Best Mid-Range Android Phones: from $250–$1,000

A review of the best mid range Android phones of 2020. Includes OnePlus 7T, Galaxy S10e, Pixel 3A and 3A XL , 4XL, 4A, 4XL, Moto G7,LG V60 and more.

Play Video
Tshaka Armstrong
YouTube Host, Mobile
Read More
February 10, 2021
6 min read

Today's video is gonna be a little different than what I've dropped before. Instead of reviewing one phone, we're taking a look at the best Android™ phones of 2020, so far. I say so far, because there are still some devices we're looking forward to getting our hands on later in the year, but we'll talk about those as well. So, let's begin by setting the rules for this top list.

Number one, I'm considering these choices for a category you'll sometimes see labeled as "most users" or “best Android™ mid-range phones of 2020”. That means that I'm looking not at early adopters or the superbtech savvy users, but your average user for whom value is more important than top-of-the-line spec.

Number two, some of the phones on my list actually went on sale mid to late 2019. If a phone became available to the public after April of 2019, it's fair game here.

OnePlus 7T

In no particular order, let's begin with the OnePlus 7T. For around $550 or less, OnePlus represents some of the best of what high-end smartphones have to offer at prices most of us can actually afford.

With this phone, you're going to get a great processor, a big beautiful AMOLED screen with 90Hz refresh rate, a solid camera that captures great images (even if it isn't the best one out there right now) , and quick charging.

You'll need quick charging because the battery life isn't tops, but it will get you through an average day depending on your use. This is one of my personal favorites, though I do wish it came with wireless charging.

Samsung's Galaxy S10e

A phone which does come with wireless charging, and can be found for as little as $350 on eBay, and takes pictures in low light (which I was highly impressed with) is Samsung's Galaxy S10e.

This phone makes me look at much more expensive phones in the lineup and ask, “why?”. Well, for me the answer is bigger screens and expense, but if you like smaller phones, smaller retail prices, and big value, I don't think there's a much better phone on the market. You can use this phone to charge other devices with wireless power share and you're gonna get excellent cameras.

What you won't get is three cameras on the rear or a fingerprint sensor under the glass. The phone features a fingerprint sensor on the side, but I utilized face unlock which worked great and got me into the phone as fast as I needed it to.

Pixel 3A & Pixel 3A XL

Let’s throw the Pixel 3A or 3A XL in the mix. If you're talking camera quality, Pixel phones have been among the best, giving the iPhone and Samsung's flagship phones a solid run for their money. There's roughly an $80 difference between the two, so size really makes a difference here.

Like the OnePlus, you're not gonna get wireless charging but what you do get is a very capable phone with long battery life and specs that do the job for someone who isn't looking to spend a great deal of money. Currently you can pick up a Pixel 3A on Amazon for $300.

Moto G7

Need a device for less than $300? The Moto G7 ticks a lot of boxes, and as I shoot this video, you can grab one from Best Buy for $250. This phone is for the budget conscious buyers who are okay with a phone that is all business without a lot of extras. Although, it actually comes with some highly functional software additions like Motorola's Moto actions and Moto display.

You can check out my full review for more on those. Just know that when you choose the G7, you're getting a good camera. You're not going to have wireless charging, though you will have fast charging, which you'll need because battery life is only mediocre. But for users shopping this range, it does what a mid-range phone does, and that is deliver dependable use.

What if you have a bit more to spend? Maybe you don't wanna spend $1,400 on a phone but you're willing to go somewhere between $700 and $1000?

LG's V60 ThinQ with Dual Display

LG's V60 ThinQ with dual display is a killer phone. While it isn't a folding phone, its dual display is a multitasker at its finest, and the specs on this device itself, the V60, are nothing to sneeze at. The screen looks great, and the battery life, with its 5000mAh, will get you through your day.

But, it's the cameras, audio hardware, and dual screens which make it a standout. The macro photos you can shoot are beautifully detailed and you still get a 3.55mm audio port and built-in digital-to-analog converter, which will have your wired headphones or car's aux port jack delivering beautiful music to your ears.

You're going to get flagship specs with wireless charging, sub-6, 5G, and 8K video recording. But the showstopper here is the dual 6.8 inch OLED displays, which will do everything from allow you to have multiple apps open at one time, one app open across both screens, or one app open on one screen using the other screen as your keyboard. Or, even gaming on one screen and using the second screen as a gaming controller.

It's a beast of a machine and you're going to pay $800 for the V60 itself or $900 for the phone with the dual screen accessory on T-Mobile.

