If you are an audio/videophile, you will probably know Oppo, the company that makes the best Blu-ray players. Oppo is a relatively new player and has been making high end Android handsets at prices significantly lower than other, better-known smartphones. Oppo’s slimmest smartphone, the Oppo R5, is ridiculously sleek at 4.85mm but loses the 3.5mm audio jack to retain this form. It comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 octa-core 1.5GHz processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, a 5.2-inch 1080p AMOLED display and a 13-megapixel rear f/2.0 camera with a Sony IMX214 sensor and a LED flash. Running on Color OS 2.0 (based on Android 4.4), it features VOOC charging technology, allowing for rapid charging, so the battery can be charged from 9 per cent to 75 per cent in just 30 minutes.
Price: Rs 29,990
Watch out Apple and Samsung — the OnePlus One is the phone to beat right now. A shockingly affordable smartphone that doesn’t sacrifice on specs, it is among the best Android devices currently in the market. Powered by a quad-core 2.5GHz Snapdragon processor, it runs CyanogenMod 11S Android, arguably the best available custom ROM based on the Android 4.4.4 KitKat operating system. The One has everything today’s flagship phones have: a full HD 5.5-inch display, an f/2.0, 13 megapixel Sony Exmor camera capable of 4K video, 3 GB RAM, NFC, LTE, a 3100 mAh battery and 64 GB of internal storage.
Price: Rs 21,999 (only by invitation)
If you are looking for a phone with every awesome spec you can pack into a handset, the CyanogenMod-supporting Oppo Find 7 is your device. Featuring the first 5.5-inch QHD display on a smartphone, it has the highest pixel density in the smartphone market, with 538 pixels per inch. The Oppo 7 comes loaded with Qualcomm’s speedy quad-core 2.5GHz Snapdragon 801 processor, an Adreno 330 GPU, 3GB of RAM, 16 gigs of storage, NFC, a 13-megapixel Sony Exmor IMX214 sensor with LED flash and a 2800 mAh battery; it runs on Color OS 1.2, which is based on Android 4.3 Jelly Bean.
Price: Rs 37,990 (only by invitation)
Xiaomi is probably the hottest startup in the world, with a whopping $45 billion valuation. And, with former Android chief Hugo Barra at its helm, Xiaomi is now the world’s third largest smartphone manufacturer. Its flagship phone, the Mi 4, may look a lot like the iPhone (and its signature MIUI interface has borrowed quite liberally from iOS), but it still ticks all the right boxes to be a viable competitor to other leading Android phones. The list of features includes a 5-inch 1080p display, a 2.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 SoC, 3GB of RAM, 16GB/64GB of internal storage, an 8-megapixel front camera, a 13-megapixel rear camera and a 3080 mAH battery.
Price: Rs 19,999
Huawei Honor 6
You don’t need an invite to buy this phone, thankfully. Huawei’s Honor 6 is what the middle of the market wants — good features at a decent price. Solidly built though unremarkable to look at, the phone delivers on the features front, with a 5-inch 1080p display, a Kirin 920 octa-core processor (which uses four 1.7GHz Cortex-A15 cores and four 1.3GHz Cortex-A7 cores), 3GB of RAM, a 13-megapixel primary camera with f/2.0 aperture and a 5MP front-facing shooter with wide-angle lens, NFC, LTE and a 3000 mAh battery.
Price: Rs 17,999
Lenovo’s latest flagship phone, the Vibe Z2 Pro is a dual-sim 6-inch device with Quad HD (2560 x 1440) display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 2.5GHz quad-core processor, Adreno 330 GPU, 3GB of RAM, LTE, NFC and 32GB of internal storage (but no microSD card slot). The Vibe Z2 Pro’s high-sensitivity 16MP rear camera comes with optical image stabilisation, auto-scene detection and can record 4K video. The handset battery comes with a giant 4000 mAh capacity, ensuring you don’t need to hunt for a charging outlet before the end of the day.
Price: Rs 32,999
XIAOMI REDMI Note 4G
Phablet users on a budget will find the Redmi Note 4G to be an affordable dual-SIM device. Powered by a Snapdragon 400 MSM8928, quad-core 1.6GHz processor, the Note 4G is surprisingly packed full of useful features, including a 13-megapixel camera, a 5.5-inch IPS 720p display and a 3200 mAh battery.
Price: Rs 9999