Note 12 Series 5G scaled

Best budget smartphones under 20k to buy in Kenya

It’s a new month and the festive season is here with us and it’s time to upgrade your existing smartphone either for yourself or your loved ones. We have compiled an ultimate list of best smartphones under 20k for you to choose according to your brand preferences.

Most of them are well specs with great features and bring reliable performance and more than good cameras. They come with decent screens and large batteries to keep them going for up to two days plus the included fast charging. The good thing is, you won’t be leaving your pocket high and dry with our picks for the best budget smartphones under 20k.

Infinix Note 12i – 19,999 Ksh

When this phone hit our review desk, I was excited about its great value from specs to price.

The Infinix Note 12i is the base device in the Note 12 series which includes the regular Note 12, Note 12 (G96), Note 12 VIP, and Note 12 Pro 5G. Even though the Note 12i is the younger sibling, it proves to be the powerhouse of the Note 12 series.

Here’s what you get:

  • 6.82 inch LCD screen which is a fast panel with 90Hz refresh rate
  • Android 12, XOS 10.6
  • Helio G85 processor
  • 50MP main camera with an additional 2MP depth sensor and QVGA camera.
  • 8 mega pixel selfie camera
  • 5000 mAh battery and supports 18W fast charging.
  • 4GB RAM with an additional 3GB of RAM and 128GB of storage

The Note 12i is clearly an improvement and would make a good buy and the upgrades make it an attractive choice when pitted against its competitors in the same price range.

Infinix Hot 12 Play – Ksh 19,999

Infinix Hot 12 Play is the company’s latest budget smartphone in the country. It succeeds the Infinix Hot 11 Play from late last year.

It comes with really cool upgrades over its predecessor such as:

  • 6000 mAh battery
  • 720p screen with 90Hz refresh rate and 180Hz touch sampling rate.
  • Type-C port
  • Helio G85 processor paired with Mali G52 GPU
  • Android 11 and XOS 10
  • 4GB RAM With the MemFusion feature that allows you to expand your RAM – you have the option to expand by 1GB, 2GB or 3GB giving you a maximum of 7GB.
  • 10 watt charging
  • Dual main camera setup which includes a 13MP plus 2MP secondary lens
  • 8 mega pixel selfie camera

Read our reviews below:

Here’s the cost for the three models:

  • 4 GB RAM and 128 GB internal storage – Ksh 18,499
  • 4GB RAM and 64GB internal storage – Kshs 16,499
  • Regular Infinix Hot 12: 4GB RAM, 128GB ROM – £199

The Infinix Hot 12 series smartphones are available offline at the company’s retail stores across the country and online also at XPARK – their official online store and other online e-commerce partners.

TECNO Spark 9 Pro – 21,000 KES

TECNO Spark 9 Pro comes with a 6.6-inch 1080p HD display and although it lacks a high refresh rate, it’s still a delightful screen to use for multimedia content consumption – watching movies, scrolling through social media and browsing the web.

TECNO Spark 9 Pro comes with Helio G85 chipset paired with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. You also get up to 3GB of virtual RAM thanks to the HiOS memory consolidation feature.

Android 12 and HiOS 8.6 come in handy. TECNO ships the Spark 9 Pro powered by a 5,000mAh battery with support for 18W Type-C fast charging.

For cameras, we get a 50MP triple combo that includes a 2MP depth sensor and a VGA camera. The main star of the show is the 32MP front camera.

Read our reviews:

Vivo Y22 – Ksh 19,999

Vivo Y22 is a really good smartphone and the company has packed great features – both hardware and software. Vivo Y22 comes with a 6.55-inch screen with an 8MP selfie camera notch. The rear camera setup includes a 50MP main camera and a 2MP macro sensor.

It runs on MediaTek Helio G85 processor paired with Mali-G52 MC2 GPU coupled with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. FunTouchOS 12 brings great extras like the expanded RAM feature which adds 4GB of virtual RAM. Others include Nano Music Player and UltraGame mode.

Android 12 ships right out of the box.

A 5,000mAh battery powers the phone and supports 18W Type-C fast charging.

Realme 9i – 21,000 Ksh

Realme 9i was launched early this year and comes with a 6.6″ FHD+ display with 90Hz refresh rate. It comes with Snapdragon 680 chipset paired with 6GB of RAM (5GB default) and 128GB storage. It runs on Android 11 and Realme UI 2.0.

For cameras, we have a 50MP triple array with an additional 2MP macro and 2MP depth. The 16MP front camera takes selfies. We also have a 5,000mAh battery with 33W fast charging support.

Nokia G11 Plus – Ksh 17800

Released early this year, Nokia G11 Plus has a 6.52-inch display with 90Hz refresh rate and is powered by Unisoc T606 processor paired with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. It runs Android 12 and has a 50MP dual camera and an 8MP selfie camera.

It has a 5,000mAh battery and 10W charging.

OPPO A17K – Ksh 14,000

This model retails for KES 15,000 in OPPO physical stores and KES 14,000 in Jumia.

Here are some of its specifications:

  • RAM: 3GB
  • Storage: 64 GB
  • Software: Android 12, ColorOS 12.1
  • Battery: 5000 mAh
  • Camera: 8 megapixels
  • Selfie: 5 mega pixel camera
  • Screen: 6.56 inches IPS LCD
  • Processor: Mediatek Helio G35
  • Connectivity: Dual SIM, 4G, Wi-Fi
  • Colours: dark blue and gold

Samsung Galaxy M13 4G – 20,300 Ksh

Samsung Galaxy M13 4G has a 6.6 x 1080 pixels display powered by Exynos 850 (8nm) processor coupled with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. It comes with Android 12 and oneUI 4.1. For cameras, we have a triple 50MP setup that features a 5MP ultra-wide sensor and a 2MP depth sensor. On the front we have an 8MP selfie camera.

Samsung Galaxy M13 4G packs a 5,000mAh battery and 15W charging.

Redmi 10C – Kshs 19,200

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Redmi 10C was launched in March this year and comes with a 6.7-inch screen. The Snapdragon 680 chipset is at the front, 4GB of RAM, and 128GB of storage. It runs Android 11 and MIUI 13.

For optics, we have a 50MP dual camera and a 5MP selfie camera. 5000 mAh battery and 18W fast charging.