Skip to content

Should you buy an old flagship or a budget Android?

  • by
  • 6 min read

Android smartphones have come a long way from being clunky boxes with super laggy software. As smartphones become more and more powerful each day, the line between flagships and budget phones is thinning fast. However, modern-day flagships are still quite a bit ahead of their budget counterparts. Usually, by the time the next generation flagship arrives, budget smartphones catch up on the last generation.

In this article, we’ll be comparing the Moto One Power with the Google Pixel 2 — a budget smartphone and the last generation flagship, respectively — to find out which one makes more sense today.

Also read: Are Netbooks a sensible buy in 2019? Let’s take a look at one and figure out

Old flagship vs new budget smartphone

We’ll be comparing the phones over parameters that matter most to the typical consumer: performance, display, camera, battery life, usability and of course, price to performance ratio.


On paper, Google Pixel 2 seems the clear winner with its Snapdragon 835 Octa-Core SoC as compared to the Moto One Power’s Snapdragon 636. Both the phones have 4 GB of RAM onboard.

And it is true. Thanks to the 835, the Pixel 2 was well ahead of its time when it was released. However, what the One Power lacks in hardware, it makes up for in the software.

Old flagship vs new budget Android: Which one should you buy?
Google Pixel 2

You see, similarly to the Pixel, the One Power runs a pretty much stock version of Android. This means everyday performance should pretty much be the same unless you’re going after a Chicken Dinner in PUBG or are doing some serious crunching on your phone.

Even then, the performance improvement, while noticeable, wouldn’t be too much. It is a simple case of better SoC, more performance.

Winner: Pixel 2


Well, this is a two-fold comparison.

The Moto One Power’s FHD display carries quite a lot of pixels with a resolution of 1080×2246 as compared to the Pixel’s 1920×1080 resolution. However, the Pixel being an AMOLED display makes up for its lack of pixels.

Surprisingly though, there’s only an ever so slight difference between the two.

When you’re talking screen size though, the One Power crushes the pixel with it’s huge 6.2″ screen. For the most part, it is identical to an iPhone X display in terms of appearance, especially the notch.

Displays are a very subjective topic, so it’s hard to pick out one winner. It depends upon personal preference and how you ‘see’ the display. However, keeping in mind the price tag and the display quality, I’m going to give this one to the One Power.

Winner: One Power


This one’s easy.

No matter what number of pixels you cram into a smartphone camera, the Pixel family of phones have the best smartphone camera of all time. Period.

Old flagship vs new budget Android: Which one should you buy?
Google Pixel 2

The One Power’s stock camera app holds back what otherwise is really good camera hardware for the price you pay. You can sideload the Google Camera App from Pixel 2 on the Moto One Power, and the results will be phenomenal.

However, Pixel 2 takes this one.

Winner: Pixel 2

Battery life

This one is an undisputed win for the One Power. The One Power has a massive 5000 mAh battery that will easily last you somewhere between one and a half to two days of usage.

The Pixel 2 has a rather small 2700mAh battery, about half of what the One Power has. I’ve seen Pixel 2 owners either keep their phone on battery saver all the time or scrambling for Type-C chargers. You can expect about 8-10 hours from it.

Winner: One Power


So how practical are these phones in everyday life?

Well, that depends a lot on the person using it. The Moto One Power with its massive battery, good display, decent camera and dual SIM option in addition to a dedicated MicroSD card slot makes a lot of sense for the everyday person who’s always on the move.

Motorola One Power: confirmed specs and features prior to official launch
Moto One Power

However, the Pixel stands out as well. You get a nice build, a rather small shape, the best smartphone camera ever and some special pack-ins from Google. However, there’s no dual SIM, no expandable memory beyond 128 GB, a rather small battery and no headphone jack.

I’ve used both as my everyday drivers. And although I love the Pixel for how it feels in hand and for the outstanding camera, the One Power is so much more practical in everyday life as I juggle between college to work to parties to anywhere else I need to be without worrying about my phone dying on me.

Winner: One Power

Price to Performance ratio

Again, depending upon what your budget is, you might not be able to afford a Pixel 2 at all. Currently, the One Power goes for about INR 10,999 while the Pixel 2 is for INR 41,900. Prices from Flipkart as the One Power is a Flipkart exclusive.

Although as far as the Price to Performance ratio is concerned, the One Power performs almost too well for the price you pay for it. On the Pixel, the steep price tag is pretty well justified by the phone itself.

Winner: One Power


So which one should you buy? There are two ways to approach this question.

A flagship obviously, comes with its perks. If you can afford it and the disadvantages wouldn’t hinder your usage, you should go for one.

However, if being versatile and practical is your thing, I’d suggest picking up a budget option as you can easily run it for a couple of years and upgrade to another budget option for roughly the same or even less than the price said flagship.

Also read: OnePlus 7 Pro: From Flagship killer to simply a flagship?

Featured image by Michael Mroczek

Yadullah Abidi

Yadullah Abidi

Yadullah is a Computer Science graduate who writes/edits/shoots/codes all things cybersecurity, gaming, and tech hardware. When he's not, he streams himself racing virtual cars. He's been writing and reporting on tech and cybersecurity with websites like Candid.Technology and MakeUseOf since 2018. You can contact him here: