If you’re looking to buy a SIM-free phone you’ve come to the right place! Our price comparison engine checks the prices for all these phones several times a day and lists them all cheapest-first so you can be sure we’re always linking you to the best prices!
SIM-free phones have become increasingly popular in the last few years. When big phones like the iPhone 7 or Samsung Galaxy S8 go on sale, they’re usually very expensive. So expensive, in fact, that it can be cheaper to buy the phones SIM-free and pair them with SIM only deals from one of the networks.
What’s more, mobile phones are a lot better than they used to be and that means people are hanging on to their phones beyond the traditional 24 month contract, pairing their existing phones with a SIM only deal at the end of their contract. It's a great way to bridge the gap before snaffling a fresh bargain Black Friday deal.
1. Moto G5
Brand new for 2017, this is the best 'cheap Android phone'
Weight: 145g | Dimensions: 144.3 x 73 x 9.5mm | OS: Android 7 Nougat | Screen size: 5.0-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 1920 | CPU: Octa-core 1.4 GHz Cortex-A53 | RAM: 2/3GB | Storage: 16GB/32GB | Battery: 2800mAh | Rear camera: 13MP | Front camera: 5MP
The Moto G series has been the leader in the budget Android smartphone market for years now. The latest phone is always a lot better than similarly priced phones and almost as good as phones that cost more than twice the price. If you're after a really good phone but don't want to spend too much money it's always a great option. The 2017 model we have here is a tad smaller than last year's G4 (5.0-inch versus 5.5-inch) but if you want a slightly bigger screen you could always go for the Moto G5 Plus.
2. Moto G5 Plus
Slightly bigger and better than the Moto G5
Weight: 155g | Dimensions: 150.2 x 74 x 7.7mm | OS: Android 7 Nougat | Screen size: 5.2-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 1920 | CPU: Snapdragon 625 | RAM: 2/3/4GB | Storage: 16GB/32GB | Battery: 3000mAh | Rear camera: 12MP | Front camera: 5MP
If you like the look of the Moto G5 but fancy a slightly bigger screen then the Moto G5 Plus could be the phone for you. It's slightly more powerful too and looks and feels far more premium than the price would suggest. It charges super fast, and has convenient features such as fingerprint sensor and much more. If you want to go even bigger, check out last year's Moto G4 Plus which measures 5.5-inches and is included below.
3. iPhone SE
The 'cheap iPhone' option is a good bet if you want Apple on a budget
Weight: 143g | Dimensions: 123.8 x 58.6 x 7.6mm | OS: iOS 10 | Screen size: 4-inch | Resolution: 640 x 1136 | CPU: Apple A9 | RAM: 2GB | Storage: 16/64GB | Battery: 1624mAh | Rear camera: 12MP | Front camera: 1.2MP
If you want a cheap iPhone then the iPhone SE is the best SIM-free phone to go for at the moment. It is not as powerful compared to the iPhone 6S or iPhone 7 but it is a step up from the iPhone 5S and crucially retains the 5S' size and shape which is ideal for anyone who wants an iPhone but doesn't want a phone with a massive screen.
4. OnePlus 3T
A top smartphone for those that want the best on a budget
Weight: 158g | Dimensions: 152.7 x 74.7 x 7.4 mm | OS: Android Marshmallow | Screen size: 5.5-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 1920 | CPU: Snapdragon 821 | RAM: 6GB | Storage: 64GB/128GB | Battery: 3400mAh | Rear camera: 16MP | Front camera: 16MP
If you're after a high-end Android handset but don't quite want to pay high-end prices, the OnePlus 3T is the phone for you. It's got everything - stunning AMOLED 5.5-inch screen, fingerprint scanner, excellent battery life and lots more. And the best bit is that it costs a lot less than the equivalent phones from the bigger brands.
5. Samsung Galaxy S7
Last year's Samsung flagship is still a brilliant phone in every way
Weight: 152g | Dimensions: 142.4 x 69.6 x 7.9 mm | OS: Android Marshmallow | Screen size: 5.1-inch | Resolution: 1440 x 2560 | CPU: Exynos 8890 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 32GB/64GB | Battery: 3000mAh | Rear camera: 12MP | Front camera: 5MP
The Samsung Galaxy S7 phones sit at the pinnacle of the smartphone world right now - they're the best selling Android handsets out there. The S7 is very similar to the S7 Edge (below), containing most of the same components. The main difference is a slightly smaller screen that's flat rather than curved. It sat at number 2 in TechRadar's best phones ranking for a year so yeah, it's brilliant. In terms of outright value for money, the S7 is probably the better option.
6. Nokia 3310
A throwback to phones of yore...when batteries lasted more than a day
Weight: 79.6g | Dimensions: 115.6 x 51 x 12.8 mm **Screen size:** 2.4-inch | Resolution: 320 x 240 **RAM:** 16MB | Storage: 16MB | Battery: 1200mAh | Rear camera: 2MP
Welcome back, old friend! Pure nostalgia may be the primary jet-fuel that makes this revamped classic fly off the shelves, but for such a low price this may genuinely suit you as a second device to take to festivals or keep in your bag for emergencies. It's some way off the capabilities of actual smartphones, but...well, did we mention Snake?
7. Nokia 6
Premium - yet affordable - Android phone from Nokia
Screen size: 5.5-inch | Resolution: 1920 x 1080 | Rear camera: 16MP | Weight: 169g | OS: Android 7 Nougat | RAM: 3/4GB | Storage: 32/64GB | External storage: microSD up to 256GB | Battery: 3000mAh
Solid specs. Full HD display. Premium metal casing. And all for a very affordable price. There isn't much not to like about the Nokia 6. And possibly its best feature is the way it runs from the stock Android 7 interface, making it an absolute doddle to use. It's never going to match the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S8 for pure processing power, but you can always pay a little more for the Arte version if you think you'll need more RAM.
