TCL 20 R 5G Phone Review 90Hz Display With MediaTek Dimensity 700 Chip

The TCL 20 R 5G phone puts emphais on "brand new" through and through. A brand new handset powered by a brand new 7nm SoC (system on a chip) - the MediaTek Dimensity 700 (MT6833) -  launched a few months ago and supports dual mode 5G - same as the TCL 10 5G.

The Mediatek Dimensity 700 (MT6833) SoC is the same midrange 7nm SoC used in the Samsung Galaxy A22 5G smartphone. The Mediatek Dimensity 700 chip integrates a 5G modem, as well as a heterogeneous multicore processor with two ARM Cortex-A76 cores (2.2 GHz max speed) and six Cortex-A55 cores (2 GHz max speed) that deliver good all-around performance for streaming movies, browsing the Internet and gaming, including 90Hz games such as Pokemon Go, Grimvalor and Gear.Club. 

 You can also play 120Hz games but the games will still run at 90Hz. When you're done gaming, it's worth switching down to 60Hz or automatic mode to preserve battery. You can do this via the phone's settings. The TCL 20 R 5G also supports game mode to make the game experience better by optimizing the phone (e.g. clean up background apps, maximize network usage, disable gestures, etc)

The TCL 20 R 5G phone runs on Android 11, using TCL's custom UI (user interface) skin. Most newer Android phone manufacturers use their own non-stock Android UI version (e.g. Samsung One UI, Xiaomi MIUI, Oppo colorOS, etc). Performance-wise, custom UIs are comparable to stock Android, although one major advantage of stock Android is the bloat-free interface.

A non-removable 4500mAh battery is built-in and supports 10W (5V/2A) fast charging via USB-C charging connection, taking 3.5 hours to fully charge. Wireless charging is not supported. There is 4GB of memory and 64GB of internal storage, although 17GB is already used out of the box. That said, this particular phone (T767H model) supports dual sim/memory card expansion so, you can use a TF card (up to 1TB) to expand the internal storage. The sim card tray supports two 4FF Nano sims or one 4FF Nano sim with a TF memory card.

Features included in the TCL 20 R 5G are dark mode, eye comfort mode, NXTVistion, notification wake screen, remote locking the phone when lost, fingerprint unlock and face unlock (face ID), which is slower and not as secure as fingerprint unlocking. Most phones with face unlock tend to be laggy, particularly when ambient light is dark and/or there is bright sunlight behind you. A single flash/led torch is also built-in

The TCL 20 R 5G is equipped with a 6.52-inch V-notch display that supports 720p HD+ (720x1600) resolution, 20:9 aspect ratio (same as Samsung's Galaxy S21+) and 90% screen-to-body-ratio (same as OnePlus 9 Pro). 

Because of the 90% screen-to-body-ratio, the screen pops out more than the body, due to the more compact body, which is easier to hold in the hand.The TCL 20 R 5G also features Edge Touch, which is built-in to the phone and works just like Samsung's Edge Touch mobile app. Edge Touch is designed mainly for phones with curved edged screens to prevent accidental touches when holding the phone. The TCL 20 R 5G has a flat 2.5D front glass screen (not curved) but it has thin bezels so, you can still take advantage of this feature.

The TCL 20 R 5G front selfie camera has 8MP resolution and supports portrait mode (does not support portrait mode video). The rear triple camera setup include a 13MP (main shooter), 2MP macro (video macro not supported) and 2MP (depth sensor). The cameras use 4P and 3P lenses respectively. The higher the better (e.g. 8P lens is better). The rear cameras are housed vertically inside a bump that protrudes about 3-4mm out; hence the phone does not sit flat against a surface.

The main 13MP shooting camera shoots in 4:3 aspect ratio. You can also shoot in 16:9 aspecxt ratio, although it only supports 9MP. When shooting video, the maximum video quality is 1080p in 16:9 at 30fps (60fps is not supported). The main camera shooter performs well but produces slightly over saturated images and, it does not support EIS (electronic) or OIS (optical) image stabilization, which is a bit surprising. This makes the camera not suitable for recording on the move. The TCL 20 Pro 5G has a much better camera with OIS and EIS for recording smooth video, as well as night mode. 

The TCL 20 R 5G features multiple connectivity options, including acreen casting, NFC and Bluetooth 5.2, which supports AAC and absolute bluetooth volume. AptX is not supported. Wifi 4 (802.11a/b/n) and Wifi 5 (802.11ac) for fast Interner are also supported, as well as Wifi Direct, which is handy for controlling Wifi Direct enabled devices (e.g. printer) without Internet connection. Despite the dual vents at the bottom of the phone, there is only one single speaker but it produces good sound. The TCL 20 R 5G frame is made of textured PMMA plastic (frame), while the back plate is made of PC plastic.

The TCL 20 R 5G handset will be first available through EE network carrier on 29th October on a £21 pay monthly contract with 4GB limited data. No upfront fees to pay. If you want to buy the phone outright, you can do so on 1st November. The phone wil retail at £179.99 and you can buy it from TCL. If 5G is not a feature that interests you, check out the TCL10L (lite) version. Accessories include sim card tray tool, USB-C charging cable,10W USB wall adapter (UK plug). A protective case is not included.  

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