Alcatel TCL A1X Review: Pros and Cons

Alcatel TCL A1X (A503DL) review breaks this phone down to determine whether or not it’s worth your money. At $79.99, find out what this phone has to offer.

Alcatel TCL A1X Review

TracFone and Alcatel have long collaborated in budget line phones. One of their products that you can consider is Alcatel TCL A1X (A503DL).

Released with an $89.99 price tag (TracFone), TCL A1X surprisingly packs a lot of impressive features at an affordable price. Even better, StraightTalk cuts the price to $49.99 while HSN.com has a $79.99 bundle package.

So, what’s TCL A1X offers? For a start, the phone comes with a 5.5-inch HD display. But that’s not all. Alcatel TCL A1X also features a dual camera, a 4G-enabled connection, and a sizable battery at 3000 mAh.

Let’s see more the complete Alcatel TCL A1X review to find out more about this phone.

Design

Alcatel TCL A1X’s design screams luxury although the phone has a plastic body. On the first impression, users can see how high the screen to body ratio is. Alcatel has thin bezels surrounding the display. The side bezels are almost invisible, giving an illusion of edge-to-edge display design.

TCL A1X also keeps things simple with only a speaker and the front-facing camera at the top. On the back, we have a similarly neat dual-camera frame, followed by two logos (TracFone’s and TCL’s). On the right side, we have a slot for SIM card and SD card, while the left side houses power keys and volume keys.

However, we’re not a big fan of the back cover. It’s has a rugged design. Although it means TCL won’t keep fingerprint marks and dirt, the back cover looks a bit cheap. Especially when compared with any phone who has a shiny back cover. At least, this phone would not easily slip from your hand.

Borders of this phone combine both rugged design and the shiny design from the front side of the phone. We think the border’s design lacks in uniformity, although it makes the phone deserve one point for an ergonomic design.

The verdict of this Alcatel TCL A1X (A503DL) review on design is, this phone is surely for people who prioritize functions over appearance.

Learn more: TracFone TCL A1X (A503DL) User Manual

Display

In this day and age, having a big screen on a phone is almost a necessity. We can have more rooms to browse apps, watching videos, and do some web-browsing. With its 5.5-inch screen, TCL A1X delivers all the convenience mentioned above. It’s comfortable to do many tasks on this phone thanks to the spacious screen.

Even better, the TCL A1X display is not only big but also packs quite dense pixels per inch. With the resolution of 720×1440 px, everything looks snappy and bright on TCL A1X. The brightness is adjustable depending on what’s comfortable for users.

The display is not a Full HD screen, though, so users might still encounter imperfect images. But at this price, it’s an acceptable compromise for display quality.

It’s also not surprising when the phone looks dim in some cases. The brightness needs to be adjusted to maximum, such as when under the sun. Viewing angles are generally good. It performs well even at a sharp angle.

All in all, compared to its quality, the big size of the screen is still the main strength of TCL A1X (A503DL). If you’re mainly searching for a big display, this phone is for you.

Camera

The most striking of the TCL A1X feature lies in its camera. It’s hard to resist a dual camera with only a 90-dollars price tag. The main camera comes with 13 MP of resolution. The second camera aids the main one to capture vibrant and high-quality images.

But how about the performance? Alcatel doesn’t specify the lens aperture for TCL A1X, but we guess it’s a standard f/2.2 one, considering the price. We expect the image results, although decent, the can’t be comparable with middle to high-end phones.

But the camera is enough for your daily picture-snapping needs. Users can experiment with focus or blur features using the dual camera. The 2 MP depth-sensing secondary camera provides a real-time blur effect on the Portrait Mode. To enhance the quality, a flash is also readily available for low light situations.

The camera also takes a decent video too with a maximum resolution at 1080p. Just like its cheaper sibling Alcatel TCL A1, the camcorder also comes with image stabilization.

The front camera, at 5 MP, delivers okay-ish results. But it’s not a big deal, especially if you rarely take a selfie. We think this camera is more suited for video calling than for photography.

Storage

Alcatel TCL A1X comes with 16 GB of internal storage. In our opinion, 16 GB is adequate for an entry-level phone like A1X.

