Author Topic: Is there such a thing as a good quality reasonably priced Android phone?  (Read 6692 times)

NestEggChick

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I LOVE my Nexus 5. The camera isn't very good, but otherwise it's been a perfect phone. The thing is, it's over 3 years old and it's having some issues. Earlier tonight it shut down in the middle of a phone call and wouldn't turn on for 30 minutes. Even when I plugged it in (the battery wasn't dead, and I knew that, but it should always respond to being plugged in!) So... I see a new phone in my future.

I want the new Pixel but at $650 - ouch! My Nexus was only $350, which I didn't mind paying. Too bad Google discontinued the line.

So what do you have and why do you like it? I want to avoid the "low end" phones that aren't very good. I want something nice - decent camera, reasonably fast, more than my current 12 gb storage, not too much bloatware, and definitely Android. Android is non-negotiable.

Any tips?

Thanks!

MarioMario

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Nexus 5x or 6p are good cheap buys.

I love my 6p but am sometimes jealous of my wife's 5x because that thing is weightless!

5x can be had for under $250 new.

Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk
« Last Edit: April 10, 2017, 10:02:27 PM by MarioMario »

rpr

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I see the new Moto G plus (5th gen) phones around $185 or so on amazon unlocked but with ads. The higher end version of this with 4GB RAM and 64 GB storage is listed for $239. Not sure how it compares to the N5x or N6p.

clackapedia

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I've heard good things about the OnePlus 3T, ~430 for most of the flagship features on most android phones.


checkedoutat39

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Around Black Friday you can find $20 4G Android phones. Most are offered by a prepaid carrier (Tracfone, Straight Talk, etc) but at that price you can buy a couple and/or just wait the year to BYOP it into another plan.

My current one is some sort of LG which I got online from Best Buy for $20 including shipping. Works fine, put whatever SD card in you want. You people paying hundreds of dollars for a phone are doing it wrong. Buy a dozen $20 phones, drop one in the toilet every month and you still come out ahead.

MarioMario

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If you want to try keeping you current phone seeing if it will work have you tried factory resetting it?

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lhamo

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I love my Nexus 5x.

I have a spare one that was only lightly used by my mom for a couple of days -- I'll sell it for cost +shipping if you are interested.   I think it was around $280 with tax (will have to look up the receipt).   PM me if interested.

sol

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The Samsung Galaxy series stopped notably improving with the S4, which is now about $175 brand new.

LadyStache in Baja

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zte 6 . cost about 180. great camera and plenty of memory.


PDM

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So what do you have and why do you like it? I want to avoid the "low end" phones that aren't very good. I want something nice - decent camera, reasonably fast, more than my current 12 gb storage, not too much bloatware, and definitely Android. Android is non-negotiable.

Any tips?

Thanks!

A few weeks ago I bought my wife (a former iPhone fanatic) a Xiaomi Redmi Note 4X via Aliexpress for $AUD 217 - so less in US$. I cannot recommend it highly enough for the money. Inside is a 3GB of RAM and 32GB memory, very nice screen. Comes with their skin on Android 6.

http://www.androidauthority.com/xiaomi-redmi-note-4-review-749774/

http://www.pcadvisor.co.uk/review/android-smartphones/xiaomi-redmi-note-4-review-eye-catching-upgrade-on-redmi-note-3-3647041/

I've been a skeptic previously of Chinese made phones - had some hit and misses - but I am confortable recommending Xiaomi  phones. They seem to have nailed to manufacturing process and design. Definitely doesn't feel like a $200 phone.


bugbaby

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I loved my Nexus 5, but it started shutting down too. I read online that it's a common problem with no real solution. But it's been ok for 2 months.

But I needed a reliable phone. So, I did some Amazon research and got a Huawei Honor $165 + 20 in accessories.  It's a solid phone with a good camera, great resolution.. The only issue with it, the second SIM slot doesn't work, and it has disabled call recording apps. If those aren't an issue, I'd highly recommend it.

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joonifloofeefloo

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Following.

WildJager

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If you haven't done a factory reset yet, do that before getting rid of the phone.  Phones, like computers, benefit from a reformat occasionally.  Most of your information is stored in your google account, so it's fairly painless.  You'll have to back up your photo's if you don't have them stored online somewhere.

NestEggChick

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Thank you all SO MUCH! Please keep the suggestions coming! My concern with older phones is that they no longer get the Android updates - how do you all feel about that?

I was thinking about doing a factory update, but I'm not hopeful. Like someone else said, this is a known problem. Plus, my phone has been dropped. A lot. The first case eventually broke. The second one is doing ok, but still. And it's over 3 years old and we all know that phones aren't built to last. But of course I'll try the factory reset first.

What I would really love is to wait for the Pixel 2 to come out and then buy a Pixel 1, but I'm not sure the price will drop enough, or that my phone will last long enough. If it dies, I need a new one right away - I can't wait several weeks. (Hence the advance research ;) )

marielle

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I love my Nexus 6p, and somehow it survives near daily drops with one of the stock cases. But it may not be the best bet if you're worried about updates and keeping it for 2-3 years.

This is when updates are no longer guaranteed by Google:
Nexus 6P - September 2017
Nexus 5X - September 2017
Nexus 5 - October 2015

"Nexus devices may still be treated to whatever the latest version of Android is, even after their two guaranteed years are up. After the two years are up, the devices will still receive important security updates for at least another year or up to 18 months after they are removed from the Google Play Store Google will go with whichever period is longer."

So security updates are good until September 2018 for 5x/6p. I personally never have worried about stuff like this though...I don't even know anyone who's ever been affected by security issues on phones.

ooeei

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My concern with older phones is that they no longer get the Android updates - how do you all feel about that?

That's just an issue with Android in general.  Most people don't worry about it, but it can be pretty frustrating if you end up with a phone with an annoying bug that is never fixed (my last android).  Even the Pixel only guarantees updates for 2 years.  It may be longer, but based on Nexus phones I don't see any reason to think it will be.

As far as security goes it's probably not a concern unless you have reason to believe you specifically would be a target for hackers (celebrity, high profile job, very wealthy, etc), or you don't have common security sense and install every "antivirus" that pops up on your screen at shady websites.   

If I came back to Android I'd go with something really popular like a Galaxy, Nexus, Pixel, or something similar, and maybe try to get a vanilla version so I could stack the deck in my favor for not having issues once the updates stop.  The Moto G is the benchmark for value phones, so it's a nice choice as well.  Niche phones tend to lose support pretty quickly as the manufacturers focus on their new offerings. 

FWIW I switched to an iPhone SE last year and have no desire to switch back.


neo von retorch

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These are phones I'd consider (typically ebay, lightly used, though the G5 can be purchased new):

$300 Nexus 6P (works with Google Fi, which I'm currently on), Moto Z Play (any GSM)
$170-230 2015 Moto X Pure, Moto G5 Plus (any GSM aka AT&T/T-Mobile provider)

I'm a bit of a Motorola fan... I own a Nexus 6, which was built my Motorola. My wife and anyone that's asked me for advice owns a Moto X Pure...

acroy

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Moto G for the win! pick your version.
Simple, fast, durable, little or no bloatware.

ketchup

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So security updates are good until September 2018 for 5x/6p. I personally never have worried about stuff like this though...I don't even know anyone who's ever been affected by security issues on phones.
I don't know anyone affected by polio, but I'm pretty sure I got that vaccine as a kid anyway.

Lack of continued updates is one the main issues with Android (especially with the cheaper models).  Apple is far better about that (which feels wrong but is true) simply because there are far fewer models to support.  I would definitely consider that a factor on a phone, unless you never use your email on your phone, or log into anything (but if both of those are true why do you have a smartphone?).  Unpatched Android devices are too common to not be vulnerable.  Same reason at work we unplugged all our Windows XP systems back in April 2014 (and Vista systems today, if we had any).

A recentish "flagship" model like the mentioned 5x is probably your best bet.  Those have far more concrete support windows, especially ones that are from Google directly (like the Nexus series).

(I'm fairly anti-Apple and a certified cheapass yet somehow ended up with an iPhone 7 due to a wonky planets-aligning deal I couldn't refuse.  From the looks of things it will be supported for many years.  I care about that way more than horsepower, flashiness, or really much else except maybe storage space and a non-shitty battery.)
« Last Edit: April 11, 2017, 01:29:13 PM by ketchup »

joonifloofeefloo

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...some sort of LG which I got online from Best Buy for $20 including shipping. Works fine, put whatever SD card in you want. You people paying hundreds of dollars for a phone are doing it wrong. Buy a dozen $20 phones, drop one in the toilet every month and you still come out ahead.

What do you all think of checkoutat39's idea?

