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Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review

Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 6.5

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Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review

Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review
Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review
Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review
The Sidekick 2 companion handset - Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review

The Sidekick 2 companion handset

Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review
Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review
Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review
Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review
Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review
Introduction


A couple of months ago, Alcatel launched the OneTouch Hero 2 – the second rendition of a 6"-screened, stylus-equipped smartphone line, which was originally introduced in last year's September. Made for those, looking for a more budget-friendly phablet, the Hero 2 follows the steps of its predecessor and brings along a few improvements, to keep it relevant. The CPU under the hood is now an octa-core MediaTek MT6592, clocked at 2 GHz, the main camera has received an Optical Image Stabilization upgrade, while the selfie cam has been bumped up to a 5 MP resolution. Alcatel has also redesigned the Sidekick – a Bluetooth-connected, compact companion handset – which now looks less like a feature phone and more like a smart gadget. Are these new features enough to make the OneTouch Hero 2 a viable option for those in the phablet market? Let's find out!

In the box:

  • Wall charger
  • USB cable
  • JBL In-ear headphones with 3 sets of different size tips
  • Three Magic Flip covers
  • SIM ejector tool
  • Sidekick 2 compact Bluetooth handset

Design

Keeping the design language from last year, the OneTouch Hero 2 still impresses us with a high screen-to-body ratio and adds a metal frame in the mix.

Looking at the OneTouch Hero 2 from the front, one can hardly find any difference between it and its predecessor – aside from the very slightly thicker bezels and a mirrored frontal cam placement, the design language is more or less the same – the edges are rounded off, the silver-colored earpiece grill above the screen is neighbored by the camera and proximity sensor, while three navigational capacitive buttons sit just below the screen.

When we spin the device around, however, we can find some differences. The Hero 2 has received an aluminum frame wrap – keeping up with the recent trend among smartphone manufacturers – which looks good all around, and houses the speaker grille engravings, stylus, power and volume buttons, microSD and SIM card slots, IR blaster. Each of these is crafted to fit the shape of the frame and nothing looks out of place. The back of the device, however, we found to be slightly disappointing – a matte plastic, which attracts fingerprints more than we would like it to, and generally feels cheap in the hands.

On the plus side – the back is grippy and comfortably shaped, so the phone still feels manageable with one hand. This is also assisted by the device's rather condensed footprint, considering the screen size, of course, and even though its screen-to-body ratio is around 2% lower, when compared to last year's model, it is still pinned at the impressive 75.83%.

The build quality feels sturdy in the hand – nothing moves around, nothing creaks and cracks, and we generally feel confident in the device's structural integrity. This is probably assisted by the fact that the phone's back is non-removable. The buttons are clicky enough, but feel shallow and wobbly. We really like the power button's placement – it's on the center of the right side – and combined with the overall shape of the device, we found that we are always able to access it effortlessly. The volume buttons are positioned slightly above it and are combined in a single rocker, which, when added up with the wobbliness and low travel, does not make for the best experience and causes us to strain at times, while setting volume levels.

The OneTouch Hero 2 comes with 3 proprietary Magic Flip covers – a foldable stand cover, a “magic window”-type cover, and an LED cover. These latch on to the phone via strong magnets on both sides of its body, and while neat – we found that the magnets cause problems when we need to store the phone next to something metal – the keys in our pocket, for example.

The companion handset – the Sidekick 2 – is also pleasing to the eye. It keeps with the Hero 2's design language, as it also sports an aluminum frame and the same plastic back. Its front is an entirely touch-based panel, which makes it look sleek and modern. Its buttons are far less wobbly and, albeit they still lack travel, feel more pleasurable to use. The companion handset's vibration also impressed us with a nice, pronounced pulsation, which gives us clear feedback when using it.


Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2
6.32 x 3.21 x 0.31 inches
160.5 x 81.6 x 7.9 mm
6.17 oz (175 g)

Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2

Google Nexus 6
6.27 x 3.27 x 0.4 inches
159.26 x 82.98 x 10.06 mm
6.49 oz (184 g)

Google Nexus 6

Huawei Ascend Mate 2 4G
6.34 x 3.33 x 0.37 inches
161 x 84.7 x 9.5 mm
7.13 oz (202 g)

Huawei Ascend Mate 2 4G

Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo
5.84 x 3.05 x 0.34 inches
148.4 x 77.4 x 8.6 mm
5.73 oz (162 g)

Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo


To see the phones in real size or compare them with other models, visit our Visual Phone Size Comparison page.


Display

A 6” display with a 1080 x 1920 resolution leaves things crisp-looking, without going in crazy-PPI land.

Aside from its gargantuan 6” size, the display of the OneTouch Hero 2 doesn't offer anything crazy by today's standards – it glows with a 1080 x 1920 resolution, which provides a 367 PPI density – things look crisp and viewing text-rich media is a pleasurable experience. The color temperature is fairly close to the reference values at 7100 K, suggesting the display has a slight bluish tint. Its contrast ratio may be high, but colors still appear a bit dull and washed-out – our tests revealed that the display's gamma drops well below the reference 2.2 level in the mid-range grayscale fields, which is the main culprit for that. To top it off – our unit has a very faint yellowish spot at the bottom of the display, which we found a bit annoying.

As far as brightness goes, the screen can glow with a maximum of 481 nits, making it usable outdoors, however, the lowest it can go down to is 17 nits, which makes it uncomfortable for viewing in the dark.

Display measurements and quality

Maximum brightness (nits)Higher is better Minimum brightness (nits)Lower is better Contrast Higher is better Color temperature (Kelvins) Gamma Delta E rgbcmy Lower is better Delta E grayscale Lower is better
Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 481
(Good)
17
(Poor)
1:1579
(Excellent)
7135
(Good)
2.06
2.08
(Good)
5.31
(Average)
Huawei Ascend Mate 2 4G 457
(Good)
21
(Poor)
1:1189
(Good)
6554
(Excellent)
2.24
2.37
(Good)
2.75
(Good)
Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo 391
(Average)
4
(Excellent)
unmeasurable
(Excellent)
7531
(Average)
2.21
4.55
(Average)
4.83
(Average)
Google Nexus 6 270
(Poor)
1
(Excellent)
unmeasurable
(Excellent)
6551
(Excellent)
1.94
5.61
(Average)
2.32
(Good)
View all


11 Comments
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posted on 19 Nov 2014, 08:46 2

1. ABDULGHAFOOR (Posts: 104; Member since: 04 May 2012)


6.5 O.o
It deserves atleast 8

posted on 19 Nov 2014, 08:58

2. Birds (Posts: 1154; Member since: 21 Nov 2011)


This is one of the less subjective reviews... Doesn't seem to be a terrible device... Even though samsung phones lag when navigating the home screen, they do have very functional gimmicks... this right here tired to beat samsung at it's game and undercut the price but hey...this...you get what you pay for.

posted on 19 Nov 2014, 09:26

4. joey_sfb (Posts: 5330; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)


A hateful comment from a Troll. Samsung is a top selling Android phone so many people must have like feature lag. LOL!

Back the proper subject. If you are not Apple or Samsung forget about letting this bias website review your product.

Its better you spent the money for proper advertisement elsewhere.

posted on 19 Nov 2014, 09:14 2

3. Neo_Huang (Posts: 1067; Member since: 06 Dec 2013)


This should be 8.5 or more, given all the freebies that come with this.

posted on 19 Nov 2014, 09:38

5. fzacek (Posts: 2486; Member since: 26 Jan 2014)


Disappointing phone. Interface and MediaTek processor suck...

posted on 19 Nov 2014, 09:51

6. joey_sfb (Posts: 5330; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)


Which mediatek processor phone do you own?

posted on 19 Nov 2014, 11:26

7. fzacek (Posts: 2486; Member since: 26 Jan 2014)


None, but the reviewer says that the interface stutters frequently, which would not happen with a high-end Snapdragon...

posted on 19 Nov 2014, 17:48 1

9. joey_sfb (Posts: 5330; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)


I have only used one Redmi Note running on 1.7Ghz, 2GB Ram model. Its perform slightly better then my Note 2 at one third of the price.

Redmi Note interface is smooth and its running games like Death Trigger and Wild Blood without lag so I stop looking down on MediaTek.

I do heard that their early quad cores model in 2013 suck balls however.

posted on 19 Nov 2014, 12:50

8. jsjammu (Posts: 84; Member since: 13 Nov 2014)


Mediatek is here to stay. They might have started off as cheap but they are getting better. Think of them as Hyundai and Kia of the early nineties.

posted on 11 Mar 2015, 15:59

10. mirexcool (Posts: 65; Member since: 28 Feb 2015)


Bought at Aliexpress. Satisfied! s.click.aliexpress.com/e/VJ2rjEMrZ

posted on 04 May 2015, 10:53

11. mirexcool (Posts: 65; Member since: 28 Feb 2015)


I like this one :http://goo.gl/zT9ZFv and Aliexpress deliver without problems and the price is lower

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Display6.0 inches, 1080 x 1920 pixels (367 ppi) IPS LCD
Camera13.1 megapixels
Hardware
MediaTek, Octa-core, 2000 MHz, ARM Cortex-A7 processor
2048 MB RAM
Size6.32 x 3.21 x 0.31 inches
(160.5 x 81.6 x 7.9 mm)
6.17 oz  (175 g)
Battery3100 mAh, 15.5 hours talk time

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