These days you can get a decent smartphone for cheap. The budget line is no longer a bargain bin for underpowered, low quality phones. Rather, it's a growing segment for compelling phones at aggressive prices.
In fact, you need to look past the high-end flagships and go toward the budget line to get a sense of where the real innovation in smartphones is happening right now.
With players from China such as Xiaomi, Oppo and Lenovo churning out high quality phones and selling them for a fraction of the asking price for premium phones such as Apple's iPhones and Samsung's Galaxy S series, phone companies are seeing the budget line as the new lucrative area.
We've seen runaway successes such as the Motorola's Moto G and the Xiaomi Mi4 - affordable 4G phones housing powerful specs and quality build but priced well under $300 (S$300).
Meanwhile, Sony recently re-entered the budget line this time around with a potential contender to the current crop of affordably priced offerings.
When you think of Sony's Xperia line, gorgeous minimalist design, ease-of-use and excellent battery life come to mind. Sony brought these elements that made its flagship Xperia Z3 so great into its budget-oriented Xperia E4g.
Even at first glance, the new E4g doesn't even look and function like a typical budget smartphone. It has a scratch-resistant 4.7-inch 960x540p screen (which is sharp enough for this display size) and runs on a fast 1.5Ghz processor and 1GB of RAM.
It's also among the few budget phones with 4G LTE connectivity.
This Android (4.4.4 KitKat) phone features 8GB of internal storage which can be expanded up to 32GB via microSD cards, and a 5-megapixel rear shooter that's capable of shooting Full HD video recording.
Finally, the included 2,300mAh battery on top of Sony's smart power management software should give the phone two-days of juice in its energy-saving Stamina mode, Sony claims.
That impressive battery life alone will definitely give other competing phones in this category a run for their money.
The arrival of Sony in the 'premium budget' line is exciting news for those who want some of that 'flagship' power and quality at a wallet-friendly price, but also want something that is made by a highly reputable brand such as Sony.
The Xperia E4g will be available in April with a price tag of roughly US$145 (S$198).