Also, I'm about to replace my six year old phone (still working!) and had decided on an LG 4 until this thread. I'm reading a comparison of the Moto G and LG G4, and can't see advantages to the first. Is LG G4 not one you guys like?

I feel thoroughly intimidated by all things electronic...  I feel like I lucked out with my Samsung Galaxy Ace, which was the cheapest thing available to me at the time and seems indestructible. Aiming to "luck out" again!

Spork

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Moto G for the win! pick your version.
Simple, fast, durable, little or no bloatware.

I got a brand new G4 (unlocked after 6 months) from consumer cellular for $150.  Seems fine.  It's a little big for my tastes... but otherwise fine.

My previous Moto experience (Moto E 2nd Gen that went through the washing machine) was ... mediocre.  The phone was fine, but man, they abandoned the software updates pretty quickly. 

mm1970

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Nexus 5x or 6p are good cheap buys.

I love my 6p but am sometimes jealous of my wife's 5x because that thing is weightless!

5x can be had for under $250 new.

Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk
I think I have the 5x, got it last year summer? (seems like right before Pixel came out)  It was $250.

HipGnosis

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Moto G for the win! pick your version.
Simple, fast, durable, little or no bloatware.
+1
I just recently got a Moto G 4th gen.   Refurbished, from an Amazon seller, for $145.
Oddly, I didn't find it by searching on Amazon.  I found one via Amazon search for $159, and was using Google search to see if that was a good price.  (I abhor Amazon search)
It looks and works like brand new.

My Moto G 1st gen works great, but it has limited memory and I would have to uninstall an app (at least one) to install another.

The G(4) is SOO much faster than the G(1), even the GPS knows where I am almost immediately.
Some of my apps didn't install from the PlayStore.  I had to get newer versions, a couple of which I had to pay for.  Luckily, I got a PlayStore gift card for Xmas.
It came with Android 6.  It just updated (after asking for permission) to 7. 

MayDay

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I've always had Androids and have no affinity for apple.

But.

I got a new Nexus 5x in Nov 16 and apparently will only get 2-3 years out of it before it is abandoned?

And iPhones seem to be supported for 5 years, and usually last that long?

And we have two iPads that have been extremely abused by my children and are almost 5 years old and 3 years old, respectively.

So maybe I should consider an iPhone next?

I want a phone that works a long time. I have no desire to mess with a new cheap Android phone every 6 months even if that is cheaper. I want it to just work, for a long time, with no fuss. 

If my Nexus lasts 3 years I'll be happy. Maybe that is good enough. Idk.

NestEggChick

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This is really interesting.

I've heard a lot of bad things about the Nexus 5X, especially from people saying they wish they'd gotten the N5 like I did. But you guys all seem to love it! So interesting.

Ketchup, I feel like we're on the same page. I'd rather have a secure phone even if I don't need it, than say it's not important and later have trouble. Also, I've gotten buggy things with the phone that updates have fixed, and I'd be so annoyed to not have them. Before this I had a Galaxy S2 and man, it was frustrating to have to wait so long for updates! That's one reason I'd love a Pixel, if it were half the price.

jooniflorisploo, that post you quoted was apparently removed and I never saw it. I'm not sure how someone found a good quality phone for $20. And yes, if they don't last long then it makes sense to spend less money, but I also don't want something cheap that will crap out in a few months - what a pain that would be! But it does inspire me to consider other options some more.

Dollar Slice

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I feel like I lucked out with my Samsung Galaxy Ace, which was the cheapest thing available to me at the time and seems indestructible.

I really like my Droid Turbo in part due to the "indestructible" thing. It's made with Kevlar/ballistic nylon and Gorilla Glass. I've had it since July 2015 and it looks almost new even though I don't use a case (just a stick-on screen protector). The other thing I like about the Turbo is the insane battery life; I've literally never run out of battery life on it.

Vindicated

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I have an LG (Tribute I think).  I just asked Sprint for the cheapest phone they had when I switched from Verizon.  It was $120.  It works just as well as the higher-quality Samsung & HTC phones I've owned, but the camera quality is not too great.  I've only had it for 4 months though, so I can't vouch for it's life expectancy.

ooeei

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I've always had Androids and have no affinity for apple.

But.

I got a new Nexus 5x in Nov 16 and apparently will only get 2-3 years out of it before it is abandoned?

And iPhones seem to be supported for 5 years, and usually last that long?

