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Top 10 budget smartphones for Christmas 2012

Wed Dec 19 2012, 14:00

3. Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini
If you're after a phone that really does offer all of the functionality of the Samsung Galaxy S3 on a budget, look no further than the Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini.

Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini

Sure it's smaller at 122x63x9.9mm and it features a downsized 4in touchscreen, but the Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini does a good job at mocking the Galaxy S3 - even with its sub-£250 price-tag. 

The handset's screen is almost as bright as the original S3 thanks to Samsung's AMOLED screen technology, and the phone's 1GHz dual-core processor does a good job of keeping things nippy. 

The Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini also impresses with its up-to-date Android 4.1 Jelly Bean operating system, which equips it with all of Google's latest innovative features. It also comes with a 5MP rear-facing camera with 720p HD video, a front-facing video call camera, either 8GB or 16GB of included storage expandable via microSD and a 1,500mAh battery.

2. Nokia Lumia 800
The Nokia Lumia 800 impressed us when it arrived on the market for £300, so you can imagine how pleased we are that it can now be bought for just shy of £150.  

Nokia Lumia 800 Windows Phone chassis

The handset runs Microsoft's quirky Windows Phone 7 operating system, equipping the phone with a vibrant user interface, Xbox Live gaming, Facebook and Twitter integration and access to Microsoft Office. An update to Windows Phone 7.8 is on its way to the handset also, which will make the interface much more customisable. 

Another stand-out point of the Nokia Lumia 800 is its design. Available in an array of colours, the phone's polycarbonate casing is one of the most recognisable on the market, and is sure to turn heads.

That's not all your're getting for you £150 either, as the Nokia Lumia 800 comes rocking an 8MP camera with flashy Carl Zeiss lens, a 3.7in 480x800 Clearblack display, a 1.4GHz Qualcomm processor and a 1,450mAh battery.

1. Google Nexus 4
Sure, at £239 it's not a 'cheap' phone, but when value for money is taken into consideration, there's no way the Google Nexus 4 couldn't finish at the top of our list.  

Google Nexus 4 Android 4.2 interface

Google has wowed the technology industry with the release of its latest flagship Nexus phone, as even though it costs just shy of £240, its specs challenge those found on the Iphone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3.

Chief among these specs is the handset's 4.7in 768x1280 IPS display, which delivers vibrant colours and easy-to-read text even when the phone is used outdoors. Another stand-out feature is the handset's 1.5GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, which proved to be one of the fastest we've had the pleasure of using.

That's not all you're getting with the Google Nexus 4. Its glass-coated casing also houses an 8MP rear-facing camera with 1080p HD video, a 1.3MP front-facing camera and the latest and greatest version of Google's mobile operating system, Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. 

If you don't mind splashing out a little, the Google Nexus 4 is definitely the best smartphone stocking filler of 2012. µ


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