2021 saw some of the finest value-oriented all-rounders phones launched in the year in the sub-Rs 30k smartphone category. The segment has it all – from high performance to loaded cameras, and presents a tough task ahead for the expert jury panel of the Indian Gadget Awards. The biggest tech award in the country, the Indian Gadget Awards calls upon around 40 experts from the Indian tech media community to pick the best consumer electronics launched in 2021. For this category, we had nine nominees, but only one can be the winner. Check out which phone won the Best Phone of 2021 Under Rs 30,000 award.
Winner: OnePlus Nord 2
Runner-up: Xiaomi Mi 11X
Check out the full list of nominees for the Best Phone of 2021 Under Rs 30,000 award:
A highly impressive all-rounder of a phone, the iQOO Z5 is known for its superior performance that’s offered by the Snapdragon 778G 5G chipset. Its 120Hz FHD+ display that gets rid of trailing or motion blur in visuals is also a key highlight. A liquid-cooling vapour chamber exists in this device for when things heat up. The phone also offers long battery life thanks to its adoption of a 5,000mAh cell that charges at 44W.
Powered by MediaTek’s flagship Dimensity 1200 5G chipset, the Realme X7 Max is an exquisitely designed handset that’s pleasing to the eyes. It’s also got a 64MP triple camera setup. Even more impressive is its 120Hz Super AMOLED display that’s accompanied by a 360Hz touch sampling rate. This panel not just makes it great for gaming but also attracts the attention of binge-watching enthusiasts who have the phone’s Dolby Atmos-certified dual stereo speakers to look forward to as well.
Here’s another mid-ranger that made headlines upon its arrival. It has adopted a tailored, AI-focused MediaTek Dimensity 1200 chipset that gives it AI chops in the camera department. The OnePlus Nord 2 is equipped with a 50MP triple camera setup. While it misses out on a 120Hz panel, its 90Hz Fluid AMOLED display doesn’t disappoint. The phone’s 4,500mAh battery charges at 65W, going from 0 to 100 per cent in just 30 minutes.
While most phones in this segment can handle games well, the POCO F3 GT takes things to the next level with its incredible set of gamer-targeted features. These include pop-up shoulder triggers, a swanky appearance, the power of the Dimensity 1200 chip, up to 8GB of RAM, a 120Hz AMOLED display, and a 480Hz touch sampling rate. On top of that, the phone boasts a 5,065mAh battery that comes with 67W fast charging support.
Samsung’s mid-range pitch for 2021 included the Galaxy M52 5G, which comes as a compelling all-round device to own. The slim handset is powered by the Snapdragon 778G processor and features support for as many as eleven 5G bands. Its 6.7-inch 120Hz Super AMOLED display offers remarkable visuals and its 64MP + 12MP + 5MP camera setup is also pretty impressive. While it’s got a large 5,000mAh battery, its 25W fast charging support doesn’t fare so well against the competition though.
This phone has been given its Master Edition (ME) tag for good reason. One variant of the phone has been designed by Japanese industrial designer, Naoto Fukasawa to look like a suitcase and exudes a really attractive aura. Another unique thing about this phone is its preset street photography mode that allows you to quickly capture stunning photos when you’re out and about. That said, it has all other bases covered very well with a 120Hz display, the Snapdragon 778G CPU, 65W fast charging, and more.
This next contender for the Best Phone of 2021 (under 30k) award is the Xiaomi Mi 11X. It’s powered by the Snapdragon 870 chipset and offers up to 8GB of RAM. Buyers also get a 48MP triple camera setup and a 20MP front camera for selfies. Equipped with a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, this 5G phone offers the benefits of a 120Hz AMOLED panel, a 4,520mAh battery with 33W fast charging, and stereo speakers.
The best part of the Moto Edge 20 is its 144Hz 10-bit OLED display with a remarkable 576Hz touch sampling rate. This allows the phone to offer a truly amazing visual experience. It’s extremely thin and lightweight and carries a 108MP main sensor, a 16MP ultra-wide camera, and an 8MP telephoto camera on its rear surface. There’s a 4,000mAh battery inside the device that charges at 30W.
Referred to by Xiaomi as the slimmest and lightest 5G phone of 2021, the Mi 11 Lite NE 5G has a real ace up its sleeve in the form of its 10-bit AMOLED display, which is Dolby Vision certified. Its operations are fueled by the Snapdragon 778G chipset, while photography is handled by a 64MP triple camera setup. You also get 12-band 5G support with this device, ensuring that you are more ready than others for when the fast wireless standard does arrive in India.