Alcatel OneTouch Idol Alpha review

A phone still in beta

Alcatel OneTouch Idol Alpha review
The Alpha takes a breather against a wall

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The display on the Alcatel OneTouch Idol Alpha is good enough to enjoy video content and engage in a blast of gaming.

If you're inside then you're going to want to turn the brightness down and the colour saturation is noticeable at times, but it's perfectly watchable for streaming Netflix or YouTube.

It can also handle basic games like Clash of Clans without a hitch. Graphically intensive titles like Modern Combat 5 or Asphalt 8 don't fare as well. Expect slow loading times, stuttering, and lag when you exit.

The main speaker is on the back so if you're listening without headphones, then be careful not to cover it up with your hand. The volume is limited and if you crank it to the max it starts to distort. You're definitely better off with headphones.

Alcatel OneTouch Idol Alpha review

The music and video apps are incredibly basic, but they support a decent range of file types and were able to play back everything I tested.

There is a widget for the music player if you want to use it, and you can create playlists and order by album, artist, or song name, but you'll find a multitude of better options in the Play Store.

I had no problems watching Netflix on the Idol Alpha and it was quick to load a high quality stream. It also worked fine for choosing content and streaming to my Chromecast.

Alcatel OneTouch Idol Alpha review

I also tested Spotify without any issues. You'll need headphones and the adapter for the microUSB is annoying, but aside from that it works just fine for listening to music.

With around 13GB of your 16GB storage available and no micro SD card slot, you might feel space is limited.

If you like to have movies or a big music collection on your phone then it will be a problem. Games like Asphalt 8 are over 1.5GB, but then it performs so poorly you won't want to install it anyway.

Alcatel OneTouch Idol Alpha review

Google gives you 15GB and the option to automatically backup photos in the cloud, so that's a handy boost.

The OneTouch backup app that comes preinstalled is something of a mystery as the user agreement is in Chinese, but it appears to just link up with your existing accounts on Dropbox, Box or Google Drive.