There’s some debate surrounding what a mid-range phone actually is. We find that there are cheap phones under $300, some good-value phones up to around $500, then a collection of mid-range phones up to $600. However, if you push a little harder you get rewarded fast. Many premium phones that started out around $1,000 fall in price quickly and land up in the $600 - $700 range. We looked at the best Apple and Android phones for under $600 last time but, frankly, this list is significantly better.
The best Android and Apple smartphones for under $700
1. Huawei Mate 8 ($899 RRP, $629 actual)
One of our favourite phones of the year. Fitting in 6-inches of screen into a phone chassis where you’d normally expect 5.5-inches, this does-it-all phablet has great battery life a decent camera and is powerful. The Mate 9 has recently been launched overseas but this is still one of the best Android phones you can buy and is a steal at just over $600.
2. Samsung Galaxy S7 ($1149 RRP, $699 actual)
We test many phones but one of our fall-back models in between testing was the Samsung Galaxy S7. The larger Edge with its curved screen annoyed us, frankly, and it cost a lot more. But this had the same specs in an easier-to-handle smaller-and-cheaper package. If the Mate 8 is too big for you, this fully-featured gem is a still a great buy.
3. Huawei P9 ($799 RRP, $689 actual)
Another of our favourite phones of the year. The twin-camera phone made in partnership with photography marque, Leica, produced our favourite photos of the year. We had great fun using it and if you take many portraits or close-up shots you will absolutely love it. It’s a bit delicate though so buy a case for it!
4. HTC 10 ($950 RRP, $640 actual)
While it didn’t get rave reviews at launch – largely because of the price – there’s a lot to like about HTC’s 10. The screen is good, the camera is good and it offers 24-bit audio which is among the best on the market. At under $640 HTC’s flagship is now very attractive indeed.
5. Moto Z ($999 RRP, $699 actual)
The modular phone only launched recently in Australia but it can be picked up cheaply. It’s a very solid phone and add-on features like battery pack, projector and Hasselblad camera make it more attractive. A decent buy.