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Phone Review: The Beautifully Designed Tecno Phantom A+ by @jesseoguns

Phone Review: The Beautifully Designed Tecno Phantom A+ by @jesseoguns

Tecno Mobile keeps connecting the dots. This time they really outdid themselves with the introduction of the Phantom A and Phantom A+ to the Nigerian Market – from all indications – with conversations going on online, what I see during my daily commutes, visit to phone stores, a lot of people are excited about the Tecno Phantm.

What is getting them giddy about the Phantom A+?

First, let me clarify. In an earlier blog post (Read - Tecno Phantom A (F7), Launches in Lagos, Nigeria), I explained the difference between the Phantom A and the Phantom A+. Tecno replaced the Phantom A with the A+. The two major differences between the A and the A+ is that the A+ comes with Jelly Bean Android 4.2 and a Quad-core processor while the A is spotting a Jelly Bean Android 4.1 OS and a Dual-core processor.

The unit for this review is the Tecno Phantom A+

TecnoPhantomA+

Design and Build

The design of the phone is excellent. It is superb for viewing text, reading of websites/blogs and reading of eBooks. Go ahead install Aldiko Book Reader or Amazon Kindle to test this.

Techno Phantom A+_2

I had previously used Tecno N3, P3 and D3. When I had those phones with me, I relied on SwiftKey from the Google Play Store as the primary keyboard. The Android keyboard that came with those versions of Tecno phones were not user friendly. It is a different ball game on the Phantom A+.

Just like on the Nexus 4, I use the Android Keyboard that comes with the Phantom A+  and I find it to be very sufficient. There’s nothing to complain about.

TecnoPhantomA+3_keyboard

Although the phone is a 5″, you can comfortably handle it in one hand. The smooth finishing on the back of the phone might the phone a bit slippery while handling and may fall off one’s hand. Never fell with me though but be careful when holding it- you don’t want to end up with a shattered screen.

I confirmed there’s 12+1 month warranty that comes with the Tecno Phantom A+ phone, only that the warranty doesn’t cover screen damages.

TecnoPhantomA+4_back

Display

At the display front, there’s also a huge spec bump from Tecno. The white background of the Phantom A+ looks like it has some orange colouration. You won’t notice it much until you handle the Phantom A+ side by side with other phones—GALAXY Note 2 or Nexus 4.

When a friend from Finland saw a post I did about the specs, he said; “that’s a lot of Android at £160 EUR [N35,000]”. It is the reason the phone is selling volumes in Nigeria too. Plus the Phantom A+ has a premium feel.

TecnoPhantomA+5

How does the Tecno Phantom A+ fare on a day-to-day use?

Battery life

The phone has removable battery. The battery life of the Phantom A+ is pretty impressive. I maxed a full day on it even with my excessive use of the web and how I usually push smartphones. To further increase the already impressive battery life of the Phantom A+, Tecno also added a Power Bank that can be used to recharge the phone if the battery is running out while you are out and about. The power bank is small and portable; it can easily fit into your jeans pocket.

TecnoPhantomA+6_powerbank

Dual SIM

The Phantom A+ supports Dual Mini SIMs, and not microSIMs.

mini_micro_sim

The dual Mini SIMs are the original SIMs, the type that works on the classic Nokia 3310. There’s no need to cut your SIM if you haven’t and if you have cut your SIM to micro SIM already, you’ll need a SIM adapter or may be required to do a welcome back/SIM swap to upgrade your SIM to the original size that works with the phone.

I know there are those who never bothered to port from one network to the other due to poor network. All they need was hunt for a cheap DUAL SIM phone in the market. The Phantom A+ is a DUAL SIM phone with a premium feel at an affordable price.

Camera

Pictures taken with the 8MP of the phone is pretty decent. You get the best shots during daylight time. You cannot depend on the Camera of the Phantom A+ in low light conditions. The Nokia Lumia 920 is still the undisputed king here, then again why should I be comparing an N80,000 smartphone with a N35,000 smartphone?

Music and storage

The phone has a removable microSD. You can easily move music from your computer to the phone. There doesn’t seem to be a desktop manager for the Phantom A+ like the Samsung Kies for the Samsung.

