Poll: Best Mid-Range Smartphones for 2018 ($300$500)

Moderators at OzBargain have decided to run yearly polls to decide the best products in popular categories that get asked repeatedly in the forum. Our aim is to have a central thread where users can vote on the items, suggest options and also change their vote throughout the year. The polls will end once the year is over.


What is your favourite Mid-range Smart Phone for the year 2018?

Mid-range: Phones with market prices between $300 AUD to $500 AUD. You can also suggest non-Android devices, if you wish.

Let's first look at last year's Poll winners. These are in order:

  1. Motorola Moto G5 Plus (Single Camera version)
  2. Xiaomi Mi5
  3. LG V20

To make the number of choices more manageable, we’ve split the questions into three separate polls — one for each price bracket and tier (consisting of "Budget", "Mid-end" and "Flagship"). Also we recognize some devices may not strictly belong in a certain category because phone prices continually change throughout the year and might exist in more than 1 poll.

Found a phone you liked? You can click on the 'Related Products' section to view current or active deals, and see forum discussions related to it.

  • Don't see a phone that you like in the poll options? Make a (sensible) suggestion and we'll add it to the list.
  • You are allowed to change your vote.

How to Suggest a Poll option? Simply type into the textbox above your Comment box and then submit your comment.


Poll Options


  • +3 votes

    wanted to get this post started with a Windows phone

    • +1 vote

      Tried searching and It looks pretty difficult to obtain a Lumia 950 XL outright, and searching on ebay only shows private sellers, and businesses selling refubished devices. Don't think we can add that as it's not only obsolete but also hard to get.

      I'd recommend something along the lines of Nokia 7 Plus when it comes out, although it may cost more than 500 AUD.

  • +2 votes
    Suggested Motorola Moto G5 Plus

    Despite the G5s Plus is out there, I consider it a downgrade to the G5 Plus as even the official Motorola store is selling the 3GB RAM version instead of the 4GB version. Also you can now only choose the second SIM card or the Micro SD card in the new G5s Plus. What's going on Motorola?!

    I have both LG V20 and Motorola G5 Plus but I consider the G5 Plus has better hardware quality and a smoother stock Android experience.


      How would you compare the camera between the two?
      And apart from OS smoothness how does speed compae in process intensive tasks such as converting video?
      Lastly which would you say runs cooler?
      I have a V20 and it kinda annoys me how quickly sometimes it warms up doing what I consider to be not process intensive (such as browsing basic web pages like reddit).


        Of course the camera and the camera app is better on the V20. One of the best at 2017.

        However the v20 is also warmer by a little bit, still very reasonable.

    Suggested LG V20

    Simply because at the price point of under $500 for local and around $400 for gray import it offers fantastic value.
    Great camera (really I have stacked it against S8 and they come tie with some stuff better on samsung and some better on LG).
    Dual sims, separate micro sd card slot and best feature removable battery!
    The screen is really nice and natural in terms of color reproduction.
    Second screen is actually handy.

    Downside is LG software can be annoying sometimes, heats up randomly with unpredictable battery life (kind of not important as I have a spare battery that I carry around but still annoying). There is only one tempered glass screen protector that works and that's the PThink LG v20 glass.

    Suggested iPhone SE

    A good option if you're after a compact phone, and of course, you have to embrace iOS ecosystem.


    Suggested Xiaomi Mi 6

    Second suggestion.

    Suggested Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017)

    Looking for a phone hopefully under $500. I think the V20 would be too big for me, although what is LG's OS skin like? I also hear they have poor battery life. Are the Samsung A5's any good? How would that compare to a Moto G5 Plus?

    Thanks in advance :)


      Samsung A5 mainly for people who want a Samsung phone and not necessarily the best kind of phone in that kind of price category.

      It's currently going $450 from Kogan or $550 from JB Hifi.

      For that kind of price you could buy a very high end LG V-series or a Nokia 8, the latter of which packs a Snapdragon 835 which is one of the fastest chips out there in the market, and it runs 'almost' stock android

      there's much more to a phone than performance though, some people just like Samsung because of the ecosystem and the way they skin the operating system.


