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5 min read 166 Shares 16 comments

Why a mid-range smartphone is all you need right now

All these new smartphone releases are overwhelming, with sky-high figures and super-powerful processors in addition to numerous acronyms and futuristic features. The question is: do we really need this much power and to spend so much money to meet our daily requirements from a phone? We often overlook the mid-range market in this regard... these smartphones are very capable of doing almost everything we actually need them for in our daily routines.

We often seek to have the best smartphone of the moment, some even go for it despite that one's wallet doesn't quite agree. We sometimes don't think twice about paying the price upfront or signing a phone contract that will run for multiple years just to be able to hold this powerful device in our hands - often forgetting to consider whether this cost is really worth it. And here is the hard truth: rarely does any device do 100 % what we want it to do.

The truth is, a mid-range phone like the Honor 8 or the Moto G4 Plus is perfectly capable of doing exactly that: nearly everything we need from a phone in our daily lives. Even though a phone is often a status symbol in addition to being a daily tool, fulfilling one's inner desire to have something nice to show off or even just to have something of high quality, to extrapolate wildly, you wouldn't buy a Ferrari just to do daily runs to the local bakery. 

Opinion by Luis Ortega
A mid-range smartphone is perfectly capable of doing what I need in my daily routine
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Look at what you use to know what you need

Try this simple test that will show you exactly what it is you need from your phone: take a look at the apps you've installed on your phone and rank them in order of most used. For most people, the top three apps are generally: Facebook (Messenger), Instagram and Snapchat. While it's true that the Facebook app consumes a lot of resources, it will also work on just as well on a cheaper smartphone too.

App Annie did an analysis of the most downloaded and installed apps from Google Play Store. Looking at both the free and paid apps, none of them (apart from the odd exception) are really able to make use of the full potential of a high-end device, not even close to it.

AndroidPIT omar loves facebook messenger
At the end of the day, we mostly just use Facebook Messenger. / © AndroidPIT

As for gaming, which is supposed to really push a phone's GPU to its limit, even the games that are supposed to really test the phone's capacity aren't able to unlock the phone's full potential. In fact, for the most downloaded games in the Play Store, most mid-range phones are also perfectly capable of running these games smoothly.

While it's true that for the most demanding games like Asphalt 8 or Real Racing 3, you will get a better gaming experience on a high-end device, you can also get a decent experience playing on a mid-range phone. However, THE most downloaded game Bubble Witch 3 Saga doesn't even come close to frying any device's GPU.

Understand your smartphone better

Of course, there is a certain portion of the audience who are photography fans or who seek a superior gaming experience. For those of you who fall into that category, obviously the hardware (camera, processor and GPU) is an important factor. Particularly for photography, the best results can only be achieved with high-end devices like the Google Pixel, HTC 10 or the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge. But sometimes you may find a hidden gem in a mid-range device, like the Moto G4 Plus, the LG G5, the Sony Xperia X Compact or the Honor 8.

The majority of people are content with just taking photos with friends or of landscapes, filtering and sharing images on their social media networks - or just playing Candy Crush Saga. The Huawei P8 Lite 2017 or the Honor 8 can tackle these kinds of tasks without any problem.

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The Honor 8 is a perfectly good mid-range phone. / © AndroidPIT

I should just clarify, I am not saying we should decrease or stop the production of high-end smartphones - these devices are extremely important to showcase new technologies and concepts, for gaining reputation and for coming up with features that will eventually end up in mid-range devices.

Are you a user who plays the most demanding games on your phone and uses apps that really test the various components or your phone? Or conversely, do you just need a smartphone that is able to manage your day to day tasks? Depending on your answer to these questions, you'll be able to make the best decision on whether to buy an expensive yet powerful high-end device or take your chances with a cheaper but perfectly capable mid-range phone.

Are you satisfied with your smartphone and using it to its full potential? Or maybe you want to change to a new device to better suit you use? We want to know your thoughts in the comments below!


With contributions from Santiago Luque

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  • Dean L. 7 months ago Link to comment

    Not all carriers lower last year's flagship at mid range price. Mine doesn't, LG G5 still at full retail.


  • just can"t wait to see the price drop of the Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge once the Galaxy S8 models are released,the prices will be dropping fast with people wanting to make the switch,Ebay will be selling loads at affordable prices


  • I own a LG G4 and I'm totally looking forward to switch to a Moto Z Play but the camera is what stops me. I really don't want to go hight-end again.

    But the LG G6 and Huawei P10 Plus seems good enough. Not sure what to do for the next 2 months.


  • Doing just fine with my Nexus 5X, it also has a great camera, paid $225 for the 32 GB model. It does everything I throw at it with ease, smooth as butter.


  • i usually go for premium but cheap...
    like a carefully chosen last year's flagship, there's a few around at mid range prices, or less.
    usually gets an experience that far exceeds it's price, and more than capable for whatever i need.


  • The €150 to €250 ZUK Z2 with Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 as the Samsung Galaxy S7 around €500 is the "mid range price, but not specs" to go. I bought one online, and it is the best tech purchase of my live.


  • Smartphones keep getting more expensive every year and people now are not able to make the switch to a new phone every year,so purchasing a budget phone is getting more popular,contracts now last over 18 months but your tied to that phone and end up paying more than what you thought,Chinese phones can turn out to better what people think plus there more affordable,plus sometimes they can be Dual sim card phones,Cubot offer some nice phones and Ebay offers these phones


  • Well, for most people, they:
    1. Buy a flagship
    2. Use until break
    3. Repeat step 1

    PS: I keep getting an error: "Error occured. Your contribution have unapproved content"


  • I recently wanted to update my phone,so I bought a Galaxy Note 4,rooted it,added a Custom recovery and a Custom ROM..perfect phone..!!


  • Mark
    • Admin
    7 months ago Link to comment

    We all WANT the newest and latest gadgets. Like this article points out do you NEED it. I would say no. My Note 4 runs everything I through at it, and it specs are less than today midrange devices.


  • I totally agree with this article. After spending a bit on a high end phone, I've realized I overspent AND ended up with something surprisingly boring. Mid-range phones are incredible right now. I'm already thinking about ditching my high end phone for one of them.


  • storm 7 months ago Link to comment

    The Moto g line has been a huge win for Android. Cheap, plenty powerful, fully featured.


  • Dean L. 7 months ago Link to comment

    I like taking pictures. So for me having a decent camera means I probably should use a high end phone. I've looked at the Moto Z play droid and have come close to picking it up. The battery life sounds awesome but the camera has received not so great reviews. Maybe this year's moto Z play droid 2 will improve the camera. Just having a hard time spending $700-$800 dollars on another phone.


    • The Z play even though it has the 625 processor can perform as well as a 800.00 dollar phone. The added bonus it has a two day battery and of course the mods! Why pay the 800.00 when you can purchase for half the price? Performance most will not notice the difference!


    • Dean, the camera is average but takes very decent pictures. That's the trade-off!

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