Choosing a new smartphone isn't as simple as it used to be. They may not come in more than one shape, but they do come in lots of different sizes, with plenty of different features and most importantly, at plenty of different price points.
For some the camera is important, for others it will be battery life, or perhaps biometrics. These days it isn't just the very best flagship smartphones that offer these features though. There are another breed of smartphones - the mid-rangers - that offer great specs but at a lower price.
That's what this feature is all about: it's for those looking for a new smartphone that isn't in the bargain bucket, but won't break the bank either.
Here we've rounded up the best devices that sit between the £200 mark and the £400 mark, all fully reviewed here on Pocket-lint. Want something even cheaper? Then check our the best budget phones under £200.
Our best mid-range smartphone
Here's our choice for the best all-round budget smartphone under £400 on the market at the moment...
Xiaomi Mi 9T Pro
The Xiaomi Mi 9T Pro is a fabulous phone for its price. It has huge amounts of performance, a 3.5mm headphone jack, a solid battery and a lovely OLED display too, not to mention decent camera performance for the most part.
The MIUI software might put some off, low light camera performance isn't brilliant and it has a fairly chunky build with no water or dust resistance, but this device has unrivalled spec for its price. In fact, it's quite simply bonkers this phone sells for the money it does.
And the best of the other top mid-range smartphones...
The Xiaomi Mi 9T Pro might not be for everyone, and luckily there are plenty of other great budget smartphones under £400 to consider. If a starting price of £200 is stretching too far, then check out our best budget smartphones under £200 feature, or if you want a round up of the best smartphones across all budgets, we have a feature for that too.
Here are the ones under £400 that are also worth considering though:
Motorola Moto G8 Plus
The Motorola Moto G8 Plus has a refined design over its predecessor below with a graduated rear, a great price proposition, a responsive fingerprint sensor and an excellent battery life.
It's camera is a little basic, albeit capable, and there is some serious competition in this market, but the Moto G8 Plus offers ample performance for its price and its problems are few and far between.
Motorola Moto G7 Plus
The Motorola Moto G7 Plus is still one of the best mid-range phones on the market, delisted being succeeded by the G8 Plus above. It delivers a truly affordable, well-designed and capable handset that offers very little to complain about for its price. It's a great alternative if the Xiaomi Mi 9T Pro is too much, or you want cheaper than the G8 Plus.
Its main issues come from the strong competition and excessive auto-brightness adjustment, but on the whole, the Moto G7 Plus has a great design, a great battery life, a clean software experience and solid camera results. It is easily recommendable as one of the best affordable devices on the market - especially as it is likely to be cheaper now that its successor is here.
Oppo Reno 2 Z
The Oppo Reno 2 Z has a clear and crisp display, a premium look and feel and a great battery life. It isn't a flagship phone, but like the Reno 2 a little further down this list, it gets you most of the way there for an astonishingly good price.
The finish is a little slippery and the low light images aren't as good as the Google Pixel 3a - a little further down - but the Oppo Reno 2 Z offers super fast-charging and you get an awful lot for your money, making it easily recommendable.
Motorola Moto G7
The Motorola Moto G7 is an excellent budget phone that not only improves over its predecessor - the Moto G6 - but it also offers the same design and size and resolution display as the Moto G7 Plus for less money.
The Moto G7 Plus offers faster charging, a bump in processor and OIS on its better cameras though, while the Moto G7 Power that falls under £200 has a huge 5000mAh battery. This means that while the standard Moto G7 is a great device, the Moto G7 Plus, Moto G7 Power or newer Moto G8 Plus might be better alternatives to consider.
Google Pixel 3a
The Google Pixel 3a just manages to slip into this category at a pound shy of £400. Like Google's flagship Pixel 3, the 3a has a clean and smooth software interface, coupled with the excellent Pixel camera, offering a great point-and-shoot experience.
It's not the cheapest of the devices on this list, and there are some with more advanced processors and more impressive specifications, while the plastic build feels cheaper than the flagship Pixel. Overall though, if you're after a pure Android device with an excellent camera, the Pixel 3a is a great device.
