Philippines

Best Upper-Midrange Smartphones in the Philippines from P20,000 to P30,000

January 2021 Edition

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When premium phones are out of financial reach and entry-level handsets just don’t make your cut, something in between is the next best thing. This is our updated list of the best upper-midrange smartphones retailing from PhP 20,000 to PhP 30,000.

Formulating this category was tricky, since you can’t set an exact price and some of these devices are, in fact, the flagship phones of their respective brands. To simplify things, we chose a price range that simply sits between our other lists for best budget, midrange, and premium smartphones.

Here they are in no particular order:

OnePlus 8T (PhP 29,990)

Die-hard fans of OnePlus will find that there’s a lot to like with the OnePlus 8T. It’s still a relatively premium experience for less. There’s plenty of contention happening in the sub-flagship arena and the OnePlus 8T has a strong case to being your best option with its overall combination of optimized performance and improved cameras.

WATCH: OnePlus 8T Unboxing and Review

Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro (PhP 24,990)

This is our 2020 best value smartphone for simply because of its price-to-feature ratio. You’re getting so much flagship-level specs for about half the price of most flagships these days. The Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro is the embodiment of Xiaomi’s commitment to bringing great value for money smartphones and is easily the best recommendation in this category.

WATCH: Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro Unboxing and Review

POCO F2 Pro (PhP 29,990)

The priciest in this bunch, the POCO F2 Pro easily also feels and arguably looks most premium. The POCO F2 Pro has the heft, look, and feel that’s typically reserved for the premium flagships. It’s powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 adding fuel to the flagship killer fire. It’s a noteworthy follow-up to the cult classic that was the POCO F1 Pro.

REVIEW: POCO F2 Pro

Huawei Nova 7 5G (PhP 23,990)

The marketing around this phone has been centered around it being 5G-capable. However, with 5G still at its infancy in terms of coverage, you should look beyond 5G when considering this phone. And when you do, what you’ll find is perhaps one of better built smartphones at this price. Of course, you’ll have to contend with the lack of Google Mobile Services. Is that a deal breaker? There are workarounds, so if you’re the type who can live with these, the Nova 7 is still solid choice.

REVIEW: Huawei Nova 7 5G

realme X3 SuperZoom (PhP 24,990)

The realme X3 SuperZoom is equipped with late 2019 flagship specs — Snapdragon 855+, 64MP main camera, 120Hz screen refresh rate — while being priced at just a little over half the price of phones with comparable specs. realme is playing in that flagship killer territory and certainly deserves more attention.

REVIEW: realme X3 SuperZoom

iPhone SE (PhP 26,990)

One of the world’s fastest processors, a fantastic camera, at a midranger’s price. If we told you, we’re talking about an iPhone you probably wouldn’t believe us but here we are. The iPhone SE’s design is dated, but everything about its performance is near-flagship or flagship 2020 levels.

REVIEW: iPhone SE

Samsung Galaxy A71 (PhP 22,990)

Awesome screen, awesome camera, long-lasting battery life — that’s the LSS-inducing theme of the Galaxy A71 as it was being teased. Lo and behold, Samsung wasn’t lying. The phone certainly lives up to the hype and while specs-wise there may be cheaper options out there, the package that Samsung has put together is quite enticing.

REVIEW: Samsung Galaxy A71

Enterprise

Google: Digitizing businesses key to P5 trillion value by 2030

Google to play big part in PH economy

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Image by Genevieve Catapangan

The digital transformation of businesses could create up to PhP5 trillion in annual economic value by 2030, a new Google Philippines-commissioned report finds.

Of this value, PhP3.5 trillion could come from technologies that help businesses mitigate the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and future similar events.

Key findings from the report include:

  • Businesses derive 363.4 billion pesos in annual benefits from Google tools and services, through increased revenues, millions of connections with customers and greater efficiencies, saving time and money;
  • App developers in the Philippines earn 384 million pesos in annual revenue through Google Play, reaching over one billion users globally;
  • Consumers receive 214.5 billion pesos in annual benefits by experiencing greater convenience, access to information, and enhanced productivity. Search saves users almost five days a year; and
  • By enabling businesses to unlock new revenue streams and expand their businesses through the use of Google Ads, AdSense, and YouTube, Google indirectly supports over 110,000 jobs in the Philippines

This could be a game-changer for the Philippine economy, as the country is still hard-struck by the global health situation and has lagged far behind other nations.

Prepared by economists at AlphaBeta, the report explores eight transformative technologies and the robust economic potential they bring to Philippine industries.

This includes Artificial Intelligence (AI) which can be used to drive data-based public health interventions, mobile internet to help digitize retail distribution channels, and the Internet of Things (IoT) for use in supply chain tracking.

Digitizing MSMEs

To fully realize and unlock the opportunities presented by digital transformation, the report has identified three main pillars of action the Philippines could take: enhancing digital skills training and education, accelerating digital adoption and innovation, and promoting digital trade opportunities.

There exists a huge potential for the Philippines, and a lot of positive work has already been done in this area within the last year.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), through its secretary Ramon Lopez is wary of the important role digital transformation plays when it comes to the country’s economic recovery post-pandemic.

Which is why Google and the DTI have been digitizing small businesses through its Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Caravan campaign for the past two years, being able to train more than 46,000 MSME business owners and employees.

In fact, Google’s tools and services are already helping the Philippine digital economy, as local business, consumers and the wider society derive over 578 billion pesos in annual benefits through increased revenues and millions of connections online.

Increasing sales

One of the businesses that benefited from the digital training workshop is Germano’s Chilli which continues to thrive until today.

