Best cheap phone to replace my cheap phone
June 17, 2020 11:13 AM   Subscribe

I need something not too expensive to replace my ailing Android.

The Trac Phone site ranges from $29.99-$119.00 and up. The Android Alcatel I bought from them for $29-$49 maybe five years ago worked fine, but the battery finally decided to die (also too many drops). I don't like doing this kind of research and was hoping someone had insight. I am not averse to Straight Talk, etc.
I'd like talk, text, data, camera, and an alarm--the basic package. About $50 would be good (both of my jobs went away due to Covid-19) but I could go a couple dollars in either direction.I am not interested in going into a store.
posted by intrepid_simpleton to Computers & Internet (8 answers total)
I am quoting new prices. And now they just sent me a 25% off any phone coupon, so there's that.
posted by intrepid_simpleton at 11:16 AM on June 17, 2020

Are you looking to switch your service, or just your phone?
posted by Sockdown at 11:18 AM on June 17, 2020

I just need a phone to replace this phone. It's toast.
posted by intrepid_simpleton at 11:19 AM on June 17, 2020

The equivalent Alcatel today is probably the U50, $60 at Overstock.

5.0-inch IPS Capacitive Touchscreen, 480 x 854 pixels with Dragontrail Glass
Android OS, Qualcomm Snapdragon 210, Quad-Core 1.1 GHz, Adreno 304
Internal Memory: 8GB, 1GB RAM - microSD Up to 32GB
5MP Camera with LED Flash and 2MP Front Camera

So I'd compare those specs to whatever the cheapest option less 25% from Tracphone has.
posted by Sockdown at 11:26 AM on June 17, 2020

I would go with a Moto or a Galaxy, and they have a good deal on their new Galaxy. The 13mp camera will blow yours out of the water and it's a nice size that should perform well and be reliable.
posted by DarlingBri at 11:31 AM on June 17, 2020 [2 favorites]

I use Republic Wireless, and pay 20 + tax/month for everything incl. 1 gb data. You can buy more data as needed at 5/ gb. My phone is a Moto G7 Power; I paid 150 on Swappa. I limited my choices to mint condition and am very happy with the phone. TracPhone seems pretty expensive on data; I have a family member's old tracphone with years of service, but data is annoyingly spendy, so it's basically an emergency house phone..
posted by theora55 at 1:51 PM on June 17, 2020 [1 favorite]

If you're okay with tracfone, you can buy a cheap phone bundled with 1500 minutes/year card for around 50.00 at or It's the cheapest way to get tracfone service, plus a new phone.
posted by stray thoughts at 9:48 PM on June 17, 2020 [1 favorite]

Late to the discussion, but Best Buy has the Moto E6 locked to Tracfone for $40, with free shipping.

I got this phone last week, and it's fine for a cheap Android phone. The only thing I miss from my old Moto is the fingerprint scanner. What I like is that it has a headphone jack and replaceable battery, two rare features these days.

The downside for you is that this is locked to Tracfone, and I'm guessing it would be difficult to unlock if you wanted to use a different provider.

They're probably discounting these because there's a new Moto E out. The new one retails for $149.
posted by SteveInMaine at 10:31 AM on June 18, 2020 [1 favorite]

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