By Frank Ling
As new models for smartphones come out every few months, the costs of owning one of these cool devices may seem out of some people’s price range and budgets. But not all is lost because you can buy a good one for just under $50, believe it or not.
If you don’t mind last year’s tech but still want to own one of Apple’s most successful products, you can pick up an iPhone 4 for the price of $49.99 with a two-year contract, and applicable data plan through Best Buy stores.
The iPhone 4 has an abundant supply of features for any potential smartphone customer. It has a great easy to use interface, is relatively speedy, fun to use, and has access to the iTunes store where tens of thousands of apps are available for downloading.
Some of the tech specs for the 8GB iPhone 4 model are its super-sharp Retina display, 3.5-inch touchscreen, 960x640 resolution, 7-14 hours of talk time, up to 300 hours of standby time, Bluetooth, GPS, Wi-Fi, 8GB storage, 5-megapixel camera, LED flash, HD video, and 1 GHz Cortex-A8 processor.
So if you’ve always dreamed of owning an iPhone, at less than $50, you’ve really got a deal.
Nokia Lumia 900 Windows smartphone
For those who have always wondered about the Windows Phone platform but were reluctant to jump into the fray, a good place to begin the quest for this kind of device is Nokia’s Lumia 900.
When it first launched in April 2012 in the U.S. reviews of the device were generally favorable and praised the device’s ability to multitask well, its ease of operation, and logical onboard app interface. However, early problems with software glitches, which were taken care of immediately by Nokia, initially hurt the Lumia 900’s reputation.
In addition, potential users criticized the home screen graphics as too “boxy” and boring.
In lieu of dropping sales numbers, Nokia decided to lower the initial price of the unit, discounted from an already low price of $99.99, to an incredible $49.99. A standard two-year wireless carrier contract and data plan is required for this unit. A recent price drop at AT&T and Amazon.com is making the Lumia 900 available at the give away price of only $19.99. Check the listings of your favorite wireless carrier and stores for availability and price.
The Nokia Lumia 900 is no slouch on features as it sports a 1.4GHz processor, 4G LTE connectivity, Wi-Fi, 4.3” AMOLED display, Unibody polycarbonate body, Carl Zeiss camera lens, 8-megapixel rear-camera, 1-megapixel front facing camera, up to 7-hours of talk time, and of course, transparent use of Word, Excel, and other Microsoft Suite applications.
Motorola Atrix HD
For those who like Android phones, Motorola’s Atrix HD may be the smartphone for those on a tight budget. It offers many of the features of its more expensive cousin, the RAZR, but at a more affordable price.
The body is made out of Kevlar and is water repellent. The Atrix HD display, according to reviews, is just as sharp and stunning as its competitor, Apple’s iPhone 4S but at a fraction of the cost.
Overall specs for the device are Android 4.0 OS, 1280x720 HD display, 4.5-inch ColorBoost touchscreen, 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, 1GB of RAM, 8GB storage upgradable to 32GB, 1080p HD video, 8-megapixel rear facing camera, 720p front-facing camera, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, up to nine hours of talk time, and up to 204 hours of standby time. However, many websites ding the Atrix HD for its relatively short battery life.
For one of the most powerful smartphones on the market, Motorola’s Atrix HD can get the job done without a big investment. The phone current sells for only $49.99 plus applicable two-year contract and data plan from Best Buy and Amazon.com.
Frank Ling is the SF Gadgets Examiner. He is a writer, professional photographer, and video editor. One of his all-time favorite jobs was working at a large video game publisher.