Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 Review
As far as the microphones go – speaking through the Hero 2 provided the party on the other end with a clear, easily understandable voice, though, just a smidgen quieter than normal. And, while the Sidekick 2 delivered a noticeably poorer-sounding voice with a pronounced digitalization and audio tearing, it was still not so bad that the opposite side wouldn't be able to understand us.
These numbers are well below today's averages and our custom test shows a disappointing battery life, especially when we are talking about a 3,100 mAh juicer – the phone only lasted 4 hours and 28 minutes – almost a 50% drop in battery life, compared to last year's model.
Real-life experience with the phone shows that the battery can surely last you the day with medium usage, however, going heavier on it with some extensive web browsing, photo shooting, and some phone calls may get you to critical battery percentages around the 6th hour mark.
The Alcatel OneTouch Hero 2 sounds like a powerful phone and a great budget-friendly, stylus-equipped phablet, which should appeal to those who are in the market for such a device. It costs around ~$430 (€350), and for this sort of money, one would expect mostly smooth operation. Unfortunately, choppy performance and a next-to-unusable stylus detracts from the experience to the point where one may wish to look for other options.
If you absolutely want a 6" phone that does not break the bank – sure, the OneTouch Hero 2 is a viable option. It is king in terms of screen-to-body ratio in its class, and that definitely matters when we are talking about gargantuan displays. Its performance does not completely break user experience, but is an unpleasant distraction. The camera is good for the phone's class and the display is crisp, even though its dull-ish colors and unfavorable contrast are a bit of a disappointment.
Looking at possible alternatives – the Samsung Galaxy Mega 2 comes for around $50 more, has a smaller battery, less RAM, an inferior resolution, and an 8 MP camera. The Huawei Ascend Mate 2, however, has a 6.1” display at 720p resolution, 13 MP main and 5 MP selfie camera, an adequate 1.6 GHz Snapdragon 400 CPU, 2 GB of RAM, a massive 3,900 mAh battery, and costs around $350 – this may be worth looking at, before taking the plunge.
If you absolutely must have a stylus-equipped phone – just go for the Galaxy Note line. A Note 3 Neo may run you north of $500 (though, you should be able to get it for much less nowadays), but the OneTouch Hero 2 is in no way equivalent to it, despite it trying to imitate Samsung's features.