Starting university? These smartphones could be for you

The new university term is just around the corner – and 18-year-olds up and down the country will undoubtedly be excited to get into life away from home for the first time.

For anyone in this position, there are so many things to think about that it can feel slightly overwhelming.

Indeed, this is one of the advantages of moving into student halls or catered accommodation, as it means there are a few less things to organise.

However, one decision no one will want to leave to someone else is what new smartphone they take with them.

Being a student often involves working with a limited budget. Many people live off loans and grants alone, while others find part-time work to help them get by.

With this in mind, we’ve come up with a list of some of the current crop of smartphones that are popular as a budget option.

Sony Xperia M4 Aqua

The latest mid-range offering from Sony, the Xperia M4 Aqua, is an improvement on previous iterations of the device.

While it has been succeeded by the Xperia M5, it is still available at a lower price point and offers some neat features that are tough to find elsewhere.

For instance, it is one of a very small number of smartphones you can safely take to the bath with you, as it boasts IP68 waterproof technology that means it won’t damage the inner electronic workings.

With 4G mobile broadband, a five-inch, 1,280×720 high definition display and 13-megapixel camera, the handset is among the best available at under £200.

The battery life can reportedly last around two days, which makes it one of the top-performers in this respect.

Oppoo F1

Oppo may not be one of the biggest smartphone brands, but that does not mean they do not offer products that can compete with some of the finest in the lower price ranges.

The Oppo F1 is the cheapest smartphone available in the UK. Although it’s running on an older version of Android – 5.1 Lollipop – it is still impressive, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 616 processor, 3GB of RAM, 16GB of storage and a five-inch 720p screen.

This means it can multitask smoothly – and its camera setup mixes a 13-megapixel sensor for bright snaps and an eight-megapixel selfie cam.

OnePlus GX

OnePlus are another comparatively new entrant to the smartphone market – but last year’s OnePlus GX seems very impressive now it has dropped below the £200 mark.

Its five-inch screen has a resolution of 1080×1920 – higher than the other smartphones on this list.

With the similar specs to other options in this price range – 3GB of RAM and 16GB of storage memory – you have an idea of what you can expect to get at this price point.

But the OnePlus is different in that it features a premium-style ‘Onyx’ design that has the feel of a flagship device, rather than a budget handset.

A cut-glass backplate sits in a solid anodised metal frame – so this is a very visually appealing smartphone.

Motorola Moto G4

For a larger screen, the Moto G4 has a 5.5-inch, display offering 1080×1920 resolution – and it is impressively powerful.

Sharp details, accurate colours and a balanced look have made this a hit with smartphone gamers, as has the Snapdragon 617 CPU and 2GB RAM, which ensures the device suffers very little slowdown.

The standard 16GB of storage can be boosted with a microSD card slot and the non-removable 3,000 mAh battery typically offers a full day’s charge. ADNFCR-2155-ID-801824536-ADNFCR

Written by Mazuma

Mazuma Mobile is the UK's most trusted mobile phone recycling service.

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