Cheapest Android Device?


Last Updated:

  1. julianf

    julianf Member

    Hello, i am in need of any android device for use as a beater. I will be testing applications and roms on it. I will be running alot of things i wouldn't be comfortable running on my $100 android phone. So what is the cheapest android device? It can be a phone or a tablet running any android version. I dont care about features it doesnt even need to have play store on it. And for android phones they have to be prepaid as i wont be activating them on a contract, just for use over wifi.

    My only specifications are that it needs wifi and a capacitve touch screen. (I learned my lesson with resistive)

    And by cheapest, i mean cheapest literally the cheapest android device available.

    Thanks

    Advertisement
  2. Rxpert83

    Rxpert83 Dr. Feelgood Moderator

    Id go onto eBay or Craiglist in your area.

    The cheapest deal is likely to be found on one of those.
  3. divinebovine

    divinebovine Well-Known Member Contributor

    I think most app developers use the Android SDK's emulator to run a VM.

    Otherwise, you'll definitely find used devices at a fraction of the cost of new ones. If you must buy new, however, watch the Hot Deals forum on Fatwallet.com, generic tablets are posted there regularly.

    Also look for the Virgin Mobile Venture...I bought three of them new for about $25/each at Target. They're certainly gone from there but I think they're often available for almost as good of a price elsewhere.
  4. julianf

    julianf Member

    anyone else?? still looking, thanks!!
  5. teddyearp

    teddyearp A guide with guides Guide

    If you want to run custom ROM's and such on it, I think you're going to need a device that is rootable and has a custom recovery available for it unless you want a one use only device. If it were me I would want a device that meets the former so I could at least recover it if something went wrong.

    That said, eBay. the G1, Motorola Droid 1, maybe even the HTC Droid Eris.

    good luck
    Rxpert83 likes this.
  6. Rxpert83

    Rxpert83 Dr. Feelgood Moderator

    Just look into any flagship phone from 2010 or before

    The evo 4g had killer dev support, and I still see it getting new things now and then.
  7. android55555

    android55555 Well-Known Member

    Droid bionic around $75 used
    Blu Life Play $220 new
    HTC rezound around $100 used
    LG Spectrum around $100 used
    HTC Thunderbolt $60 used lol
    Samsung Galaxy Nexus around $150 used
    Droid RAZR around $150 used

    Source: Amazon.com
  8. nickdalzell

    nickdalzell Well-Known Member Contributor

    if you're intending on testing things that would normally break a device (like trying a custom ROM or recovery on a non-supported cheap tablet) i would go for the $40-60 cheap budget Polaroid or Emerson or Trio tablets. they often come in a 4.3" phone-size screen, and are easy to replace if your hacking skills don't pan out. i am currently testing to see if a custom recovery and ROM can work on them, being that they often share similar hardware with other devices (such as an ARMv6 CPU often found in lower-end pre-paid phones such as the ZTE Merit)

    I have already managed the needed hacking necessary to get Play Store to run on otherwise non-supported devices, and intend to find out what else i can make work.
  9. Ssith

    Ssith Well-Known Member

    i would second this. just run a virtual machine. cheaper, easier, and you can adjust the settings to make your apps work across a larger variety of devices instead of just the cheapo ones.

    and if you bork it, it's a simple "delete and re-up a new machine" to fix instead of a "buy a new phone, again" situation.
  10. alicepattinson

    alicepattinson Well-Known Member

    Oh i'd definitely go for Craiglist :) but watch out for super cheap devices okies?
  11. nickdalzell

    nickdalzell Well-Known Member Contributor

    Try the crop of budget products at the nearest Big Lots. i have a lot of fun messing them up lol.

    A VM is good but the SDK requires a lot of good spec on your computer to run, and even then it can run rather slowly. games and anything like Netflix won't work. you'll get audio but a blank screen, so if you plan on developing anything like games or graphics intensive stuff, forget the VM.
  12. out of ideas

    out of ideas Well-Known Member

    Running the AVD (Android Virtural Device) is pretty much too much of pain in the rear for app testing.

    It can give you a decent idea of stuff on different screens, but takes forever to load, and just simply does not respond the same as a real device. Plus setting up the internet is pain too.

    I can run and debug an app literally dozens of times on my phone before the AVD even loads up. So i personally don't use it. I just collected a few phones for different screen sizes and versions etc. And know what im doing isnt going to break a phone, so I just test apps on my personal phone as I make changes. I've also seen plenty of "my app wont do x" being fixed by running it on a real phone.

    if your building apps, get at least the minimum OS you plan to build for(if your building for GB+ get at least a GB phone). Froyo phones could probably be found dirt cheap, but are kind of obsolete at this point.

    If you plan on building or testing ROMs, make sure the phones the same OS at the very least. An incompatible app just simply wont install, but an incompatible ROM can brick your phone.

    Amazon, ebay, and big box stores when they have sales are good spots to look. Or you could always ask friends what they did with their old phones.
  13. nickdalzell

    nickdalzell Well-Known Member Contributor

    this is exactly why i buy generic devices. the hardware is more or less the same as a low-end phone one would develop for as far as minimums go, but are far easier to replace in the event you end up with a brick. if it can run well on the cheapest products, it's a good possibility it will run even better on a higher-end product. a lot of my hacking is at the system level so the risk of bricking is extremely high. i got a closet shelf for all the paperweights i have gathered over time, at least, the ones i have yet to toss in the trash.
  14. MinDev

    MinDev Well-Known Member

    I think the Galaxy Precedent new is going for like 60 or something...
  15. robbiegreene508

    robbiegreene508 Well-Known Member

    I'm not yet to my correct selling post/thread count, but I intend on selling a bunch of my phones from Virgin (usa). I just bought an S3 on T-Mobile, so i have a Samsung Intercept with slide out qwerty, a LG Optimus V, both on gingerbread, and 2 brand new Kyoceras... one is an Event (4.0) with case and screen protector, I used for a week before my S3/carrier swap, and a Rise (4.0 with slude out qwerty) that is still sealed. NONE of these were ever modded, unlocked/flashed, etc... not enen ota updates. I had no clue and wasn't into cell phones, instead of upgrading the phone I saved up and bought new phones, lol. All have clean ESNs, all mint, have chargers, work 100%, no damage, etc... ill guarantee it. I even have a Verizon Illusion too, same deal. I put them on eBay and got a dead beat buyer, so I'm either going to relist after an eBay resolution (cuz they already pulled their fees from my account), or if I can I will be posting them here soon. I was selling on ebay as a package/lot, with 10 other CHEAP BASIC cells I've got (no data/internet, the starter prepay kit phones), but I'm strongly considering keeping one or two for "practice", before I learn the hard way and brick my new galaxy phone... EVERY PHONE, even the cheapies, have their batteries and chargers... just a heads up to you and anyone else who will be looking soon, ill gladly hear offers on 1 or all of these, with or without the 10 basic phones too... ***fyi MODERATORS; this isn't intended as an ad, but as info to watch for my upcoming ad when I'm eligible to do so..***

Share This Page