Alcatel has taken the wraps off its latest smartphone, and is attempting to offer something completely unique to the younger end of the consumer market. The Alcatel A5 LED is a refreshing change.
Starting with its most notable, and most unique feature, the entire back is covered in an LED light show. It lights up when you receive notifications, and not only that, it lights up a different pattern and colour depending on the application that's sending the alert. For instance, if it's Facebook, you can get a blue background with a white "F" scrolling across the back. For Snapchat, it could be yellow. But you can program it to do what you want.
Using a feature called Colour Catcher will enable you to create your own unique LED cover patterns and themes. Whether you want to design something eye-catching and wacky for when your best friends call, or just have something that matches your outfit, you have the freedom to make something fresh.
As you'd expect, the LED cover isn't just for notifications. You can also use it as a mobile light show when you're listening to music, or just have it as an ambient light when watching movies or videos. This, of course, emphasises the main aim here, which is to have a phone that's both different, and fun.
Taking this customisation further, the Android Marshmallow based software has an app which allows you to choose colours using the camera, and then sets a wallpaper and theme to match. This changes the app icon colours as well as the rest of the phone's user interface.
The launcher also allows you to change how many rows and columns of apps you want on your home screen, how big you want those icons to be as well as a host of the usual Android customisation options.
As for specifications, the screen on the front is a 5.2-inch HD 720p display which is powered by an octacore MediaTek processor and a 2,800mAh battery. This battery should be more than capable of lasting a full day, and for those worrying about the detrimental effects of the LED cover, we're told in average use tests, it only used 3% extra battery over a full day.
The 8-megapixel camera on the back is adequate for snapping pictures to share on social media, and the 5-megapixel selfie cam, likewise, should be suitable for the odd self portrait.
Clearly, specifications aren't going to set the world alight here, but the added LED Cover and its features might just be enough to make the targeted young demographic think it's a cool smartphone. It will be available in May across Europe and is set to cost €199.