Keyboard

One of the reasons some people stay away from touchscreen phones is the difficulty in typing on it. I know I complained bitterly about the keyboard on the low range Tecno Android phones – P3, N3 and D3. But I’ll score the implementation of Android Virtual Keyboard on the A+ an 8/10. You don’t need to install a SwiftKey to get a superb typing experience. I did not see a need for the SwiftKey here.

The only annoying thing I found with the virtual keyboard was how the keys were making some funny sounds even when I thought I had disabled them. I eventually found how to disable the touch tome on its keyboards and I was fine.

To disable the clicking sound, simply go to Go to Setting, select Language, Click the setting icon by the right and click Sound on Click Press to un-select it and you are good to go

FM Radio

Almost any smartphone that has Internet access can give you access to FM Radio. Only that with some smartphones, you’ll need an app and Internet access. On the Tecno Phantom A+, you have the FM radio pre-installed. All you have to do is add the antennae [the earphones] and you’re good to go. No need for Internet access. There are still a lot of people that love a phone that comes with the good old FM Radio.

Geeks and hackers are going to miss something about this phone. Unlike the other popular Android phones that are supported by developers who create custom tweaks and custom ROMs to be flashed unto the phone, a search on XDA-developers for custom ROMS for the Techno Phantom A+ is going to yield very few results.

In the past, you won’t see any results. Things are changing and more people are interested in Tecno phones. I searched and Google returned some results of people who already have tutorials on how to root the phone. Rooting a phone isn’t for the faint of hearts and we are not encouraging anyone to do that here. If you want to give it a trial, feel free. Take responsibility, we won’t be responsible for a damaged phone.

I won’t be too surprised if we get a custom CyanogemMod for a Tecno Android phone in the future.

One downside is that those that got the Phantom A are getting a lower spec than those who have the Phantom A+. Also, there is no upgrade path for the Phantom A—no OTA or any other means of upgrading the Android version has been stipulated.

Music sharing and transferring of media

The phone supports Bluetooth and WiFi means of transferring and sharing files. You also have an 8 GB memory card thrown into the bag for extra music and photos.

Applications

There are a couple of apps that are pre-installed and ready for use. All the Google Apps are pre-installed plus some apps to get users started. Tecno went a step further to pre-install some apps in the microSD card. Feel free to knock yourself out.

This is especially nice as many of the people who are going to find the Tecno phone an interesting phone won’t frequent Application Stores like the Google Play Store. So, they have a collection of apps to get started with.

You’ll like to know if you can make video chat with it. Sure. You can use WhatsApp, Viber and Skype a few other VOiP apps. The Phantom A+ has a front facing camera that makes the video chat possible. The resolution of the front facing camera is 1.2 MP.

In a conversation with a friend, I was informed of a chat application that enables Tecno users to chat with one another. Further investigation proves that the chat service by Tecno isn’t just for Techo phones, but can be downloaded from the Play Store. I downloaded the app for my Samsung GALAXY Note 2 and it is working perfectly on it. The chat service by a Tecno Mobile company is called PalmChat. Have you heard of PalmChat before?

Two ways you can get more applications into the phone; you either go through Google Play Store or the Installing Assistant manager added by Tecno as mentioned above—where the apps are pre-loaded on the 8 GB microSD card installed.

Sound

The sound of the Phantom A+ was compared with the Samsung GALAXY Note 2 I’ve had with me. I found that the sound, though coming from a single speaker placed at the back of the phone, was sufficient when you’re playing song on the phone aloud. You can play your music without using your earphones while doing you laundry.

The screen at 5” is also large enough and perfect to watch movies in transit or while waiting to see the doctor without looking to conspicuous to the people around.

Downsides

I don’t like the fact that I can’t update the OS Over The Air—OTA—and in Tecno’s office. I am hoping that in the future, Tecno is going to make it possible that one can easily get an updated version of Android without having to move from one phone to the other, as it is in the case of the Phantom A and the Phantom A+

Conclusion

The Tecno Phantom A+ is in a class of its own and if you want a pretty decent phone and do not want to spend more than N40, 000, I’ll recommend you go for it. The things you’ll get in the pack certainly feels much more than the price you are paying for—more like a case of too good to be true.

