during MWC 2022TCL has launched its new Series 30 smartphones, a range of affordable devices that will be available for purchase in Europe from April 2022, and are sure to land on UK shores soon after.
TCL is a fast growing Chinese technology company that manufactures some of the The best cheap phones for a few years now, TCL 20 Pro It was a good example of that. When I reviewed it, it was the 6.67-inch curved display that really caught my eye as well as its long-lasting battery and great design.
This year the series saw some change and TCL announced five new devices, including TCL 30 5G, 30+, 30 4G, 30SE and 30E. Prices start at €139 (around £115) and range up to €269 (around £225), so there’s something for every budget, no matter how small.
I was able to get hands-on with the new TCL 30 5G while in Barcelona and to make a long story short, it’s going to be a great option for anyone who wants 5G support on a budget. Here’s why.
First, it looks great. The new TCL 30 5G is a little different from last year’s phones. The glossy back has been replaced with a sophisticated matte alternative and the camera strip has been replaced with a rectangular notch. The new design looks and feels a lot like Samsung’s best phones which makes it look like it could be a lot more expensive than it actually is.
You’ll be able to buy it in Tech Black or Dreamy Blue, both of which look smart but the blue variant is definitely more attractive in my opinion. The phone looks solid and won’t pick up any dirty fingerprint marks which means you can use this without a case.
Weighing in at just 184g and measuring 165 x 75 x 8mm, the TCL 30 5G is a compact enough device to fit in your pocket. Even if you have small hands, like me, you’ll be able to use it with one hand which will be a huge plus point for a lot of people.
The 6.7-inch FHD+ AMOLED display has a resolution of 1080 x 2400 pixels with up to 900 nits of brightness. The screen looks great and takes up 91% screen-to-body ratio – long gone are the days of thick bezels on cheap phones!
When it comes to display quality, the TCL 30 5G will be good enough for browsing the web or streaming a YouTube video here and there. You also get a 60Hz refresh rate, and while it’s not quite as smooth as the best phones out there, it’s still great for swiping and scrolling.
While I couldn’t do a proper test of the camera, I can go over the setup you’ll get from the TCL 30 5G. The rear camera system consists of a 50MP main lens, a 2MP depth sensor, and a 2MP macro camera, while on the front is a 13MP front camera.
There are also a few different camera modes and features to know about including Steady Snap, One shot, High Pixel, Portrait Mode, Movie Mode, and Stop Motion. It will be interesting to see how well the camera’s hardware and software work together when I get to review the phone.
Powering the phone is a MediaTek Dimensity 700 chipset with 5G support, and that’s the icing on the cake here. These reliable mid-range chipsets bring the price of 5G down to an incredibly low price, making it affordable for more people.
If you’re not likely to take advantage of that, you can save even more money by opting for the TCL 30, which is 4G only and as such uses the MediaTek Helio G37. Either way, the CPU is paired with 4GB of RAM and 64GB or 128GB of storage which will be plenty.
The TCL 30 5G packs a 5,010mAh battery to keep it going all day with support for 18W fast charging although there’s no wireless charging. This is also very good for a cheap phone at this price. I haven’t been able to put the battery through its paces during the short time I’ve had it with it, but I assume it’ll easily last through a workday.
While I couldn’t tell how well the daily TCL 30 5G works, after taking a cursory look at it, I think it looks like a great option for those who want 5G on a budget.
Of course, it can hardly compare to the best Android phones you can buy, but considering how cheap it is, the TCL 30 5G manages to pack a lot of modern technology including a good-looking display, and a mid-range. chipset and even a triple-lens rear camera system. All this packed into a compact and stylish device.
Right now, we don’t know anything for sure about UK pricing, but we do know how much the TCL 30 5G will cost in mainland Europe, so we can risk a guess.
If you want 5G support, the TCL 30 5G starts at €249 (about £210) for the 64GB variant, and goes up to €269 (about £225) for the 128GB storage.
5G is not a necessity? The TCL 30 will be available starting at €179 (around £150).
If you can’t wait, take a look below to see where you can buy TCL’s top of the line phone from 2021, the TCL 20 Pro 5G.