Spending a ton of money on flagship models is not the cup of tea for many smartphone users. They are ready to spend a good amount for some advanced features, and for them, the mid-range section is absolutely spot on. The year 2022 saw some great mid-rangers like the Nothing Phone (1), Google Pixel 6a, and OnePlus Nord 2T, among many others, which provided seamless performance and fought toe-to-toe with the flagships of 2022. Read this article to find out more about the best upcoming mid-rangers in 2023.
OnePlus Nord 3
On OnePlus’s Indian website, there were sightings of the OnePlus Nord 3’s name, which makes it almost certain that the smartphone is going to release very soon. Codenamed as Meili, several leaked reports suggest that the device may get launched in June or July. Several specifications have emerged from various sources, giving the impression that the OnePlus Nord 3 is a less expensive version of the OnePlus 10R with reduced specifications. The OnePlus Nord 3 will probably come with a plastic frame sandwiched between Gorilla Glass 5. A 6.7 in fluid AMOLED display is on the cards, supporting a 90 Hz refresh rate. The device is powered by Android 13 (OxygenOS 13) and will probably have the MediaTek Dimensity 9000 with 4 nm nodes. The OnePlus Nord 3 will start with a minimum of 128 GB/ 8GB variant and have NFC support. An expected triple-camera setup of 50 MP (wide), 8 MP (ultrawide), and 2 MP (depth) with the capability of recording 4K videos at 30 FPS will be in the rear, while in the front there will be a 16 MP selfie camera. A 5000 mAh battery with an 80 W wired charger is expected, and the price will probably be between $300-$400.
Samsung Galaxy A54
If you go by the track record of the A52 and A53, then March 2023 seems to be the ideal time slot for the launch of the A54. Some of the leaks have confirmed that the price tag for the A54 will be around $499, and that is believable as it aligns with the predecessor’s price at the time of launch. Reports suggest the Galaxy A54 will have a plastic body with a matte finish, and the front will have Gorilla Glass. The device is expected to have a 6.4 in SUPER AMOLED display supported by a 120 Hz refresh rate and 800 nits of brightness. With a pixel density of around 411 PPI, the resolution of the device will be 1080 x 2400 pixels. The 5000 mAh battery is expected to provide a decent backup, but the 25 W wired charger is not up to date if we consider the market. The device will run on Android 13, and the One UI 5 will sit over it. If the rumors are to be believed, the processing department will be handled by the Exynos 1380 (5nm). The Samsung Galaxy A54 will have 128 GB internal storage and 6 GB RAM for the base variant, with the option of a microSDXC card slot. Expect a triple-camera setup with the primary lens being 50 MP with OIS and PDAF support, alongside a 5 MP macro lens and a 12 MP ultrawide lens. The selfie camera is 32 MP, with both the front and rear having the ability to capture 4K videos at 30 FPS. Samsung will probably offer a sea of colors to choose from, and an expected IP67 rating will be in the cards for dust and water resistance.
Google Pixel 7a
The Google Pixel 6a is probably one of the best budget smartphones that were released in 2022. The Google Pixel 7a is also trying to follow in the same footsteps, but when it comes to the launch of Google’s A-models, they often do not follow a consistent pattern. Suppose take, for example, the Google Pixel 6a, which was declared in May 2022 but released in July 2022. It is expected that the company will launch the device somewhere around May 2023, but will hit the market later. Previously, rumors were heard of a smartphone from Google with the codename “Lynx” that would come with a ceramic body. All the leaked reports and information suggest that the Google Pixel 7a could be the first model to get a ceramic body. The device will be a bit taller than its predecessor and looks quite similar to the Pixel 7, with probable Gray and White color options. Some tipsters got their hands on the early unit and leaked a video, where it was seen indeed that the Pixel 7a got a higher refresh rate of 90 Hz. As far as the internal storage and RAM are concerned, the base variant will come with 128 GB and 6 GB. Under the hood, the device will probably be powered by a Google Tensor G2 processor, which will further enhance the performance. Leaked information suggests that a Qualcomm-branded modem will be used in place of a Samsung modem, which is a big shift from the previous generations. A rumored 50 MP camera is also on the cards, which will be using the Samsung GN1 sensor, while the telephoto lens will have a Sony IMX787 sensor, and the front camera will have a Sony IMX712 sensor. The Android experience will be as clean as you can expect from a Pixel device, but it is not yet confirmed that the Pixel 7a will come out of the box with Android 13 or Android 14. Expect a price of around $449 for the Google Pixel 7a, which will not be a burden if you are interested in buying a mid-range phone.
Apple iPhone SE 4
Apple’s iPhone SE 4, which is the cheapest iPhone series, is set to launch by the end of 2023 or the beginning of 2024. As for the price, it is going to hover somewhere between $400-$500, to stay in competition with mid-range devices from Samsung and Google. Rumors have stated that BOE technology will provide the 6.1 in OLED display of the iPhone SE 4, and that could be a magnificent upgrade from the 4.7 in display of its predecessor. Now if it moves forward with the larger display, the design is evidently going to change, and some reports have suggested it would take its inspiration from the 2018 iPhone XR model. Shedding the Touch ID, the iPhone SE 4 will probably come with Face ID support, and it is yet to be known whether it will use a smaller notch or a larger one. It can be expected that the device will be powered by the A16 Bionic chip, which you can find in the iPhone 14 Pro models. The iPhone SE series camera is decent but does not have Night Photography mode, which is a real bummer, and it may still be absent from the iPhone SE 4. Leaked reports have suggested that the iPhone SE 4 will have the same 64 GB storage as its predecessors, and this is also problematic as most devices in this segment come with 128 GB. As the display is getting larger, you can expect a larger battery than the iPhone SE 2022, but Apple does need to move to a higher refresh rate than 60 Hz for the new models.
Motorola Defy 2
The Motorola Defy 2 has already been announced for February 2023, but the company has not yet confirmed the exact release date of the model. Along with the Bullitt Satellite Connect Service, Motorola will provide two-way satellite connectivity in their Defy 2. As per the information, the device is built on an aluminum frame with a plastic back and has an IP68 rating along with military-grade certification. The device will come with a 6.6 in IPS LCD display with a 120 Hz refresh rate. If the leaked information is correct, the device will be equipped with Android 12 and a MediaTek Dimensity 930 chipset, which are not up to the mark in 2023. The base variant of the Motorola Defy 2 will have 128GB internal space and 6GB RAM, with the option for a microSDXC slot as well. It is expected to come with a triple-camera setup of 50 MP (wide), 8 MP (ultrawide), and 2 MP (macro) in the rear and 8 MP in the front. Though it will be powered by a 5000 mAh battery, the inclusion of a 15 W charger is quite unacceptable. The Motorola Defy 2 is expected to come with a price tag of around $599 when it hits the market.
The 5 mid-range smartphones that are mentioned on the list are surely going to create waves and provide competition to the flagships that will be released in 2023. Providing some impressive features at the mentioned price brackets is surely going to make some of them the best value-for-money smartphones in 2023. But you must also be aware of the fact that all the specifications, prices, and dates that are provided to you in this article have been collected from various sources, and some of them may change in the long run.