Alcatel A5 LED features the world’s first interactive LED cover

The Alcatel A5 LED has just been launched at this year’s Mobile World Congress, and its standout feature is its interactive LED cover, which Alcatel hopes will capture the imaginations (and money) of young people.

Alcatel isn’t one of the most exciting mobile brands, usually associated with cheap and cheerful budget handsets, but the LED cover may make it a more appealing purchase. The cover can light up when you receive notifications from incoming calls, messages, alarms and social media activity, and you can customize the way it looks with cover patterns and themes.

The cover will also light up and display animated patterns while you listen to music, and if you shake the Alcatel A5 LED handset, the pattern will change.

While the cover of the Alcatel A5 LED isn’t the first protective case that gives you important information while keeping your smartphone safe (the HTC Dot View case has been around for a while now, and does something similar), this is the most feature-rich and customizable case we’ve seen so far, and the fact that it’s included for no extra cost is welcome news.

It’s not all about the LEDs

Aside from the LED case, the Alcatel A5 LED features 4G LTE connectivity, an octa-core processor, NFC, Android 6.0 Marshmallow and a 5.2-inch 720p display.

Other specs include 2GB of RAM, a 2800mAh battery and 16GB internal memory, which can be expanded by up to 128GB with a microSD card.

Photo-taking duties are handled by an 8-megapixel rear camera with dual-tone flash and a 5-megapixel front camera.

The Alcatel A5 LED will be available to buy in Europe and Australia from May 2017 and will cost €199 and AU$299, respectively (around £170, US$210). We’ve asked Alcatel to confirm worldwide availability and pricing.

Will a funky interactive LED cover and some decent (though not mind-blowing) specs help the Alcatel A5 LED become a hit? We’ve had some hands-on time with the device at MWC, so keep an eye out for our first impressions of this smartphone to find out.

MWC (Mobile World Congress) is the world's largest exhibition for the mobile industry, stuffed full of the newest phones, tablets, wearables and more. TechRadar is reporting live from Barcelona all week to bring you the very latest from the show floor. Head to our dedicated MWC 2017 hub to see all the new releases, along with TechRadar's world-class analysis and buying advice about your next phone.

Matt Hanson
Managing Editor, Core Tech

Matt is TechRadar's Managing Editor for Core Tech, looking after computing and mobile technology. Having written for a number of publications such as PC Plus, PC Format, T3 and Linux Format, there's no aspect of technology that Matt isn't passionate about, especially computing and PC gaming. Ever since he got an Amiga A500+ for Christmas in 1991, he's loved using (and playing on) computers, and will talk endlessly about how The Secret of Monkey Island is the best game ever made.