Alcatel OneTouch Idol 3 pre-order price jumps tomorrow

idol 3
Back at the beginning of March, I met up with the Alcatel OneTouch team while I was covering MWC for PhoneDog. And its latest phone could be one of the best value-for-money devices on the market today. The pre-orders were meant to go live tomorrow, but the company decided to surprise us with an early pre-order and price-drop. If you pre-order before tomorrow, April 21st, you’ll pay just $199.99 for a device which promises to be pretty great. You can grab it on Amazon (with Prime) or direct from Alcatel OneTouch’s site.

Alcatel OneTouch – of course – has partnered with T-Mobile a number of times in the past. Most recently, the company’s budget tablets were being given away for free. This time however, the manufacturer is selling its devices unlocked and SIM-free. What’s more, this new device is compatible with all of T-Mobile’s LTE bands: 2, 4 and 12.

Other specs include:

  • 5.5-inch 1080×1920 display (443ppi)
  • 64 bit Octa-core Snapdragon 615 chip – 1.5GHz quad + 1GHz quad
  • 13MP rear camera
  • 8MP front camera
  • Android 5.0 Lollipop
  • Dual front-facing speakers with JBL audio
  • 16GB storage – expandable to 128GB
  • 2GB RAM
  • 2,910mAh battery (13hrs talktime on 3G)
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n

As well as that, it possesses a neat feature that means it’s never upside down. When turned on its head, the screen content turns around too. But more than that, there are earpieces and microphones both above and below the display so that you’re never holding the device the wrong way.

After today, the price jumps to $249.99 – which is still great value for money – but why wait when you can save $50? The device will ship some time in May. I’ve also been sent one to check out, so I’ll be sure to share my PhoneDog unboxing video with you as soon as it’s ready either later today or tomorrow. In the mean time, you can check out my hands-on video from March:

Sources: Amazon, Alacatel OneTouch

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  • besweeet

    Weird how the product page on Alcatel’s website has “reviews” already.

    • Cam Bunton

      Haha. Isn’t that always the case. I have one on my desk right now, so, it’s feasible they’re early testers? *shrugs*

      • besweeet

        That must be it.

        http://i.imgur (.) com/QWP1GkS.png

        • Cam Bunton


      • Fritz

        Would you have any way of knowing if Alcatel plans to update this phone to 5.1? I just pre-ordered one figured try it while it costs less, if not just send it back. The only thing that worries me are the pre 5.1 OS glitches and how durable the screen is to falls.

        • Cam Bunton

          I don’t know for sure about 5.1, but the software is virtually stock, so it won’t be hard for Alcatel OneTouch to push updates.

  • brybry

    Definitely preordering one of these. If it sucks back it goes to amazon.

    is the overheating issue on the snapdragon 615 credible?

    • Cam Bunton

      I’ve not experienced much overheating with the 615. I’ve used the Desire 820 that uses the same chip, and it gets warm. But not “hot”.

    • GinaDee

      All Android smartphones get pretty warm / borderline hot.

      Both my S6 and S6 edge gets pretty toasty to the touch when uploading pics to OneDrive or updating apps in general. It’s one of the first things I’ve noticed when I powered them up for the first time.

      • eAbyss

        ALL smart phones do that. It’s the nature of battery powered, ultra portable devices.

  • Colton Mandell

    Just pre-ordered mine! I’m greatly looking forward to your review Cam. Looking at the specs alone, I know this will be a good phone. What I am most curious about is battery life, please be sure to touch on that in your review :)

    • Cam Bunton

      Of course. Battery life is always observed..

      • Colton Mandell

        Yeah, yourself as well as most of the Phonedog team covers battery life. Surprisingly a lot of reviewers leave that out, which to me is of prime importance. a 2910 MAH battery should suffice for above average battery life I would guess, but it’s hard to know for sure because few devices thus far use the 615 chip.

    • MKashi

      Doesn’t the Snapdragon 615 suffer from heat issues?

      • Colton Mandell

        I haven’t heard anything regarding heat issues for the 615. The 810 is the processor with reports of overheating. Also, this phone is made entirely of plastic, an insulator as opposed to metal which is a conductor. Thus, I wouldn’t expect it to get too hot. Only time will tell once I put the phone through its paces, but for $200 this is a no-brainer if you are in the market for a new phone. With the specs in this thing, it should run as well as current flagships for all but the biggest power users who need 30 apps running at once, while playing the latest and greatest game.

