best-20-philippines-10k-pesos-2012

In this era, when there are numerous of models available in the local market and new smartphones get released one after another, it can be tricky to know which smartphone is best suited to your wants or needs.

So I’ve decided to offer some help, carefully selected the top ten smartphones (that are already available in the local stores) under or on a 10,000-peso budget. See the list(s) after the break.

NOTE: The smartphones listed below are in no particular order and price quotes come from the manufacturer’s SRPs and/or the cheapest we’ve seen from the malls and online sellers.

1. Nokia Lumia 610

Key Features:

  • 800MHz processor
  • 3.7″ 480 x 800 pixel screen
  • 8GB internal memory
  • Windows Phone 7.5 OS
  • 256MB RAM
  • 5 MP autofocus camera with LED flash

Pros: Most affordable Windows Phone handset, smooth performance, good battery life, solid build

Cons: No memory expansion, poor video camera, slimmed down Windows Phone spec, some stuttery lag

Price: Php9,500 – Php10,500


2. Sony Xperia U

Key Features:

  • Dual-core 1 GHz Cortex-A9 processor
  • 3.5″ 854 x 480 pixel screen; Sony Mobile BRAVIA engine
  • 8GB internal memory
  • Android OS v2.3.7 Gingerbread, planned Android 4.0 ICS update
  • 512MB RAM
  • 5MP autofocus camera with LED flash

Pros: Solid construction, Clear display, Fast, smooth Android, Clever Facebook integration, Nice music player, Dual-core power in a pocket-friendly package

Cons: No microSD slot, Browser looks dated, Stiff camera button, Awful 720p video

Price: Php9,800 – Php10,800


3. HTC Desire C

Key Features:

  • 600 MHz single core processor
  • 3.5″ 320 x 480 pixel screen
  • 4GB internal memory
  • Android OS v4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
  • 512MB RAM
  • 5MP autofocus camera

Pros: Attractive design, Android Ice Cream Sandwich & Sense 4.0, Beats Audio, Easy to use, Decent camera

Cons: Slow and sluggish, screen unresponsive at times, poor account integration

Price: Php9,500 – Php10,000


4. Samsung Galaxy Mini 2

Key Features:

  • 800 MHz single core processor
  • 3.27″ 320 x 480 pixel screen
  • 4GB internal memory
  • Android OS v2.3.7 Gingerbread, planned Android 4.0 ICS update
  • 512MB RAM
  • 3.15MP fixed-focus camera

Pros: Neat, chunky chassis; responsive display; coloured back; three-megapixel snapper takes okay pictures

Cons: Poor display quality, Fixed-focus camera, no flash, No secondary video-call camera, Video recording maxes out at VGA @ 25fps, Struggles with complex apps and games

Price: Php9,990 – Php10,990


5. BlackBerry Curve 9220/9330

Key Features:

  • 3.5″ 320 x 240 pixel screen
  • 512MB internal memory
  • BlackBerry OS 7.1
  • 512MB RAM
  • 2MP autofocus camera with LED flash

Pros: BB OS 7.1, Good battery life, Slow processor

Cons: Noisy keypad, No GPS, No 3G, Poor camera

See full review here.

Price: Php9,500 – Php10,500


6. LG Optimus L3

Key Features:

  • 800 MHz single core processor
  • 3.2″ 240 x 320 pixel screen
  • 1GB internal memory
  • Android OS v2.3.6 Gingerbread
  • 348MB RAM
  • 3.15MP fixed-focus camera

Pros: Neat, compact design, looks pricier than it is

Cons: Screen resolution poor and not very sensitive, sluggish processor, fixed-focus camera

Price: Php5,500 – Php6,000


7. HTC Radar

Key Features:

  • 1 GHz single core processor
  • 3.8″ 480 x 800 pixel screen
  • 8GB internal memory
  • Microsoft Windows Phone 7.5 Mango
  • 512MB RAM
  • 5MP autofocus camera with LED Flash

