TCL 10L vs. Moto G Fast: Which should you buy?

TCL 10L display
TCL 10L display (Image credit: Hayato Huseman / Android Central)

TCL 10L

TCL 10L

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The TCL 10L manages to offer an impressive loadout of specs and features, given its low price. This is first evident with its display, which is a 6.53-inch Full HD+ one with bright and vibrant colors. Other key specs include 6GB of RAM and 64GB of expandable storage, along with things like a customizable Smart Key and NFC for Google Pay support.

TCL 10L

Better features

Higher-quality 1080p display
More RAM and storage
Customizable "Smart Key"
Has NFC for Google Pay
Great software experience
Weak cameras
Not compatible with Sprint

Moto G Fast

Moto G Fast

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Shoppers that want to spend even less should consider what the Moto G Fast has to offer. The display resolution is only 720p, RAM and storage are decreased, and there's no NFC, but you do benefit from a lower price. The G Fast also comes with better cameras, excellent battery life, and exclusive software features like Moto Display and Moto Actions.

Moto G Fast

Keep costs low

Motorola's custom Android software
Fingerprint sensor is great
Solid battery life
Works with all U.S. carriers
Lower price
Display is only 720p
Not enough RAM/storage
No NFC

Overall, we think the TCL 10L is the better purchase of the two phones. For just a bit more money, it delivers a much sharper display, better performance, more storage, and contactless Google Pay support thanks to its inclusion of NFC. The Moto G Fast makes quite a few compromises to hit its lower price, but depending on your budget and needs, it may be worth the savings. The Moto G Fast is also the only choice if you're a Sprint customer, seeing as how the TCL 10L isn't compatible with CDMA networks.

Why the TCL 10L is worth the extra money

TCL is most well-known in the United States for its budget TVs, but over the years, it's existed in the Android space through its Alcatel and BlackBerry sub-brands. The TCL 10L is one of the very first self-branded phones the company has ever released, and it's an excellent first attempt.

Right off the bat, one of the 10L's greatest strengths is its display. On offer here is a 6.53-inch LCD panel with a 2340 x 1080 Full HD+ resolution. That comes with slim bezels, a hole-punch cutout for the selfie camera, and TCL's NXTVISION display tech that delivers more vibrant and accurate colors than competing screens.

Around back, you'll find a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor that supports a variety of helpful gestures, in addition to the TCL 10L's four cameras. Getting so many sensors in a phone this cheap is a great value proposition, but actual image quality leaves a lot to the imagination. Images are often bland, and varying exposure levels can be a challenge, making this a mediocre camera setup at best.

Thankfully, poor camera performance is about one of the only areas where the TCL 10L really stumbles. Its Snapdragon 665 processor and 6GB of RAM is more than enough horsepower for this price; you get 64GB of expandable storage, a 4,000 mAh battery, and a clean build of Android 10. TCL also throws in NFC for Google Pay support, along with a "Smart Key" — a customizable button that you can use to perform a variety of different actions.

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Header Cell - Column 0 TCL 10LMoto G Fast
Operating SystemAndroid 10
TCL UI
Android 10
My UX
Display6.53-inch
LCD
2340 x 1080
6.4-inch
LCD
1560 x 720
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 655Qualcomm Snapdragon 665
Memory6GB RAM3GB RAM
Storage64GB32GB
Expandable StorageUp to 256GBUp to 512GB
Rear Camera 148MP primary camera
f/1.8
16MP primary camera
f/1.7
Rear Camera 28MP ultra-wide camera
f/2.2
8MP ultra-wide camera
f/2.2
Rear Camera 32MP macro camera
f/2.4
2MP macro camera
f/2.2
Rear Camera 42MP depth camera
f/2.4
Front Camera16MP
f/2.2
8MP
f/2.0
SecurityRear fingerprint sensorRear fingerprint sensor
NFC✔️
Water ResistanceWater-repellent coating
Battery4,000 mAh4,000 mAh
Carrier CompatibilityAT&T
T-Mobile
Verizon
AT&T
Sprint
T-Mobile
Verizon
Dimensions162.2 x 75.6 x 8.4mm161.87 x 75.7 x 9.05mm
Weight180g189.4g

The Moto G Fast is a decent low-cost alternative

Moto G Fast

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

The Moto G Fast is one of the many budget Android phones Motorola created for its 2020 lineup, with its main appeal being its low price. However, you don't cost as little as the G Fast does without making a few notable cutbacks.

Where the TCL 10L's display is one of its greatest strengths, this is an area where the Moto G Fast falls flat. The 6.4-inch size and bezel-lite design are both great, but being limited to a 1560 x 720 HD+ resolution is anything but. The display is serviceable and gets the job done, but it's much softer than the TCL 10L and just doesn't look nearly as good. You get half the RAM and storage compared to the 10L, with the G Fast giving users 3GB and 32GB, respectively. There's also no NFC, meaning you won't be making Google Pay payments anytime soon.

Those are quite the compromises to put up with, but it's not all doom and gloom for the Moto G Fast. The phone has the same Snapdragon 665 processor, a rear fingerprint sensor, and a surprisingly good trio of rear cameras. You're also treated to a water-repellent coating and support for all U.S. carriers, giving it a unique edge over the TCL 10L in these regards.

It all comes down to your budget

If your budget allows you to afford the TCL 10L, it's the phone we'd recommend getting. Its cameras may not be the best out there, but you're benefitting from a superior display, performance, storage, and extra features. For the price difference between it and the Moto G Fast, it's well worth the added cash.

That said, the Moto G Fast is a fine phone if you just can't afford the TCL 10L. Everyone's budget is different. Should yours happen to be a bit stricter, the Moto G Fast delivers all of the Android basics in a well-built package that keeps costs to a minimum.

Joe Maring was a Senior Editor for Android Central between 2017 and 2021. You can reach him on Twitter at @JoeMaring1.