In 2009, as new mobiles entered the market the average smartphone price in Kenya for some buyers was too high. Now, as new brands and companies have begun to offer options those prices are drastically improved. It’s possible to find cheap mobiles or more top of the line selections at a reasonable cost. In the last few years the number of mobile users in this country doubled, then tripled. By 2014 what was a small niche of users has grown to an estimated 21 million. For those hoping to upgrade to a better mobile, or interested in purchasing a mobile for the first time the changes of finding just the right handset for personal needs is very good.
HTC started producing award winning mobiles in 2005. Well known globally they are an important presence in Kenya being one of the many new companies offering the exact type of mobile desired in this new marketplace. Finding an HTC for the right smartphone price in Kenya is usually a matter of knowing which series and model a buyer needs for as little cost as possible.
The Desire 326G Dual SIM is a good example of an entry level cheap smartphones in Kenya, with many of the features new buyers are hoping to find. Part of the popular and inexpensive Desire series, this handset usually retails for less than Ksh. 12,000. What makes this series standout if the unique design features that make this an easy to use smartphone handset for those outside of the United States. Dual SIM, and removable 2000 mAh are among the top such features, making these a great choice for those who need to make international as well as local carrier calls, or who will need to carry an extra battery rather than simply recharge. Unlike some smartphones marketed in Kenya, however, there are fewer trade offs for these differences. The back facing camera is 8MP with LED flash and a front facing camera for personal 2MP pictures are both a better quality than found in many other devices. The operating system is Android 4.4 (Kitkat).
A Step Up with Another Desire Option
For a slightly higher cost a buyer can have a slightly slimmer smartphone with the HTC Desire Plus 526G Plus and the HTC Desire 526G. The 4.7 screen is also slightly bigger than others in the series, and resolution is 540 x 960 pixels. The cameras, Dual SIM, OS, and battery capacity are exactly the same as the others earlier in the series. The look is much sleeker, and slimmer so it’s up to the buyer to decide if this along with a bigger screen and clearer image are worth a higher cost as it usually retails at Ksh. 14,000.
New Options with Infinix Hot Note
In looking at the typical smartphone price in Kenya, it’s easy to disregard some of the Infinix series Hot Note. This isn’t as well known a brand name, and the smartphones themselves generally do not have the sleek look as other offerings. A little research, however, reveals this is a better option than it might appear. Infinix X600 Note 2 is an exception. This handset comes in gold tone along with other choices, and features are just as plush as the exterior. Dual Micro SIM with a 5.98” screen the back facing camera is 13MP a big step beyond many other selections on the market at this time. The OS is Android 5.1, but with 16GG and 1GB RAM it’s certainly possible to upgrade if the chosen carrier allows for this. The front facing camera is 2MP, still good for the occasional selfie. When comparison shopping for smartphones in Kenya buyers should note the price of this device reflects an upgrade from other smartphones at Ksh 12,000. This is an example of alternatives for cheap smartphones.
Checking the Price for Smartphones in Kenya and Brands from Around the World
Often it’s not all in the name when it comes to the smartphones price in Kenya. A choice that’s very like the Infinix X600 is the InnJoo Max 2 Plus. The same sleek appearance, 1GB RAM, and 13MP rear facing camera, Android 5.1 operating system, and gold tone is found with this handset. The battery on this choice is 4600mAh promising a longer charger. This retails usually for about 3,000 less than the X600.
Brands at Higher Cost
Some companies will always charge a greater price in Kenya for their smartphones. Apple is a prime example, as this brand is usually among the most innovative with their smartphones. If the buyer’s need is for a robust OS, very specific apps, or strong security when comparing Kenyan smartphones these are the better choice. The most common operating system throughout the country is Android because the apps are easy to buy and use. Still, for those who desire the iPhone there are choices available. The Apple iPhone 6 Plus is currently available on the market with 128GB-1GB RAM. The camera is a disappointing 8MP, but there is a 1.2MP front facing camera which is an improvement over other earlier models of the iPhone. It’s a Nano-SIM which can cause a problem for many potential users. The operating system is iOS 8, and the dual core 1.4GHz Cyclone CPU is among the best found in Kenya’s market. The cost is hefty retailing at over Ksh 87,000.
A Higher Cost for More
Like iPhones and Apple, the Sony brand often comes with a higher sales tag. Many Sony smartphones also have only a single SIM. The difference with these phones is in the design, and quality of the handsets. The Sony Xperia Z1 has 16G, and 2GB RAM, and it runs the Android OS v4.2 Jelly Bean OS. These are issues the user can usually work around by upgrading the OS for example. The camera is far superior to others on the market and might be worth the price and the frustrations of working around other issues for those who need excellent images when taking pictures. The Sony name was first made famous with their cameras and it shows with the Xperia Z1’s 20.7MP camera with 5248 x 3936 pixels, auto focus and LED flash. There’s only one camera on the phone, and its back facing, but it is superior to any other smartphone’s currently offered. The smartphone’s 5” screen gives the user clear resolution at 1080 x 1920 pixels with TFT capacitive touchscreen ability. Another benefit with this choice is this device is waterproof. This isn’t cheap, but most less than the iPhone and offers more for those who truly need a great camera along with an easy to use phone. The downside is it comes at a higher price in Kenya than many others at over Ksh. 30,000 retail.
A Trusted Name and Getting the Right Price
BlackBerry is one of the earliest brand names to enter the global smartphone market. For many there’s nothing that conveys the image of professionalism as owning one of these smartphones, and for the brand as kept up with innovations developed by other mobile companies. In this county the brand is disadvantaged by not having a Dual SIM. The Blackberry Passport at 32GB with 3GB rams strives to make up for this with Blackberry 10.3 OS and Quad-core 2.26 GHz Krait 400. The extra wide 4.5” IPS display is one key point many users love about this phone. The 13MP camera is still an improvement over the iPhone’s cameras, and the 3450 mAh battery offers a longer charger. The downside of the battery is in not being removable. While lower in price than most iPhones this Blackberry currently retails no lower than Ksh. 55,000.
A Cheaper Smartphone Alternative
When craving the BlackBerry brand, a good starter handset is the BlackBerry Z3. It’s true the Z3 has only 8GBs and 1.5GB Ram, but this smartphone is cheap in Kenya, and is more in tune with other mobiles currently offered here, and users will still love the wider display with a 5” display that’s 67.6% screen to body ratio. The camera is far less than those enjoyed by Sony users with a 5MP 2592 x 1944 pixels, auto focus and LED Flash, however, it’s a better value then iPhone’s. Like the more expensive BlackBerry series users have the 10.2.1 OS that’s upgradable to v10.3.1. This is a smaller, more basic BlackBerry and the retail price reflects this at around Ksh. 14,000.
Microsoft OS and Prices
The Microsoft Lumia 830 has some of the same issues as Sony and Apple in not having a Dual SIM option. This offer is considered among the best in Kenya including the BlackBerry, Apple, or Sony series devices retailing at less than Ksh. 30,000. The Lumia 830 has 16GB with 1GB of RAM, but its biggest selling point is the Microsoft Windows Phone 8.1 OS. The camera is a bit superior to some on the market of even greater price on the Kenyan market, having a 10MP 3520 x 2640 pixels, camera with Carl Zeiss optics, and optical image stabilization. The 5” screen has a IPs LCD capacitive touchscreen, making worth the cost.