The Indian smartphone market is at a critical juncture right now, some of the recent high-profile launches have already reached our shores, but some of the most-sought after models are yet to be released, but will take some time. So, unless you are ready to wait for upcoming smartphones, here are your choices for the best available Android phones in India.
First, let us talk about the high-end smartphones – the phone with prices more than INR 25,000.
Best High-end Android phones (INR 25,000+):
Sony Xperia ZL/ Sony Xperia Z
Keeping in the mind the pricing and feature combo, Sony Xperia Z and ZL are the best smartphones available in the country right now. The phones are not priced as high as HTC Butterfly, but still offer competing specs. Sony has recently got its act together with updates, so we can expect the phones to get the future Android updates. Also, given the Sony involvement with open-source community, Sony’s Android phones have the one of the best developer community. What else one can expect from a high-end smartphone.
If you don’t fancy glass back and are fine with skipping water/dust resistance, you can opt for Xperia ZL; else Xperia Z is always there for 2K premium.
LG Optimus G
LG might not have a full HD display on-board Optimus G, but this Nexus 4 cousin still packs some great specs that too in a very aggressive pricing from the company. Already running on Jelly Bean, the phone is expected to at-least get the next Android version; however LG’s track record isn’t that great with timely updates.
The developer community for LG Optimus G is also not active as other smartphones; probably because of no official bootloader unlock support. But, not everyone is concerned about Android updates or dev-community, so, apart from these two disappointments, LG Optimus G is a great deal.
Samsung Galaxy S III
Despite the impending arrival of Samsung Galaxy S 4, Galaxy S III still remains a great smartphone and thanks to all the price-cuts, it has become a great deal. Samsung is expected to provide at least one more major Android update for the phone, which was launched with Ice Cream Sandwich and has already got Jelly Bean update.
Developer community is also very active for the smartphone, so if you like to tweak your phone; S III is no-brainer.
Phablet choices in this budget: Samsung Galaxy Note II – If you want something with a massive-screen, Galaxy Note II is a great choice.
That’s all for high-end smartphones in India, now let’s talk about mid-range segment.
Best Mid-range Android phones in India (INR 15,000 – INR 24,999)
Sony Xperia S
With the reduction in price, Sony’s 2012 flagship Xperia S is one of the best smartphones to purchase in the mid-range segments. It packs some impressive specifications and is expected to get the Android 4.1 update in the coming weeks.
Similar to other Sony devices, Xperia S also has a thriving developer community.
Samsung Galaxy S II Plus
Launched recently in the Indian market, Samsung’s Galaxy S II Plus is a decent phone for anyone planning to grab an Android phone in medium budget. The phone comes with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean out of the box, but we would not be so sure about the future Android updates.
While, the original Galaxy S II had an impressive developer community, we hope the same happen with S II Plus too.
LG Optimus L9
LG came out with some pretty decent devices in its L-series last year and until we see the launch of L-series II in the country, the original L-series remain a wise choice for different budget segments. LG Optimus L9 is surely one of the better devices in mid-range segment.
The phone has already started getting Android 4.1 update in select countries and should also reach India soon. With Jelly Bean, LG has unlocked the bootloader on the phone, which in turn has led to surge in development for the device. We have already seen the CM nightlies.
Other good phones in the mid-range segment:
Phablets choices in this segment:
Samsung Galaxy Grand Duos
Samsung’s Galaxy Grand has emerged as a great choice for consumers who want a large-screen smartphone experience without spending too much money.
So, we are finished with mid-range segment, and it is time for entry-level Android smartphones.
Best Entry-level Android phones (INR 8,000 – INR 15,000)
Sony Xperia Sola/ Xperia U
Thanks to the recent price-cuts, most of the earlier mid-range smartphones like Sola have now landed in the entry-level segment. Xperia Sola and Xperia U pack some decent specifications and runs on Ice Cream Sandwich, although Sony does not plan to update these phones to Jelly Bean, ICS is still a very polished Android version for daily usage. You might miss Google Now and Project Butter goodness, so you will have to sacrifice some things for the lower-pricing.
Samsung Galaxy S Advance
Similar to Sony models, Samsung’s Galaxy S Advance has also got various price-reductions and is now a part of entry-level segment. The phone comes with some nice features along with Android 4.0, but there is no word whether it will get Android 4.1 or not. It is certainly worthy of consideration.
Sony Xperia E/ E Dual
Sony’s recently launched Xperia E and E dual smartphones are two phones that certainly are worthy of a look. They might not have a dual-core processor on-board, but along with Jelly Bean and a comparable less pricing, they do make a good deal. Choose according to your SIM needs between the single and dual-SIM versions.
Phablet choices in this segment:
Micromax A116 Canvas HD
This is certainly a no-brainer. Micromax’s ultra-popular phablet A116 Canvas HD needs no introduction. Packing a quad-core processor and 720p display, the phone has got favourable reviews all around.
Lowest end of the smartphone segment (INR 0 – INR 7,999)
Micromax Ninja A89
Micromax has flooded the market with entry-level and ultra-cheap smartphones, but not all of these are deemed worthy of your money, but A89 Ninja certainly looks otherwise. Packing more than decent features in this budget segment, A89 deserves to be considered. It runs on Android 4.0, but we don’t see it getting Jelly Bean update.
Samsung Galaxy Music Duos
Not everyone wants to spend their money on a home-grown manufacturer, so here is an option for you from Samsung. Galaxy Music Duos might not have insane specs, but you get the Samsung branding and credibility. You can expect better after sales experience and decent enough features of this pricing.
Image credit: Maxim_g