This year’s Consumer Electronics Show isn’t being held physically in Vegas, but the days before, during, and after the show always have new products for us to look forward to. Before the show, we’ve seen smartphone makers like Motorola dump new products onto the market, while others like Xiaomi launched rebranded versions of their existing products in Europe and India.
To accommodate the new users looking for a place to chat about any of these new devices, we’ve opened up forums for all the phones that have launched over the past week or two, which includes 2 from TCL, 3 from Xiaomi, 4 from Motorola’s 2021 Moto G line, 1 from Samsung, and 1 from Lenovo. As a bonus, we’ve also opened up forums for an upcoming phone from OPPO, which is set to launch in India about a week from now. Let’s dive in.
TCL 20 5G and 20 SE
TCL has been making smartphones under established brands like Alcatel and BlackBerry for a few years now, but they’re looking for their own brand to become a household name in a few years’ time. Their first go-around resulted in the TCL Plex, but the company really knocked it out of the park with the TCL 10 series. At CES 2021, TCL unveiled the first 2 smartphones in the new TCL 20 series: the TCL 20 5G and the TCL 20 SE.
The TCL 20 5G is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 690, 6GB of RAM, and a 4500mAh battery. It has a 6.67″ Full HD+ LCD with a hole-punch cutout, a triple rear camera, and a single front-facing camera. It’s a solid mid-range phone running Android 1o, though TCL is only promising to deliver one major update.
The TCL 20 SE is a much more budget-friendly smartphone. Powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 460, 4GB of RAM, and a 5000mAh battery, the 20 SE only costs €149 — half the price of the TCL 20 5G. Surprisingly, this budget phone ships with Android 11 out-of-the-box, unlike its mid-range cousin.
Xiaomi Mi 10i and Redmi Note 9T (also Redmi 9T)
It seems like Xiaomi unveils a new smartphone every week, but that’s only because many of the smartphones they launch aren’t really that new. In fact, a lot of the phones Xiaomi launches are simply rebranded versions of phones they already launched in other markets, often with a few changes here and there like adding an extra camera or NFC. This month, Xiaomi launched 1 phone in India and 2 phones in Europe that fit this description.
The Mi 10i launched in India with essentially the same specs as the Mi 10T Lite/Redmi Note 9 Pro 5G but with a 108MP main camera instead of a 64MP one. Because of this slight difference in hardware, we’ve opened up dedicated forums for the device.
Because Xiaomi already offers a Redmi Note 9 series in Europe, the company decided not to keep the branding when they brought over the new Redmi Note 9 series they recently launched in China. In Europe, the two phones are called the Redmi 9T and the Redmi Note 9T, so we’ve opened up forums under these names. Since the Indian Redmi 9 Power is identical to the European Redmi 9T, we’ve also merged the two forums together. Yeah, we know it’s a bit confusing.
2021 Moto G Phones: Moto G Play, Moto G Power, Moto G Stylus (also Motorola One 5G Ace)
Motorola is another smartphone brand that has a bit of a confusing lineup, but fortunately, its most recent announcements are rather straightforward. Last week, the company unveiled its first 2021 Moto G phones, which include the Moto G Play (2021), Moto G Power (2021), and the Moto G Stylus (2021). These phones are launching first in the U.S. and they’ll be joined by the Motorola One 5G Ace, a rebranded version of the Moto G 5G.
In Motorola’s 2021 Moto G lineup, the Moto G Play (2021) is the cheapest option. It’s powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 460, 3GB of RAM, and a 5000mAh battery and features a 6.5″ HD+ LCD, a modest triple camera setup, and 10W charging. The Moto G Power (2021) is in the middle of Motorola’s 2021 Moto G line, and it features Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 662, a 5000mAh battery, a 6.55″ HD+ panel, a triple camera setup, and 15W charging. Lastly, the 2021 Moto G Stylus is the most premium of the three, with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 678, a 6.8″ Full HD+ display, and a built-in stylus.
While not technically part of the 2021 Moto G line, the Motorola One 5G Ace carries the same hardware as the late-2020 Moto G 5G. It’s one of the cheapest 5G phones you can buy in the U.S., though we’re not sure why it’s called the “One 5G Ace” which sort of implies it has advantages over the Motorola One 5G (which itself is a rebranded version of the Moto G 5G “Plus”).
OPPO Reno 5 Pro 5G
Next week, OPPO will launch the Reno 5 Pro 5G in India. Powered by the MediaTek Dimensity 1000+, the Reno 5 Pro 5G will be the first MediaTek-powered flagship to launch outside of China. While the device isn’t OPPO’s true flagship phone for 2021 (that would be the upcoming Find X3 series), the Reno 5 Pro 5G can be considered a budget flagship phone.
Samsung Galaxy M02s and Lenovo Tab P11
Budget phones may not get much love, but they’re popular for a reason. Samsung’s Galaxy M02s features impressive hardware for its price of 8999 INR, which converts to roughly $123. But in order to make this low price point possible, a lot of compromises had to be made, which includes dealing with ads in the software. Fortunately, there are ways to get rid of these ads, which is one reason why people still turn to the XDA forums when it comes to budget phones.
Affordable tablets are another product category that doesn’t get much love, but it’s not because they’re simply underappreciated. It’s hard for Android tablets to compete with the iPad at the top and the Amazon Fire at the bottom, but a couple of OEMs have carved out a niche in between. Lenovo’s Tab P11 is one such example of a tablet that caters to those who need a bit more out of their tablet than an Amazon Fire can offer but who don’t want to shell out hundreds more for an iPad.
We’re two days away from one of the biggest smartphone launches for XDA: the Galaxy S21 series. Samsung’s flagships are really expensive, though, which is why millions flock to cheaper alternatives. The recent devices from TCL, Xiaomi, and Motorola offer a lot of bang for your buck, while the upcoming Reno 5 Pro 5G will hopefully give you a premium experience without breaking the bank. Samsung’s Galaxy M02s should serve the need of those on a super tight budget, while the Lenovo Tab P11 will act as a mid-range alternative to the iPad.