Specs summary


The Alcatel Idol 4S with Windows's screen is 5.5 inches with 1080 x 1920 pixels resolution.


There is a Qualcomm MSM8996 Snapdragon 820 Quad core 2.15 GHz processor (CPU).


The phone runs on the Windows 10 operating system (OS).

21+ MP
You can take photos or capture video with the phone's onboard 21+ megapixel camera. There is also a secondary front facing camera with 8+ megapixels resolution.
64 GB

Internal memory is 64 GB. An external, MicroSD, MicroSDHC, microSDXC (up to 128 GB) expansion slot is available for increased storage capacity.


The phone is powered by a Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion), 3000 mAh battery. Alcatel's performance ratings are 17.5 days standby time, 800 minutes (2G).

Reviews summary

Based on 7 reviews

What's good  

  • Premium design
  • Great audio quality
  • Massive internal storage
  • Included VR headset
  • All-day battery life
  • QuickCharge 3.0 support

What's bad  

  • Limited carrier availability
  • Limited app availability
  • Weak low-light camera performance
  • Questionable resolution for VR use
  • No NFC support

It’s been awhile since we’ve seen a contender for the top of the Windows 10 phone rankings. With a quick glance at the specs, it’s clear that the Alcatel Idol 4S with Windows is set to shuffle the rankings. But does the phone have what it takes to hold its own at the high-end of the price brackets?

Reviewers have been testing out this latest release and reviews are rolling in! Let’s see what’s good and bad about this new VR-ready device.

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The Alcatel Idol 4S with Windows might look familiar. That’s because the phone already has an Android version available. There’s also the latest BlackBerry DTEK60 sporting the same design. But the Windows version isn’t a simple variant—It’s a whole new phone.

Fortunately, the metal and glass design is still classy looking and a hit with reviewers. Pocket Lint noted, “Those glass surfaces have subtle curves towards their edges, so [they] look elegant, but it's not quite enough to stop the phone feeling like a big shiny block in your palm.”

One area where reviewers had a few issues as the fingerprint scanner on the back of the phone. Many noted that it was hard to find with its small size and lack of haptic feedback. Many also noted delays in fingerprint recognition. NeoWin said, “The fingerprint scanner on the IDOL 4S is satisfactory. It can feel a bit slow when using it to wake the device, although it certainly feels faster if you're already on the lock screen.”

Flip the phone over and it continues to look the same as it’s Android cousin. However, while the phone used a 5.5-inch AMOLED screen, the resolution is only 1080p. Pocket Lint was pleased with the screen overall, but noted, “On a phone this large the Full HD resolution does start to look a little bit rough around the edges compared to some other flagships.”

The big problem with the display came when reviewers snapped on the VR headset included with the phone. While the fit was great, and the effect worked, most reviewers mentioned pixelation issues and a lack of supported VR apps on the Windows Store. Pocket Lint said, “The 1080p screen isn't sharp enough, while the motion and animations aren't quite smooth enough to make it a pleasant experience. It's more a fun additional feature than a genuinely good experience.”

While the screen loses a few points compared to the Android version, the processor gets a significant boost. The Windows version sports a 2.15GHz quad-core Snapdragon 810 processor and 4GB of RAM—though only 3.5GB are accessible by the phone. Performance reviews were mostly positive in both normal operation and Continuum mode. PC World declared, “I could stack and stack applications in the background without any apparent slowdown, and everything I threw at the Idol 4S ran fluidly.”

With 64GB of storage and microSD support, there’s zero worry about having enough room for your favorite apps and media either.

Reviewers were torn on the 21MP rear camera. While they all noted it was an acceptable camera—most felt they lacked the detail and low-light performance of previous Windows models. Windows Central summed up opinions well, saying, “While I think the rear shooter is okay for regular users, it will be hard to convince Lumia fans otherwise. That's a shame for what is otherwise a fantastic phone.”

However, there was no debate about the battery life on the phone. The 3,000mAh battery lasted every review a full day with ease. A full charge clocks in under 2-hours thanks to USB Type-C and QuickCharge 3.0 support. There’s little to worry about keeping your phone running throughout the day.

Overall, reviews are positive. While the phone carries the same potential pitfalls as other Windows phones, it offers a powerful flagship option with a few VR goodies at a fair price. NeoWin’s verdict reflected other reviews, saying, “For [the price], you're getting an elegantly designed Windows phone with a vibrant display, powerful internals, and a bundled VR headset. If you were looking for a new Windows phone, this is it.”

Reviews (7.8/10 Avg. rating)


Not Microsoft's mobile saviour

from Pocket-lint
There's no doubting the hardware capability of the Idol 4S - we've seen it at work several times on Android. What's disappointing in the Windows 10 version is the lack of optimisation from a software standpoint. With its slow loading - and that's despite a hardware boost - it can be quite an off-putting experience... Full review

Unlocking the power of Windows 10

from Forbes
The Idol 4S with Windows 10 is a competent phone. The specifications are modern enough that it feels future-proofed for the upcoming Windows 10 software updates expected in 2017, it meets the expectations of a modern smartphone, and it is possible to live with the mobile version of Windows 10 and have it help organise your life... Full review

VR on a Windows phone, for once

from Neowin
The Alcatel IDOL 4S with Windows 10 is a powerful and beautiful Windows phone that's actually designed with consumers in mind. It's an extremely pleasant device to use, although it's not without its shortcomings... Full review

Smooth & stable performance, stunning screen

from MSPoweruser
All in all, the Alcatel Idol 4S is the superphone Windows Phone fans have wanted for a while. It does not appear to be aimed at businesses and comes at an excellent price for consumers. For under $500 you have a phone with the performance of a far more expensive device, and it’s a diamond in the rough... Full review

A gorgeous device

from Pocketnow
The Alcatel IDOL 4S is a gorgeous device. It’s thin, shiny, and fast. It’s the first to add mobile virtual reality support to the platform too! Unfortunately, at least at this time, it feels like Microsoft is really holding Alcatel back with their poorly made Universal Windows Platform apps on Windows 10 Mobile... Full review

Excellent battery life and performance offset a mediocre camera and lack of apps

from PCWorld
Your consumers Windows phone choices boil down to two: the Microsoft Lumia 950 or the Alcatel Idol 4S. The Lumia 950’s superior camera offers a significant edge. I’ll back any phone that delivers outstanding battery life, however, and the Idol 4S’s silky-smooth performance complements this feature perfectly. As for VR? Without compelling content, it’s gimmicky, but what little there is, is implemented well... Full review
Windows Central

A great option at an incredible price

from Windows Central
The Alcatel Idol 4S with Windows 10 is a fine phone, physically, but a huge part of the experience comes down to the second half of the name: with Windows 10. There's no denying that the current situation with Windows 10 Mobile: it's in a barely-registering distant third place behind Android and iPhone, and the Windows Store still is struggling to fill the app needs of customers as comprehensively as Android and iOS... Full review

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