And we have two iPads that have been extremely abused by my children and are almost 5 years old and 3 years old, respectively.

So maybe I should consider an iPhone next?

I want a phone that works a long time. I have no desire to mess with a new cheap Android phone every 6 months even if that is cheaper. I want it to just work, for a long time, with no fuss. 

If my Nexus lasts 3 years I'll be happy. Maybe that is good enough. Idk.

Well, it's not like the phone breaks down when they quit updating it, but you are missing out on security patches and bug fixes, and maybe a few new features that would work on an older device.  I know people with old Androids who don't have issues, granted they're usually pretty minimal users.

FWIW the iPhone 5 was released in Fall of 2012, and received an update a week or so ago.  That doesn't mean it's just as good as an iPhone 7 or competing Android, but it's as secure as can be on its hardware.  I know a few people who still have one with no complaints.  I've got an SE and really like it, the battery life has totally spoiled me compared to my old gen 1 Moto X.

I really like the idea of Android, but the fragmentation and openness that makes it great with all of its choices is also its weakness, because there is so much hardware to consider with every update.  Google's lack of control over Android is its best and worst feature.  Personally I decided I don't really need a lot of openness and customization on a phone, the iPhone is plenty for me.  The things I need it to do, it does as good or better than a comparable Android in my experience. 


rpr

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My Moto G 1st gen works great, but it has limited memory and I would have to uninstall an app (at least one) to install another.


I have the 1st gen as well and use it primarily when traveling as it is unlocked. But as you said, the storage limitation of 8GB including the Android OS makes it a challenge requiring constant installs and uninstalls.


therethere

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I got an unlocked Huawei Honor 8 about 6 months ago and I love it. I got it for $250 and have been scanning the sales to buy another for DH. I know some complain about the OS, but from switching from iOS I like it better. It has the features of Android but is more user friendly like iOS in my opinion. Others have concerns about security updates but its unproven thus far and I don't have much for others to hack. I was just looking for battery, SD slot, and a good camera at less than $300 and this fits the bill.

Spork

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FWIW: I would never buy Huawei branded anything.

This news was not in the least bit surprising:
http://thehackernews.com/2016/11/hacking-android-smartphone.html

I dealt with corporate Huawei equipment... and all of it was either put together with incompetence or intentionally put together so as to be laughably insecure. 

therethere

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In all seriousness, can you please explain how this is any different than Google or Facebook collecting your info? I mean, I assume everything I do nowadays has the ability to be public information or is being sold to random companies I've never heard of. So what is the huge concern?

rpr

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In all seriousness, can you please explain how this is any different than Google or Facebook collecting your info? I mean, I assume everything I do nowadays has the ability to be public information or is being sold to random companies I've never heard of. So what is the huge concern?
The difference in this case is that this was being done not by the manufacturer but by a third party likely without authorization. Furthermore, this third party company has been blacklisted by Google. All this points to a major lack of security control by the manufacturer of these phones who allow such malware to be installed on their own devices. Just to further point out that this sort of thing even happened to B&N Nook devices as well.

neo von retorch

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In all seriousness, can you please explain how this is any different than Google or Facebook collecting your info? I mean, I assume everything I do nowadays has the ability to be public information or is being sold to random companies I've never heard of. So what is the huge concern?

  • It's China. You're not supposed to know about it. You don't know how they'll use the information. They might hack your bank accounts.
  • It's specific. Google collects aggregate data, and some much more specific data (demographics, interests, recent browsing/search history) which is used for nefarious marketing, which makes them gobs of cash. It's clear how they make money off your data.

Neither is great. I didn't even mention Facebook, because I choose not to use Facebook, so they can't collect (or use) my data. I do use Android and other Google services, so I'm sure I pay the "consumer" tax in buying things that get marketed to me that otherwise do not. Still, showing zero concern over things like this is a slippery slope.. does something really bad have to happen before you show some concern? In general, consumers should "vote with their dollars" if they generally want "good" products and service. If you throw that out the window, you deserve what you get.

dreams_and_discoveries

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After my second Samsung broke in under 2 years, I went for a cheapo smartphone - went for a  DOOGEE X5 Max, which was the bargain price of 79 I believe.

Now it had the same Spec as my galaxy, and so far I'm liking it - the camera is not as good, but I've got no other complaints.

Spork

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In all seriousness, can you please explain how this is any different than Google or Facebook collecting your info? I mean, I assume everything I do nowadays has the ability to be public information or is being sold to random companies I've never heard of. So what is the huge concern?

