We go hands-on with the Alcatel Flash Plus!
The sub 9K smartphone segment that has long been dominated by local brands has been completely turned on its head in the past few months. It started with ASUS’ Zenfone 5 last year, and was further disrupted by the arrival of Meizu’s M1 Note a few months ago. Now with the imminent release of Alcatel’s Flash Plus and the arrival of Lenovo’s A7000, the battle of the king of the lower mid-range market has never been hotter.
Today we’re taking a look at a phone that has the chops to upset Meizu’s M1 Note as the current king of the lower mid-range market: the Alcatel Flash Plus. With a drastically lower SRP and an oddly similar spec sheet, the Flash Plus is poised to take snatch the crown from the M1 Note. Before we begin, let’s take a look at the specs:
Alcatel Flash Plus specs
- 1.5GHz MediaTek MT6752M octa-core processor
- 2GB of RAM
- 5.5-inch HD IPS OGS display, 1280 x 720 resolution
- 16GB of storage, expandable via microSD
- 13-megapixel rear camera, Sony IMX214 sensor
- 8-megapixel front camera
- Dual-SIM, dual LTE
- 3G, LTE
- WiFI, Bluetooth, GPS, A-GPS, USB OTG
- 3,500mAh battery
- Android 4.4 KitKat
- Php 6,490
Initial Impressions: Light weight and solid, with plenty of power under the hood
The Flash Plus sports a design that’s fairly conservative and safe, sporting gentle rounded corners and slightly rounded back for better grip. Much like the M1 Note, the Flash Plus utilizes a unibody plastic construction, which means that the battery is non removable which may or may not be a good thing, depending on how you look at it.
The Flash Plus is a dual SIM, dual LTE device, with SIM slots on both sides of the device. Unlike the M1 Note, the Flash Plus has a microSD slot located on the left side of the phone, which allows you to further expand the 16GB of storage that the device has. We liked the fact that the SIM and microSD slots can be opened with your bare hands without the need for a specialized SIM ejector tool.
The 5.5-inch IPS display is protected by Dragontrail glass and is of relatively good quality. The bezels on the sides aren’t as thick as you’d expect on a budget device, which is surprising. The three capacitive buttons on the bottom of the display tells us that the device still runs Android 4.4 KitKat, even though it runs a 64-bit octa-core processor. The Flash Plus runs a custom UI on top of KitKat which is similar to the offerings of other Chinese manufacturers, since it strips out the traditional app drawer and places all your apps outside.
Speaking of hardware, the Flash Plus runs an octa-core MediaTek MT6752M processor running at 1.5GHz paired with 2GB of RAM. In our benchmark test with AnTuTu, the Flash Plus managed to score around 43224 points which is quite impressive, considering what price it’ll retail for.
The Alcatel Flash Plus is projected to be priced at Php 6499, which is far cheaper than Meizu’s M1 Note that previously retailed for Php 7990. At that price point, the phone is a great deal – especially considering the alternatives. The phone will be a Lazada exclusive, and is expected to go on sale any day now.