Every year, manufacturers release dozens of smartphones. All of them fall in different categories. The cheap ones are termed budget smartphones, if you go slightly higher, you get mid-range phones, similarly, there are upper mid-range and then we have the expensive ones- the Flagships! And it’s obvious that one chooses a smartphone that is within their budget. But it’s equally true that budget may be one of the important factors to consider before getting a smartphone, but your need also matters. For instance, you might be someone who is into a lot of gaming, or you may be someone who is constantly indulged in streaming videos. So, it’s vital that you go looking for the best thing in your budget whilst balancing your needs as well.
So, first let’s get into understanding the terms. A flagship phone is the best offering any company has brought out using the research and development they own. Basically, it’s the best of what they can do. Samsung has their Galaxy Note devices, their Galaxy S- Lineup and the Galaxy Fold as their most premium offering. Apple’s iPhones have always been their only and the most premium offering. Similarly, we have Huawei with their Mate and P- series, we have Google Pixel phones and the most recent addition to flagship segment is One Plus with their OnePlus 7T Pro. Mostly flagship segment is where the companies offer innovation like foldables, the best of camera capabilities and the like. Overall, flagships are all rounders with the best of hardware and software available at the time of their release.
Mid-range phones, as their names suggest are the phones that have a moderation of specs, quality and price. They derive some things from the flagships and some from budget phones. For example, Xiaomi’s Pocophone F1 had a flagship grade processor while having other features similar to budget phones. However, it’s not necessary that a mid-range phone has to have any flagship or budget specs. It could just have something that lies in the middle. These days, you can find most mid-range phones having good enough processor, a good display, a nice-to-look-at-design and a sizeable battery.
So, if you get everything in moderation with mid-range phones, why should anyone opt for a flagship then? Well, because of the quality, the aesthetics and the extras. The extras are actually what make flagships, flagships. A flagship phone has the coolest of features like wireless charging, reverse wireless charging, health monitor, super- fast wired charging capabilities, etc. They also have the best User Interface optimizations and the best of performance. Even the looks of a flagship distinguish it, you know it when you see and hold one. All these features are well, not necessary to be honest, but it makes your experience better.
On the other hand, mid-range phones pack only the things that are necessary, like a bigger battery, a livable processor, good to go looks and a stable user interface. But the good thing is, mid-range phones have started to replace the need of a flagship. Because if you think about it, you can get all the necessary things in mid-range phones too. A very good example of a good mid-range phone that gives flagships a run for their money is Xiaomi’s Redmi K20 pro and Realme’s X2 pro. They pack the most necessary of features in them while costing half of what flagships do. In the Nepali market, Samsung and Huawei have their flagships costing around or above one lakh rupees. iPhones, on the other hand are crazy expensive here. So, if you are looking for a good value flagship, brands other than Apple can give you the value. But at the same time, Apple’s iPhones have their separate fan base even here in Nepal.
For flagships, it truly depends upon the software and the interface. iPhone users usually love Apple’s interface and are hesitant to switch to Android. So, no matter what the cost of the device is, they prefer using iPhones. For Android users, there are Samsung, Huawei and One Plus that bring out flagship phones in the Nepali market which are as good as the iPhones. As for mid-range phones, there are a lot of companies that have mid-range phone in their lineups here in Nepal. And this is the segment where you get a lot of buyers as well. Top companies that are competing against each other in the mid-range battle are, Samsung, Xiaomi, OPPO, Vivo, Realme, etc. These days, the mid-range smartphone segment is where all the excitement and competition lie in Nepal. This segment has become very price and spec oriented. So, other than the ‘extras’ that I talked regarding flagships earlier, mid-range phones have almost many flagship features. So, which smartphone should you choose, a mid-range or a flagship? Well, in the end, it all depends upon the user and their priorities. If premium is what you are looking for, then a flagship is what you should get, provided the budget suits you. Flagship phones are all- rounders and you get the best of everything, the updates reach you faster and your flagship device gets security patches sooner than others. There are very less chances for something to go wrong with a flagship, unless it’s a factory defect. Also, you will get better and service from the service centers if you own a flagship phone.
However, Mid-rangers fit your budget whist giving you most of the things you can ask from a smartphone. Their repair cost is less, in fact they cost less in the first place. And if you are not so concerned about the latest software and security features and you wish to save money, mid-range phones can just serve the purpose for you. In the end, flagship or mid-range, one should know that the phone you buy need to justify your needs, as I said in the beginning.