Cheapest Android Device?

lewismayell

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 24, 2013
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South West England
As I'm waiting for iOS 7 I'm wondering if there is a cheap Android devices that I can play with? One that wouldn't matter when it is ruined. Does anyone know of any?
 

paulsalter

macrumors 68000
Aug 10, 2008
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UK
As I'm waiting for iOS 7 I'm wondering if there is a cheap Android devices that I can play with? One that wouldn't matter when it is ruined. Does anyone know of any?
plenty of them at carphone warehouse for under £100, but they might not perform that well and be on old versions of Android

Samsung Galaxy Y is £39.95
Samsung Galaxy Ace £69.95
HTC Desire C is £79.95 (this is Android 4.0 so quite recent)

http://www.carphonewarehouse.com/mobiles/deal-finder?&filterFeatures=PHONE_ANDROID

Any particular feature you are after or just cheap?
 

lewismayell

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 24, 2013
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South West England
Not really any features in particular, something I can mess around with really, not an old version of Android preferably, also, with devices on older versions, is it possible to update them or not?
 

paulsalter

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Aug 10, 2008
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it varies on some of the older ones, no official upgrade but you can sometimes do it manually

Galaxy Fame is on Jelly Bean 4.1 (current is 4.2 but not sure what has 4.2 might just be Nexus line) but then it's £109 so the price starts to go up
 

Jessica Lares

macrumors G3
Oct 31, 2009
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Near Dallas, Texas, USA
Look around at places like http://androidforums.com and XDA.

I HIGHLY suggest you root and look around at the ROMs and kernels being developed. Do some research before committing to buy something. The cheapest devices are low-entry, and optimized for phone calling, e-mail checking, and quick browsing. They aren't designed for playing games or watching videos. You can fix a lot of it when you root and flash a new ROM to them though.

I currently have a Huawei Fusion 2 that's overclocked to a little over 1110MHz (it's a 800MHz device), and running CM10. Works great, but only because I did the dirty work and ripped off all the AT&T bloat.
 

0dev

macrumors 68040
Dec 22, 2009
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The best way to get a good Android phone is to get a used mid-range or high-end model from last year. Android phones built to be budget phones are awful and won't give you a proper taste of Android.

I would suggest looking around eBay and CeX (if you have one near you), look for phones like the Samsung Galaxy S2 or Galaxy Nexus, they go for £100-£150 on eBay and that's very good value, especially if you flash a ROM based on the S3 or Note 2 on an S2, or CM if you prefer stock Android.

The Nexus S can be picked up for under £100 on eBay so if you really want something properly cheap, that's a far better option than any of the cheap Android phones you can buy brand new in store.
 
Last edited:

MRU

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Aug 23, 2005
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The best way to get a good Android phone is to get a used mid-range or high-end model from last year. Android phones built to be budget phones are awful and won't give you a proper taste of Android.
Was thinking the same thing. A low end sub £80-100 phone (unsubsidised) is really going to give you a 'bad' android flavour.

I'd second buying a flagship secondhand from last year galaxy nexus, htc one X or S3 - yes it will cost a little more - but you'll be able to resell in a few months time without 'too' much of a hit price wise ( and probably less of a price hit than blowing £100 on a terrible low powered android POS).

I'd veer more for the galaxy nexus - simply because its 16gb and going to give you a flavour of android 4.1 / 4.2 now, and won't suck donkey balls.
 

paulsalter

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Aug 10, 2008
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UK
I would suggest looking around eBay and CeX (if you have one near you), look for phones like the Samsung Galaxy S2 or Galaxy Nexus, they go for £100-£150
would certainly recommend the S2 if you can find it for this price

But avoid the NFC varient if you want to get official updates quickly
 

lewismayell

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 24, 2013
613
21
South West England
Oh wow, thanks guys, definitely a bit to look put for than i though haha. How good is an S3 mini? Theres a few on ebay, do they run like full versions of Android and stuff?
 

ucfgrad93

macrumors P6
Aug 17, 2007
17,612
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Colorado
Was thinking the same thing. A low end sub £80-100 phone (unsubsidised) is really going to give you a 'bad' android flavour.

I'd second buying a flagship secondhand from last year galaxy nexus, htc one X or S3 - yes it will cost a little more - but you'll be able to resell in a few months time without 'too' much of a hit price wise ( and probably less of a price hit than blowing £100 on a terrible low powered android POS).

I'd veer more for the galaxy nexus - simply because its 16gb and going to give you a flavour of android 4.1 / 4.2 now, and won't suck donkey balls.
Agreed. Don't go low end. I'd try and get the S3 or HTC One X.
 

thehustleman

macrumors 65816
Jan 3, 2013
1,123
1
As I'm waiting for iOS 7 I'm wondering if there is a cheap Android devices that I can play with? One that wouldn't matter when it is ruined. Does anyone know of any?
Never buy a cheap Android.

The experience is a living hell.


Go high end or used high end or nothing because cheap phones are terrible.

All Androids ARE NOT created equal by far.

Try one with Jelly Bean, you'll have the best user experience of your life
 

lewismayell

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 24, 2013
613
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South West England
Also, with rooting, is it the same as jailbreaking iOS? And how would I be able to get rid of all the company ***** and just have the 'pure' version of android?
 

thehustleman

macrumors 65816
Jan 3, 2013
1,123
1
Also, with rooting, is it the same as jailbreaking iOS? And how would I be able to get rid of all the company ***** and just have the 'pure' version of android?
No far from it.