Premium Feel of Tecno Phantom A+

Jesse About Jesse
In pursuit of useless knowledge, spotting patterns & connecting the dots at the intersection. | Gadget Freak

61 Comments

  • U sure u maxed a full day on d battery? I hav one too and the battery discharges too fast and charges soo slowly. I assumed that flaw was y they added d power bank. Hope I set everything on my fone right. Pls reply

    • I reviewed the Phantom A+ here and not the Phantom A. If what you have is the Phantom A+, you should get the same battery performance as I got. Another point to note is, the stability of your network can determine how long the battery lasts.

  • Hello sir, please can you tell me how long it takes to xharge from 0% to battery full? and if browsing can it last atleast 6-7hrs at once…. Thanks sir

  • Apart from upgrading OS, what else is the OTA for? I want to get the phantom A+ but this OTA thing is giving me concern. Could you please expantiate on it and explain the risks I take if I put it aside and go ahead with the phone. I heard somefin about sim updates…?

    • @Tunmise, OTA — Over The Air — is used in this case to update the operating system to a more recent one. Many people hardly ever update their phones and this doesn’t make the phone less of a phone. There’s no risk whatsoever, you just won’t be able to update the operating system but the phone is still going to function well.

  • plz i want to know if this phantom A+ got Us free call app as other android have?

    • @Patrick, you can install free call apps on the phone like Viber, KakaoTalk, Skype and messaging apps like WhatsApp and 2go.

  • To my knowledge OTA is only used for upgrading OS and i dont know what you mean by sim update, maybe you should be specific @ Tunmise

    @Admin dont know why you are not responding though!!!

    @Patrick i dont think it comes with such app but be rest assured you can get/download any of those free call app on Google playstore!

  • Please can I root the phone

    • @tony you can 100% root the phone with no hassle

  • How can I have get one of the phone delieved to me

  • I actually saw this review earlier before deciding to purchase my tecno phone…so far so good, but I can’t shake the feeling that it may not last long

  • Praying to get it, but only waiting whether tecno will release another model that equally has the same function/specifications with Samsung S4.

  • wot do u tink samsung will do dat A+ cant do.

  • is the screen made of corning glass like the other phone,cos the t9′s screen scratches too easily and needs a change

  • Pls answer me now, can Tecno Phantom A+ do pinging lik BB?

    • yet it does

  • phantom phone is superb, when l saw it first time l did not belieeve its efficiency until l used it.

  • Please how do I turn on my notification lights on the phantom a+

  • Hi I got mine a few days ago but I’m having trouble getting its USB drivers, can somebody help me with that?

  • hi, i’ve tried to delete/change my homescreen but i simply can’t find a way to do that. can you help, please?

  • Full day use on a Tecno Phantom? With that battery consumption? Stop it, laugh wan tear my belle here

  • please what is the functional and price different between phantom a+ and phantom pad. and where can i buy one in benin city? urgent pls!

  • […] image via 360nobs […]

  • Hi thanks for your review. It actually helped me to turn off that funny sound while typing. However, i wish to state emphatically that the battery life is SHORT. But its a great phone. Bash

  • Chief.. check nairaland, people have started using S4′s Custom Rom for the Tecno A+.. I wonder the kind of phones Tecno would make by the end of this year.. The sky is their limit..

  • […] new cadre of phones like the LG G2, the Moto X, the Sony Xperia Z1, the Samsung Galaxy S4, and even techo’s Phantom A+ are pretty good looking and toting hardware the iPhones aren’t. Maybe the 5C will allow Apple […]

  • Pls i am in Asia, Philippines precisely and my friend recomended Phantom A+ but i can’t seem to get any outlet or contact to purchase the phone.pls any useful info will be appreciated Thanks!

  • this is beautiful, thank you soooo much, im about to get a Nokia lumia 800 maybe but im really interested in the A+ now, my major issues with phones r just their battery, that’s why im safe with Nokia….I hope it does have that awkward chi… loud noise….lool

  • pls ao can I do screen grab or screen shot on phantom A+ if it can?pls reply.

  • GENERALLY MOST SMARTPHONES BATTERY DON’T LAST A DAY WITH FULL USE.IT DEPENDS ON THE AMOUNT OF mAh FOUND ON THE BATTERY, IF DATA NETWORK IS PUT ON, WIRELESS CONNECTIONS, RUNNING APPLICATIONS, NETWORK TYPE [3G/2G] AND DATA TRANSMISSION DURING BROWSING.

