In 2014, the budget smartphone market has become hugely competitive. We've had the Moto G and Moto E from Motorola, the Lumia 630 from Nokia and EE's own brand Kestrel offering 4G for under £100.

But now Microsoft is looking to undercut everyone with the Lumia 530, which is a 4in smartphone with the latest version of Windows Phone 8, at the ultra low price of £60.

But can a £60 smartphone really be any good?


Like the rest of the Lumia range, the 530 is colourful and robust, with the polycarbonate casing offering a comfortable experience and a feeling that it won't fall apart if you drop it.

There's nothing special about the design of the Lumia 530, but it has managed to avoid looking as cheap as its £60 price tag.


This is where the budget price of the Lumia 530 really shines through. The 4in display has a resolution of 854x480 pixels which isn't the worst on the market, but the screen looks washed out and dull compared to some other budget smartphones on the market - particularly the HD screen on the Moto G.

Performance and Software

The Lumia 530 features a 1.2GHz processor paired with just 512 megabytes of RAM, but despite these modest specs, the system runs very smoothly.

The phone comes with Windows Phone 8.1 pre-installed and the tight software/hardware integration helps get the most from the phone, meaning you don't notice that this is a budget device.


A five megapixel sensor with no flash means that the Lumia 530 should only really be used to take pictures when you have no other option available.

Add to this the fact there is no front-facing camera and it is clear where Nokia cut corners to get this phone to market with a £60 price tag.


It is clear that the Lumia 530 is limited. It's screen and camera are poor but given these limitations it is remarkable that Nokia has produced a smartphone of this quality for just £60.

The problem is that the budget smartphone market is saturated and if you are willing to spend just a little bit more, you will get a whole lot more smartphone for your money.