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Best phones under Rs 15,000 in India for May 2021

Redmi Note 10
(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)

The most crowded smartphone segment in the Indian market is the sub-Rs 15,000 price bracket. Most of the smartphone sale contributions happen here. Since the last few months, the smartphone launches and sales have gone up thanks mega launch that happened in the month of March

Some of the phones launched in 2020 have also received price cut which makes them more affordable than ever before. With the change in price, now in this sub-Rs 15,000 segment, we have a bunch of new devices from Redmi, Samsung, Motorola, and Realme. These are the best value for money smartphones available currently that are priced under Rs 15,000. 

In the list, we have smartphones from Poco, Realme, Xiaomi's legendary and Redmi Note series, and Samsung. We also have an option for those who want just stock Android device Nokia. Let's take a look at the best smartphones under Rs 15,000 in India for 2021.

If you are looking for over Rs 15,000, have a look at our under Rs 20,000 guide.

What can you expect from a Rs 15,000 phone?

  • Big battery and fact charging
  • Good display
  • High refresh rate on a few phones
  • Decent performance and gaming experience
  • camera experience like never before 
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Poco X3

(Image credit: Aakash Jhaveri)
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Poco X3

(Image credit: Aakash Jhaveri)
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Poco X3

(Image credit: Aakash Jhaveri)
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Poco X3

(Image credit: Aakash Jhaveri)
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Poco X3

(Image credit: Aakash Jhaveri)
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Poco X3

(Image credit: Aakash Jhaveri)
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Poco X3

(Image credit: Aakash Jhaveri)

Poco X3

A brute force approach

Specifications
Display: 6.67-inch Full HD+, LCD, 120Hz
Processor: Snapdragon 732G
RAM: 6/8GB
Storage: 64/128GB
Rear camera: 64MP + 13MP + 2MP + 2MP
Front camera: 20MP
Battery: 6000mAh, 33W charging
OS: Android 10, MIUI 12
Weight: 225g
Thickness: 10.08mm
Reasons to buy
+Consistent performance+Versatile and capable cameras+Great 120Hz display+No ads
Reasons to avoid
-Bulky-Relatively slow charging-LCD panel

Initially launched for Rs 16,999, the base variant of the Poco X3 is now available for Rs 14,999 on Flipkart. The Poco X3 Pro is also the most affordable phone with a 120Hz display. The device is powered by Snapdragon 732G chipset which offers pretty smooth performance. 

In terms of camera, the Poco X3 has a 64MP primary sensor, a relatively high-res ultra-wide lens and two auxiliary shooters, paired with a robust suite of shooting modes make it an extremely enjoyable camera.  At over 10mm thick and a weight of almost 230 grams, it is one of the bulkiest phones out there as it also packs in a 6,000mAh battery with 33W fast charging brick. 

Features like IP53 water-resistance, an IR blaster, dual speaker setup are icing on the cake at this price point. 

Read our Poco X3 review

 Buy Poco X3 on Flipkart 

6+64GB: Rs 14,999

6+128GB: Rs 15,999 | 8+128GB: Rs 18,999View Deal

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Redmi Note 10

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Redmi Note 10

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Redmi Note 10

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Redmi Note 10

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Redmi Note 10

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Redmi Note 10

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Redmi Note 10

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Redmi Note 10

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)

Redmi Note 10

The right balance

Specifications
Display: 6.43-inch Full HD+, AMOLED, 60Hz
Processor: Snapdragon 678
RAM: 4/6GB LPDDR4X
Storage: 64/128GB UFS 2.0
Rear camera: 48+8+2+2MP
Front camera: 13MP
Battery: 5000mAh, 33W charging
OS: Android 11, MIUI 12
Weight: 178.8g
Thickness: 8.2mm
Reasons to buy
+Excellent display+Good performance+Sleek design+Reliable battery life
Reasons to avoid
-Camera needs work-MIUI 12 is still not perfect

The Redmi Note 10 is an excellent upgrade from the last-gen devices and overall one of the best phones under Rs 15,000 that we can recommend. It has an excellent display, offers good performance and has reliable battery life. As for the optics, the 48MP quad-camera setup on the back performs well in the daylight but struggles in low-light. Selfies come out just above average here. 

In terms of battery life, the device will easily last a day and to back that up, Redmi is now offering a 33W fast charger in the box. The Redmi Note 10 has a superb AMOLED panel with a peak brightness of 1,100 nits. It is also one of the best-looking phones in the segment. Lastly, the software allows amongst the most customizable skins in the market, but it still needs some work. 

Read our Redmi Note 10 review

Buy Redmi Note 10 on Amazon

4+64GB: Rs 12,499 

6+128GB: Rs 14,499View Deal

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Realme 8

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Realme 8

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Realme 8

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Realme 8

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Realme 8

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Realme 8

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Realme 8

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
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Realme 8

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)

Realme 8

Greater than the sum of its parts

Specifications
Display: 6.4-inch Full HD+, AMOLED, 60Hz
Processor: MediaTek Helio G95
RAM: 4/6/8GB LPDDR4X
Storage: 128GB UFS 2.1
Rear camera: 64+8+2+2MP
Front camera: 16MP
Battery: 5000mAh, 30W charging
OS: Android 11, Realme UI 2.0
Weight: 177g
Thickness: 7.99mm
Reasons to buy
+Excellent battery life+Fast charging+Much sleeker than last year+Consistent performance
Reasons to avoid
-No high refresh rate-Secondary camera performance

While it may not seem like it at first, the Realme 8 is a solid rival to the Redmi Note 10 with a Super AMOLED display, excellent battery life and a fresh design. It manages to offer a more consistent experience than the specs may suggest. For starters, the first big change is the super AMOLED display on the Realme 8, an upgrade from the LCD panel on the Realme 7.

As for the performance the Realme 8 has retained the Helio G95 SoC from the last generation and has been optimized well enough to manage even the heaviest tasks. Realme UI 2.0 also makes its debut in India with the Realme 8 series by bringing in a plethora of customization options.

With a sleek profile of 7.99mm, the Realme 8 packs in a massive 5,000mAh battery which can easily last a day and a half with heavy usage and charging up the device can be done in an hour thanks to the 30W fast charger provided in the box. In terms of camera, the primary camera on the back with 64MP is the only one that's worth your attention.

Read our Realme 8 review

Buy Realme 8 on Flipkart

4+128GB: Rs 14,999 | 6+128GB: Rs 15,999

8+128GB: Rs 16,999View Deal

Moto G40 Fusion

(Image credit: Flipkart)

Moto G40 Fusion

Specifications
Display: 6.68-inch, Full HD+, LCD, 120Hz
Processor: Snapdragon 732G
RAM: 4/6GB
Storage: 64/128GB
Rear cameras: 64+8+2MP
Front cameras: 16MP
Battery: 6000mAh, 20W fast charging
OS: Android 11
Weight: 220g
Thickness: 9.6mm
Reasons to buy
+Clean Android+Performance+Big battery
Reasons to avoid
-Slow charging-Bulky

Motorola added a good budget phone in the segment with the launch of the Moto G40 Fusion in India. The Moto G40 Fusion is powered by the Snapdragon 732G processor which is a capable chipset. It is also the best gaming chipset in the segment. In addition, you also get a big 6.8-inch 120Hz LCD screen with HDR10 certification. 

In terms of battery life, the device also packs in a massive 6,000mAh battery which should last a couple of days. But for charging the device, you will have to settle for a 20W fast charging, which takes about 2 hours and 30 minutes. 

The device runs on near-stock Android 11 out of the box and as an added security feature, the device also comes with Thinkshield for a mobile suite that protects the phone from supply chain level to OS and hardware level. In the camera department, you get a 48MP main camera on the back and a 16MP selfie camera. 

Buy Moto G40 Fusion on Flipkart

4GB + 64GB: 13,999

6GB + 128GB: Rs 15,999View Deal

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Poco M2 Pro

(Image credit: Future)
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Poco M2 Pro

(Image credit: Future)
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poco m2 pro

(Image credit: Future)
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poco m2 pro

(Image credit: Future)

Poco M2 Pro

If it ain't broke, don't fix it

Specifications
Display: 6.67-inch Full HD+
Processor: Snapdragon 720G
RAM: 4GB/6GB
Storage: 64GB/128GB
Rear camera: 48MP + 8MP + 5MP + 2MP
Front camera: 16MP
Battery: 5000mAh, 33W charging
OS: Android 10, MIUI 11
Weight: 209g
Thickness: 8.8mm
Reasons to buy
+Insane battery life+Solid performance+Built and design+Fast charging
Reasons to avoid
-Bulky-60Hz display

Poco M2 Pro is the company’s mid-range with powerful internals that is more or less same as the Redmi Note 9 Pro. But, it offers slightly better design, Ad free experience,  and faster-charging speed for the same price. The Poco M2 Pro features a 5,000mAh pack will easily last you over a day and also supports 33W fast charging.

On the inside, you get the Snapdragon 720G chipset, which is the most reliable silicon available at this price. Combine that with a 48MP quad-camera setup and a big 6.67-inch Full HD+ screen, and you get a very easy-to-recommend phone. 

Read our Poco M2 Pro review

Buy Poco M2 Pro on Flipkart

4+64GB: Rs 12,999

6+64GB: Rs 13,999 | 6+128GB: Rs 15,999View Deal

(Image credit: Realme)

Realme Narzo 20 Pro

Fastest charging phone

Specifications
Display: 6.5-inch Full HD+, 90Hz
Processor: MediaTek Helio G95
RAM: 6/8GB
Storage: 64/128GB
Rear camera: 48MP + 8MP + 2MP + 2MP
Front camera: 16MP
Battery: 4500mAh, 65W fast charging
OS: Android 10, Realme UI 1.0
Weight: 191g
Thickness: 9.4mm
Reasons to buy
+65W fast charging+90Hz display
Reasons to avoid
-Inconsistent performance

The first "Pro" variant in the Realme Narzo series comes with the segment-first 65W fast charging. With this super Dart charger, the 4,500mAh battery can be filled in just 38 minutes. On the front, there is a 6.5-inch Full HD+ LCD panel with 90Hz refresh rate, 120Hz touch sampling, 480 nits brightness, and 90.5% screen to body ratio. Under the hood, the device is powered by MediaTek’s gaming-centric Helio G95 chipset. 

The device is available in two configurations with up to 8GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage. You are looking at a quad-camera stack on the Narzo 20 Pro with primary 48MP Samsung GM1 sensor, an 8MP ultra-wide shooter, a macro lens and a mono portrait lens. To the front, you get a 16MP  selfie camera.  

Buy Realme Narzo 20 Pro on Flipkart

6+64GB: Rs 13,999

8+128GB: Rs 15,999

Rs 1,000 off on pre-paid transaction View Deal

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Samsung Galaxy M12

(Image credit: Amazon)
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Samsung Galaxy M12

(Image credit: Amazon)

Samsung Galaxy M12

Cheapest phone with 90Hz screen

Specifications
Display: 6.65-inch HD+ LCD, 90Hz
Processor: Exynos 850
RAM: 4/6GB
Storage: 64/128GB
Rear camera: 48+5+2+2MP
Front camera: 8MP
Battery: 6,000mAh, 15W fast charge
OS: Android 11, One UI 3.1
Weight: 221g
Thickness: 9.7mm
Reasons to buy
+90Hz screen+Big battery+Decent performance 
Reasons to avoid
-Slow charging -Bloatware and spammy notifications 

Samsung Galaxy M12 is the brand’s first phone with a 90Hz screen refresh rate in the budget segment. Apart from having a high refresh rate screen, the device also comes with a massive 6,000mAh battery and an 8nm Exynos 850 processor. 

In terms of optics, the device is having a  48MP ISOCELL GM2 main camera, a 5MP wide-angle lens followed by a 2MP macro and a 2MP depth sensor. To the front, there is a dew-drop notch that houses the selfie camera of 8MP. The phone runs on OneUI 3 Core based on Android 11 out of the box. 

Buy Samsung Galaxy M12 on Amazon

Buy Samsung Galaxy M12 on Amazon

4+64GB: Rs 10,999

6+128GB: Rs 13,499

Rs 1,000 coupon available View Deal

Best smartphones under Rs 15,000

DevicePrice
Poco X3Rs 14,999 onwards
Redmi Note 10Rs 11,999 onwards
Realme 8 Rs 14,999 onwards
Moto G40Rs 13,999 onwards
Poco M2 ProRs 13,999 onwards
Realme Narzo 20 ProRs 14,999 onwards
Samsung Galaxy M12Rs 10,999 onwards