Update: In our original Alcatel OneTouch Pixi 3 Review we lambasted the device. Turns out we had a faulty unit
Inexpensive smartphones are changing the world. Consumers are tapping into mobile computing power and connectivity that was once a glory only bestowed upon the iPhone elite. Frequently, Android phone makers are producing feature rich, multi-touch experiences at a tenth of the iPhone cost. In many ways, this device is almost one of them, as we find out during our Alcatel OneTouch Pixi Review.
To be sure, this is a budget phone, and lists as one of the cheapest smartphones on the market. I tried hard to keep telling myself that, to empathise with a consumer drawn to the phone‘s price over its features. With that in mind, a week‘s use of this phone left me with this conclusion: it is a great pity this phone tends to dawdle and hang as it otherwise could have been one of the best budget smartphones on the market. Design and build
The build feels cheap and 90‘s like, but that is to be expected ““ the phone does, after all, appeal to a market disinterested in design aesthetics. It is thicker, but smaller, than most phones on the market ““ see comparison to the iPhone 6 and InnJoo One. In an odd way, I actually quite liked the 10mm thickness and basic feel of the phone ““ almost felt like its inner contents were robustly looked after by a thick armour of its shell.
Although I didn‘t test it, this phone would almost certainly fare well in the standard drop test. The phone has a 4.5 inch screen making one-handed operation a default for most users. The Android navigation buttons are all capacitive, with no mechanical buttons. I prefer this ““ it just seems to feel less tiring on the thumbs after heavy use.
So what works?
Setting aside the sluggishness, this phone delivers an Android experience many have come to love. The phone runs Kitkat 4.4; in addition you get GPS, hotspot Wi-Fi, BlueTooth, Dual SIM and FM Radio. I was pleasantly surprised to find all my favourite feature-rich Apps replicate the cosmetics of a high end phone. I found the “˜torch‘ settings feature useful and the screen quality certainly could have been worse.
The camera does the job for taking the odd picture of a mountain but you would certainly not buy this phone for the camera performance. What doesn‘t work?
Using this phone can feel like having a series of conversations in a Frail Care home. The response times appear fast, but when multitasking through Apps the phone tends to hang and occasionally freeze. Ultimately, the processing power of the phone does not accommodate power users, but then again, if you are buying a budget phone you probably are not a power user and therefore might forgive the phone‘s tendency to lag.
I noticed that I only became frustrated with the phone after using it for 20 minutes continuously. If you are the type of user who is dropping into the occasionally IM and reading a the odd daily news story, your frustration will be less felt – if even at all.
Alcatel have a whole range of great phones. While this is not what I would consider to be a great phone, it does carry a low enough price tag to compensate for the poor responsiveness. If you are not addicted to your phone (like the rest of the world) and you are looking to save money, this device may well be your answer.