The impressively affordable TCL 10 Pro and TCL 10L handsets are now available in the US
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The TCL 10 Pro is an absolute knockout
TCL is primarily known as a manufacturer of TVs, air conditioners, washing machines, and refrigerators, as well as a (former) BlackBerry and (current) Alcatel brand licensee in the global mobile industry, but starting this year, the company wants to make a name for itself in the US smartphone market.
Previewed for the first time all the way back in January ahead of a planned full announcement at the Mobile World Congress that was predictably pushed back to April, the TCL 10 lineup includes an impressively affordable 5G-enabled handset and two even cheaper models with 4G LTE support only and more than respectable specifications.
Unfortunately, 5G-hungry bargain hunters in the US will have to keep playing the waiting game until Verizon makes good on its promise from a few months ago... or pick up the OnePlus 8 with a new T-Mobile line starting at only $350. Of course, the state of the nation's 5G networks is still pretty terrible, so you might as well just skip the "next-gen" connectivity for the time being and purchase the TCL 10 Pro or TCL 10L with no strings attached.
The unlocked Android 10 phones are available from Best Buy and Amazon with compatibility for AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon's 4G LTE networks in a single paint job each. Curiously enough, the higher-end Ember Gray TCL 10 Pro is listed as "currently unavailable" on Amazon while fetching $449.99 through Best Buy for both in-store pickup and relatively quick nationwide delivery.
Powered by a mid-range Snapdragon 675 processor, this bad boy boasts a decidedly premium design made almost entirely from glass, with stunning curves and a tiny notch.
It's hard to find a similarly good-looking device at a comparable price stateside these days, especially one that also packs 6 gigs of memory, 128 gigs of storage space, and a massive 4,500mAh battery.
The TCL 10L doesn't look bad either... for a $250 phone
On top of it all, the TCL 10 Pro comes with a grand total of four rear-facing cameras, including a 64MP main sensor, a 16MP super-wide-angle shooter, a 5MP macro lens, and a 2MP "super-low-light" sensor.
Meanwhile, the $250 Mariana Blue TCL 10L goes directly up against the Moto G Power with a smaller 4,000mAh battery in tow, the same exact Snapdragon 665 SoC, a slightly larger 6.53-inch display with a "dotch" (aka hole punch), two extra gigs of memory for a total count of 6, and a vastly superior (at least on paper) quad rear-facing shooter system composed of a 48MP primary camera, an 8-megapixel super-wide-angle lens, a 2MP macro, and a 2MP depth sensor.
This is definitely a convincing own-brand debut from TCL in the hard-to-crack US market, beating pretty much everything the company tried in recent years under the Alcatel label, but it remains to be seen if the company will grow even more ambitious in the near future, rolling out 5G flagships and perhaps turning some of its wacky concepts into a commercial reality as well.