TCL 10 5G Review
TCL 10 5G review
Having reviewed the TCL 10 Pro last year I was looking forward to seeing how the TCL 10 5G compared to it.
The TCL 10 5G is TCLs first 5G phone ,when you take the TCL 10 5G out of the box and hold it, it feels very well made no doubt from TCL experience in home electronics where they are the second largest TV manufacturer in the world.
On the front of the phone there is the massive 6.53’’ screen covered by 2.5D glass, the hole punch camera and the phone call speaker, TCL have done a great job with really small bezels on the phone. The right side of the phone has the volume rocker, screen unlock/power button. The left side of the phone has a dedicated google assistant shortcut button and the Single Sim card /Microsd card tray. On the top of the phone is the one of the microphones and the headphone socket. On the bottom is the main speaker, USB-C connection and main microphone.
It would be nice if you had the option to change what that Google assistant shortcut button would launch.
As the screen is so large the phone is quite big measuring 163 x 76 x 9 mm but you get used to the phones dimensions pretty quick and with the bigger screen it weights a good bit too at 210g.
The rear of the phone has a lovely two tone effect where the bottom starts off as light blue and gradually darks along the length of the phone and has a Fingerprint-resistant coating. On the rear of the phone is the fingerprint scanner which I found worked very well and had a very fast response. There is also the TCL quad camera with dual led setup which is raised slightly from the rear surface.
If the TCL 10 5G is like the TCL 10 Pro,it's very durable as I have dropped it a few times face down on a tiled floor and there wasn't a scratch on the phone.
While some manufacturers are happy to remove items from the phone box and you pay the same for the phone its great that TCL have included a case for the phone, which is an essential item for most phone users.
Also in the box you get a USB-C cable, fast USB (18W) charger, sim tray removal tool and a quick start guide.
The screen on the TCL 10 5G is a 6.53’’ (1080x2340) LCD ,395 PPI, FHD+ which supports HDR10 Playback.TCL brings their TV expertise to their mobile display with their NXTVISION technology. The Visual enhancement mode gives options to automatically adjust the displayed image to make it clearer and sharper and improve brightness when an image changes to a dark scene, SDR to HDR that uplifts a SDR video to HDR. I found the screen to provide a very good colour representation and videos from Netflix and Amazon Prime were very clear, bright and sharp, and if you want to make full use out of the 6.53’’ screen and you dont mind the camera in the corner of the image you can enable the hole-punch display.
A Reading mode which changes the display to be more like an e-reader so the display is easier on your eyes, a good option with the Reading mode is that you can enable it automatically if you goto a certain app i.e. Kindle and it turns off when you leave the app. The Sunlight display which increases readability of the screen under sunlight. You can also enable Eye comfort mode which filters out blue light by turning the screen an orange colour, and also modify its intensity.
Its a pity you don't get the great notification light effect that you get on the TCL 10 Pro or a notification led.
Even though the TCL 10 5G has one main speaker at the bottom of the phone, it did a very good job with all different types of music that I tried with it. High-Res audio is also supported. Super Bluetooth is an option so you can share the streaming music to up to 4 bluetooth devices at the same time. Normal headphones and apple headphones are supported via the headphone socket
As the TCL 10 5G is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G and has 6GB its super fast I didnt have any speed issues when I used the phone. The phone always was very fast when scrolling through multiple open apps. Unlocking either via face unlock or the rear fingerprint sensor was very quick too, having a case on the phone does make it easier to find the rear fingerprint sensor though.TCL have a smart manager which can optimize the phone, so if you find issue you can run it to tidy up cached files.
Plenty of internal memory with 128GB onboard, which you can add to via a microsd (up to 1TB). I really like the TCL launcher its very smooth and fast and there is no bloatware included, hopefully Android 11 will be available soon like it is for the TCL 10 Pro.
The quad camera setup on the TCL 10 5G is setup like this
64 MP, f/1.9, 26mm (wide - 79.8°), Sensor Size 1/1.72", Pixel Size 0.8µm,
8 MP, f/2.2, 13mm (ultrawide - 118°), 1/4.0", 1.12µm
5 MP, f/2.2, (macro - 83.2°) , 1/5" , 1.12 μm
2 MP, f/2.4, (depth - 83°) , 1/5" 1.75μm
With a Led flash on either end of the lens array.
The TCL Camera App is simple and straightforward. The camera captured images in good detail in all scenarios and the colours matched the objects and werent washed out.
There are plenty of modes supported in the native camera app like Google Lens, Portrait , Pro (where you can tweak all the camera settings like ISO, White Balance , Shutter Speed, Temperature), Slow Motion, Stop Motion, Light Trace, Panorama Mode, Super Macro and just using the High Pixel 64 Mega Pixel Camera.
The Super Night mode does an amazing job at taking pictures in very dark conditions, it can see colours and objects that I couldn't see.
Example of the Super Night mode (taken in a full darkened room, with only a small piece of light coming in)
10x Zoom Outdoor Example
Sunset, another good example of the low light capabilities of the camera to capture images in darkening conditions
The selfie camera has a resolution of 16MP Sensor size: 1/3.06” Pixel size 1μm with an angle of 79.1° which isnt as wide as some other selfie cameras, but it still provides enough to take a very good selfie with plenty of detail there are also options for tweaking the selfie. It took good photos even in indoor conditions. The front camera also support video in 720P & 1080P @30FPS
The video supports plenty of combinations, 720 &1080P@60f/s, 1K & 4K @30f/s but the audio records in mono. You can also record slow-motion in 720P @960f/s ,1080 & 720P @241/120f/s
The onboard battery capacity is 4500mAh and the TCL 10 5G supports Quick Charger 3.0 and has a charging time of 2 hours, or charge up to 37% in 30 minutes using the included Quick charger. The phone has an intelligent power saving option which automatically optimises the battery according to how you use the phone. There is an option to turn on a battery saver so if your battery is running low it reduces devices performance, limits background data like email, location services etc. so your battery will last longer. And there is a super saving mode that uses a simple theme and limits the number of apps that you can use. I found that even after using the phone with lots of video streaming apps over a day , the phone still had plenty of battery left in.
Is very well covered with 2G/34/4G/5G 4X4 MIMO, Bluetooth 5.0,NFC,Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac 2x2 MIMO. I did manage to find the very edge of a 5G cell and managed to get a speedtest of 42Mbps whereas the 4G speed in the same location was 7.7Mbps so the 5G speeds are definitely a big improvement and will continue to get faster with the more 5G that is being rolled out in Ireland.
If your looking for a good value 5G phone, with a long battery life and a big screen it would be hard to beat the TCL 10 5G.
Available to Buy on Three
On Prepay from 260€
On BillPay from Free