Don’t feel like waiting for Prime Day to get an excellent smartphone deal? TCL didn’t either, so they’ve already put their phones on deep discount in anticipation of the big day! These phones are more than 30% off, which already makes them some of the best Prime Day smartphone deals we’ve yet seen. Both the TCL 10 Pro and TCL 10L are on sale, and it’s hard to go wrong with either phone if you’re looking for something new without spending a ton.
When we reviewed it last year, the TCL 10 Pro felt nothing like a sub-$500 phone. The attractive glass and metal frame feels like a high-quality flagship phone should, and there’s no annoying camera hump on the back, either. It even performs more like a flagship than the price would make you think thanks to the Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 processor inside.
Additionally, it’s got two features that flagship phones don’t normally ship with anymore: a 3.5mm headphone jack and an IR blaster up top. The large 6.47-inch AMOLED display up front features some software tricks from TCL’s excellent TVs, enabling a better overall picture than you might expect. Under the glass is an in-display fingerprint scanner, although you’ll probably wish TCL opted for a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner on the 10 Pro, as the in-display one isn’t very good.
TCL just recently updated both phones to Android 11, and while that’s not exactly a fast update schedule, TCL has promised at least two years of security updates, meaning the phone is still good and safe for another solid year. While TCL is currently running its Android 12 beta program on the TCL 20 5G, there’s no word of an Android 12 update planned for the TCL 10 series. In short, don’t necessarily expect it.
As far as cameras go, even though there are a whopping four cameras on the back of the TCL 10 Pro, they aren’t the best cameras in the business. Something has to give at this price point, and while it also doesn’t have the fastest processor in the world, its cameras suffered a bit from cost-cutting. It’s not a terrible experience, by any means, and the macro camera is significantly better than what OnePlus packed into the OnePlus 8, but it isn’t going to win any awards.
In addition to an interesting macro camera that lets you shoot objects super up-close, it’s also got an ultra-wide-angle camera for taking in the entire scene in one shot. Great variety, no doubt, but if cameras are any priority at all, you’re going to want to spend $50 more on a Pixel 4a, instead. You won’t get the range of camera options with that phone, but photos and video capture are substantially better than what TCL offers.
At just over $150, the TCL 10L is a pretty incredible choice when comparing to most of the competition in this price range. It’s got solid performance, all-day battery life, better than average cameras (at this price range), and a great software experience with Android 11. It’s also got a rear-facing fingerprint scanner that’s much better than the in-display one on the TCL 10 Pro. This is the lowest price the TCL 10L has ever been offered at Amazon, so it’s likely that you won’t find this kind of deal again for some time.
The TCL 10L packs a 6.53-inch display on the front, a snappy Snapdragon 665 processor, 6GB of RAM, an incredibly large 4,000mAh battery for all-day battery life (and then some), and four cameras on the back for an interesting range of photography options. No coupon to clip here, just a great deal!
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