The "1-Minute" Review
- Slow performance
- Middling battery life
- Hit-or-miss camera quality
- No fast charging
Alcatel might not be a familiar name to most, but the company has been quietly releasing new phones and filling in their lineup in the budget and mid-range smartphone market. The Alcatel 3V falls into their budget category. Though these days budget phones potentially provide surprising bang for the buck.
There’s not much in the phone’s design that stands out. But that’s not a bad thing. In fact, when compared with other budget phones, the 3V is one of the better-looking models. The glossy, plastic back and rim give it a more premium appearance.
Still, it doesn’t come without its downsides. The back attracts fingerprints and is also very slippery, making it prone to drops. Some reviewers found build quality unsatisfying as it would flex and creak under moderate pressure.
It’s also fairly large measuring in at 6.37-by-2.9-by-0.3 inches. Despite the size, the all-plastic body gives it a light weight of 155 grams.
Gracing the front of the 3V is the 6-inch 1080-by-2160 IPS display, offering a little over 400ppi. Reviewers were impressed on overall sharpness and clarity -- especially considering the price tag. They also note that while it can’t compare to flagship phones, it also offered decent enough contrast, color accuracy, and brightness.
The biggest flaw of the screen is the lack of Gorilla Glass protection. You’ll want to put this phone in a case to protect it from falls.
While the outside of the phone might look nice, the internal specs are another story. It comes equipped with a 1.4GHz quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM.
The 3V under-performs when compared to other similarly priced phones. Reviewers noticed significant delays when opening apps -- to where they would think their taps didn’t register. It slowed down more when they had multiple apps open.
If you’re a mobile gamer, you’ll want to look elsewhere. While it played most current games, critics noticed dropped frame rates and very long loading times.
Despite the lack of performance, battery life was mediocre. The 3,000mAh battery lasted around a day of moderate usage -- though they could push it to two days when used very minimally. There’s no wireless charging or fast charging though. So, you’ll want to top it off every night to avoid any issues the next day.
A dual-lens camera at this price might tempt you to buy the 3V. Unfortunately, reviewers found it to be one of the worst cameras they’ve tested in a while.
Not only was it slow, it also didn’t take good pictures -- even in good lighting situations. Most of their pictures had muddy colors and some amount of blur --whether from motion or low shutter speeds. This was worse for them in low-light situations as images became too noisy and too dark.
Overall, most of their pictures came out poorly. In the right lighting situations, they could take decent pictures. Still, good pictures took too much time to set up. This takes away the main benefit of a smartphone camera -- being able to take a picture quickly.
While it might be cheap, critics have a hard time recommending the Alcatel 3V. Digital Trends states, “... the Alcatel 3V gives a lot of phone - but if the user experience is frustratingly slow, what’s the point?” Tom’s Guide adds, “... the Alcatel 3V suffers from terrible performance and paltry battery life... these cheap phones don’t offer a premium experience.”
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