Of course, about 6 GB of that number is reserved for the system, but users will still have a lot for their apps and files. Besides, there is not much bloatware on TCL A1X that takes unnecessary space.

Just in case the 16 GB of storage runs out, Alcatel provides an SD card option for TCL A1X. They allow users to add an additional memory card with up to 32 GB of space. Since an SD card is not included with purchase, it means users will need to spend extra money again.

Performance

For its processing power, Alcatel TCL A1X uses a 1.5 GHz quad-core processor and 2 GB of RAM. We find this setup is adequate for a basic phone like A1X.

Loading an app and going back to the main screen feels smooth with the 1.5 GHz processor. The touchscreen is responsive.

The 2 GB of RAM might at one point become limiting, especially if a user opens a lot of apps at once. But for everyday light tasks, the phone handles multitasking pretty well.

Heavy apps may cause some lag, as expected with a limited RAM. But overall, since the target customer of this phone is basic users, A1X’s processing power would do a good job.

Those basic tasks include calling and messaging, reading news, and browsing webpages. Social media also runs well on TCL A1X. There is the Facebook app pre-installed already, so you won’t have to download it yourself.

TCL A1X also perform decently on entertainment apps, such as taking a picture and watching a video. You can also play light games on TCL A1X.

As for the software, the Android on A1X is Android 8.0 Oreo, which is a recent version although not the latest. Unlike brands such as LG or Samsung, Alcatel opted for Android stock on its phones.

No customized launcher to hinder the performance or apps that take up the precious limited storage. The lack of customization also makes the OS not confusing to use.

This phone also features Google Assistant, which helps users get things done such as setting up reminders by using a voice command.

You can also use Google Assistant to search for something on the internet, such as checking the current weather. If you’re familiar with iPhone’s Siri, Google Assistant is the Android equivalent.

A real-life test on Google Assistant is either a hit or a miss. Sometimes the phone takes commands really well, but often it also misheard what you said and doesn’t perform the task asked.

But overall it’s a nice feature to have. Along with Google Assistant, this phone also comes with useful accessibility features such as Hearing Aid, Proximity sensors, and a Handsfree speaker.

Connectivity

Alcatel TCL A1X is 4G LTE ready while still supports older 2G and 3G band. Most of the time, calling gives no issue as long as you have strong reception.

The location of the loudspeaker on the top of the display also helps to make the voice output sounds clear. TCL A1X supports voicemail and multimedia messaging.

TCL A1X also has Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and USB-ready with a standard micro-USB port at the bottom of the phone. This phone is GPS-enabled for its location-based service. Another thing worth mentioning is the FM radio, which can provide you entertainment even without an internet connection.

Battery

A 3000 mAh battery powers Alcatel TCL A1X. It’s able to keep the phone on standby for up to 18 days while talktime is up to 20 hours.

We had thought that 3000 mAh would not be enough for a 5.5-inch phone. But as it turned out, the battery is efficient and lasts until the end of the day. It even could last until the next day if you rarely use it.

As additional information, TCL A1X’s battery is lithium polymer one and non-removable.

Wrap-up

Alcatel TCL A1X’s main attraction lies in its dual camera and big display. That what differs this model with other Alcatel phones such as TCL A1 or TCL LX.

The more expensive price is justifiable for the features users will get, although A1X can be better in several departments such as more internal storage or a bit more RAM.

Although TracFone sells this phone at $89.99, you can get it even cheaper with the Straight Talk version at $49.99. The HSN bundle, at $79,99, also includes a case, a car charger, and 1500 minutes of balance (texts, calls, and data), aside from the phone itselfs. Depending on your need, you’ll have a lot of choice when it comes to price.

As a final conclusion for our Alcatel TCL A1X (A503DL) review, we’d recommend TCL A1X for people who seek more than just a basic Android phone, while still don’t want to spend a lot of money for a middle or high-end phone.

Pros:

  • Big 5.5 inch display
  • dual camera
  • HD Screen
  • Affordable price
  • Android 8.1 Oreo Stock version

Cons:

  • Only 2 GB of RAM
  • Plastic body
  • Small storage space (16 GB)

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