Budget Widevine L1 Certified Phones

Best Budget Widevine L1 Certified Phones & Devices Support List in India

If you are looking for budget Widevine L1 Certified Phones in India, you have landed in the right spot.

Most of the smartphones these days come with unique innovations and functions, but there are few things written on fine print and thus can have unexpected consequences. Like, say, for example, the Redmi Y2 from Xiaomi was touted to be the best selfie smartphone and soon discovered to come with a 32-bit software (ROM) for which support is ending in August 2019. A similar must-have feature you may find annoying is the lack of a Widevine L1 certification. What is this certification all about and which smartphones support it? Let us find it out in the following post.

Also Read: List of Phones with HDR10+

What is Widevine L1 certification?

When Google purchased Widevine (the company), they integrated Widevine DRM protection on their Chromium platform as well as on Android (Android MediaDRM). The Chrome browser, Android TV, and ChromeOS make use of Encrypted Media Extensions and Media Source Extensions which was originally developed by Widevine. Why is it important? It is because most of the popular streaming services secure premium content using the Widevine DRM.

Xiaomi recently launched its new Redmi Note 7 and 7 Pro. However, review sites were quick to point out one of the issues on the phone – the lack of Widevine L1 certification. This and a few other phones do not come with the requisite certification which means the phone will not be able to play the protected content from the streaming services like Amazon Prime Video, Netflix or Hotstar in full resolution.

The phones mentioned above can stream the content in lower resolutions at 540p only. The Widevine L1 certification ensures that the phone can offer you streaming functionality in full resolution and protect content on the publisher’s end. But, is that such a huge issue? Well, yes – if you are a media freak. You will not be able to enjoy the content as it was planned to be. It may also deprive you of the better viewing angles.

Best Budget phones with Widevine L1 certification

Well, now that we have found why it is so important to go with a smartphone with the Widevine L1 certification, let us now check out a few affordable phones that offer you the aforesaid functionality. Ensure that your phone supports it before buying it so that you can ensure that you are not falling short of enjoying the best streaming functionality at best possible quality.

Nokia 6.1+

Check on Amazon Check on Amazon India

Nokia 6.1+ is one of the first phones from Nokia that came with the notch display along with Nokia 5.1+. It is a part of the Android One program and assured to get the regular software updates straight from Google.

A few features you stand to gain with the phone include

  • It has a 5.8-inch full-HD+ display with 19:9 aspect ratio and Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection.
  • The display is bright and offers you the right viewing angles.
  • You have access to Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 processor powering the smartphone.
  • The internal storage reads 64 GB along with 4 GB RAM. You also have access to expandable storage to up to 400 GB
  • The 3060 mAh battery should provide you enough juice to last a day.

The phone offers you a completely consistent and smoother user experience. It can handle the intensive workloads you throw at it.

Samsung Galaxy A7

Check on Amazon Check on Amazon India

This is yet another excellent example of the best phone with the Widevine L1 certification to watch the streaming content from popular streaming services. The first Galaxy series device to offer you a triple camera setup, it comes with a decent battery backup.

Some salient features worth the mention include

  • The device sports a glass back, an innovation in the A series of devices in recent times.
  • The 6-inch display offers you an 18.5:9 aspect ratio and the recent Infinity display design
  • The fingerprint sensor is incorporated within the Power button and snappy enough.
  • The phone runs on the Exynos 7885 processor running at 2.2 GHz.
  • It is available in two variants featuring 4 GB RAM / 64 GB storage and 6 GB RAM / 128 GB storage.
  • The 3300 mAh battery capacity should take you through a day of normal usage.

The phone also features Dual Apps functionality to use two instances of the same app for those who are using two profiles on social media services. The performance is entirely trustworthy and offers you a lot of enhancements.

Pocofone Poco F1

Check on Flipkart

One of the sub-brands of Xiaomi, Poco F1 did not come with the Widevine L1 certification initially. Looking at the uproar by the users, Xiaomi later introduced the certification through a software update. Perhaps it is the only smartphone in the mid-range budget to offer a flagship Snapdragon 845 processor.

