We’ve already given you our choice for the best high-end smartphones in the market, now it’s time to dial it down a notch and look at some of the best deals available under Rs.20,000. Not everyone has a big budget when it comes to mobile phones, which is fair, but spending less doesn’t mean you have to compromise a lot on features or performance. There are plenty of good options to choose from thanks to big price cuts and new higher end models launching almost every month now, putting a lot of good phones withing the reach of those on a strict budget. Let’s have a look at, what we feel, are some of the best, value for money handsets under Rs. 20,000.

HTC ChaCha – Rs. 14,700 (View Stores)
First up, is the ChaCha from HTC. This touch-and-type smartphone has cleverly managed to integrate one of the most popular social networks (Facebook) into a well designed and easy to use handset. The ChaCha is a brilliant little phone even without the big ‘F’ button, the keypad is very comfortable to use and the touchscreen is quick and responsive.

Compact and functional

Compact and functional

HTC has also thrown in their Sense UI to complete the experience. The phone is powered by an 800MHz CPU and runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread. We really didn’t have any major gripes with this phone other than the price, which we felt was a tad on the higher side. Either ways, you won’t be disappointed with the features and it’s functionality. Here are some of the highlights of the phone:

  • 2.6-inch TFT capacitive touchscreen with a 480 x 320 pixel resolution
  • 3G, EDGE/GPRS, Wi-Fi with DLNA support and hot spot creativity
  • GPS with A-GPS support
  • Bluetooth v3.0 with A2DP and USB 2.0
  • 5 megapixel autofocus camera with an LED flash, video capture up to 720 x 480 resolution
  • VGA resolution secondary camera
  • 3.5mm earphone socket
  • Expandable memory up to 32GB

Motorola Defy – Rs. 15,699 (Check prices)
Motorola’s Defy is still going strong as one of the best rugged smartphones in the market. While it was a good buy even at launch, it’s an even sweeter deal now at its current pricing. The phone is designed for all-weather use and easily withstands dust, grime, water, what have you, making it perfect for our country.

Rugged and durable

Rugged and durable

Powered by an 800MHz Cortex A8 processor from Texas Instruments, the phone is pretty quick and even though it officially comes with Froyo, you can easily update it to Gingerbread (just Google it). Here are some of the highlights of the phone:

  • 3.7-inch TFT capacitive touchscreen with a 480 x 854 pixel resolution
  • 3G, EDGE/GPRS, Wi-Fi with hot spot creativity
  • GPS with A-GPS support
  • Bluetooth v2.1 with A2DP and USB 2.0
  • 5 megapixel autofocus camera with an LED flash, video capture up to 640 x 480 resolution
  • 3.5mm earphone socket
  • 2GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB


Nokia E6 – Rs. 15,450 (View Stores)
Nokia really puts the ‘smart’ in smartphone with the E6. If you’re on the lookout for a business phone that’s not a BlackBerry, then the E6 fits the bill perfectly. Right from the design to the materials used for the body, Nokia has paid a lot of attention to detail which gives it a premium feel. The E6 runs Symbian Anna and is powered by a 680MHz ARM 11 processor. While this may feel underpowered, we assure you it’s far from it.

For the business minded

For the business minded

The phone can record 720p videos with ease and the default video player will easily playback 720p MKV and AVI files out-of-the-box. What we really liked about the phone is the great build quality, very good battery life, multimedia feature set, crisp high resolution screen and a brilliant keypad. The only major sour grape here is the fixed focus camera. Here are some of the key features of the phone:

  • 2.4-inch TFT capacitive touchscreen with a 640 x 480 pixel resolution
  • 3G, EDGE/GPRS, Wi-Fi with hot spot creativity
  • GPS with A-GPS support
  • Bluetooth v3.0 with A2DP and USB 2.0
  • 8 megapixel fixedfocus camera with dual LED flash, video capture up to 1280 x 720 resolution
  • 3.5mm earphone socket
  • 8GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB

Nokia 701 – Rs. 16,700 (View Stores)
Nokia’s latest addition to their touchscreen family, the 701, is a very good all rounder for the price it retails at. It runs Symbian’s latest OS, Belle, which adds features similar to the ones we’ve seen on Android so if you are a long time droid user and happen to make the switch, it won’t be a complete alien environment.

A good all rounder

A good all rounder

Powered by a 1GHz processor it will easily handle 720p videos without a hitch. It also packs in features not seen on many smartphones like FM Transmitter, NFC support and TV-out. We really liked the build and finish of the phone and although the Ovi store dwarfs in comparison to the Android Marketplace and the Apple Appstore, the Nokia 701 is plenty functional right out-of-the-box. Here are some of the highlights of the phone:

  • 3.5-inch TFT capacitive touchscreen with a 360 x 640 pixel resolution
  • 3G, EDGE/GPRS, Wi-Fi with hot spot creativity
  • GPS with A-GPS support
  • Bluetooth v3.0 with A2DP and USB 2.0
  • 8 megapixel fixedfocus camera with dual LED flash, video capture up to 1280 x 720 resolution
  • 3.5mm earphone socket
  • 8GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB

Samsung Galaxy S i9000 – Rs.19,999 (View Stores)
Samsung’s flagship from last year is still going strong with no signs of slowing down. The Galaxy S or GT-i9000 is famed for its brilliant Super AMOLED display which delivers unmatched contrast and colours compared to even the best LCD displays. With a 1GHz Hummingbird processor onboard and official Gingerbread 2.3.4 support, the phone can easily match up to any of the newcomers in the market.

Still going strong

Still going strong

The Galaxy S offers amazing value thanks to its great display, low weight, slim form factor, 16GB built-in memory and TouchWiz which adds plenty of additional support like MKV and FLAC capabilities. The following are some of the highlights of the phone:

  • 4.0-inch Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen with a 480 x 800 pixel resolution
  • 3G, EDGE/GPRS, Wi-Fi, DLNA with hot spot creativity
  • GPS with A-GPS support
  • Bluetooth v3.0 with A2DP and USB 2.0
  • 5 megapixel autofocus camera, video capture up to 1280 x 720 resolution
  • 3.5mm earphone socket
  • 16GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB

So there you have it. Our list that we feel are the best smartphones available in the market. Feel free to share your list of the best phones in this price range.

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