This year, unlike last year, TCL announced 5 smartphones, the TCL 10 Pro, 10L and 10 5G, 10 SE and 10 Plus. And having already analyzed 2 of the previously revealed devices, now is the time to test the TCL 10 Plus, which, like the 10 Pro, are the most premium phones of the brand’s equipment.
And generally speaking, I can guarantee that this is a very interesting phone, and one that you should take into account if you are looking for a mid-range phone. But let’s try to know a little more about this TCL 10 Plus.
Design and display
The design of the TCL 10 Plus is undeniably its strongest selling point. The first time I went there I was amazed at the feel to the touch, with a smooth matte finish on the back. It has a plastic body and rear, very good quality, but plastic. It is incredibly soft to the touch, and not at all slippery, due to its plastic construction. The only area that doesn’t have a matte finish is the photosensor area on the back, as it has a slightly glossy finish there, presumably to showcase the sensors. And I can already add that I love the design of this equipment, just as I had already loved the 10. The sensors are practically on the face of the body, at the back, and the protrusion of the sensors is less than 1 mm. thick. Also, the color that was made available to me was Starlight Silver, which I can already say I like, and which gives it different tones when the light reflects on it.
On the right side of the equipment we have the power button and the volume buttons. On the left side we have a textured button for the virtual assistant, which in this case is Google Assistant. Unfortunately, this button is exclusively for this purpose and we can’t map it to anything else, like taking photos. Maybe in a future firmware update TCL will allow it to be mapped.
At the bottom we have this phone’s only speaker, a microphone, a USB Type-C port, and the nano-SIM slot. At the top we have the rare 3.5mm port for headphones and another microphone.
TCL 10 Plus is one of the prettiest phones we’ve tested
When it comes to the display, this TCL 10 Plus comes with the best the market has to offer, namely an AMOLED display, which continues to be accompanied by TCL’s proprietary technology, NXTVISION. This screen has 6.47 inches with FullHD + resolution with 1080×2340 pixels, its colors are vibrant and clear enough. Plus, when watching real HDR content, the picture quality is spectacularly beautiful. My biggest problem with this screen is that its colors tend to be a bit saturated, but changing the screen profile to a soft color profile has helped a lot with this “problem”, even though it still seems a little off. little too vibrant My taste.
It has a fingerprint sensor that seems to be as reliable as most phones and reasonably small bezels. The sides of this screen are slightly curved, and it has a small notch in the upper central part to house the front photo sensor.
Sometimes I felt like the sensitivity of the screen on the sides (curves) was in question, but in general it worked just fine.
If the cameras of this TCL 10 Plus are aesthetically excellent, their actual performance is below what is desired. It has 4 sensors on the back, where its main sensor is 48 megapixels with f / 1.8 aperture, an 8MP ultra-wide sensor with f / 2.2 aperture, a 2MP macro lens with f / 2.4 aperture and depth detection with aperture 2MP and f / 2.4. Up front we have a 16MP sensor with an f / 2.2 aperture.
In theory, these specs might sound like everything you need to have a good photographic experience, but the 10 Pro’s photos end up looking overly processed, unnatural, and sometimes completely fluorescent.
Personally I like the brightly colored photos, but the TCL 10 Plus abuses it in the vast majority of scenes, becoming more than I consider to be too much. It is very common for the colors to be much stronger than in real life, and while it may sound interesting, I can’t help but feel that the photos don’t look real. It might sound strange, but I usually complain to the contrary, so maybe I’m a little too picky with TCL.
However, this is all even worse in low light conditions, where the standard capture mode dramatically increases all colors. Thankfully, TCL’s Super Night Mode helps and softens some of those highlights, although it’s still far from perfect.
The front camera, on the other hand, takes good photos, doesn’t abuse colors too much, and generally does a good job.
When it comes to videos, they’re honestly a lot better than photos. The picture is great, and the night mode in video recording does a great job, and it proves that the failure of the photo on this equipment is in the software, not in the hardware. The quality of the video recording is not the best I have tested, not even close to that, but it can for example record videos up to 4K at 30fps and shoot slow motion videos up to at 120fps at 1080p, with good quality. Image stabilization is generally good, but there is also some jitter during playback. But in general, it works fine in this recording section.
Again, I think TCL can fix the sensor issues with an update. A third-party app will likely help to significantly improve the photographic quality of this equipment. Honestly, and for logical reasons, I didn’t install it (before I finished this scan) because my scan is on what TCL has to offer, not third parties … but they go for me, an app third will help, and a lot, in photography. (TCL is for you to read this).
Inside, this TCL 10 Plus is not much different from the TCL 10 Pro, so its performance is far from different. Once again, TCL decided to equip this equipment with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 665, which does not seem to me to be the best solution for a 2020 smartphone. This processor comes with 6 GB of RAM and 128 GB of internal storage. And yes, it has a slot for a MicroSD card, so you can expand the storage capacity, but to use it you will have to give up space for an operator card.
Although I think this processor is already very “early 2019”, the truth is that it is capable of running any app that is on the Play Store. Obviously, the heaviest games, although they are played, we cannot select the maximum settings. But I can assure you that I have played PUBG Mobile, COD Mobile, and Fortnite without any major issues. Obviously, it doesn’t perform as well as a high-end phone, but it performs reasonably well in most games.
Below I leave the Antutu test so that you can draw your conclusions. The test does not reflect daily use, but you can tell.
This smartphone has a 4500mAh battery, and is more than enough for a full day with heavy use, a day and a half with moderate use. At no time did I worry about its autonomy, because every time I left the house with it charged, I always arrived at night with more than 30% of the battery. In this sense, and although I cannot describe the autonomy as “giant”, I would say that it is more than sufficient for the vast majority of users.
TCL offers an 18W charger (Quick Charge 3), so your charge lasts less than an hour and a half, if you let the phone reach almost 0% battery. I usually put on the same load when it hits 15%, and it never took more than 1h15 minutes to hit 100%. It’s not the fastest, but I think in terms of loading it’s fine.
TCL, as expected, uses the Android operating system, and in its equipment, and to be more precise, Android 10, which is currently the latest version of Google’s system, and TCL hasn’t made many changes compared to that. à to its predecessor. This is why the company continues to use a very fluid and fast interface. I like this interface, but it always comes with bloatware software which, although it can be removed very easily, is consumable. Animations are smooth and application switching is quick.
We now also have the AllwaysOn feature, and TCL has been smart enough to do away with their “smart assistant” by replacing it with the Google News Feed.
It’s worth noting that the company still has some work to do here, but it won’t be because of the software that the TCL 10 Plus ceases to be great gear.
Analysis: TCL 10 Plus – Final verdict
The TCL 10 Plus appears to be a copy of another phone from the company, the 10 Pro. Its plastic design is one of the most beautiful that I have ever had the opportunity to experience with this material, a screen similar to the 10 Pro, just like your fingerprint scanner on the screen itself. It also maintains most of what was already good in the 10 Pro, including low-light video recording and a nice performance for a mid-range phone.
However, it is undeniable that it is almost a TCL Pro, with a case with less noble materials, and with photographic sensors a little less interesting.
However, in general, this TCL 10 Plus is definitely a good phone, and one that certainly won’t do any harm to users who decide to buy it.
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Founder of Noticias e Tecnologia, and this is his second online project, after several years connected to a portal focused on the Android system, of which he was also one of its founders.
IT professional and passionate about new technologies, mechanical sports and mountain biking.