TCL’s timing couldn’t be better. In a world where premium smartphone sales are slumping, the company best known for affordable 4K TVs is turning its attention to much smaller displays at prices that make the OnePlus 7T Pro and Galaxy S10e look downright expensive. If it wasn’t for TCL’s glorious embrace of headphone jacks, in fact, you might confuse the company’s new phones for competing models costing four figures.
Of the three new TCL phones, only two of them—the 10 Pro and the 10L—are coming to the U.S. at launch. The 10 5G “will be available in select regions around the world later this year,” though TCL does have plans to bring it to the U.S. “for under $500” by the fourth quarter of 2020.
The 10L and 10 Pro are hardly consolation prizes, however. While they don’t have the latest Snapdragon processor (settling instead for the 665 and 675, respectively), there’s still plenty of premium specs running through them:
- Dimensions: 162.2 x 75.6 x 8.4mm
- Display: 6.53-inch FHD+ Dotch LCD display
- Processor: Snapdragon 665
- RAM: 6GB
- Storage: 64GB
- Front camera: 16MP
- Rear camera (quad): 48MP, f/1.8 + 8MP, f/2.2 ultra-wide + 2MP, f/2.4 macro + 2MP, f/2.4 depth
- Battery: 4000mAh
TCL 10 Pro
- Dimensions: 158.5 X 72.4 X 9.2mm
- Display: 6.47-inch Full HD+ AMOLED
- Processor: Snapdragon 675
- RAM: 6GB
- Storage: 128GB
- Front camera: 24 MP
- Rear camera (quad): 64MP, f/1.8 main + 16MP, f/2.4 ultra-wide + 5MP, f/2.2 + 2MP, f/1.8 low light
- Battery: 4500mAh
Even before you flip them over to see the quad cameras, there’s no mistaking their premium feel. The 10 Pro’s display is more at home in a thousand-dollar phone than a $450 model, with a camera notch and an immersive curved edge-to-edge design with barely-there bezels. The display is more than a nice design: TCL leverages its “NVTVision” tech “to produce nearly accurate colors and enhanced image and video quality to produce nearly accurate colors and enhanced image and video quality.” It also means it’s Netflix-certified to stream HDR10 content. TCL calls it their “differentiator,” and it certainly made a strong impression during our time with it.
The glass extends to the back, where the 10 Pro comes in a classy matte green and black. You’ll also find a horizontal camera array embedded in a smooth glossy stripe. The setup is impressive, with a 64MP main camera, a massive 2.9-micrometer low-light cam, a macro camera, and a 123-degree ultra-wide-angle camera. We didn’t get a chance to test the camera, but it’s certainly an impressive array for a $450 smartphone.
The phone is a little chunky, but it has a nice premium feel. It’s the only one of the three to feature an in-display fingerprint sensor (the 10L and 10 5G have rear-mounted square sensors), and the whole…