TracFone ZTE Cymbal-G LTE Z232TL / Z233VL Review

Everything about ZTE Cymbal-G LTE Z232TL and Z233VL as part of TracFone line up, completed with everything a phone would have with the old fashion clamshell design.

Enjoy the new taste of a phone from TracFone ZTE Cymbal-G LTE Z232TL and Z233VL with its clamshell shape and Linux OS, which will help the user to adapt from the old time phone into something more sophisticated.

TracFone ZTE Cymbal-G LTE Z232TL / Z233VL


Clamshell with a touch screen is the unique designs sport by ZTE Cymbal-G. Perhaps, the main idea of this phone is to help user from being shocked when moving from the old time feature phone into smartphone.

Build in small size measured at 4.26″ x 2.18″ x 0.73″ and weighed 4.59 ounces, therefore it is so easy to wrap it in people’s palm.


ZTE Cymbal-G builds with two displays. The external display is only 0.96 inches in size using monochrome TFT screen, while the internal display is 2.8 inches in size and using color TFT LCD screen with 240 x 320 resolutions.


The operating system as the brain of this phone was using not Android but Linux. This is something unusual because most smartphone out there using Android as it OS, and the fact that is using Linux offer people with a different kind of user experience. This is also what makes this phone unique.


Unfortunately, ZTE Cymbal-G only has one camera. The 2 MP rear camera is the only thing people can use and as expected, the quality is not that good. People can use it to take a picture and also video recording. At this point, this phone is indeed similar with the old time feature phone.

Related Posts:
TracFone LG Rebel 2 LTE Phone Review
TracFone ZTE Cymbal-G User Manual


For a small size phone like this phone, ZTE Cymbal-G is quite powerful. ZTE equipped it with Quad-core 1.1 GHz, Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 MSM8909 as it processor. The 512 MB RAM is big enough for such a small package, which ensures people about its performance.

People can store everything on its 4 GB internal storage where up to 827 MB usable. For most people, such is a small storage space, but no need to worry because this phone supports microSD that can keep up to 32 GB data.


The small package doesn’t always mean that it can’t do something worth it. This phone is a fine example, where it already supports 4G LTE for faster internet connection. ZTE Cymbal-G also has Wi-Fi connection, Bluetooth version 4.1, micro USB, A-GPS and a 3.5 mm Jack. The entire part of connectivity system in this phone is the same as the one available on another type of smartphone.


ZTE entrusted a removable, 1500 mAh lithium ion battery to power up this phone. At this capacity, the phone should be able to stay up to 10 days on standby time, and for talk time, it can last for up to 8 hours.


To wrap up this review, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of this phone.


  • Quad-core processor. For such a small size phone, using quad core processor is a big plus. Bigger smartphone out there also use this type of processor so it was easy to imagine how good it will work.
  • It already supports 4G. With this feature, people can browse around easily using without having to worry about having a slow connection.
  • MicroSD. People can use microSD to stored additional file.


  • People can’t download any application in this phone and it means people are stuck with the built in app.
  • Small size memory, but people can work it out with microSD card.
  • No front camera means no selfies.

What about it? This phone looks like a transition between the old feature phone into the era of smartphone, which may do well for those who just start using smartphone but may not serve well for people who already used to with the sophisticated and complicated smartphone.

TracFone ZTE Cymbal-G LTE Z232TL / Z233VL Specifications

Body: Form Factor: Clamshell (Touchscreen), Size: 4.26″ x 2.18″ x 0.73″, Weight: 4.59 (ounces)
Display: 2.8 inches, External Display: 0.96 inches, TFT LCD Screen, Resolution: 240 x 320 px
System: Operating System: Linux
Processor: 1.1GHz Quad-Core, Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 MSM8909
Camera: Rear Camera: 2 MP, Front Camera: No, Video Recording: Yes
Memory: RAM (Memory): 512 MB
Internal Storage: 4 GB, Support MicroSD (Up to 32 GB)
Network: Support 4G LTE
Connectivity: Wi-Fi: 802.11 a/b/g/n, Bluetooth v4.1 A2DP, USB: microUSB 2.0, GPS: A-GPS, 3.5mm Jack
Battery: Lithium-ion, 1500 mAh, Removable
Standby time: Up to 10 days, Talk time: Up to 8 hours
Sensor: Accelerometer, Proximity Sensor
Other Features: Hearing Aid Compatible, Multimedia Messaging, FM Radio