  • Attention Admin I ill like to know if I can load another os like windows on my phantom a+ while booting so I can choose which one to boot.

  • I was experiencing slow responce and I did “Clear Data” on my TECNO D5 as you suggested, and that action has cost me my CONTACTS. Please do you know how I can get back my contacts? I don’t have backup. Please, I need some one to help me. pls ssssss

  • Whenever I get new phone, I always sync with PC. Infact all my real data in on the PC. The phone is just the houseboy. So incase I loose the phone, I still have all my data on the PC…
    Can I sync data to MS Outlook with this Techno A+ phone? I don’t want to start using google services…

  • the phone is superb, I’m using one, the battery is awesome and it max a day use, it is root able and excellent in features. mine has great image in lowlight if u need help on urs u can contact the admin or me on Whatsapp 08064703060

  • Hi I had one sometime ago. The problem I am facing is WIFI FAILS TO TURN ON, BLUETOOTH ALSO IS NOT WORKING WIFI HOTSPOT ISNT WORKING EITHER. I tried to restore default to no avail

  • i have one and am very happpppy

  • I WANT TO BUY TECNO ANDROID BUT I DONT KNOW WHICH TO BUY

  • Hi. I guess you have handled both phones physically. Please:
    .1) Is there a way to physically know if a phone is A+ or A?
    .2) Is there a way to check in the phone software in order to verify if the processor is dual core or quad core?
    Thanks

  • believe me tecno phone is God sent to my country called nigeria

  • You have any app from the android market anything … Just anything

  • Hi, how can I do a screen shot on my phantom mobile phone ( tecno ) ?

  • Pls how can i upgrade my TECNO Phantom A to A+ OS? How can i turn on front light when i receive ping or any chat?

  • Does this techno phantom a+ allow user to download and BBM?, thats all i need to know cause am going to get the phone in four days.

    pls reply me via email: eyo_veek@yahoo.com

  • hope these techno phones are not china phones

  • hello sir, pls the bluetooth, wifi and hotspot on my Phantom A+ are not working. What do i do pls? If i put any of it on it goes off on its own almost immediately. Pls help. Thank u

  • Yes… great phone but recently my WiFi and Bluetooth just stopped working overnight. I can’t turn them on and because of this issues I’ve observed that battery power runs down faster than it should. The phone is barely six mouth old and it shouldn’t be expected to develop such problem at this time. I will be very grateful if anyone has a solution to it because I can’t enjoy using a phone without it’s WiFi and Bluetooth working.

  • […] One wonders how it would be different from the Phantom A or the Phantom A+ […]

  • pls how do I turn on notification light on phantoms+. tried going to setting then to display but I don’t see notification option. tnx

  • pls when am making call the screen of the phone (phantom A+) goes off unless unless unless i insert the ear piece…any help pls

  • That’s normal man, because you are blocking the light sensor so it shuts out the backlight to save battery, am sure it comes back on when you remove from your ear. http://www.powerhq.com.ng

  • pls how much is phantom a+ uk used very clean one

  • My Phantom A+ had a fall and now keeps restarting especially after any idle time. Can somebody help! Navigated the entire phone setting to figure what the issue could be.

  • Can I access Microsoft packages on the Tecno Phantom A+, most especially outlook?

  • plse my techno phantom sim 1 is not working and if I insert two sims,it screen turns blue and sme stuffs cmes on de screen .unless I remove de battery and insert it again b4 de phone comes back 2 normal.and wit DAT dey tell me,no sim1 inserted whiles der is a sim inserted.plse I need help

  • I think this is among the most significant information for me.

    And i’m glad reading your article. But should remark on few general things, The web site style is ideal,
    the articles is really excellent : D. Good job, cheers

  • Please Can phantom A+ use earpiece bluetooth

  • plz i jus wanna know if this phantom has any other extra app appart from the other android phones

  • Very quickly this web page will be famous among all blogging and site-building
    users, due to it’s pleasant posts

  • I highly suprised on how all people are telling there are noise sound when trying to call me while me I am getting them well, The phone is Techno P3

  • How do I remove powering sounder on phantom+

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