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Alcatel One Touch's Pop C-series line of budget phones hands-on

Brian Heater
09.06.13
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Alcatel One Touch (that's all part of the company's full name, incidentally) clearly intended on making a big splash at this year's IFA. The company announced a number of relatively high-end handsets in Berlin this week, including the flashy Idol Alpha and the massive Idol Hero. But let's face it, not everyone is able to shell out big bucks for handsets. Thankfully, the company also used the show to take the wraps off of four new budget Android 4.2 entries in its C-Series of handsets. The company had three on-hand at tonight's Pepcom event: the C1, C3 and C5. The biggest of the bunch, the five-inch C7 was here in spirit, making an appearance as a dummy unit. Thankfully, the company's got a bit more time to perfect that one, seeing as how the handset isn't due out until some time before the end of the year.

The C5, which is set to start shipping in November, was on-hand in all of its final production glory. All said, it's not a bad looking piece of hardware. Granted, it loses a bit of its luster placed up against the likes of the Alpha and Hero, but again, this is a budget device we're talking about here. The handset's got a 4.5-inch display and a white face that's at least somewhat reminiscent of Galaxy devices, with the usual trio of touch Android buttons on the bottom. The device we handled had a metallic red backing, with a prominent five-megapixel camera up top and a speaker grille along the bottom. Inside is a quad-core 1.3 GHz processor -- a step down from the C7's quad-core version.

Gallery: Alcatel One Touch's Pop C-series line of budget phones hands-on | 11 Photos

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Alcatel One Touch's Pop Cseries line of budget phones handson

The four-inch C3 actually sports the same speed processor as its 4.5-inch sibling. The camera, on the other hand, has been knocked down to 3.2-megapixels. All in all, however, it's not a bad feeling phone. The rear of the handset is a bit on the plasticky side, but it still has a fairly nice weight to it. The same, sadly, can't be said for the C1. It really does feel like a cheapy handset, a fact helped along by the HVGA display and the 1GHz processor inside.

Alcatel One Touch is calling these "starter" handsets for those who need training wheels before entering the wild world of smartphones. In the case of the C1, however, it could be a potentially frustrating place to start. The C1 and C3 are due out next month.

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