Affordable flagships describe devices that don’t just challenge flagship smartphones but deliver a flagship-class experience at a somewhat affordable price point.

Mi 11T Pro and Realme GT2 Pro
Atom Smartphones Wednesday, April 27, 2022 - 13:17

We don’t hear the phrase flagship killer or flagship challenger much in 2022. Most brands prefer to use ‘affordable flagships’ to describe devices that don’t just challenge flagship smartphones but deliver a flagship-class experience at a somewhat affordable price point. That threshold is Rs 50,000. If you’re in the market for a smartphone that’s future proof, has a solid camera and one that you can flaunt at a meeting or a nightclub, you’ll be spoilt for choice: 

Samsung Galaxy A73 5G: Samsung has two compelling options at this price point including the Galaxy S21 FE. The A73 5G, that sits on top of the heap in Samsung’s A series has our vote. The design language borders on minimalist chic, the device feels light in your hand despite a robust 5000 mAh battery. But it’s the 6.7-inch Super AMOLED Plus display with a 120Hz refresh and the quad rear cam (headlined by a 108MP lens with OIS) that put it in our list. (Rs 41,999 onwards) 

Apple iPhone 11: Looking for an affordable iPhone under Rs 50K? This one’s a tough decision. We like the iPhone 12 mini with its solid camera and diminutive form factor. If you’re not a power user, then the average battery life might just work for you. There’s also the iPhone SE (2022) with the new A15 bionic chip (that powers the iPhone 13 quartet). If a large screen and a dependable battery are key drivers for you, then the 2019 iPhone 11 still gets our nod with a stellar camera, a 6.1-inch display and buttery smooth performance. (Rs 49,900 onwards) 

OnePlus 9RT 5G: Even as we put this round-up together, we have one eye on the upcoming OnePlus 10R that’s likely to land in the Rs 45,000 to 55,000 price band. The 9RT is the follow-up to the OnePlus 9R and comes in an elegant Hacker Black colour option with a smooth, almost sandstone-type finish. The 9RT is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor and is available in two hardware options – 8GB/128GB or 12GB/256GB. Lowlight photography is impressive, this device features a triple cam that includes a 50MP primary lens (Rs 42,999 onwards)

OPPO Reno 7 Pro: One of the best looking phones at this price point. The flat-edge form factor might remind you of the iPhone 12 and 13. OPPO claims that it’s the first phone to use LDI (Laser Direct Imaging) processing. It’s chiselled with over 1.2 million micro-rasters reminiscent of shooting stars that play out particularly well in the Startrails Blue colour variant. The 6.55-inch display is almost bezel-less (just 1.55 mm) while the device feels light in your hand despite a 4500 mAh battery backed by a 65W fast charger in the box. (Rs 39,999)

Realme GT2 Pro: is riding heavily on its eco-friendly appeal and contemporary design. Designed by renowned Industrial Designer Naoto Fukasawa, Realme claims that this is the world’s first biopolymer design for a smartphone that is derived from renewable sources like paper pulp. It weighs under 190 gm and is just 8.18 mm thin despite a large 6.7-inch QHD+ AMOLED display that packs an impressive 525 pixels per inch and peaks at 1400 nits of brightness. (Rs 49,999 onwards) 

Xiaomi 11T Pro: 0 to 100% in less than 20 minutes. Mi’s 120W HyperCharge solution is one of the highlights in the 11T Pro, that’s propelled by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor and comes in a choice of three hardware configurations (including the top-end 12GB/256GB variant). HD Content from platforms like Netflix play out well on the 6.67-inch (1080 x 2400 pixels) 10-bit AMOLED display with Dolby Vision support. The 11T Pro combines a 108MP primary lens with an 8MP ultra-wide lens and a 5MP macro cam. (Rs 39,999 onwards) 

Views expressed by the author are personal

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