Tech

Review: Alcatel PLUS 12 – An inexpensive 2-in-1 solution

The Alcatel PLUS 12 is one of the cheapest Windows 10, 2-in-1 laptops on the market and is being offered by Vodafone both outright and bundled with 4G data packages.

The market for 2-in-1’s has exploded in the last few years and here at EFTM we’ve been keeping our eyes on products such as the HP Spectre x360 and the Acer Spin 5, but these are rather costly, so to switch things up we thought we’d take a look at the lower-end of the market.

SUMMARY

You can pick up a PLUS 12 outright for $558, which is a pretty fair price for the type of computer you’re getting.

The good

  • Very cheap at $558.
  • Rather lightweight.
  • Keyboard is included in the box.

The bad

  • The processor is noticeably impacting performance.
  • Limited usable storage (10GB) will inevitably cause problems for most.
  • Case doesn’t make for a strong ‘stand’.

The verdict

The Alcatel PLUS 12 is an affordable, low-tier 2-in-1 that will handle the basics well. While it certainly won’t suit photo or video editing, video gaming, etc – if you’re looking for school or office functionality, give a thought to this device.

FULL REVIEW

Technically speaking, the PLUS 12 is nothing flash, it’s fit out with an Intel Celeron at 1.1GHz, 4GB of DDR3 RAM, 32GB storage (of which 10GB is usable) and has a 11.6” full HD screen. The two biggest things to note here are the processor and storage. Out of the box at 1.1GHz, the performance of the PLUS 12 is noticeably weak. This laptop was only designed for basic cloud-based school and office work, it really shouldn’t be pushed further than that.

Storage space is really only a potential problem as while some among us have mastered the art of cloud-computing, many others still require a decent amount of physical space. Whether that’s because they have limited internet access/data usages or simply enjoy filling their desktop up like a lunatic, you may need to utilize microSD card expansion to properly function with the PLUS 12.

The laptop/tablet mode switch is seamless the same as any other Windows 10 2-in-1 and both modes are equally as functional. The PLUS 12 comes with both keyboard and stylus in the box, but I’ve never found the stylus useful in the vast majority of daily functions – especially in the case of these lower-tier devices as they simply weren’t designed for much more than reading, researching and writing.

One comment I received about the keyboard while at a cafe was how cheap and light it looked – and they weren’t wrong as far as it almost feeling fake – but I’d argue that in the case of 2-in-1 laptops, where you’re often tucking your keyboard up into the case, the lighter the better! There was next to no difference when carrying around the ‘tablet’ version of the device with the ‘laptop’ version (keyboard & case).

Daily use saw the PLUS 12 rather effective. The vast majority of my laptop use is writing/researching at a local cafe – which is almost exclusively what this device was designed to do. It’s light and easy to travel with, however I did have some trouble with the case not properly supporting the laptop as far as a ‘stand’. I wouldn’t recommend it for anyone that spends all day on their laptop, but it makes for a good, cheap, casual device.

One thing I have to note though is a glitch I experienced after installing Google Chrome – all of my active tabs were being constantly refreshed (presumably because of the severely limited storage space), which caused excessive data consumption.

If you’re so inclined to pick up the Alcatel PLUS 12, Vodafone are the exclusive retailer in Australia and sell it both outright for $558, or inside data packages as follows;

Studying Cyber Security and working for Macquarie Media Limited, John is a huge nerd with a passion for video games and computers.

You will often find him in the streets advocating for the benefits of gaming or just generally nerding out.

Feel free to email with any questions or comments: [email protected]

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