CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on PCs, phones, gadgets and much more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and follow the Cheapskate on Twitter!
As I've mentioned, oh, several hundred times, I recently spent a week experimenting with a "budget" Android phone: the $180 Nokia 6. If today's deal had been available when I started, however, I might have chosen it instead.
For a limited time, and while supplies last, B&H Photo has the Motorola Moto G5 Plus unlocked GSM/CDMA phone for $199.99 shipped. Available in your choice of Fine Gold or Lunar Gray, it's normally $229.99 -- already a steal.
Worth noting: Amazon is currently matching that price, but you'll likely be on the hook for sales tax as well; B&H charge it only if you live in New York or New Jersey. And, geez, do we have to buy everything from Amazon?
Although Amazon also sells the G5 Plus "with offers and ads" for less, it's only $15 less thanks to this sale -- and I definitely recommend the ad-free version. I don't find those ads to be a nuisance on an Amazon Fire tablet, but on a phone? They really gunk up the lock screen.
Why would I have chosen the 5.2-inch Moto over the 5.5-inch Nokia? Simple: the former would have solved my two complaints with the latter, namely somewhat laggy performance and less-than-stellar cameras. According to CNET's Patrick Holland: "Overall image quality is...very good compared to other entry-level and midrange phones."
The Moto also sports a 2GHz Snapdragon 625 processor to the Nokia's 1.3GHz Snapdragon 430. Holland found overall performance to be "peppy."
Another big point in favor of this phone: It works on both CDMA and GSM networks, so you can use it on just about any carrier. (The Nokia is GSM-only.)
I also think I'd have liked the shortcut gestures Motorola baked into the fingerprint sensor. You can swipe it to the left, for example, to access recent apps.
Alas, this US model lacks NFC, so you can't use it for Android Pay, and Holland didn't care for the tinny sound from the Moto's speaker. (Read hisfor all the important details on this phone.)
Those dings aside, this remains an amazingly good value -- a phone that would have been considered midrange just a year ago, but now priced decidedly like an entry-level model.
Bonus deal: Game time! Ending tomorrow, Green Man Gaming's summer sale includes some incredible deals -- especially when you apply discount code summer2017 at checkout. (It's good for an extra 15 percent off.) Thus you can get the Portal bundle for just $4.25, The Orange Box for $3.40, Doom for $12.75 and the Just Cause Collection for $4.04.