Don’t want to be tied to a single carrier?
Buying unlocked android cell phones is a great choice if you don’t want your device to get locked with only one carrier. After all, it’s your phone, right?
Then you may as well decide how to use it, which includes choosing what network you want to use.
That’s not the case, however, if you already own a smartphone that is currently contracted with one carrier. So, to solve your dilemma, you have two options:
- Pay for the charges that come with using a different carrier on a locked phone, or
- Ditch your old phone and buy a new, readily unlocked Android cell phone
Since you’re still reading this, we’re positive that you chose number 2. That being said, we took and reviewed the best unlocked Android cell phones on Amazon for you to choose from.
The Best Unlocked Android Cell Phones
|Best Overall||Huawei Mate SE|
|Cheapest||BLU VIVO XL4|
|Best Value||UMIDIGI Z2|
|Highly Recommended||Moto X4|
|Runner Ups||UMIDIGI Mobile A3|
Amazon’s 5 Best Unlocked Android Cell Phones
Right off the bat, Huawei is a pretty underrated brand of smartphones, as they don’t disappoint their users with all the specs and features that they provide.
The Huawei Mate SE is one of their underrated smartphones. Because for a budget phone, you get to enjoy a dual rear camera, a high-quality front camera, and a very responsive fingerprint sensor.
In terms of its performance, the Mate SE has a powerful octa-core 2.36 GHz processor, paired with a 4 GB RAM, and a 64 GB internal storage. So if you like multitasking or playing games, this phone will not disappoint you.
However, one of its downsides includes its 33450 mAh battery capacity, which is pretty low, considering that you can do a lot of things with this smartphone. Additionally, some batches have been reported to have trouble with automatically pairing with Bluetooth devices.
Other users also bought one of Amazon’s best power banks together with this smartphone. The Anker PowerCore is a powerful power bank with a 20100 mAh capacity, and a 4.8 A output for fast charging.
2. BLU VIVO XL4
You’ve probably never heard of BLU smartphones, and we’re not surprised. However, what could be surprising to you is that they have smartphones that can perform just as well as other famous brands.
The VIVO XL4 boasts narrow bezels that allow for a 6.19″ wide display with 80% screen to body ratio. So, if you like watching videos, playing games, or just having a large phone screen, this is an excellent choice for you.
Now, for its price, you get a 13 MP + 2 MP dual rear camera and a 13 MP selfie camera, making it an ideal photography camera. Moreover, it features a 4000 mAh battery capacity with fast charging capabilities.
One major downer about the VIVO XL4 is that some units were reported to have troubles with connecting to wifi. If ever you did decide on purchasing this phone and experience the same problem, don’t hesitate to contact BLU immediately.
Don’t forget that prices change on Amazon from time to time, so if you want to get this smartphone for this price, click or tap on the button below now!
If you think that the price above this phone is a typo, it’s not. The UMIDIGI Mobile A3 is the cheapest unlocked cell phone in our list, but it will not disappoint when it comes to specs and features.
The most noteworthy feature of this smartphone is its ultra-crisp 1440 x 720-pixel display, which is probably the best we’ve seen, considering that it’s below $100. Even at 20% brightness, the display on the screen still impressed us.
Furthermore, for its price, the A3 is surprisingly LTE capable. So, being an unlocked phone, that means a lot since you’ll be able to use it no matter the carrier that you subscribe to. What’s more, it also has fingerprint and face scanning features.
Now, you probably won’t be surprised that this smartphone has downsides since its cheap, and you’re not wrong. For starters, the dual camera is not as good as you’d expect from a 12 MP + 5 MP resolution.
Also, it has a poor battery life of only 3300mAh, so you may have to charge this phone at least twice a day.
4. UMIDIGI Z2
We have another one from UMIDIGI here, and this time it’s the Z2 unlocked cell phone. If you were impressed with the A3, then you’re going to love this even more.
The best features of the Z2 are its highly responsive fingerprint sensor, and fast face unlock. These two security features often malfunction in some devices. Hence, it’s good that this smartphone did not disappoint in that department.
Additionally, both front and rear cameras have 16 MP + 8 MP lenses, which proves that will not disappoint if you want something that can make your photos look crisp and bright.
Now, the Z2 has had good reviews from other users, in general. However, some of its downsides include lagging and the battery not lasting long enough for games.
Overall, we’d recommend this smartphone for photography enthusiasts or selfie addicts.
5. Moto X4
The Moto X4 may be the last on our list, but it definitely isn’t the least out of all the unlocked cell phones that we found.
For its price, it’s packed with all the specs and features that you won’t expect. To begin with, it has an IP68 water-resistant rating, protecting the phone from spills and splashes. Additionally, you can talk to Amazon’s Alexa through this smartphone.
When it comes to taking pictures, it boasts a 16 MP selfie camera with flash and a 12 MP + 8 MP dual rear camera. With these resolutions, the X4 can easily capture quality photos even in low light.
In terms of responsiveness, it has an octa-core 2.2 GHz processor paired with 3 GB RAM and 32 GB internal memory, making it a tad laggy when your RAM gets all eaten up. Additionally, its internal memory is a bit disheartening, but it can be expanded to up to 1 TB external memory.
Common Questions about Unlocked Cell Phones
Is it better to buy an unlocked phone?
“Better” depends on your preference, really. Unlocked phones give you the freedom to use your device on more — if not all — network carriers. So, if you’re loyal to a particular carrier, then you’d be alright even with a contract phone.
Are unlocked phones more expensive?
Unlocked phones seem more expensive at first. However, it gives you the worth of your money in the long run as they don’t have long-term subscriber contracts that lock the device to one carrier.
Can an unlocked phone be used on any carrier?
All unlocked phones will work on GSM carrier networks, including T-Mobile, AT&T, MetroPCS, Cricket, Simple Mobile, and Tracfone.
Should You Buy an Unlocked Cell Phone?
In general, unlocked smartphones are a great choice if you want to use your device on more carriers, and if you’re planning on reselling. More often than not, unlocked cell phones have a higher resale value, which makes it worth the money in the long run.
Did you find the unlocked cell phone that you want on our list? What are your thoughts about unlocked smartphones? We’d love to hear about it in the comments below!