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  1. Just bought this phone. Cannot figure out how to add contacts. Just first names and phone numbers.
    We have an old tracfone, very simple. This one is very confusing to me. Any help would be appreciated.
    Tracfone ZTE Z233VL

    Thank you

  2. I agree! Purchased this phone to have a simple bare bones phone for hubby. I have wasted hours trying to do the simplest of things. If there was a manual included I did not see it. Torture trying to figure out the simplest things. I approached hubby to toss it – though it was inexpensive – a complete waste of money.

    • I agree with this person, I have wasted hours trying to get contacts. After I finally fine the sign for adding contacts, and add a contact, I cannot figure out how to get the sign for adding contacts again. Is there a simple way to get the sign that says add contacts, this is very frustrating

  3. I have the same problem with this phone. The directions are not correct for adding contacts. Called for help but they could not give me an answer.

  4. Worst phone I’ve ever seen, can’t even make a call unless you know how. Can’t even read balance, I would not recommend buying this phone

  5. Bought (wasted money on!) this garbage phone on May third. It’s terrible! Alarm doesn’t work, no minutes left display, and you cannot even find out your phone number! Honest! The number is not under any setting whatsoever! Save your money people! I use Linux as my primary PC operating system, and know Linux very well, but this is just one corrupted piece of junk! Tomorrow I’m going to Metro for the $30 deal. No more Tracfone head-achy junk phones!

  6. Very disgusting phone. Doesn’t hold a charge. I have to charge a phone every day. After 7-8 hour there is not charge. I bought a new battery and again the same doesnt hold a charge. Although it said have a 10 day standby time. 8 hour talk. i never talk. or talk 10 minute

  7. I have spent many frustrating hours trying to figure this phone out…I hate it ! switching back to my old flip phone I think..much easier to use !

  8. Just bought this phone and concur with other people. Waste of money, doesn’t display minutes left, should stick to more expensive ones. don’t buy it.

  9. Someday I will learn to look for comments such as these before I buy something new.
    I haven’t much used it, but have noted the same negatives. My primary is my rather elderly (like me) flip phone.

  10. I am thankful that they still make push-button phones. I hate touch screens on phones! With those, I keep bumping the screen and accidentally activating things or hanging up on people. I also hate having to wipe the screen off all the time. But then, I’m someone who still holds their phone up to their ear rather than putting it on speakerphone and holding it out like a walkie talkie. I hate it when people do that, it’s so annoying.

    Anyway, I really like this phone. Sure, it doesn’t show you how many minutes you have unless you send a text and wait to receive one OR unless you go to the website on a computer, tablet or smartphone and look up your account that way. That’s the way I usually do it. Once a week, I check my account on the website on my desktop PC and see if I need to add minutes. If you use your phone a whole lot, its best to sign up for the automatic plan that adds minutes every month.

    But, it does have some great features for the dirt cheap price: big buttons that are easy to hit even with gloves on; a big selection ring and button that makes navigating the menus easy; very durable body; FM radio; multiple alarms; editable calendar; weather forecast; calculator; etc.

    I the two most important features in any phone for me are durability and ease of use in less than optimal conditions since I do a lot of work outdoors. I also make a lot of use of the FM radio with headphones plugged in. I love that it requires headphones plugged in and I wish all phones did. I don’t like it when people use their phones like ghetto blasters.

    The camera isn’t the fanciest, but it does work good enough in bright light. The sound recorder has come in handy a couple of times.

    Compared to my last flip phone, I like the calendar on this one better because I can actually use it as a PDA and remind myself of appointments with it. With some phones I’ve had the calendar didn’t let me save notes nor set alarms on future days.

    The menus are easy to navigate. The calculator is so easy to use that I actually use it more often than my pocket calculator now. Battery life is excellent. Only seems to need charged about once a week unless I use it alot.

    Then there’s the antenna. It’s actually better than the one on my wife’s smart phone! I can get signals in places where her expensive phone can’t.

    It’s really all I need in a phone: durable, reliable, easy to use.

  11. Cannot get a signal unless I am next to a tower, when traveling it is useless, and the microphone keeps breaking up my calls.

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