Chance are, most folks know TCL for its range of televisions, but surprise surprise, the Chinese company released its very own smartphone back at IFA 2019. It is the TCL Plex, and you can now get this mid-range Android smartphone in Malaysia for RM1,199.
Now, TCL isn’t exactly new in the smartphone industry. After all, both the BlackBerry and Alcatel brand names are owned by the company. But the TCL Plex is the first smartphone to be released with its own branding, and it’s actually a pretty decent mid-ranger.
Its list of specifications comfortably place the Plex in the upper mid-range segment. It comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 chipset paired with 6GB of RAM, 128GB of internal storage, a microSD card slot – it supports cards up to 256GB – as well as a reasonably big 3,820mAh battery.
Given TCL’s expertise in display technology, the company is very proud of the Plex’s 6.53-inch 1080p “Dotch” IPS display. The Dotch is basically what TCL dubs the hole-punch design (it’s even trademarked by the manufacturer), and it’s a reasonably small cutout.
On top of that, the Plex’s display, not surprisingly, is manufactured by TCL itself. It comes with a mode called NXTVISION, and once enabled, it improves the visual quality of the screen with a “six-axis colour enhancement.” This, in turn, allows it to play SDR videos with HDR-like colours; certainly a lofty claim.
In the camera department, the Plex features a triple camera system made up of a 48MP main shooter, a 16MP super-wide angle camera, and a 2MP “low-light” sensor. I haven’t had the chance to try out the camera performance extensively yet, but it’ll be interesting to see how the triple camera setup fares in low light conditions.
Another feature that’s highlighted by TCL is the Plex’s ability to connect to four different audio sources via Bluetooth simultaneously. It’s dubbed Super Bluetooth, and it certainly works as advertised. There is, however, one limitation: the feature only works with two audio sources if the phone is connected to a 2.4GHz WiFi network.
The TCL Plex is now available for purchase in Malaysia for RM1,199 in Opal White or Obsidian Black, and you can get your hands on it from the company’s official store on Shopee. To sweeten the deal, a pair of TCL MTRO wireless headphones worth RM199 is bundled with the smartphone too.