UPDATED: SoyaCincau’s best smartphones under RM1,200 (2nd half, 2018)


What a year it has been so far since the last time we published our best smartphones under RM1,200 (2018 edition). We changed governments in a historic election nobody saw coming, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is now zero-rated and, of course, a whole bunch of brand new affordable smartphones launched.

We thought about a simple update to our original guide, but because so much has changed, we figured it would be a disservice for you to just add the couple of new phones to the end of that one. Instead, we decided that it would be better if we gave the whole guide a proper face-lift, featuring the new updated GST-less budget smartphones, several brand new handsets and a revised Editor’s Choice section.

Here’s our ultimate budget smartphone guide Part 2.

Before we get started, there are a few things you should know about this updated guide. To better reflect the current landscape of budget handsets, we’ve added a whole bunch of brand new devices that have been launched in the past few months. These include the ASUS’ killer budget ZenFone Max Pro M1, the rock-solid Nokia 6.1 and a couple of brand new selfie experts.

But, we also removed several handsets that were previously in the list, devices that we found were too old or too difficult to find reliable vendors online. So, if nothing here interests you, you can still check out our previous list for more options.

The list also contains updated prices for each smartphone now that GST is zero-rated. That said, since several of these devices aren’t brand new anymore, there is a much higher chance that you can pick them up for a price that’s much lower than the RRP we list thanks to discounts and promotions.

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In any case, let’s get into the meat and potatoes of it all. For those who are new to our smartphone guides, you will find an entry for each smartphone in the following pages. Each entry will contain a brief rundown on some of the specs and some other features we think you should know about that particular smartphone.

In each entry, we will also provide links to where you can buy these phones online. However, keep in mind that we will not be responsible for any purchases you make, so do so at your own discretion. We would generally advise users to make purchases from reputable sellers or official stores. We also advise users to purchase devices with official Malaysian warranties to avoid any complications should problems arise with that particular device. Sure, there may be instances where imported sets are more affordable, but the risks associated with it are also higher.

Then, on the second last page, you’ll find our massive comparison table so you can see how each phone stacks up against each other at a glance. Finally, on the last page we will have an “Editor’s Choice” list where we pick our top three best handsets for the money.

Ready? Let’s get things started.