8. LG G5
A cheap SIM-free phone that matches more expensive options
Weight: 159g | Dimensions: 149.4 x 73.9 x 7.7 mm | OS: Android Marshmallow | Screen size: 5.3-inch | Resolution: 2560 x 1440 | CPU: value | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 32GB | Battery: 2800mAh | Rear camera: 16MP | Front camera: 8MP
LG phones have been very strong for the last couple of years. The LG G5 is only a year old but the SIM-free price has already dropped quite considerably which makes it a great option for a SIM-free phone purchase. It's got a great screen, a dual-camera and many other features that cheap phones don't usually have. A great option.
9. Moto G4
Last year's best cheap phone is still excellent
Weight: 155g | Dimensions: 153 x 76.6 x 9.8mm | OS: Android 6 Marshmallow | Screen size: 5.5-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 1920 | CPU: Snapdragon 617 | RAM: 2GB | Storage: 16GB/32GB | Battery: 3000mAh | Rear camera: 13MP | Front camera: 5MP
For less than £150 you can grab yourself the Motorola Moto G4 which is a brilliant budget Android SIM-free phone. In many ways it makes a mockery of the prices that the other phones go for. It lacks the stunning build quality of a Samsung or an iPhone but it gets most of the way there and for a price that will have many people doing a double-take. One thing to note - the Moto G5 is now out and our review will be here very soon so this phone might soon be replaced on this list!
10. Huawei Honor 8
An extraordinarily shiny Android phone that’s extra ordinary
Weight: 153g | Dimensions: 145.5 x 71 x 7.5 mm | OS: Android Nougat | Screen size: 5.2-inch | Resolution: 1920 x 1080 | CPU: Kirin 950 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 32/64GB | Battery: 3,000mAh | Rear camera: Dual 12 MP | Front camera: 8MP
Huawei is a Chinese brand that has taken the smartphone world by storm in the last few years. And the Honor 8 is an all-metal and glass phone that could easily go for more money. It looks and feels really premium but the asking price is a step below other leading smartphone which makes it a great SIM-free option.
11. iPhone 6S
2015's best iPhone is still a brilliant phone to this day
Weight: 143g | Dimensions: 138.3 x 67.1 x 7.1mm | OS: iOS 10 | Screen size: 4.7-inch | Resolution: 750 x 1334 | CPU: Apple A9 | RAM: 2GB | Storage: 16/32/128 | Battery: 1715mAh | Rear camera: 12MP | Front camera: 5MP
The iPhone 6S is no longer the best iPhone out there but it could be the best iPhone to buy if you want something decent without paying the Earth. It's well over £100 cheaper than the iPhone 7, after all, and yet it's exactly the same size, has a very similar screen and has most of the same features.
12. Samsung Galaxy S8
The latest and greatest Samsung Galaxy phone is out now
Weight: 155g | Dimensions: 148.9 x 68.1 x 8mm | OS: Android 7 Nougat | Screen size: 5.8-inch | Resolution: 1440 x 2960 | CPU: Exynos 8895 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 64GB | Battery: 3000mAh | Rear camera: 12MP | Front camera: 8MP
The Samsung Galaxy S8 is a superb phone and it's currently available to pre-order from various places. If you want it SIM-free you're going to have to pay around £689 which is a lot of money. Don't worry though, if that's way too much there are some great cheaper options further down the page. We'll be publishing our full Samsung Galaxy S8 review soon so keep checking in for our full verdict.
13. Apple iPhone 7
Far and away the western world's best selling phone
Weight: 138g | Dimensions: 138.3 x 67.1 x 7.1mm | OS: iOS 10 | Screen size: 4.7-inch | Resolution: 750 x 1334 | CPU: Apple A10 Fusion | RAM: 2GB | Storage: 32/128/256GB | Battery: 1960mAh | Rear camera: 12MP | Front camera: 7MP
The iPhone 7 is the most popular SIM-free phone out there. It's also the most popular contract phone out there. And so it was always going to make our list of the best SIM-free phone deals. Is it the best SIM-free iPhone to buy though? Only you can decide that - you'll probably see that the iPhone 6S offers most of the same features but is available for less.
14. Google Pixel
The best phone for pure Android
Weight: 143g | Dimensions: 143.8 x 69.5 x 8.5mm | OS: Android 7.1 | Screen size: 5-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 1920 | CPU: Snapdragon 821 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 32/128GB | Battery: 2770mAh | Rear camera: 12MP | Front camera: 8MP
The Google Pixel is a super high-end Android phone and consequently you're unlikely to find cheap prices for it just yet. If you're after a brilliant Android phone though it's a super option. It's got perhaps the best camera of any phone out there right now, and because it's made by Google it's got Android baked into it from the ground up so it's super slick and easy to use.
15. BlackBerry KEYone
The return of the physical keyboard
Weight: 180g | Dimensions: 149.1 x 72.4 x 9.4mm | OS: Android 7.1 Nougat | Screen size: 4.5-inch | Resolution: 1080 x 1620 | CPU: Snapdragon 625 | RAM: 3GB | Storage: 32GB | Battery: 3505mAh | Rear camera: 12MP | Front camera: 8MP
The KEYone is a sophisticated smartphone made for business - sound familiar?
Yep, this is classic BlackBerry territory and it resurrects a physical keyboard for a modern Android audience. The QWERTY keyboard offers more than just nostalgia, while the smart and secure software will give businesses some peace of mind. Just know that the mid-range specs will only get you so far, as will the so-so entertainment capabilities