TCL 10 L Review
TCL is making a name for themselves in the display manufacturing space, a area once dominated by Samsung and LG. Over the years, TCL displays have become better and better, and TCL TVs are becoming more popular and a go-to choice for many consumers. With the launch of the TCL 10 Pro and TCL 10 L smartphones, the company is officially placing it’s label on the mobile marketplace, and with some stunning results. Here is our review of the TCL 10L after over a month of use.
This isn’t TCL’s first crack at smartphone manufacturing, as the company has produced the last few BlackBerry devices, and are also the brains behind Alcatel devices. With the TCL 10 Pro and the 10 L, the company is now branding their own phones and stepping in the sometimes hostile world of smart phone devices. And early impressions of the L are quite impressive!
Unlike the Pro, the L is not available in a matte finish, but the only finish currently available is a very attractive Marine Blue gloss finish. The 4 cameras along the back are slightly raised above the back of the phone. The beautiful screen is using all the power of TCL development, and “combines powerful NXTVISION visual technology with a curved AMOLED display and a 64MP AI quad-camera system.”
This means that you will be taking some great pics on your mobile device – which so far seems to be pretty accurate! Occasionally the phone will over-correct the white balance or colour-tone of the image, but overall these cameras are a big step forward and are almost ready to compete with the heavy hitters!
One of my favourite parts of this device is the fact that it comes with both fingerprint scanner and facial recognition, which can be active at the same time! While facial recognition is often the most convenient, right now with many of us wearing face coverings while out and about, this is no longer a practical solution. Having the convenience to simply use the fingerprint scanner on the back of the phone without any modifications is a nice touch.
The 4k video offered by the screen is gorgeous. While the 10 L does not have a curved screen like its Pro counterpart, I do not find much loss in that. The entire screen is used (with the exception of a very small portion around the front-facing camera) and it really provides a great viewing experience for all of your favourite media content.
The speaker, on the other hand, is a little lackluster. There is only one speaker at the bottom of the phone which, when compare to other devices who also include one at the top, provides a somewhat flat audio experience. This is easily negated by connecting a headset or other bluetooth audio device to the phone, but relevant enough for those who like to have the open sound on their device.
Gaming on the TCL 10 L is quite smooth and enjoyable. Featuring a Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 665, Octa-core processor, and 6GB of RAM, the specs may not crest the top of the pack but more than suffice for some of the more resource consuming apps out there. The 6.53″ display is more than enough to provide a crystal clear image of any game you might be enjoying on it, and the extremely impressive battery life of 30+ hours will ensure that this phone does not need to rest before you do!
After extensive use of the TCL 10 L over the past 5 weeks, my thoughts on it have changed very slightly. I still really enjoy the 6.53″ display, the camera has been more than satisfactory and the battery life is undeniably top shelf, the flipside of which means that once you do need to charge your phone, it’ll be charging for a while. The biggest problem I have found recently is with longer use and the more apps that are downloaded, the TCL 10 L quickly becomes bogged down. While not a total deal-breaker, you will certainly want to stay on top of keeping your apps closed to maximize the resources available to the task at hand.
It should also be noted that TCL has pushed major updates to its devices improving system stability, camera performance and updated security releases. It is nice to see the company take an active and engaged approach when receiving feedback from its customers.
Overall, the TCL 10 L still offers considerable power and value, while coming it at $350 CAD (from Bell). While this phone won’t stand toe-to-toe with the latest high-end iOS and Android devices, it certainly has a spot on the market for those looking for a very usable device at a much more attractive pricepoint. Anyone looking for a solid device and is willing to compromise somewhat on camera and audio quality will be quite happy with the 10 L. In comparison with the TCL 10 Pro, I have not found a significant enough difference in the Pro’s performance to justify the additional cost.