While I am not crazy about the Googles/Facebooks gathering data.... this is actually someone ON your phone AS you doing things.   It's the difference between "gathering cookies and statistical data" and "having a shell on your PC."

If you happen to be a high value target to the Chinese government, do any banking/financial transactions or use the phone for any corporate access... it might be a very big deal.  If not... use at your own risk.

dess1313

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look into the Oneplus phones

https://oneplus.net/

was recommended by a friend, and is a really nice phone.  just got mine 2 weeks ago.  also comes with a warranty plan if wanted, and is fully unlocked

StetsTerhune

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I loved my Nexus 5X right up until the day it bricked on a bootloop with no warning at all. Apparently this is a reasonably common issue (like a memory fault) and truly unfixable. This on a 15 month old phone. A part of me wants to just get a new N5X, but I don't think I can justify that to myself after the last one died for no reason. If my phone is going to die on me (and they all do), I want it to be because I somehow smash it into oblivion.

I'm taking this opportunity to take a couple month hiatus from having a phone (2 weeks in, it's pretty great), but after that I'm torn between getting the cheapest acceptable* option -- to me that's probably a Moto G4 play -- or something slightly more expensive and up to date like the moto G5 plus. I could get 2 g4 play's for the price of a g5, which seems like a decent solution. I travel 100% of the time, and while not having a phone is fun at this moment, it's often not an option at all for me, so having a back-up phone is appealing to me.

*The Moto G's (and above), along with iphones and google phones look like the only phones that have antenna's covering every possible cell phone band. I travel and use a different network wherever I go, so not having to think at all about the bands at all is a luxury I have grown accustomed to.

MMMaybe

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I am thinking of getting the One Plus 3T. I have had my iPhone 4S for 5 years but it is struggling. I usually buy my phones outright so I want to get something that will last a few years and the One Plus looks promising.

FernFree

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I just got a Moto G5 Plus from Republic Wireless and am in the process of saying goodbye to my iPhone 6S (getting it unlocked, transfering contacts, etc.).  If all goes well I should cut my cell phone cost in half for the next year:

iPhone 6S  New ~$800, sell it 1.5 to 2 years later for ~$320 on Swappa
Moto G5 Plus New ~$230
= net ~$90 on the phone swap

AT&T 1G Monthly - $45
Republic Wireless 1G Monthly - $20
Monthly savings $25 * 12
= $300 annual savings

Then I'll work on getting that 1G of data down to save even more. :)

I did a lot of research before I decided on the Moto G5 Plus.  I came down to it or a Nexus 5X, but decided on the Moto b/c of:
1. Moto has the newest version of Android
2. Moto has new technology/software b/c Nexus 5X is already a year or two old
3. Nexus 5X has bootloop issue and poor battery life
4. I'm forgetting the numbers now, but I think the Moto was also a bit cheaper than the Nexus 5X.

kelvin

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I was able to get one of the Huawei P?s. Love it. It came out about the same time as the Nexus 4, which it was replacing for me, but I was able to buy it new from the factory. So a two-year-old phone, but without the battery issues that a two-year-old phone has.

The manufacturer had their own custom version of android on it which had gotten poor reviews at the time the phone was new, but they'd worked out the kinks by the time I got it. I paid $250 (CAD) for it, would do it again in a heartbeat.

davisgang90

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I bought the Moto G4 with amazon ads and it is a great phone.  https://smile.amazon.com/Moto-4th-Generation-Exclusive-Lockscreen/dp/B01EZC9WC0?sa-no-redirect=1

FLBiker

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DW got a Moto G4 a year or two ago and has been very happy with it.  I have my mom's old Iphone, but when it dies I'll probably get a Moto G.

markpst

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Re: Is there such a thing as a good quality reasonably priced Android phone?
« Reply #44 on: September 30, 2017, 08:32:37 AM »
The Moto G4 32GB is now $129.99 (Amazon & BH Photo). Unlocked and available to use on all 4 major carriers, which is a big plus IMO.

I bought the G4 Play used about a month ago for less than $60 on Ebay (the XT1607, not the Verizon subsidized one). I really like it so far. Pretty much stock Android, and it has an FM Radio which I use quite a bit. The battery life is great, and the battery is removable/replaceable (G4 Play only, I believe the G4 is harder to replace). I am using mine on Tracfone, but will switch to Red Pocket once my service/minutes end.