Some of the features you would be impressed with the phone are

  • It features a 6.18-inch screen with full HD+ compatibility and an 18.7:9 aspect ratio. There is a Gorilla Glass 3 protection as well.
  • The regular edition comes with a polycarbonate back, while you can opt for the special edition Armoured Edition review that offers you a Kevlar back
  • The phone comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor at 2.8 GHz.
  • You can opt for three storage variants – 6 GB RAM / 64 GB storage, 6 GB RAM / 128 GB storage and 8 GB RAM/ 256 GB storage. It comes with dual SIM hybrid slot for either expanded storage or second SIM

The 4000 mAh battery is one of the positive elements that tend to make it a  great choice. Aggressive marketing and efficient functionality are what would make it a great choice in almost all aspects.

Realme 2

Check on Amazon India

Oppo launched the Realme sub-brand to take on the Xiaomi devices. It is equipped with a fiberglass body; the phone is one of the best options for those looking for extra features in an affordable device. While Realme 1 was designed focussing on design and performance, while the Realme 2 is more of a budget-friendly all-rounder.

Some salient features we would want to pinpoint are

  • The phone looks unique fiberglass body and glossy diamond cut appearance on the rear.
  • It has fingerprint sensor added for in sharp contrast to Realme 1.
  • The phone comes with separate slots for two SIMs and a dedicated microSD card.
  • It is powered by octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 450 SoC and lives up to the expectations concerning the performance.
  • You can either opt for a 3GB RAM / 32 GB storage or 4 GB RAM / 64 GB storage options.
  • The sizeable 4230 mAh battery capacity should offer you more than a day’s backup even with high usage practices.

The 6.2-inch display offers you a 19:9 aspect ratio and provides you a useful functionality for the regular day to day tasks. However, it may not perform well enough if you throw intensive tasks at it.

Samsung Galaxy J6

Check on Amazon India

Another Samsung budget device to feature Widevine L1 specification, the Galaxy J6 comes with a robust design, a display specifically meant for consuming high-end content and an average day to day performance. The screen offers you a Gorilla Glass protection and an 18:9 aspect ratio.

A few salient features offered the phone include

  • You have access to two SIM trays – one for SIM 1 and another for SIM 2 and dedicated microSD card for increasing the storage capacity.
  • The 5.6 inches super AMOLED design offers you access to contrasty HD color reproduction and is best for enjoying the streaming content in actual full HD resolution.
  • You also have an outdoor mode for the display that brightens the screen for better outdoor viewing.
  • The 3000 mAh battery may be a little on the lower side and may not be the best in terms of prolonged usage.

Powered by Exynos 7870 Octa-core processor, the phone does offer you a consistent performance, but the camera is a little lackluster. The vibrant display has always been a Samsung forte, and you will get it on this phone as well.

How to find if your phone has Widevine L1 certification?

Now that we have already learned about the Widevine L1 certification and which affordable phones come with it, you would also want to check if your phone supports the functionality or not. Well, you can check it quickly.

Just visit Google Play Store on your phone and look for the app named DRM Info. Install it and follow these instructions –

  • Launch the app and look for the subsection that says ‘Widevine’ CDM
  • Check the rating shown against the Security Level option
  • If the rating shows L1, you are lucky, and your phone does come with the L1 certification, and you can watch the streaming content in the full resolution instead of having to be limited to the 540p resolution.

On the other hand, if it reads L3, sadly enough – you lack the functionality, and you will not be able to watch the content in full HD resolution.

The Concluding Thoughts

With a focus on the content on streaming services like Netflix or Hotstar, it is imperative for your phone to have the Widevine L1 certification so that you will be able to enjoy the content in full HD resolution as it is meant to be. If your current device does not support it, it may be a good idea to check out for the phones that offer you the proper certification. This collection should give you a helping hand in that direction.

If you have been using any of the phones with the L1 certification, do share your experiences with us to provide our readers with the right kind of information on how important the certification is.

More Reading:

Disclosure: We are a professional review website that sometimes receive compensation or free units from the companies whose products we review. We test each product thoroughly and give high marks to only the very best. We are independently owned and the opinions expressed here are our own.