Alcatel is looking to strengthen its position at the low cost end of the Australian market with the announcement today of three new phones coming to our shores next month.
The company’s offering a tagline of “affordable innovation”, and that seems apt as it brings features like “full view” (notched) displays and multiple cameras to a market segment that may not have seen such things yet.
We caught up with Alcatel at Mobile World Congress earlier this year, where we got to see, touch and feel some of these devices up close. Now it’s your turn, with phones ready to launch in Australia.
We do need to point out one caveat, though – two of these phones will ship with Android 8.0 Oreo on board. That’s not great while we’re waiting to see Android 10.0 hit the market. You’ll still get security patches to ensure you’re safe and secure, but that’s probably about it. If that’s important to you, the choice should be pretty clear.
Alcatel is doing things a little differently this year, offering them for sale via Amazon from July with retail presence at Officeworks complementing their existing retail partnerships. This puts their phones in one of the biggest marketplaces in the country, and should hopefully help them to improve on last year’s record-setting sales.
This one we didn’t see coming. It’s a wallet-friendly $179 smartphone making it one of the cheapest on the market.
The Alcatel 1x sports a 5.5-inch Full View HD+ display and is powered by a quad-core MediaTek processor with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage. There’s a dual sensor (13MP + 2MP) camera array on the back that offers refocusing ability in post in case you get your focal point wrong.
There’s no fingerprint scanner, but that’s pretty normal at this price point and you can use that front-facing camera to do face unlock with Alcatel’s FaceKey software.
$179, Amazon and Officeworks (July)
We’ve been waiting for the 1s to hit Australia since it made its debut in February just in front of Mobile World Congress.
The 1s packs quite a punch for its $199 price tag with 3GB RAM and 32GB of storage running a Spreadtrum octa-core professor. It’s running Android 9.0 Pie.
That’s all behind a 5.5-inch Full View HD+ 18:9 display, and around back you’ll find a dual sensor 13MP/2MP camera setup and a fingerprint scanner.
$199, Amazon (July)
Finally, the Alcatel 3 comes in at the higher end of the range with a slightly higher price tag – but at just $279 it’s still not going to break the bank.
The Alcatel 3 is a bigger device with a 5.9-inch Full View HD+ screen with a taller 19.5:9 aspect ratio. It’s hiding an 8MP front-facing camera with flash packed into its new miniature ‘U notch’.
The Alcatel 3 is running a Snapdragon 439 processor paired up with 3GB of RAM and 32GB storage, with a fingerprint scanner on the back and Alcatel’s FaceKey face unlock on offer from the 8MP front facing camera.
There’s a dual sensor 13MP/5MP camera on the back of the phone offering realtime bokeh effects along with AI/AR effects (we’re thinking scene recognition, etc).
$279, Amazon and Officeworks (July)