Best unlocked phones between $400-$600

When it comes to buying phones, many in the US are conditioned to purchasing devices from their wireless service provider. Sadly, this backwards thinking is like buying your PC from your internet provider.

Buying a phone unlocked, or direct from the manufacturer, has its benefits. Going this route lets you pick the carrier that works for you. Moreover, the phone is void of bloatware and unwanted apps.

If you’re on the hunt for a new phone, you’ll find that some of the best unlocked phones priced $400 to $600 offer excellent value. It’s here where devices provide high-end performance that will last most consumers multiple years.

We’ve gathered a number of attractive phones that fit in the budget of $400 to $600. Here, we showcase a variety of phone makers and models with some of the standout features.

  • Best unlocked phones under $150
  • Best unlocked phones between $150-$250
  • Best unlocked mid-range phones between $250-$400
  • Want to buy a used phone? Read this first!

Google Pixel 3 – $500

 

Thanks to the arrival of the Pixel 4, the price has dropped for its predecessor, the Pixel 3. That’s great news all around because it’s not only one of our favorite phones of the last year, but it’s virtually indistinguishable from the new model — for most users.

For your money you get still-powerful hardware and a stock Android experience. And even though the new model gets exclusive rights on some tech, a lot of the helpful stuff will make its way to the Pixel 3.

An all-around cohesive experience, you get one of the best cameras, incredible smarts, and a clean UI.

Works with: Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and respective MVNO brands

Google | Amazon | Best Buy | B&H

OnePlus 7T – $600

 

The newest of those phones listed here, we love what OnePlus has done in the 7T. It’s among the most powerful devices you’ll find a few hundred bucks cheaper than what bigger name brands command.

A 6.55-inch display stretches edge to edge with only a minimal cutout for the front-facing camera. It’s not just any screen, either. There’s 1,000 nits of brightness at 90Hz refresh rate to deliver a stunning image.

Packed with 8GB RAM, super-fast 128GB UFS 3.0 storage, and the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 Plus processor, it’s an all-around powerhouse. Then there’s the 3800mAh battery and its warp charging capability.

Let’s see, what else? How about a triple camera configuration, a whole suite of cutting edge connectivity, and LTE support for all four major carriers.

Works with: Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and respective MVNO brands

OnePlus

Motorola Moto Z4 – $500

 

Running a near stock Android, the phone’s capabilities grow exponentially and where it matters — thanks Moto Mods!

Get a longer battery, better camera, or louder speaker, and more. Hell, you can even add 5G to your phone if that’s what you want. Standout features include a sizable 6.4-inch display, dual-cameras, fast charging, and a water-repellent coating. Extra points awarded for being compatible with all major carriers.

If you buy it directly from Motorola, you’ll like end up with a free MotoMod accessory. Actually, a lot of places are throwing in a free 360 degree camera.

Works with: Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and respective MVNO brands

Motorola | Amazon | Best Buy | B&H

Asus ZenFone 6 – $500

 

There are no other phones on this list that look like the Asus ZenFone 6, literally. It’s the only handset listed with a pair of cameras (48-megapixel and 13-megapixel ultra-wide) on the front and the back. Actually, it’s the same cameras, which employ a unique hinged design.

Speedy with its Snadragon 855 chipset and 6GB RAM, there’s a giant 6.4-inch screen that touches the edge in all directions. A 5,000mAh power source keeps things running day or night and the price keeps money in your pocket.

Works with: AT&T, T-Mobile, and respective MVNO brands

Amazon | B&H | Newegg

CAT S48c – $580

 

While this phone is getting a bit older, it’s still worth a look if you happen to fit the target demographic. Specifically, if you’re a contractor, laborer, utility worker, plumber, or someone who spends their days in the field.

The CAT S48c is rough and rugged and works all four of the major wireless service providers. It’s the sort of experience you go for when you can’t be bothered to worry about being delicate with your device.

Key specs include an octa-core 2.2GHz processor with 4GB RAM and 64GB internal memory. Need more storage? Add a microSD card and you can double it. The 5-inch display is protected by Gorilla Glass 5 which means the ultimate in scratch resistance.

Works with: Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and respective MVNO brands

Amazon | Best Buy