Redmi Note 8 Pro, Samsung M30s to Realme X2: Best phones under Rs 20,000 (Feb 2020)

64 MP cameras, Super AMOLED displays, 8 GB RAM, 256 GB of internal storage etc. Ask and you shall receive in this budget.

The sub-Rs 20,000 phones are steadily inching towards the features and performance levels of budget flagship phones. It is pleasantly surprising to see the kind of specs and processing power that buyers can get in this budget these days. From last generation flagship processors to sharp Super AMOLED displays to 64 MP cameras to 256 GB of internal storage, you have access to all of that here. So what are your best options under 20K this month? Let’s find out.

Best phones to buy under Rs 20,000 in India

Realme X2

Realme XT (Review) was the first phone with a 64 MP camera in India. And Realme chose to add three more cameras at the back to give it company. It had a Snapdragon 712 SoC. Replace that with a more powerful Snapdragon 730G chip and you have a Realme X2 (First impressions). You can get the 6 GB and 8 GB RAM variants in this budget with 128 GB internal storage that can be expanded further with a microSD card. This phone runs Android Pie with the pleasant Color OS 6.0 UI on top. Expect an Android 10 update soon.

Realme X2

Realme X2

The quad-camera setup comprises of the main 64 MP camera, an 8 MP ultra-wide lens, 2 MP dedicated macro camera and a 2 MP depth sensor. The main camera supports pixel binning and captures some impressive 16MP images in varied lighting conditions including low light. The images have good amount of detail along with natural colours. There’s a 32 MP camera up front for selfies.

The other features of the Realme X2 are equally impressive. The design is elegant and has a glass back that is protected by a layer of Corning Gorilla Glass 5, and same goes for its sharp 6.4-inch Super AMOLED Full HD+ display. There’s an in-display fingerprint scanner too. Its 4,000 mAh battery keeps the phone powered for a day and a quarter of moderate usage. But what’s even better is the bundled 30W VOOC 4.0 fast charger that juices it up superfast.

Realme X2 price in India: Rs 18,999 for 6 GB RAM/128 GB storage; Rs 19,999 for 8 GB RAM/128 GB storage

Redmi Note 8 Pro

Redmi Note 8 Pro (Review) is Xiaomi’s answer to Realme XT and is comparable to the X2. This too comes with the exact quad camera combination at the back with a 64MP sensor being the poster boy. The camera performance is comparable but the colours and contrast are slightly boosted. While purists won’t appreciate it, social media enthusiasts may actually like it. The phone's design is as good as the X2’s with a glass back and Gorilla Glass 5 protection at the front as well as at the back. The phone is on the larger side courtesy of its 6.53-inch Full HD+ display. The company hasn’t opted for an AMOLED screen here but the LCD display is sharp and supports HDR.

Redmi Note 8 Pro

Redmi Note 8 Pro

The Redmi Note 8 Pro is powered by a MediaTek Helio G90T SoC which raises the performance bar in the midrange segment. Not only does it outperform its Qualcomm counterparts in system benchmarks but takes the gaming performance several notches higher. One can play PUBG Mobile on it in Ultra mode with HDR on. That’s some serious performance for the segment. It has a 4,500 mAh battery that can last you for a couple of days of moderate usage without much gaming, and for a day if you indulge in ample gaming. 

It runs Android Pie with MIUI 10 on top. You again get 6 GB and 8 GB RAM variants of the phone with 128 GB internal storage in this budget. We prefer the 6 GB/128 GB combination.

Redmi Note 8 Pro price in India: Rs 15,999 for 6 GB RAM/128 GB storage; Rs 17,999 for 8 GB RAM/128 GB storage

Vivo V15 Pro

The Vivo V15 Pro (Review) has a pop-up selfie camera, a notch-less display and an in-display fingerprint scanner. The phone boasts of a 90 percent plus screen to body ratio courtesy of its 6.39-inch Full HD+ Super AMOLED display. While its 32MP pop-up front camera caught everybody’s attention at launch, the 48MP + 8MP + 5MP triple camera setup at the back is equally impressive and delivers good images in different lighting conditions.

Though this phone doesn’t have an SoC as powerful as the Realme or Xiaomi phones in this list, there’s ample processing power here courtesy of a Snapdragon 675 SoC coupled with 6 GB RAM and 128 GB of internal storage. Its 3700 mAh battery keeps the phone powered for a day of moderate usage. The phone runs Android Pie. The phone has received a price cut and now retails under Rs 20,000.

Vivo V15 Pro price in India: Rs 19,990 for 6 GB RAM/128 GB storage

Samsung Galaxy M30s

This one's for Samsung fans as much as for those looking for a phone with insane battery life. To make the deal sweeter, price of the 6GB RAM/128GB storage variant of the Samsung Galaxy M30s has dropped under 15K on Amazon India at the time of writing. The phone has a 6000 mAh battery that easily lasts two and a half days of moderate usage. And all that without making the phone look and weigh like a bloated suitcase. The company also bundles a 15W fast charger to charge the mammoth battery reasonably quick.

Galaxy M30s.

Samsung Galaxy M30s.

There’s more to this well-priced Samsung midranger starting with an excellent 6.4-inch Super AMOLED display. You get triple cameras at the back with a combination of 48MP primary, 8MP ultrawide and 5MP depth sensor. The cameras do a very good job in most modes and lighting conditions and are among the best Samsung have to offer on their phones priced under 20K. There’s a 16MP selfie camera too. The Galaxy M30s runs Android Pie with Samsung’s One UI.

Samsung Galaxy M30s price in India: Rs 14,999 for 6 GB RAM/128 GB storage

Poco F1

We are still figuring out how to keep this phone out of our lists. Till then, enjoy while it lasts. You can now get the top-end variant of the Poco F1 (Review) with 8 GB RAM and 256 GB storage for just Rs 16,999. You can add another 256 GB to it using a microSD card, in case you need more storage. The design isn’t the most eye-catching but it is still a beast when it comes to performance thanks to a Snapdragon 845 SoC.

The Poco F1 has a 6.18-inch full HD+ notched display and a 12MP + 5MP dual camera combination at the back that does a good job in average to good lighting. The image quality is pretty good but nothing fancy. There’s also a solid 20MP front camera for selfies. As we keep saying, this is mainly a phone for gamers on a budget than camera enthusiasts. If you are looking to play PUBG in its full glory on a tight budget, Poco F1 is still an excellent option along with the Redmi Note 8 Pro. The Poco launcher on top of Android Pie remains a better alternative to MIUI though. 

Poco F1 price in India: Rs 16,999 for 8 GB RAM/256 GB storage

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