Jailbreaking is required to have basic functionality that wasn't included but also offers some advanced functionality



Rooting offers advanced functionality and if you need to, you can unlock the boot loader which gives you the opportunity to install custom ROMs or even other OS'S
 

lewismayell

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 24, 2013
613
21
South West England
Other OS's being other android versions or any mobile operating system?

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No far from it.


Jailbreaking is required to have basic functionality that wasn't included but also offers some advanced functionality



Rooting offers advanced functionality and if you need to, you can unlock the boot loader which gives you the opportunity to install custom ROMs or even other OS'S
Other OS's being other android versions or any mobile operating system?
 

Michael Goff

Suspended
Jul 5, 2012
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Other OS's being other android versions or any mobile operating system?

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Other OS's being other android versions or any mobile operating system?
I know you can install Ubuntu on some Android phones. >_>

Don't think you need root, though.
 

0dev

macrumors 68040
Dec 22, 2009
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The S3 Mini isn't bad. It's mid range rather than low end. Just don't pay anything over £150 for one.
 

TacticalDesire

macrumors 68020
Mar 19, 2012
2,286
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Michigan
Buying a cheap android phone is going to be a rough experience. It'll be laggy and slow and you'll be lucky to get any internal storage. The galaxy s3 mini isn't an awful choice. I'd look for a GSM Galaxy Nexus. Battery is far from great but if you're looking for something to beat around and mess with android with it will be fine. Far from a current flagship however.
 

unlinked

macrumors 6502a
Jul 12, 2010
697
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Ireland
As I'm waiting for iOS 7 I'm wondering if there is a cheap Android devices that I can play with? One that wouldn't matter when it is ruined. Does anyone know of any?
People seem to be going for phones but if you just want to try out Android you could try a Nexus 7. That is fairly cheap, no carrier stuff,the best Android updates and easy to put roms on if that is your kind of thing. Google might be releasing an updated N7 soon but I don't think that should put anyone off too much.
 

chagla

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Mar 21, 2008
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on EBAY there are a lot of Galaxy NOTe 1 (i717 model) going for US $210 for moderate to good conditions. i recommend it. not sure if they will ship to UK? its easy to hack IF you choose to. good performance, has expandable storage, good camera. etc etc. u can also unlock it for 2/3 dollars
 

Southernboyj

macrumors 68000
Mar 8, 2012
1,652
37
Mobile, AL
As I'm waiting for iOS 7 I'm wondering if there is a cheap Android devices that I can play with? One that wouldn't matter when it is ruined. Does anyone know of any?
Cheap is relative. When I think of a cheap Android, I think of the Nexus 4. It's cheap as in bang for buck value. I don't even recognize those $30 Android phones as Android at all, since they're running like Android 2.2
 

Anthony81586

macrumors regular
Oct 15, 2011
118
0
I've got a galaxy nexus with spare batteries and what not I'm looking to part with. I'm eligible for an upgrade and am chomping at the bit to use it for an ip5. So if you're interested I'll sell it to you cheap (depending on what you and I consider "cheap" lol). Send a PM if you're interested, bud
 

Jessica Lares

macrumors G3
Oct 31, 2009
9,212
728
Near Dallas, Texas, USA
I have a Huawei Fusion 2. For anyone needing a phone for if you're going to sell your current iPhone for 5S, or you need like a 3 month replacement until your contract is up, I'd definitely recommend it. It's the nicest GoPhone they have at the moment. No frills, no crappy onboard keyboard, just the phone. Got mine in April and the experience only gets better. Has 3G too. Throw a MicroSD card in there, I have a 16GB one in mine.

Like $50 refurbished right now. like $70-80 brand new (I don't recommend it, you want one that has gotten the back taken off a few times, it's a nightmare to get off at first :eek:).

Of course, the first thing you want to do is do away with the stock ROM, it's horrid. But once you root, flash CWM, you're pretty much golden. I have CyanogenMod 10.1 on mine, but CM7.2, CM9, and CM10 are more stable. There's a stock ICS rom from another similar phone that works great on it too. The nice thing is that you can crank up the CPU on most of these ROMs, make it way, way, way, way less laggy, and enjoy all the more recent stuff. 3 day battery life too. Lasts all day with normal usage.

It has built in FM radio too, I'm using the Spirit FM app with it at the moment. Actually has a pretty good sound for a cheap phone.

Maybe the cons would be that it's a 3.5" screen, the camera is pretty crappy (but makes for an awesome "toy camera", especially with Cameringo), and the build itself could be better (it squeaks). But the screen doesn't like absorb the battery like AMOLED does and then I was able to drench the thing in like a waterfall of water (I was outside and went behind the canopy we have and got rained on, I thought the phone was going to be toast since it was totally rained on, but I just wiped it with a towel and it's fine :eek:).

Has a small led that supports all those LED apps, think it does yellow, pink, white, green, red, and blue. The whole screen and the menu keys are covered by the plastic screen. I can't remember if my S2 was like that, but you won't easily ruin your keys because of it.

The back has bumps too, so it's not slippery. Probably the nicest thing about it IMO.

I really like playing Canabalt HD on mine. The vibration is strong on this and it makes the game so much better! A lot of my Humble Bundle stuff works fine on it. You won't be able to play everything, but the majority of stuff works very well.

I'm at a hotel where the signal really sucks here BTW. Hahaha. But here's a picture of mine: