Battery life

Battery life is as average as it comes with the Alcatel Idol 5, which houses a 2850 mAh battery cell. We've been able to get a solid one-day of normal usage from a full charge, which is the tally we'd expect at the very least from most phones nowadays.

On the flip side, the fast-charging technology employed it manages to recharge the phone in a speedy amount of time. It's not lightning quick, but fast enough to deliver juice during short bursts when you're in a rut trying to get a charge.

Call Quality

One surprising area where the Alcatel Idol 5 manages to shine is call quality. Besides the artificial tone of voices through the earpiece, everything else is just plain wonderful with the experience. For starters, the earpiece and speakerphone are powerful enough to discern voices in noisy environments. And moreover, its signal strength doesn't fluctuate intermittently during usage.


Those eyeing the Alcatel Idol 5 here in the US will have to settle for Cricket Wireless, who is the exclusive carrier of the phone. Accompanied with a sticker price of $199.99, in addition to the $49.99 cost of the UNI360 VR Goggles, it doesn't seem like a bad deal for something that's VR-ready at under $250. Then again, it's competing in a crowded field where phones of this caliber come with fingerprint sensors and lower price points – take the Moto E4 Plus for example, which is a hair under at $180 full price.

Honestly, it's a tossup because the Idol 5 is indeed VR ready from the get-go, offers an atypical premium design for its category, and customizations to the software that help to make it even more useful than stock. Still, it's not without its faults, as the camera really fails to make an impression. If that's not high on your priority list, then that shouldn't be an issue. But then again, this seems more like another middle-of-the-road option for those on a budget. There's nothing fanciful about it that we haven't seen before.


  • Premium design
  • It's VR-capable with the optional UNI360 VR Goggles
  • Incredible sound performance from the speakers
  • Now Key offers quick access to apps/functions


  • Disappointing camera performance
  • A fingerprint sensor is expected for the price

PhoneArena Rating:




1. Nicoglx

Posts: 15; Member since: Aug 23, 2017

I can´t believe this phone has a better socre than the Essential.

2. fyah_king unregistered

I have the essential and I give it a 9.

6. jacquechristman

Posts: 6; Member since: Oct 31, 2017

That's probably because the Essential costed almost as much as the Galaxy S8 when they reviewed it. The Essential is a better phone than this one, and they know it, but it had too many issues to validate its original price point.

3. dragon76

Posts: 32; Member since: Jun 24, 2012

I have the Essential also and it isn't as bad as PhonieArena made it out to be.... the only real issue with the Essential was the choice of image sensors but it can take some pretty good pictures with the GCam port so all Essential has to do is figure out how to get the stock app to stop compressing the pics and give it manual settings

4. dragon76

Posts: 32; Member since: Jun 24, 2012

also.... I don't really rely on PhoneArena for reviews as much anymore because they tend to be pretty bias towards certain brands.... and the proof of this statement is all over the website
  • Display 5.2" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 8 MP front
  • Processor MediaTek Helio P20, Octa-core, 2300 MHz
  • Storage 32 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 2850 mAh(18h 3G talk time)

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