  • dtam

    how’s the physical feel of this Cam? I had an Alcatel One Touch Evolve and it had sharp edges

    • Cam Bunton

      Not sharp at all. It’s really nice and slim. It’s a bit plasticcy, but not overly so.

  • Bob Carver

    What is the display made of? I see no mention on any sites as to if it’s Gorilla Glass or not. That’s holding me back.

    • Colton Mandell

      It’s made of plastic wrap. They had to cut corners somewhere…

      • Joe

        I heard that plastic wrap 10.0 which is the one that they are using is pretty tough stuff it can withstand light scratches from fingernails. Not bad stuff.

    • Colton Mandell

      This is actually a good question. I tried to look for an answer and I couldn’t find anything. I can’t imagine a company making a flagship without incorporating a scratch resistant screen of either gorilla glass or dragontrail. Worst case scenario, I’ll put on a tempered glass screen protector.

    • brybry

      previous models used gorilla glass 2 or dragontrail so hopefuly it’s one or the other.

  • David Tyler

    Will hotspot work on this phone?

    • That’s a pretty standard feature nowadays, even on really cheap phones, so it’s probably safe to assume so…

      • David Tyler

        Yeah, I just saw it specifications . I just ordered one.

  • Fabian Cortez

    Conan referenced this phone once and it is indeed a lot of phone for the money.

  • Fabian Cortez

    VoLTE and [maybe] Wi-Fi calling (come on Google)?

    • Jason

      I didn’t see anything mentioned in the video or specs about tmobile wifi calling being built in. The phone looks mostly stock android so I’m guessing no wifi calling, kind of sucks I can only buy phones with wifi calling no coverage in my home without it.

      • Fabian Cortez

        If Google truly wants to step up their game, they need to bake Wi-Fi calling into Android as soon as possible.

        • eAbyss

          WiFi calling will be baked in by mid year.

    • eAbyss

      VoLTE will probably come if they ever update to 5.1+ and WiFi calling is being baked in to Lollipop by mid year so they’ll probably receive it then if they update to the needed version if they haven’t come up with a work around by that time. T-Mobile has pledged to only sell WiFi calling capable phones (still waiting on the Nexus 6 though) from now on so I’d expect it to support it not too long after launch if not at launch.

      • Legeresbitch

        What are you basing your assumption about volte from? Source?

  • Nate Netzky

    I know you mention that it supports all of Tmobile LTE bands, however what about their HSPA+ network? Does its support AWS on HSPA+?

    • Fabian Cortez


  • janis7376

    fg fga fga ag adfg

  • Daniel Holt

    I thought there were 4 LTE bands

    • Trevnerdio

      700 MHz, 1900 MHz, and 1700/2100 MHz. Band 4 is two frequencies :)

  • lovis

    Compatible in France if i pre order now on ? (with free mobile operator)

  • RefarmAllchan51andPCSnowPlease

    Does anyone else notice that 443 ppi and 5.5-inch 1080×1920 do not match?
    (unless the “i” in “ppi” does not stand for “inch”)

    • Bubba Chen

      Yeah, that’s 400 ppi. And if you’re talking about the 4.7″ 720p version, that one calculates at 312 ppi. Someone is failing at math.

      • eAbyss

        It’s listed the same on the Alcatel website so I think he just got the specs from there without checking their accuracy. Easy mistake.

  • Ordeith

    Is this line going to be released as Nokia phones in the future?

  • Trevnerdio

    Wow, this is incredible. I can’t wait to see how it reviews in the mass market. I almost want to buy one right now to supplement my Note Edge/potentially replace it in the future.

    • Why wait for someone else to tell you about it? Just get it.

      • Trevnerdio

        Cuz money.

        • Fabian Cortez

          Amazon only charges you when it ships. That’ll be on May 21.

          Oh well, you waited too long since it’s now up to $249.99.

  • brybry

    Ended up Preordering 1 on amazon. Worked out even better since I had a $80 gc waiting to be used

  • steveb944

    Dang, I kinda want this as a back up device.

    • Fabian Cortez

      Amazon only charges you when it ships.

      It starts shipping on May 21.

  • Archon

    Ok… I dropped my Nexus 5 and now its held together with duct tape :-( So, Amazon here I come… I guess I can wait a few more weeks for this :-)

  • eAbyss

    There’s some issues with the specs posted here and on the Alcatel website.

    “5.5-inch 1080×1920 display (443ppi)”

    A FHD 5.5″ screen would be ~401ppi. 443ppi would be roughly 4.97″.

