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Are cheap smartphones worth it?

There’s a lot of hype around our range of high-end smartphones, and rightly so.

Whether it’s the iPhone 6s, the HTC One M9, or the Samsung Galaxy S7, we’re proud to offer our customers a choice of flagship phones from some of the world’s leading manufacturers.

But what if you don’t want to splash out on a top-of-the-range handset? Are cheap smartphones really a viable alternative?

In order to find out, we’ve taken some of Tesco Mobile’s most affordable Pay monthly phones for a test drive and picked out our favourite cheap phones – all available for less than £15.00 a month!

Microsoft Lumia 535

Available from just £7.50 a month, there’s an awful lot to like about the Microsoft Lumia 535.

Similarly to most Windows phones, the Lumia 535 offers solid specs for a below average price – an increasingly common feature that is fast becoming one of the trademarks of a manufacturer that has otherwise struggled to compete with Apple and Android dominance.

With a Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 processor and 8GB of internal memory, the Lumia won’t be troubling the big boys in terms of raw performance, but is certainly a strong enough handset to meet most of your smartphone needs.

The major concern around most affordable mobiles tends to be the build quality, but we’re pleased to report that the 535 feels sturdy and looks good aesthetically. All things considered, the Lumia 535 is a bright, fun, and wonderfully usable phone – and is well worth its tiny price!

Motorola Moto E 2nd Generation

Motorola are specialists in providing quality handsets at low prices, and the Moto E 2nd Generation is no exception. A great entry-level handset that’s available from just £10 a month, the Moto E gives you a lot more than you’d expect from such an affordable phone.

The device itself is well made and doesn’t feel likely to fall apart in your hands, which is more than can be said for some models of a similar price, and with 8GB of internal storage (which can be raised to 32GB with a microSD card), the Moto E is certainly no slouch when compared to a variety of its direct rivals.

This otherwise great handset is somewhat let down by a poor camera, but we think it’s (quite literally) a small price to pay.

Samsung Galaxy Core Prime

Considering the high standards that Samsung has set itself over the years, we expected big things from the Galaxy Core Prime. Available from just £12.50 a month, it’s one of the cheapest Samsung handsets on the market, although it certainly doesn’t look it. The Prime may not have the striking good looks of the Galaxy S6, but we were pleasantly surprised by just how attractive this cheap Samsung phone is.

The Core Prime features a 5MP rear camera that’s well above average for a phone in this price bracket, and – by purchasing an external memory card – you can increase your internal phone memory to 64GB. We’re also pleased to report that this device comes with a range of convenient features, including an Ultra Power Saving Mode and a Find My Mobile app, that make the Galaxy Core Prime one of the most practical cheap smartphones on the market.