Best 5 Value-for-money smartphones below RM1K for the New Year


Fresh from an expensive Christmas and looking for a value-for-money smartphone for the New Year of 2018? Well, we've got a list for you with the best smartphones for below RM1K that you can get this New Year. Consisting of some solid all-rounder favourites and some new devices with all new features like fullview 18:9 aspect ratio displays, here's our Best Value-for-money smartphones below RM1K for the New Year list in no certain order.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 - The usual Value Buster

Making a reappearance from our trending midranger comparison, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 maintains its position as one of Malaysia's value-for-money devices by dropping down in price to RM769 with the same midrange Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor and single 13MP rear camera with a 5.5-inch full HD display, infrared blaster and rear fingerprint sensor. This somewhat renewed version offers 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage for a bit more value while the large 4100 mAh battery helps things along. The rather common 5MP front camera for the selfie crowd is about as generic and somewhat outdated as the the metal body but it ticks off most of the checkboxes as a value buster for the New Year.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 4.jpg 

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 drops down in price for even more value-for-money but doesn't offer much else different other than more memory

Xiaomi Mi A1 - The Stock Android Xiaomi

Upping the ante for Xiaomi is the Mi A1 featuring a stock Android One operating system and 12MP dual rear cameras at RM999. However, it doesn't add on much more than the other Xiaomi in our list as it packs in a 5.5-inch full HD display, 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage but cuts down the battery to a smaller but still reasonable 3080 mAh. It is also a rear fingerprint sensor enabled device but also doesn't offer much more in terms of design asides from the usual metal body.

Xiaomi Mi A1.jpg 

The Xiaomi Mi A1 offers stock Android One and 12MP dual rear cameras but cuts down battery size to 3080 mAh

Wiko View - Another 18:9 aspect ratio fullview alternative

Offering a 5.7-inch 18:9 aspect ratio fullview display in HD+ or 720 x 1440 pixel resolution is the Wiko View at RM899. While it does offer a 16MP front camera with selfie flash, other tech specs are less than stellar with a lower-end quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB storage, 13MP rear camera, rear fingerprint sensor and 2900 mAh battery. It is one of the few smartphones in our list to have an 18:9 aspect ratio fullview display though but due to limited release it seems to only be available in just black and not deep bleen or cherry red like earlier advertised.

Wiko View.jpg 

The Wiko View is one of the few smartphones out there to offer a fullview display below RM1K

Motorola Moto G5s Plus - The value priced Dual Pixel Stock Android

The only phone in our list to come with a 13MP Dual Pixel dual rear camera, the Motorola Moto G5s Plus comes in at RM999. It also has a midrange Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor, 4GB of RAM, 32GB storage, stock Android and a 5.5-inch full HD display while the 8MP front camera also has an LED flash along with a front fingerprint sensor. A reasonable 3000 mAh battery keeps the lights on but the love-it-or-hate-it metal body with big camera hump is the deal breaker here, so if you like the design then the various value-added features are just like icing on the cake.

Motorola Moto G5s Plus.jpg 

The Motorola Moto G5s Plus offers many solid features you'll like, especially if you like the design too

ASUS ZenFone Max Plus (M1) - The big battery 5.7-inch 18:9 fullview display all-rounder

The only other smartphone in our list to offer the latest 18:9 aspect ratio fullview display with HD+ or 720 x 1440 pixel resolutions, the ASUS ZenFone Max Plus (M1) also has a large 5.7-inch display in the compact body of a phone usually packing in a 5.2-inch display. It also packs in the largest battery at 4130 mAh, 16MP PDAF (Phase Detection Autofocus) + 8MP 120 degree wide angle dual rear cameras and a 16MP front camera for selfie enthusiasts, all for RM899. Granted, it does use Mediatek MT6750T SoC but it is an octa-core processor while a rear fingerprint sensor and face unlock keeps it more secure than most.

ASUS Zenfone Max Plus.jpg 

The ASUS ZenFone Max Plus (M1) looks good while offering plenty of better than usual features

Conclusion - Best bang-for-your-buck value-for-your money 2018 New Year smartphone

Overall, for its price of RM899, the ASUS ZenFone Max Plus (M1) offers the best bang-for-your-buck value, especially if you're looking for a slimmer 18:9 aspect ratio display smartphone, longer lasting 4130 mAh battery and Face Unlock. It's also the better choice if you're looking for more detailed 16MP selfies while the dual rear cameras offer other phoneography options on the go with a capable 16MP or 8MP 120 degree wide angle dual rear cameras.


Our latest price lists have the ASUS ZenFone Max Plus (M1) now at RM849 despite the RRP (Recommended Retail Price) of RM899! 

The Motorola Moto G5s Plus offers a solid bunch of features and it would be our choice over the Xiaomi Mi A1, the other stock Android phone in our list if you're not interested in a fullview display. The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 still offers plenty of value-for-money as well but is somewhat dated in terms of features. While the Wiko View also offers a fullview display,  the ASUS ZenFone Max Plus (M1) offers better well-rounded features (better processor, more RAM, bigger battery, Face unlock, etc.) so it is our best bang-for-your-buck value-for-money smartphone for this upcoming New Year. In addition, you can now win a ZenFone Max Plus (M1) for free, just check out their Facebook page for more details.

Do you have other alternatives? Let us know in our Facebook page and stay tuned to for more comparisons, tech news and reviews.

Features Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Xiaomi Mi A1 Wiko View  Motorola Moto G5s Plus ASUS ZenFone Max Plus (M1)
Price RM769 RM999 RM899 RM999 RM899
Processor Snapdragon 625  Snapdragon 625 Snapdragon 425 Snapdragon 625 MediaTek 6750T
Display 5.5-inch FHD 5.5-inch FHD 5.7-inch HD+ 18:9 fullview 5.5-inch FHD 5.7-inch HD+ 18:9 fullview
Rear Camera 13MP 12MP + 12MP 13MP 13MP dual pixel + 13MP 16MP + 8MP wide angle
Front Camera 5MP 13MP + LED flash 16MP + selfie flash 8MP + LED Flash 16MP + screen light
Battery 4100 mAh 3080 mAh 2900 mAh 3000 mAh 4130 mAh
Fingerprint sensor rear rear rear front rear
Face Unlock N/A N/A N/A N/A Yes

A quick look at the features of the devices in the list.


All of that 5.7-inch fullview display in the compact body of a smartphone usually equipped with a 5.2-inch display

Asus Zenfone Max Plus Specs & Price >
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