Welcome to GadgetMatch’s list of the best smartphones priced below $300! Each month, we update our selection with the budget-friendly phones we believe are most deserving of your hard-earned savings.

Even though the spotlight has been on high-end smartphones this entire year, there have been a few surprisingly good entry-level handsets coming out lately, as well. So good, in fact, that we had to reassess our entire list.

Here they are in no particular order:

Huawei GR3 2017 / Honor 8 Lite ($180)

As much as we enjoyed having Huawei’s GR5 2017 (also known as the Honor 6X) on this list, we couldn’t help but replace it with its more affordable sibling, the GR3 2017 (confusingly called the Honor 8 Lite in some regions). You can never go wrong with a midrange chipset and premium-looking body in a sub-US$ 200 handset.

REVIEW: Huawei GR3 2017

LG Q6 ($250)

How often do we see a near-borderless display on a budget-friendly smartphone? As of now, just once. Thanks to LG, we’re seeing FullVision on the Q6, and it’s stunning at this price point. Along with it comes a power-efficient processor, high-grade aluminum frame, and triple-card slots.

REVIEW: LG Q6

ASUS ZenFone 4 Max ($200)

It doesn’t get much more complete than this below $300. The ZenFone 4 Max has everything you’d hope for in a $200 phone, including a dual-camera setup and large 5000mAh battery in a body that’s surprisingly compact. Once its cleaner version of ZenUI arrives, this will be one tough entry to kick out.

REVIEW: ASUS ZenFone 4 Max

Xiaomi Mi Max 2 ($270)

Xiaomi is already well known for offering incredible bang for one’s buck, but they really took it to another level with the Mi Max 2. Its 6.44-inch Full HD display is practically tablet-sized; its Snapdragon 625 processor is one of the best chips you can find on any handset; and the massive 5300mAh battery feels like it lasts forever.

REVIEW: Xiaomi Mi Max 2

Vivo Y53 ($120)

When you talk about great value, you must include Vivo’s Y53. Despite having no fingerprint scanner, its processor and build quality are among the things you used to find on phones twice the price of this handset — truly a serious consideration when you can’t spend more than $140.

REVIEW: Vivo Y53

Updates as of September 1:

  • Replaced the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4X with the Mi Max 2
  • Replaced the OPPO A57 with the LG Q6
  • Replaced the ASUS ZenFone 3 Max 5.5 with the ZenFone 4 Max
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