Samsung Note 10

If top-of-the-line is what you're after, the next phone on our list can scratch that itch. Samsung's Note 10 is the Note for those who want all of the Note’s features but in something that will easily fit in their pockets. You get the S Pen and it's new air actions which allow you to make gestures with the pen in midair to activate features. You also get cameras that are solid performers, wireless charging, fast charging, and speakers which are better than those found on some laptops.

The display is, of course, stunning. With HDR Plus support, paired to the loud built in speakers, your media experiences on this phone will be delightful. Shooting video will also be great with the video image stabilization that is built into this phone.

The only way you can do better is to shell out more money for the larger Note 10 Plus, which would cost you $150 more at full price, but for $1100, I'm thinking it's a good idea to wait to see what the forthcoming Note 20 has to offer. Rumor is, it's a lot.

Pixel 4 XL

And if you don't want or need an S Pen and want a phone with exceptional night shots, the Pixel 4 XL is one to look at. You're gonna to get a phone with a 90Hz refresh rate on the screen, and cameras, which changed the game and really made other manufacturers take low-light capabilities to the next level with their night sight mode and motion sense for gesture controls.

And of course, you're getting stock Android straight from Google with a promised upgrade path of three years of OS updates.

Speaking of updates, we're only in the beginning of the year still, with the Coronavirus throwing a wrench in the supply chain, some launches may be delayed, but there are devices to look forward to which may have you wanting to wait to make the move to your next phone.

Samsung Note 20 Rumors

Samsung's Note fans have a lot to look forward to this year. Rumors are that it may include faster storage than the S20, as well as faster RAM. We may see the S20's camera system in the Note 20 as well as 5G, and a new display which is a 5G friendly, lower power consumption display, and even better handling of eye fatiguing blue light. And maybe the most important rumor of all, major upgrades to the S Pen. We'll see.

OnePlus 8 & OnePlus 8 Pro

Then my personal fav, OnePlus has their OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro on the horizon. I'm actually a fan of both and can't wait to get my grubby revealing hands on those devices. The Pro model looks like it may cost somewhere around $700, and rumor is that both models will be 5G enabled.

Other rumors around OnePlus latest batch of phones have a 120Hz screen refresh rate, and finally, maybe the addition of wireless charging, as well as an entry-level OnePlus 8 lite device.

Google Pixel 4a and 4a XL

Google will be releasing lite versions of its Pixel 4 and 4 XL in the Pixel 4a and 4a XL, though the rumors are that there may be no XL version this time around. Slated to be announced in May, based on last year's timing of the announcement of the 3a's at Google IO, which has been cancelled this year, the 4a may have a 5G version with Snapdragon's new 765 chipset. The Pixels have had excellent cameras and their night sight modes are among the best in the business. So it may be well worth waiting a month or two to get your hands on one.

What Are Your Best Mid-Range Android Phones of 2020?

So what do you think? Is there a phone you're looking forward to seeing this year? Personally there's more I'm excited to see but most of us won't be able to get our hands on here stateside, like certain phones from Xiaomi and everything Huawei, but that's a whole other discussion for another video.

So now's your chance, tell me which phones you want to see this year or which phones you think were the best of 2020 so far, do you agree or disagree with what I've laid out here? Let me know in the comments and let's talk about it.

We don't take it lightly that you've watched these videos. We appreciate you. So, thank you for watching this best Android phones of 2020 video, we'll see you in the next one.

Best mid-range Android phone comparison
List prices

OnePlus 7T


Samsung Galaxy S10e


Pixel 3A


Pixel 3A XL


Moto G7


LG V60 ThinQ


Samsung Note 10


Pixel 4 XL


Samsung Note 20


OnePlus 8


OnePlus 8 Pro


Google Pixel 4a

$569.99 List Prices (as of 02/10/21 4:44 MST).

Tshaka Armstrong
Written by
Tshaka Armstrong
Tshaka is a nerd and Griot. Founder of the non-profit digital literacy organization Digital Shepherds, he’s also been a broadcast technology reporter, writer, and producer. In addition to being an award-winning broadcast storyteller, he’s also covered tech online and in print for everything from paintball gear technology, to parenting gadgets. He blathers on about his many curiosities on social media everywhere as @tshakaarmstrong.

Related Articles

Woman Using Her Phone Outside
What Is Data Roaming?
Whenever you venture outside your carrier’s network, you risk data roaming fees. Learn what is...
Telstra Internet Issues
Spectrum Internet Not Working? Try These Simple Fixes
Spectrum Internet is known for offering fast speeds and decent prices. But it’s not the...
Outdoor camera on the side of a house
Best Outdoor Security Cameras of 2022
There are hundreds of outdoor security cameras on the market, but how do you know...
Best TV Service Providers of 2022
Find the best TV provider for you with our 2021 TV Service Buyers Guide. Compare...