Best 5G Phone Under $300?

The OnePlus Nord N20 5G is a budget smartphone sold by T-Mobile, but is it a better buy than the Nokia X100 that’s also offered by the carrier?

OnePlus He has announced the Nord N20 5G as its newest budget 5G smartphone for the US, but despite the low price tag, it has some competition which includes the likes of the Nokia X100. Priced under $300, the Nord N20 should appeal to those who want a 5G smartphone that doesn’t burn a hole in their pocket. OnePlus has ramped up its mid-range offerings with its Nord lineup, which has amassed nine models since it was first announced in 2020. However, only four have made it to the US

In comparison to other major markets like China and India, there are fewer options for Android smartphones in the US, especially in the budget and mid-range segment. China’s Xiaomi, Realme, Vivo, and OPPO are among the leading brands in the budget space, but they do not sell their products in the US Brands that do sell their products in the country have a limited selection.

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The Nord N20 5G and Nokia X100 5G are very different-looking phones. OnePlus has opted for a flat design that emphasizes lines and edges, while the Nokia phone has a lot of curves. Both phones sport punch-hole front cameras in their displays, with the Nord N20 5G’s in the top-left corner and the Nokia X100’s in the middle. In addition to the flat frame, the OnePlus phone also has a triple camera setup in a vertical alignment. In contrast, the Nokia X100 has a curved frame and a quad-camera array in a circular module. The OnePlus Nord N20 5G and Nokia X100 can only be purchased in one color – Blue Smoke and Midnight Blue, respectively.


Both Phones Run An Outdated Version of Android


The OnePlus Nord N20 5G ships with Android 11 in 2022

The OnePlus Nord N20 5G is the smaller of the two with its 6.43-inch display. The screen is an AMOLED panel with FHD+ resolution and a 60Hz refresh rate. In contrast, the Nokia X100 has a larger 6.67-inch FHD+ LCD 60Hz panel. Nokia’s phone has an 8nm Snapdragon 480 5G processor which has two Cortex-A76 cores and six Cortex-A55 cores. It is not as powerful as the 6nm Snapdragon 695 inside the OnePlus Nord N20 which has two Cortex-A77 cores and six Cortex-A55 cores. Despite the differences in performance, both phones have 6GB of RAM and 128GB of built-in storage with support for expansion via a MicroSD card slot.


In the camera department, the Nord N20 5G has a 64MP f/1.79 main camera paired with a 2MP monochrome camera and a 2MP camera with a macro lens. The Nokia X100 has a 48MP main camera with Zeiss Optics, a 5MP ultra-wide camera, a 2MP depth camera, and a 2MP macro camera. It also has a 16MP sensor in front for selfies and video calls. Both phones have a headphone jack, USB-C port, Bluetooth 5.1, dual-band Wi-Fi, and NFC. They also have support for face unlock in addition to a fingerprint scanner. The Nord N20’s fingerprint scanner is embedded in the display, while the Nokia X100 has it on the side where it doubles up as the power button. Additionally, the Nokia phone has a dedicated Google Assistant button on the side. Nokia ships the phone with a 4,470mAh battery which it claims will provide up to two days of usage. It supports 18W fast charging and comes with a charger in the box. OnePlus, on the other hand, has equipped the Nord N20 5G with a slightly smaller 4,300mAh battery but it supports 33W fast charging. Like all other OnePlus phones so far, a power adapter is bundled with the phone.


While both phones were launched after the release of Android 12, they run the older Android 11. OnePlus has promised three years of security updates, but just one OS upgrade to Android 12. Considering it launched more than five months after Android 12’s release, this is best described as a crafty move, even though it is not an uncommon practice. Those who pick the Nokia will get a stock Android experience while the OnePlus phone has OxygenOS on top. At $282, the OnePlus Nord N20 5G offers an AMOLED display, a powerful mid-range chipset, and a charging speed that is faster than what competing devices offer. Considering these benefits, the slightly cheaper $252 Nokia X100, also sold by T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile doesn’t seem to be as good of a deal considering it has a less powerful processor and charges much slower than the OnePlus phone.


NEXT: Galaxy A53 5G Vs. Galaxy A42 5G: Best Samsung Phone For Under $450?

Source: Nokia, OnePlus

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