The Honor 20 replaces the excellent Honor 10 and it delivers an impressive balance of features and price. It offers capable cameras at a fair price point, a side-positioned fingerprint scanner and a screen-dominating design.
It has a couple of downsides - including a large camera protrusion, an LCD rather than OLED display and no 3.5mm headphone jack, but the battery life is solid and this device offers a great design for half the price of flagship devices.
Moto One Zoom
The Moto One Zoom offers a smooth operation with a clean software experience, a solid battery life and a decent quad-camera for its pretty affordable price.
The in-screen fingerprint scanner isn't the best and it is less powerful than our top recommendation - the Xiaomi Mi 9T Pro - but the Moto One Zoom is a series of successes and worth considering.
Xiaomi Mi 9
The Xiaomi Mi 9 offers plenty of power, a compelling camera experience and a great display with a minimal notch, all within a great design that looks excellent in the various colours offered.
The mono speaker isn't brilliant, there's no IP rating or microSD card and the MIUI software isn't anywhere near as good as the likes of the Motorola software experience, but the Xiaomi Mi 9 offers fabulous value for money, making it one of the most compelling phones of 2019 at this price.
Moto One Action
The Moto One Action offers great performance for its price and a dedicated video camera that makes for smooth and wide-angle footage. The idea of a vertical hold for horizontal videos is also great.
Battery life isn't the best and the punch hole front camera is rather large, while the screen's auto-dimming feature is a little keen. Aside from those small flaws though, the the Moto One Action impresses for how well it performs overall at this price point and you'll be hard pressed to find a more accessible phone for the money.
Motorola Moto One Vision
The Motorola Moto One Vision is a well-priced and specified phone shows that a mid-range device can deliver the goods in performance and features terms without costing the earth. It offers a really smooth software experience and a solid dual rear camera setup for its price.
The punch-hole for front camera is bigger than competitors and it has a so-so battery life, but the Moto One Vision has a 21:9 aspect ratio - something only Sony has dabbled in previously - offering something a little different.
Xiaomi Mi Mix 3
The Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 is powerful, distinctive thanks to its slider design and it offers a large screen and great AMOLED quality. It doesn't have the best selfie camera, but the results from the dual rear camera are decent.
The distinctive design is fairly thick and heavy, while the software isn't the smoothest experience but the Mi Mix 3 offers a solid battery life, as well as the option of a model with 5G capabilities for those with a little more budget so well worth considering.
Sony Xperia 10 Plus
The Sony Xperia 10 Plus is the larger of Sony's mid-range handsets featuring a 21:9 aspect display. Like the smaller Xperia 10 model, the 10 Plus isn't priced as competitively as its competition but it offers an attractive and minimal design with interesting form factor that is great for watching specific movie content.
The camera isn't the best out there and there is a little lag in speed here and there, but the Xperia 10 Plus offers a good battery life, some useful software additions and a clean experience overall, making it a worthy consideration especially if the 21:9 aspect ratio display is appealing to you.
The Honor Play is one of the best affordable phones on the market. It features an accomplished metal unibody design, an outstanding battery life, plenty of power on tap, a GPU Turbo for gaming extras and all for an incredible price point under £300.
You get a huge 6.3-inch display but within a manageable footprint thanks to the 19.5:9 aspect ratio, and there are dual rear cameras, a fingerprint sensor and NFC all on board. The Honor Play won't beat all flagship smartphones for load and speed but it is a serious handset well worth considering.
Samsung Galaxy A7 (2018)
The Samsung Galaxy A7 (2018) offers an excellent screen for its price, along with a triple camera on the rear that offers a variety of extra options, including wide-angle.
The camera loses detail in some situations and Micro-USB means no fast charging, but the 18:9 aspect ratio screen means you get plenty of screen within the footprint, along with a solid build quality.
Nokia 7 Plus
The Nokia 7 Plus offers a lovely solid design, coupled with a large display and a capable camera, making for a great mid-range device. It also delivers a capacious battery and 2x zoom that few others have.
The design is perhaps a little bigger than necessary, the speakers aren't brilliant and the camera is a little slow to launch, while similar devices with comparable specs exist at this price point, but the Nokia 7 Plus is still one to consider.