    “16GB storage – expandable to 128GB”

    It’s expandable to 144GB. 16GB internal + 128GB SD card = 144GB

  • John

    Does the Camera have IOS? and what’s the difference between 615 and 810 aren’t they both 64bit?

  • All I heard was that the 4.7″ Idol 3 has a 2000 MAh battery and i just shut off the Video….JUST LIKE THAT! WHAT A WASTE OF MY TIME!
    My lil LG L90 has a nice 2640 MAh battery and has worse specs than this…LMAO

    • Fabian Cortez

      All I heard was that the 4.7″ Idol 3 has a 2000 MAh battery and i just shut off the Video….JUST LIKE THAT! WHAT A WASTE OF MY TIME!
      My lil LG L90 has a nice 2640 MAh battery and has worse specs than this…LMAO

      $199 is for the 5.5″ version with the larger battery, etc….

      • You know some of us have 2 lines. This of course would be in no way for my MAIN line. THAT line has a #GalaxyNote4 on it! Current, 2nd line has an #HTCOneM8 …Some people are not interested in having a 2nd 5.5″+ device.

        Some of use use that 2nd line for music, etc.

        • Fabian Cortez

          You know some of us have 2 lines. This of course would be in no way for my MAIN line. THAT line has a #GalaxyNote4 on it! Current, 2nd line has an #HTCOneM8 …Some people are not interested in having a 2nd 5.5″+ device.

          Some of use use that 2nd line for music, etc.

          What does any of that have to do with the fact that this borderline 5.5″ 8 core super phone was only $199 unlocked?

  • landmarkcm

    Interesting Alcatel finally stepping up there game it looks like! Since most of their other devices are crap.

  • Got mine just in time, should be a nice phone to compare with some of my other high end devices that cost 3 to 4 times more. I bet this phone is gonna do just as well, or even better because the snapdragon 615 is a GREAT processor. This should be good. If you didn’t get it, oh boy…you missed a good one.

    • Karly Johnston

      You obviously never owned an Alcatel phone b4. You should have spent that on a Zenfone 2.

      • brybry

        Zenfone 2 review has been average at best. Average photos, average battery life ~ rather give this a shot. Spec wise no reason why this should be trash unless they totally spammed out the android os.

        • Colton Mandell

          Agreed. I’ll take a Snapdragon 615 over an intel Atom. I think Snapdragon outdid themselves with this midrange SOC. It has 8 cores, is fast, and isn’t plagued by the overheating issues of the 810. And I don’t need 4gbs of ram, I don’t think anyone does.

      • Colton Mandell

        I really don’t care which manufacturer makes what phone. If the internals (CPU, GPU, and RAM) are all up to snuff the phone will be just fine. You’re just paying for the name if you don’t look at the specs. Also, this is a phone that Alcatel has invested a lot into, and they plan on it being a huge success. That said, this isn’t your bargain basement Alcatel phone, they are actually trying with this one, so I would bet the fit and finish will be nice to go along with the very capable spec sheet.

      • John

        Zenfone doesn’t have all the T-Mobile bands,that’s the reason why I purchase this Alcatel.

        • Karly Johnston

          Even the Taiwan SKU has 1700 and 700, much less the upcoming US Zenfone.

        • John

          Show me the link that Zenfone 2 have 1700,700 band for T-Mobile US. I’ve search gsmarena and YouTube, it doesn’t have it. I really want HUAWEI P8 but that doesn’t support T-Mobile new 700 band

        • Karly Johnston

          how lazy are you?

      • I have. I’m not like most of the people online, I make my own decisions. I don’t really care what someone else says about a device, I buy it and find out for myself. You should too.

        • Karly Johnston

          Thousand of negative reviews with few positive don’t lie, especially on such a small brand.

        • Again, you didn’t buy it so you don’t know. If you live like that, you are not living. Simple. Follower, or leader? Which one?

        • Karly Johnston

          Again, you don’t posses this phone so your opinion has no value until you do.

        • I’ve ordered it though. Did you? I purchase nearly every phone that hits the market, so talk to me in a month. lol, and I will show you how ‘valid’ my comments are.

  • Karly Johnston

    Cam obviously didn’t do his research as this phone doesn’t have 1700 or 700mhz.

  • JD
  • lora9832


  • 818SFV

    so whats the catch?

  • Louis

    Does anyone know if this will have WiFi calling?