Looking for a cheap 5G phone in 2020? TCL says look no further

The TCL 10 Pro is the flagship offering, at an affordable price point
(Image credit: TechRadar)

TCL just unveiled a lineup of new phones that don't just pack performance and quad cameras at a low cost – one of them is a 5G phone that's slated to be sold at half the price of other leading 5G phones when it comes out later this year.

It's not the first time the China-based TCL has sold phones in the UK and US, as it produces the budget Alcatel series of devices, and up until recently, was responsible for the Android-toting BlackBerry handsets such as the KeyOne, Key2 and Key2 LE.

TCL is now entering the US, UK, and Australian markets with three own-brand devices. The flagship TCL 10 Pro is a phone we saw launched at CES 2020 in January, boasting a 6.47-inch AMOLED FHD+ display with fingerprint scanner embedded in it and HDR10 support.

There's four rear cameras too, helmed by a 64MP main shooter along with a 123-degree wide-angle lens, macro lens, and video camera dedicated to capturing footage in low light. The TCL 10 Pro release date is set for Q2 2020, with a price tag of £399 / $449 / AU$899.

TCL 10 5G and 10L

We also saw the TCL 10 5G at CES 2020, and it will, as the name suggests, offer 5G at an affordable cost. It has a similar design and camera set-up (it swaps a depth sensor for a low-light sensor) to the 10 Pro, but comes with a lesser chipset (a 'Snapdragon 7-series 5G SoC, per TCL's press release) and a 6.53-inch FHD+ LCD display, rather than a punchier AMOLED panel.

However, the savings made with the screen and chipset means the TCL 10 5G price is a reasonable £399 (around $488 / AU$802) – making it one of the cheapest 5G phones available, though it will only be sold in 'select regions around the world later this year,' according to a TCL press release. It's unclear if that will include the US and/or Australia.

Finally, the TCL 10L is the younger sibling to the flagship 10, with an LCD display and lesser specs with a Snapdragon 665 chipset and 6GB of RAM, though it still boasts four rear cameras. TCL claims the 10L will offer the best performance at its price point, and provide support for HDR video.

Talking of price, the TCL 10L is set to cost £199 / $249 / AU$499, with a release date sometime in Q2 2020.

You'll have to wait for our full reviews of TCL's 10 series to find out how they stack up to the established names in the market - but early signs are positive with solid spec sheets and sensible pricing.

John McCann
Global Managing Editor

John joined TechRadar over a decade ago as Staff Writer for Phones, and over the years has built up a vast knowledge of the tech industry. He's interviewed CEOs from some of the world's biggest tech firms, visited their HQs and has appeared on live TV and radio, including Sky News, BBC News, BBC World News, Al Jazeera, LBC and BBC Radio 4. Originally specializing in phones, tablets and wearables, John is now TechRadar's resident automotive expert, reviewing the latest and greatest EVs and PHEVs on the market. John also looks after the day-to-day running of the site.