        Ah yep, that's what I thought. Thanks for the info. Yeah I have considered the Nokia 8, a bit more than I wanted to spend but might be worth it. They are a good phone then? I think I want to move away from Samsung and give something else a try too :)


        I've noticed the recent deal on the Nokia 8, directs me to ebay for $499 now. They're also available at eGlobal for around $480-490. Are they a legit safe site to buy from? Is it worth waiting a bit longer for the price to come down or a better deal?


          Its $449 if you are using 10 percent coupon code. Dont use PICK5, use PRONTO. Go through Cashrewards if you want another 1% cashback.

          To look at the current hottest coupon codes, you can visit our Coupons site https://www.couponese.com/. the best coupons are listed on the homepage


          @scrimshaw: oh yep, missed that. Thanks! So do you think this would be worth it over say the Moto G5? Good phone?



          this is probably the cheapest Snapdragon 835 phone you'll see in a long time.

          The Moto G5S Plus is a mid end device, and it is pretty good value at 299

          Both are good value, and I think for the majority of users the Moto is a perfectly serviceable phone and would satisfy all but the most hardcore of mobile gamers or shutterbugs.


          The Nokia 8 is very nice except for the very poor camera performance, esp in low light. Looks like the motos are slightly better in this department? Is the G5 Plus considered better than the G5S Plus?



          Reviews say that G5S plus is not a huge improvement over the G5 Plus. There's no performance difference between the two.

          Apparently, there is a 1 second lag for taking pictures on the G5s Plus.. Anecdotes are from 3 months ago, so it's possible that the issue is patched already.



          Many Moto G5S Plus phones have a battery charging issue. My phone stopped charging at all within only a couple of months of usage and I had to send it back to Shopmonk for replacement/ repair. I am awaiting the outcome. I didn't expect Motorola phones to have such issues as my Moto G3 and Moto E3 went for years without any problem at all. A quick Google and I realised that it's not just my phone - many G5 and G5S phones seem to have this issue.

    Suggested HTC One X10

    HTC One X10.
    Look at the price versus specs of this one. Only released in Australia and Russia (I think?) but an absolute killer phone for the price - which can easily be found at $300-$350 and sometimes under.

    It's true 2 day battery is absolutely amazing for this price.


      But reviews say the camera is not good.


        The camera is alright. It's no SLR, but it takes decent photos that I'm happy with. I'm not a selfie freak though so can't comment that much on close up faces.


          Not talking about photo quality, reviews say it is slow?


          @apprentice: Where are these reviews might I ask?

          The HTC One X10 camera performs well, with great detail thanks to its high megapixels, reasonably fast focus, and also has commendable performance in tough low light conditions

          I must agree with this. It's no Sony with a 0.3 sec autofocus but it certainly doesn't leaving you waiting around to take a shot.

          Has one of the best build qualities I've seen in a phone this cheap and I might be slightly biased here but HTC Sense OS is one of the best android experiences, if not the best. As for lag. HTC phones don't lag.


    Would like to recommend Xiaomi Mi 5s Plus for people who want a good CPU, RAM, storage, headphone jack, IR, NFC and slightly good camera (can be improved a bit with a Google camera mod). It's only on Ali Express unfortunately valued at less than $500 (about $450-480 for the 6GB/128GB version).

    Honestly I would've wanted Xiaomi to continue the trend of supporting headphone jack but I'll probably won't buy a flagship or mid-range phone in the future since they abandoned it. Really sucks though, their battery is awesome too.

    Suggested Motorola Moto G5S Plus

    Motorola Moto G5S Plus.

    How does it compare to G5 Plus? :)

  • +1 vote
    Suggested Nokia 7 Plus

    Gonna be a new midrange phone coming in with Nokia 7 Plus. Probably the best midrange smartphone out there if Nokia actually unlocks the bootloader. Keep an eye out for this phone if anyone is going to buy a midrange phone in the next few months. It's scheduled to arrive in april/may.

    • +1 vote

      Yep, the Nokia 7 Plus looks great with it's new 6" 18:9 screen, launching with Android 8 Oreo/Android One with two years of O/S security updates, should have full 4G band support for Australia, and many other good features and specs for a midrange price phone.