Pros: Stylish, all-white aluminum design, Windows Phone Mango is clean and easy to use, Crisp display, Fast processor

Cons: No microSD, Nonremovable battery and poor battery life

Price: Php9,800 – Php10,800


8. Alcatel Inspire 991D

Key Features:

  • 800 MHz single core processor
  • 4″ 320 x 480 pixel screen
  • 150MB internal memory
  • Android OS v2.3 Gingerbread
  • 5MP autofocus camera with LED Flash

Pros: microSD slot included, Large 4″ screen

Cons: Sluggish performance, Low user memory

Price: Php9,000


9. Lenovo P700

Key Features:

  • 1 GHz single core processor
  • 4″ 800 x 480 pixel screen
  • 4GB internal memory
  • Android OS v4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
  • 5MP autofocus camera

Pros: microSD slot included, Large 4″ screen, Fast and very responsive, Great display quality, Fast camera with good image quality, Front camera included, Long battery life, Feels durable, Affordable

Cons: A bit heavy, Rear camera lens is prone to scratches, Only 1 SIM tray is 3G-capable

Price: Php9,990 – Php10,990


10. LG Optimus Black

Key Features:

  • 1 GHz single core processor
  • 4″ 480 x 800 pixel screen
  • 2GB internal memory
  • Android OS, v2.2 (Froyo), upgradable to v2.3.4
  • 512MB RAM
  • 5MP autofocus camera with LED Flash

Pros: microSD slot included, NOVA display 4-inch screen, Thin and lightweight chassis, Quick to navigate, 2MP front-facing camera

Cons: Unlikely to get ICS update, Gesture UI is fun but mainly pointless, Casing is a little roughly hew, Disappointing video recording capability

Price: Php9,950 – Php10,950


Meanwhile, here’s another list of smartphones under Php10K (or $200) that didn’t make to our Top 10 but are worth mentioning:

Still in no particular order.

1. Samsung Galaxy Y (Young) / Y Duos – Php5,990 (info)
2. Samsung Galaxy Pocket – Php4,990 (info)
3. BlackBerry Curve 8520 – Php7,500 – Php9,500 (info)
4. HTC Explorer – Php6,500 – Php8,500 (info)
5. Sony Ericsson Xperia Active – Php9,500 – Php10,500 (info)
6. Sony Ericsson Xperia Mini Pro – Php7,000 – Php9,500 (info)
7. Alcatel Blaze Glory X918N – Php6,199 (info)
8. Huawei Ascend Y200 – Php5,490 (info)
9. ZTE Kis V788 – Php7,490 (info)
10. Cherry Mobile Dragon W900 – Php9,999 (info)


As you may have noticed, feature phones (or phones running Bada, Symbian or the-like) like the Asha series weren’t included since they don’t really classify in the “smartphone” class or category (for obvious reasons).

On the other hand, the second list, in addition, is basically the cheap smartphones that actually made buzz locally — may it be in terms of hype or sales. So, technically, this is a Top 20 instead of just ten.

Anyway, if you ask me the top three phones on this list, they would be the Xperia U, HTC Radar and LG Optimus Black/BlackBerry Curve 9220.

Of course, you may also have your own top three. As I’ve mentioned earlier, we get to choose which suits best to our wants/needs or kind of lifestyle. In the end, you have the last say. I’m just here to help as much as I could. I wish I had!

So, what’s your top 3? Or, have you already thought of one smartphone in your mind that best fits you?

If you think I’ve missed something in my list/s, feel free to comment below.

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Ram Mancelita is the founding Editor of TechBuzz. He has been recently awarded as the 2013 Technology Blogger of the Year and the 2012 Best Cebu Technology Blogger by the Cebu Bloggers Society and Best Cebu Blogs Awards, respectively. Get to know him better by visiting his personal blog at Mancelita.com or following him on Twitter at @mancelitaRam.