge enabled charger.

Verdict

The Realme 2 Pro is the best smartphone that you can purchase under a budget of Rs.12,000.

With the class-leading performance-oriented Snapdragon 660 SoC and a very capable camera, this phone is definitely a very compelling purchase.

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High screen to body ratio

R

Powerful processor

R

Decent battery life

Q

No USB C

Specifications

Operating SystemAndroid Oreo 8.1
RAM4 GB
Internal Memory64 GB
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 660
Camera16MP+2MP Rear, 16MP Front
Battery3500mAh
Display6.3 inch FHD+

 

3. Nokia 6.1 Plus

nokia-6.1-plus
Best Build Quality
  • Guaranteed software updates
  • USB C port
  • Tough aluminium outer frame

Nokia isn’t the old Nokia anymore. With HMD making the Nokia phones rather than the Microsoft, they’ve decided to go en route Android.

With a few phones such as Nokia 7 Plus priced under Rs.25,000 creating ripples in the market, Nokia is now back with a winner – the all-new Nokia 6.1 Plus.

Design and Build Quality

Machined out of series 6000-grade Aluminium, the Nokia phones offer the best build quality in the market. They are built solid and feels extremely durable in hand.

The Finnish design exudes confidence and stands on par with the design of any other smartphone available at this price range.

The Nokia 6.1 Plus comes with an edge to edge display that is protected by 2.5D curved Gorilla glass that blends in with the chassis seamlessly.

The backside of the chassis is adorned by a vertically placed dual-camera module followed by a flash and a fingerprint scanner.

Having a USB C port for budget phones are still considered a luxury by many smartphone brands, but not Nokia.

Overall, the Nokia 6.1 Plus is definitely one of the phones with the best build quality available in the market.

Processor and Performance

The Nokia 6.1 Plus is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 SoC which is one of the mid-range champions when it comes to the efficient mix of performance and battery life.

With 6GB high-speed LPDDR RAM onboard, this device can blaze through apps and can handle multitasking without any sort of lags or stutters.

The Adreno 509 GPU inside lets you play high-end games but at low graphics settings.

The built-in 64GB ROM provides you with a sufficient starting point to store all your data – be it movies or songs on the phone offline, without the fear of running out of memory too soon.

This device also comes with a dedicated SD card slot which is another luxury that we are used not to expect from budget smartphones nowadays.

Display

The Nokia 6.1 Plus features a 5.8-inch full HD+ display with a resolution of 1080 x 2280 pixels.

This notched display has a 19:9 aspect ratio and has a pixel density of around 432 ppi.

The colours appear vivid and the contrast levels despite being an LCD display is excellent. The texts appear sharp and clear so does the images.

This being an IPS LCD, the viewing angles are great and there is no colour shift when viewed from extreme angles as well.

Camera

The Nokia 6.1 Plus comes with a dual rear camera setup which constitutes of a 16MP primary sensor accompanied by a 5MP depths sensing unit for accurate edge detection and portrait mode photos.

On the front, there is a 16MP shooter which has autofocus capabilities and an aperture size of f/2.0.

The pictures from both the front and rear cameras come out detailed and colourful in daylight conditions but suffer from oversharpening in photos shot at low light environments.

When it comes to the video, this phone does support gyro EIS (Electronic Image Stabilization) for smoother video recording with minimal shakes.

Battery Life

The Nokia 6.1 Plus is powered by a non-removable 3060 mAh Li-ion battery which easily lasts over a day of moderate to heavy usage.

The Snapdragon 636 is very much an energy-efficient processor and combined with the stock Android OS running on this smartphone, energy consumption is very minimal when sitting idle.

Verdict

The Nokia 6.1 Plus is a great contender to the Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 pro and even trumps the device in certain aspects such as running a stock Android OS.

For those who love Nokia, this device is definitely one of the best devices that the company has launched this year.

Under Android, One programme promised future updates will make this device one of the most desirable gadgets to own in its price segment.

R

Excellent build quality

R

Android One device

R

Elegant design

Q

Comparatively smaller battery capacity

Specifications

Operating SystemAndroid Oreo
RAM6 GB
Internal Memory64 GB
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 636
Camera16MP + 5MP Rear, 16MP Front
Battery3060mAh
Display5.8 inch Full HD+

 

4. Samsung Galaxy M20

samsung-galaxy-m20
Best Reliable Smartphone
  • 5000mAh battery
  • Ultra wide dual camera
  • Infinity V display

Samsung Galaxy M20 is the latest mid-range budget offering from Samsung loaded with features aimed to compete with the likes of Xiaomi and Asus.

Design and Build Quality

The Samsung Galaxy M20 is made from polycarbonate plastic shell with a textured finish which looks decent for the price tag it carries.

The build quality seems quite decent for the price and matches the competition.

The rounded corners and the edges help this phone to be easily held in the hand and aides better one-hand usability.

The rear side of the phone houses the dual cameras assisted with an LED flash and at the bottom is the speaker grill.

The Galaxy M20 comes with a micro USB port for charging and data syncing and has a 3.5mm jack for plugging in earphones and headphones.

Display

This budget entry-level smartphone has a large 6.3-inch full HD+ display with a resolution of 2340x1080 pixels.

The company fondly calls this display as an infinity V display, thanks to the waterdrop notch in the front.

The 19:9 display has an impressive screen to body ratio of 83.6% and comes with a pixel density of around 409 ppi.

The quality of this display is very good and possibly a tad bit better than its competitor devices.

The colour accuracy and saturation levels are excellent and the display also delivers excellent viewing angles.
Samsung has included an automatic brightness sensor on this phone so that you won’t have to manually slide around to get the desired brightness levels anymore.

Processor and Performance

The Samsung Galaxy M20 packs in a homebrewed octa-core Exynos 7904 chipset clocked at 1.8GHz.

This processor coupled with 4GB of RAM runs all the casual applications with relative ease and no stutters.

However, the limited RAM might exhibit lags if you are planning to heavily multitask or play memory-intensive games on this device.

Apart from the 64GB internal storage, this device comes with a dedicated SD card slot which can take cards up to 128GB.

Connectivity

This dual SIM budget Android smartphones have two SIM slots and support dual VoLTE.

Camera

This smartphone has a 13MP + 5MP rear camera setup of which the 5MP is a wide-angle sensor which helps you cover more of the subject in a single shot.

The front 8MP shooter does its job in well-lit conditions.

Battery Life

Powering the Samsung Galaxy M20 is a massive 5000mAh Li-Po battery which is rated to last for two days worth of heavy usage.

Samsung also bundles a fast charger which can charge this mammoth battery from 0 to 100% in just under 2.30 hours.

Verdict

If you are in search of a branded budget smartphone with unmatched reliability, the Samsung Galaxy M20 is one of the best phones available under Rs.12000.

R

Fingerprint scanner

R

Dedicated SD card slot

R

Ambient light sensor

Q

Slow OS updates

Specifications

Operating SystemAndroid 8.1 Oreo
RAM4 GB
Internal Memory64 GB
ProcessorExynos 7904 octa-core
Camera13MP+5MP Rear, 8MP Front
Battery5000mAh
Display6.3-inch FHD+

 

5. Infinix Hot 7 Pro

iInfinix-hot-7-pro
Honorable Mention
  • Feature-packed budget smartphone
  • Android 9.0 Pie OS
  • 1-year brand warranty

The competition among the budget smartphones is intensifying day by day. That makes us, the customers get to reap all the benefits.

This time it’s the Infinix which has surprised us with the launch of their feature-packed premium budget device in the country – the Infinix Hot 7 Pro.

Design and Build Quality

First things first, the Infinix Hot 7 Pro is made of plastic. However, the quality of the plastics used is good and feels extremely durable in hand.

The metallic back shell looks stylish and has given a matte finish for better grip and also aides in hiding fingerprints.

The weight distribution on the phone is excellent. This makes it easy to operate with a single hand.

The buttons on this device feel clicky and responsive. The feedback is excellent and since the buttons are slightly raised, you will not find any difficulty even in the darkness to locate them.

Display

The Infinix Hot 7 Pro features a 6.19-inch HD+ resolution display that output images and visuals with great details and vivid colours.

This panel can achieve a maximum brightness level up to 500 nits which will make viewing this display in bright sunlight much easier.

For those who are keen with the numbers, the lack of full HD display might be a bummer.

Processor and Performance

Helio P23 may not be as extravagant as the P60 inside Realme 1 but it’s perfectly capable to handle all day to day tasks with ease.

With 6GB RAM and 64GB storage inside, you can indeed juggle between apps without having to face any problems.

Even though this phone comes with a generous 6GB RAM, the processor might throttle when it comes to playing games and running apps which demand serious horsepower.

Yes, you can play casual games to kill time but nothing much when it comes to resource-intensive ones.

Camera

The Infinix Hot 7 Pro has a dual rear camera comprising of a main 13MP sensor assisted by a 2MP depth-sensing unit. This sensor is aided by a dual-tone LED flash for better night photography.

The pictures from the rear camera come out pretty well with good colour accuracy.

The front camera too is a 13MP + 2MP shooter. The selfies come out nice and decent for posting into social media platforms.

The video quality is where we find some negatives. There are focus hunting problems and exposure variations that ruins the footage.

Battery Life

The Infinix Hot 7 Pro packs in 4000mAh Li-ion battery pack inside.

Suffice to say the battery life is not great, it’s crazy excellent. You will easily run into the second day with juice to spare.

Verdict

The Infinix Hot 7 Pro is a great value for money device which comes with a lot of features for the price at which it is retailing.

If you’re not in for serious gaming action, the Infinix Hot 7 Pro is the best bet for a casual smartphone under Rs.10,000 currently in the market.

R

Dual cameras at the front and rear

R

Excellent battery life

R

Dedicated SD card slot

Q

No full HD display

Q

Poor video output from the camera

Specifications

Operating SystemAndroid 9.0 Pie
RAM6 GB
Internal Memory64 GB
ProcessorHelio P23 Octa core
Camera13MP+2MP Rear, 13MP+2MP Front
Battery4500 mAh
Display6.21 inch Full HD+

 

And that concludes our list of the best mobile phones under Rs.12,000.

We have taken a genuine effort to list out only the best smartphone in this price category.

We will be updating this list when new phones that can challenge our top picks are launched.

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