Germano’s Chilli started in 2008 to recreate the experience of eating chili garlic from restaurants to people’s homes. The concept was fairly new at that time and the business struggled with brand awareness.

Owner Gerome Panlilio then took a Google Philippines-hosted seminar in 2018 to get himself acquainted with features such as Business Profile (formerly Google My Business) on Google Search and Maps, as well as vital knowledge and tools.

This enabled his products to be searchable online, which led to more revenue. Before the pandemic, Germano’s Chilli’s online sales only peaked at 3 percent, but in the past year and a half, it increased to 15 percent.

Digitizing is the way to go

Google Philippines is aiming to aid more businesses like Germano’s Chilli, creating a world that supports digital freelancing and accelerates the shift towards digital payments to let go of disruptions to business operations.

Providing business such access to global markets and equipping them with the necessary digital capabilities to expand reach, business will be able to manage the long-term economic implications of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Enterprise

Converge commits to 100% renewable energy

Its main office now runs in clean energy

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Converge finally switches to 100 percent renewable energy to power its main office in Pasig City. The company committed to a total of 2.5 megawatts of geothermal energy up to 2023.

First Gen, a clean energy corporation, will be the energy provider for the Internet company. Converge is serious about reducing its carbon footprint and marching its sustainability commitment.

“The Philippines is especially vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, and this has direct implications on the future of our business too. We have chosen to take decisive action now. This is the first major step in our journey to becoming carbon neutral,” said Benjamin Azada, Converge’s Chief Strategy Officer.

The clean energy will be sourced from the Tongonan geothermal power plant in the province of Leyte. During the first year, the energy firm will provide a maximum of 1.5 megawatts, and will increase to 2.5 megawatts through its second year.

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Accessories

Sony adds water-resistant WF-C500 to its headphone line

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Sony WF-C500

Sony is making your music-listening experience even more personalized with the announcement of its new wireless headphones: the WF-C500.

Sony’s impressive WF-C500 is ideal for people who want to switch to truly wireless headphones and enjoy all their favorite music in even better quality.

With its unique sound customization, compact design, easy to use Bluetooth pairing, long lasting battery life and water-resistant feature, Sony’s newest headphones can now take your music anywhere.

Small size, uncompromising sound

The WF-C500 showcases a compact design that perfectly fits your ear, while delivering high quality sound powered by Digital Sound Enhancement Engine (DSEE).

This restores high frequency sound and fine fade-out sound to the track you’re listening to and create a more authentic listening experience.

The wireless headphones will also allow you to customize your sound aptly using the Equalizer setting in the “Sony | Headphones Connect” app.

That way, you can tailor your sound depending on the music genre you’re currently vibing to—whether it’s chill pop or bassy rap—with a variety of settings.

You can even create and save the preferred settings so you won’t have to tinker with controls the next time you plug the headphones in.

Comfort is key

The WF-C500 is small and light, while its ergonomic surface design helps create a more stable and secure fit in your ears to make them the perfect companion wherever you go.

Their rounded shape makes them a pleasure to wear, leaving you free to focus on music that matters to you.

Compact and stylish case

The truly wireless headphones come with a stylish cylindrical charging case that is small and definitely easy to carry around so you can take the earbuds anywhere you go.

Its translucent lid with a frosted glass-like texture adds on to a luxurious appearance and feel.

Effortless listening experience 

The WF-C500 has been specially designed to make every day listening trouble-free.

Aside from easy operation buttons like play, stop, skip and volume adjustments, they offer an easy way to access your preferred voice assistant like Google Assistant or Siri to make or receive calls hands-free.

You can connect to your preferred voice assistant to get directions, play music and send messages with just a click of a button.

Conversations also flow freely with hands-free calling, which is made clearer than ever with a high-quality built-in microphone.

Great for on the go

Sony WF-C500

The headphones will provide you with 10 hours of battery life, making it perfect for on the go listening.

Its handy charging case pushes that life up to 20 hours total. If you’re in a rush, you can easily add an hour of extra playtime by having a quick 10-minute charge.

Water-resistant for multitasking

With an IPX4 water resistance rating splashes and sweat are no problem for the WF-C500, meaning you can keep moving to the music while enjoying your passions like working out or being at the beach.

The WF-C500 is ideal for multitasking too. If you want to listen to your music while still being able to have a conversation, remove one earbud only from the charging case and use as normal.

A stable and reliable Bluetooth connection creates a seamless and uninterrupted listening experience that ensures it’s just you and the music.

Immersive audio features

Sony WF-C500

The WF-C500’s Bluetooth chip transmits sound to left and right ears simultaneously, along with optimized antenna design ensuring outstanding listening.

And with low audio latency, watching your favorite movies take on a whole different audio experience as well.

Additionally, WF-C500 allows playback of 360 Reality Audio tracks, personalized to the specific shape and size of the user’s ears.

With 360 Reality Audio you can bring the concert wherever you are or listen to music as if you’re with the artist in the recording studio.

Pairing is a breeze

The WF-C500 supports Google’s Fast Pair feature, which means you can pair the headphones with your Android device quickly and easily.

Swift Pair also makes it quick and easy to pair your headphones with your Windows 10 computer via Bluetooth.

Sustainability matters

Sony has not only designed the WF-C500 to be stylish but also with sustainability in mind.

Zero plastic is included in the packaging material of this model, reflecting Sony’s commitment to reducing the environmental impacts of their products and practices.

Pricing and availability

The WF-C500 comes in black, white, green and orange and is now available for PhP 4,999 at Sony Centres and Authorized Dealers stores nationwide.

You may also shop for the WF-C500 at Lazada and Shopee.

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