      Let's just hope it will be priced closer to mid than flagship, if so could be a huge comeback for Nokia.


    Do any of these mid range options offer dual sim - but actual dual sim (whether it be 4g/4g or 4g/3G..?) since 2g is going soon. This feature and camera quality are probably my two main things

    • +1 vote

      2G has already gone on Optus and Telstra, only Vodafone still has it, and only 12 months more.

      Most of the dual SIM phones here should do 4G or 3G on the second SIM. The problem with 2G on the second SIMs was usually because earlier hardware did not support 3G on the second SIM. So from the Snapdragon 820 chipset onwards (and similar era in the mid range CPUs), the hardware supports at least 3G on the second SIM. There's a wiki page here with more info: http://whirlpool.net.au/wiki/dual_sim_4g3g_phones

      That page includes these as confirmed phones with this feature:
      Moto G5 Plus
      LG V20
      HTC One X10
      Moto G5S Plus

      Not dual SIM:
      iphone SE

      Not listed, or not confirmed:
      Xiaomi Mi 6 [but this has the right SoC to support it, so fairly likely it does]
      Samsung Galaxy A5 [not sure, has a Samsung CPU]
      Nokia 7 plus [but this has the right SoC to support it]


    Hey guys
    Previvously was using an iPhone se until it died , went to using a redmi note 4 and now a mi a1

    But I'm looking for a smaller phone with band 28 as optus in Brisbane city with a non band 28 mobile is pretty crap

    Was considering an iPhone se again but for $300+ for an older device doesn't seem worth it.

    Any recommendations for 5inch or smaller devices in this price point


    My wife's LG G4 just died (boot loop), and I need a new phone soonish. Camera is high priority.
    Sounds like the camera on the G5S Plus isn't that good. Xiaomi A1 is a possibility, but WAF with a Chinese phone is a risk, and it doesn't have Band28 (important) or NFC (not that important).
    Any other suggestions for a phone with a good camera in the mid-range?

  • +1 vote
    Suggested Xiaomi Mi 5s Plus

    Sorry for this comment again, just putting the Xiaomi Mi 5s Plus phone into the poll. With Lineage OS 15.1 being stable and soon having stable project treble coming in, it should be a good phone for anyone to use.

    • +1 vote

      I thought Project Treble was applicable to only the phones that released with Oreo out of the box?


        That is true, but XDA devs have found a way to put unofficial project treble into Xiaomi devices using an unused partition as a vender partition (iirc). Not perfect but good enough for a 2016 device.


    Where have all the mid range phone deals gone?

  • +1 vote
    Suggested Oppo A73

    Oppo A73


    I know I'm late to the party, but is the zenfone 5 getting any love?


    Why is the G5 Plus rated higher than the G5s Plus?


      I would also like to know this. My SO was considering the 5s+, however the G5+ is noticeably cheaper? Online the reviews suggested it was a small step up. Am I missing something?

  • +3 votes
    Suggested Nokia 6.1

    The new Nokia 6.1 is out, and if you search around the price is around $330.30

    The specifications are pretty good for it's price:

    Nokia 6.1 $330.30

    • Android One - Stock Android. 2 years of Guaranteed Software updates from Google.
    • 5.5 inches 1080p display
    • 64 GB, 4 GB RAM
    • Snapdragon 630 Octa-core 2.2ghz
    • Hybrid Dual SIM with Micro SD slot
    • Bluetooth 5.0
    • USB Type C, USB 2.0 OTG, 3.5mm Audio output
    • Li-Ion 3000 mAh battery
    • NFC, Google Pay Capable

    Extra notes: No notifications LED. It has Band 28.


    Any takers for the moto g6 plus? I'm about to buy one.

    Suggested Motorola Moto G6 Plus

    The Moto G6 Plus is finally out in Australia, with pricing north of $440 AUD.

    The specs are improved from last year.

    • Band 28, stock android
    • 5.9 inches, 18:9 ratio (tall screen), 1080 x 2160 display
    • dual cameras, 12 MP + 5 MP
    • splash resistance
    • 2.2ghz Snapdragon 630 Octa core SOC
    • 4GB of RAM
    • a generous 3200 mAh battery
    • NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, USB type C turbo charging
    • Hybrid SD card slot shared with SIM slot 2
    • Runs Oreo out of the Box.

