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Thread: Help Picking Unlocked Phone

  1. #1
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    Help Picking Unlocked Phone

    I'd like some help picking an unlocked phone for someone under $235.

    The camera and at least having/getting Android 12 is important.

    Is one of these significantly better than the others?

    Google Pixel 3 XL 64GB Smartphone (T-Mobile Unlocked, Just Black) MFR #GA01296-US $199.99
    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...3_xl_64gb.html
    (Would a person notice any difference between the T-Mobile 3 XL compared to a factory unlocked Pixel 3 XL?)

    Moto G Power (2021) 64 GB 179.99
    https://www.amazon.com/Power-battery.../dp/B08NWBY8YJ

    OnePlus Nord N200 5G 64 GB 199.99
    https://www.amazon.com/OnePlus-Unloc.../dp/B07XWGWPH5

    Moto G Stylus (2021) 128 GB 229.99
    https://www.amazon.com/stylus-batter.../dp/B08NWF8SL4

    Google - Pixel 3 with 128GB Memory Cell Phone (Unlocked) - Just Black $229.99
    https://www.amazon.com/Google-Pixel-...07K5GLZ8J?th=1

  2. #2
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    The Pixel 3 and 3 XL have gotten Android 12 and their cameras are much better than any of the others you mentioned.
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    Thanks. Do your see any issue with the 3 XL bring an unlocked T-Mobile version?

  4. #4
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    Boz1 I'd wait & see if there's a repeat of AMZ & TF deal of late Nov - early Dec 2020. If it goes as last year it'll feature this years 2021 models of Motorolas. Last year I bought a Factory Unlocked (for all carriers) Moto G Stylus 2020 for $132 otd & retail was $299.
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  5. #5
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    I agree waiting a few more days to see what Black Friday deals pop up is a good plan.


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    I personally don't like moto phones anymore. The company has a bad habit of dropping updates on their devices pretty fast. Consider yourself lucky if you get one major android os update before moto drops it. The Nord has very mediocre specs, but it has 5G, if that is something that appeals to you. I lean towards Pixel 3/3xl out of these options - unless you want 5g of course

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    Help Picking Unlocked Phone

    Quote Originally Posted by Qt0 View Post
    I personally don't like moto phones anymore. The company has a bad habit of dropping updates on their devices pretty fast. Consider yourself lucky if you get one major android os update before moto drops it. The Nord has very mediocre specs, but it has 5G, if that is something that appeals to you. I lean towards Pixel 3/3xl out of these options - unless you want 5g of course
    The Nord N200 won’t get more than one major Android update, according to OnePlus support. That probably won’t happen for the better part of a year, unless the OPPO-OnePlus technical ‘merger’ changed this (doubt).
    Most Nord series phones will have the same lack of support issues as you mentioned with moto phones.


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    I have no actual experience with these phones but here are my thoughts:

    Both Pixel 3 phones have a SnapDragon 845 which is a high end processor from 3-4 years ago. I would say that it is still more powerful than the SnapDragon 480 processor found in the other phones listed. The camera on the Pixel phones should still be better than the other phones.

    On the other hand, the Pixel phones probably won’t get another OS update after Android 12 and most importantly no more security updates either. Since the other phones were released this year or last so they should get one OS update and a few more years of security updates.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boz1 View Post
    Thanks. Do your see any issue with the 3 XL bring an unlocked T-Mobile version?
    None that I'm aware of.

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    Thanks for all the feedback so far.

    The phone does need to be unlocked for international use immediately.

    I really am leaning toward the Pixel 3 or 3 XL. I actually wouldn't mind having one of those myself, despite the end of official support.

    The Moto phones are nice for what they are, and I'm sure the battery life per charge would be better, but I think an older Pixel 3 or 3 XL would be a more premium experience with the better processor and much better camera. I also think the Pixel 3 or 3 XL better-than-any-other-Pixel front cameras would be nice to have. Also, even if any of the Moto phones get updated to Android 12, if it turns out like other Moto phones, that could also be the last Android version update.

    Now, I just need the person I'm buying for to tell me whether or not the Pixel 3 larger 128GB storage for $229.99, or the Pixel 3 XL larger screen size, but smaller 64GB storage for $199.99, is more important before the prices change or they go out of stock!

  11. #11
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    I recently got Moto G Power 2020, instead of the 2021 version. As I read many reviews that the earlier version has better hardware (e.g., camera), it costs a few more dollars but seem worth it. However, my Moto G Power (2020) is in Android 11, so it does not meet your Android 12 requirement at this moment.

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    Boz1,

    have you considered a Oneplus N10 5G

    i have had both a N10 and N200 and N10 is better in every way(ram, storage, camera, overall performance) and i believe could be found within the budget at least if 'used - like new' from Amazon is an option

  13. #13
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    Help Picking Unlocked Phone

    Quote Originally Posted by robbyrobby View Post
    Boz1,

    have you considered a Oneplus N10 5G

    i have had both a N10 and N200 and N10 is better in every way(ram, storage, camera, overall performance) and i believe could be found within the budget at least if 'used - like new' from Amazon is an option
    The N10 will never get Android 12 officially from OnePlus. Using Boz's requirements that would be a no go unless he wants to flash a custom ROM.


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  14. #14
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    I'm in the market for a new phone as my 2 1/2 year old Umidigi S3 Pro is getting beat up. It has worked well for me except I dropped it so it has an ugly Crack in the screen. It's stuck on Android 9, and has a weird defect that the proximity sensor does not work. But have lived with it because 5150 mah battery life is very good.

    One thing I noticed is that it seems like manufacturers are making phones more disposable than ever and you may get 1 major update but that's it. So whatever version of Android you are on, that would probably be it. Seems like they want you to update to a new phone periodically.

    I saw the bh photo deal for the pixel 3 xl for $199. It should get Android 12. Hardware wise, if it beats whatever else is out there, sounds like a solid buy.

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    Last edited by ShredFred; 11-24-2021 at 08:20 AM.

  15. #15
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    Yeah, that Pixel 3 XL looks like a pretty good deal, compared to what you'd get with the other phones in that price range. The only thing that has me hesitating is the reportedly mediocre battery performance.

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