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The Vodafone Smart Prime 7 is sensibly-priced, and is aimed at people who want a reasonably capable handset but aren't 'power users'. This is a phone for someone young, or someone old, or, honestly, anyone in the middle who wants a simple-to-use device with an up-to-date version of Android and plenty of upsides.
Vodafone offers this phone exclusively, and it can be obtained either for a one-off fee of £75 for pay-as-you-go users, or free on a £16 per month contract.
The nice thing about this is that while the phone is cheap, you're still getting 4G for blisteringly-fast web access – just make sure you get a tariff with enough data, or you'll blow through it in no time. Plus in July 2016, we've even included the Vodafone Smart Prime 7 in our list of the best cheap phones.
The most impressive thing about the Vodafone Smart Prime 7 is that it doesn't look like a cheap handset. It's well built, it has some reasonable features that will give it value for almost any user, and it runs surprisingly smoothly.
The battery life is worth a shout-out too, because it's really decent. You'll get 24 hours out of this handset, even with moderate use, and that's a great thing for a handset that's likely to see a lot of use as a telephone, rather than as a mobile gaming platform or video-blogging powerhouse.
I'm also a big fan of the screen. It doesn't have the sort of specs to make a geek weak at the knees, but it's clear, crisp and has loads of detail. It suffers a bit in bright sunlight, but it's still usable – it's a really good effort all around.
While the camera can produce passable images outdoors and in good light, it's never going to deliver a shot that will wow you. Its photos are fine for, say, Facebook, but I wouldn't want to use them for much more.
The 8GB of internal storage, is, frankly, disappointing. This is a key area of cost-saving for phone manufacturers, but, while there's a microSD card slot for up to 128GB of additional storage, that won't suit all needs – this is a phone that isn't really aimed at people who want to muck about with such things, and 16GB would have been a better option.
I was very happy with the Vodafone Smart Prime 7 until I got to the camera, and then things started to fall apart a bit. However, I can just about live with the slightly weak snapper on this phone, because there are so many other things going on here that are worth celebrating.
The screen is far better than I would have honestly expected, and I also like the design of the Smart Prime 7, which is basic without being cheap and nasty. It's not going to win any beauty contests, but neither is it going to be the butt of a "what are thooooose" style internet meme.
The Smart Prime 7 is more than powerful enough for most uses – I played games, and had no problem with the general speed of the handset. It does quite poorly in benchmarking, but that doesn't worry me unduly, as I wouldn't expect a low-cost device to keep up with today's high-end smartphones.
There's plenty here to like, and not much to dislike. If your phone camera is very important to you then I'd urge caution; aside from that though, the cheap and cheerful Vodafone Smart Prime 7 hits a good note for me.
First reviewed: May 2016