      I bought one last week. Very happy with it so far. It's damn slippery though, being all glass. I have a case on the way from Mr Ebay.


      Hybrid SD card slot shared with SIM slot 2

      Just had a look at specs on GSM Arena and it looks like it's got a dedicated microSD slot?


    Anybody here got the Nokia 7 plus?

    Looking like a winner at the moment

    Suggested Samsung Galaxy S7

    Is a Samsung Galaxy S7 a good buy atm? Can get them on Kogan for $529 atm, which is only just over this limit. Or are there better alternatives for around $500, but which still have notification LED, IP68 rating, decent 24-bit/192kHz audio, decent cameras, Band 20+28 and decent battery life?


      As an ex-S7 owner… I'd say no.

      The S7 will not get Android Pistachio and if you are looking for more frequent security updates and OS updates, I'd be looking at getting a S8 at the least.

      The Galaxy S8 will cost you about a hundred more. The biggest downside however is the badly placed fingerprint sensor, but at least you get to keep the IP68 rating.

      If you're trying to keep the budget low I would recommend the Nokia 7 Plus. The camera on it is good (not impressive) and it has good battery life, something I found the Samsung S7 was lacking in.


        Thanks for the quick reply, advice and suggestion. Don't think I'm too worried about having the latest Android updates. Never liked the edges on the newer Samsung phones. The Nokia 7 Plus does look nice, but probably a bit too big for me and audio specs aren't great on it. No notification LED either :P I'll be replacing an aging and half broken Samsung s4, at least to get me through til 5G comes and is affordable :)


        How about the Sony Xperia XZ1, or the LG G6 (no notification LED tho). How would these compare? Any issues with the G6 and what's LG's and Sony's UI like?

    Suggested Lenovo P2

    Lenovo P2.
    Despite it has a huge 5100mHa battery it's slim as my LG G3 that I hate so much because it's battery doesn't last even half day.
    The one you need to look after is the 4GB RAM, 32GB ROM which has band 4G 28 for Telstra (plus all the rest).
    I'm so happy about this phone, Lenovo included a silicon back cover and screen protector, a OTG adapter, quick charger and usb cable, plus the seller added another back cover and screen protector.
    The phone is just beautiful and despite its low purchasing price it looks much more valuable than those $800+ phones with thin battery that doesn't last even 1 day.
    I updated it offline by following a thread on XDA Developers Forums (very easy to follow) and it all went smooth.
    It can still be purchased even from a eBay seller located in Australia or the one I bought from Malaysia, professional seller.


    There are some interesting Chinese phones with interesting specs.

    Nubia z17
    Ummidigi z2 pro
    Meizu pro 7

    To name a few


    Which one of those has the best camera?


      probably the Galaxy S7 as it is a flagship phone. It's camera was good enough that it was re-used in the Galaxy S8.


    Got an s7 for $550 ish. This was a brick and mortar stor though, so better deals can be had.

    Was absolutely worth it.

    To bad the note 7 went out with a bang. That woulda been excellent value for money this year :/

    Suggested Huawei Nova 3i

    I have a Nova 2i, now that the 3i has dual Sim both 4g I think it stacks up.
    Good camera etc, face unlock. Good battery life.

    Suggested Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite

    Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite
    6.26", has band 28 support, dual hybrid sim, good camera (sony?), Snapdragon 660 AIE,
    4G: FDD-LTE B1/B2/B3/B4/B5/B7/B8/B20/B28, TDD-LTE B38/B40
    Can be had currently for under $300 inc del if accessed via Couponese.com site, in there search for Mi 8 Lite and in the Geekbuying coupons select KEIHKUGM. (for Black 4/64 ver only) Change the Geekbuying site currency to US$ and buy using a fee free CC to save around $10 on the currency conversion.

  • +1 vote
    Suggested Huawei nova 3e

    Why isn't Huawei nova 3e on the list?

    What is everyones opinion on it.

    Looks pretty good for about $300..


    Ok scratch that:

    Pocophone is defs the winner for 2018 at 300USD

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