TCL 40 XE 5G Review: Budget Bliss, Unleashed

Unleash your frugal side with the TCL 40 XE 5G: Budget-friendly brilliance in your hands!

Martin Guay
Martin Guay - Chief Editor
12 Min Read
4.1 Unleash the power of affordability with the TCL 40 XE 5G – the budget-friendly smartphone that redefines value for money.
Review Overview
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The TCL 40 XE 5G at a Glance

Welcome to the world of the TCL 40 XE 5G (TCL T609J), a budget-friendly smartphone that packs a punch! With its 6.6-inch HD+ display and 90Hz refresh rate, this device offers a smooth and immersive visual experience. Powered by the MediaTek Dimensity 700 5G processor, it ensures reliable performance for your everyday needs. Let's dive deeper into what makes the TCL 40 XE 5G a standout choice for budget-conscious consumers.

Price and Availability

The TCL 40 XE 5G comes with an attractive price tag, making it a steal at $169.99 in the US and CAD$320 in Canada. Starting from June 2023, this smartphone will be available exclusively in North America. So, get ready to grab this incredible device that delivers premium features without the hefty price.

Device Specifications

To give you a comprehensive overview, here are the detailed specifications of the TCL 40 XE 5G:

  • Design: Size – 164.46 x 75.4 x 8.99mm, Weight – 195g, Color – Starlight Black/Noir étoilé
  • Memory: ROM/RAM – 128GB/4GB, SD Support – Up to 1TB
  • Chipset: Processor – MediaTek Dimensity 700, MT6833, Speed & Type – Octa-core: 2 x 2.2GHz, 6 x 2.0GHz
  • Network: UMTS – B1, 2, 4, 5, LTE – B1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 12, 13, 17, 20, 25, 26, 29, 38, 41, 66, 71, 5G – n38, n25, n2, n5, n7, n66, n71, n78, n41
  • Display: Size – 6.56″ HD+ LCD, Resolution – 720X1612, Refresh Rate – 90Hz, Touch Sampling Rate – 180Hz
  • Rear Camera: Megapixels – 13MP + 2MP (Macro) + 2MP (Depth), Aperture – f/2.0 + f/2.4 + f/2.4, Video – 1080p@30fps
  • Front Camera: Megapixels – 8MP, Aperture – f/2.2, Video – 1080p@30fps
  • Battery: Capacity – 5,000mAh, Charging – 18W Fast Charging (9V2A)
  • OS: Android 13
  • Audio: 3.5mm Headphone Jack – Yes
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi – 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth – 5.1, NFC – No, USB – Type-C

TCL 40 XE 5G review - Lifestyle 01

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Design and Display

When it comes to design, the TCL 40 XE 5G (TCL T609J) doesn't disappoint. With its sleek and eye-catching aesthetics, it exudes a premium look that belies its budget-friendly nature. The device measures 164.46 x 75.4 x 8.99mm and weighs 195g, providing a comfortable and ergonomic grip. The Starlight Black/Noir étoilé colour options add a touch of elegance.

Featuring a 6.56-inch HD+ LCD display with a resolution of 720X1612, the TCL 40 XE 5G offers vibrant colours and sharp visuals. While it would have been great to have a Full HD+ display, the 90Hz refresh rate ensures smooth scrolling and enhances the overall user experience. Prepare to be immersed in your favourite content, whether it's browsing the web, watching videos, or gaming.

TCL 40 XE 5G - Display

Performance and Software

Under the hood, the TCL 40 XE 5G houses the MediaTek Dimensity 700 processor, known for its power efficiency and reliable performance. While it excels in handling day-to-day tasks and light gaming, it may struggle with graphically demanding games in higher settings. However, for casual use and moderate gaming, it provides a smooth and lag-free experience.

The TCL 40 XE 5G (TCL T609J) runs on Android 13, offering a near-stock user interface with TCL's suite of pre-installed productivity and security apps. Although you won't receive Android 14 updates, TCL promises two years of security patches to keep your device protected. Enjoy a clean and intuitive interface that allows you to navigate effortlessly and make the most of your smartphone experience.

Camera Capabilities

Capture moments with clarity and vibrancy using the TCL 40 XE 5G's camera system. The device boasts a 13MP primary shooter that delivers vibrant and colour-rich photos, especially in well-lit conditions. While some colours may appear slightly saturated, the overall quality of the images impresses, especially considering the budget-friendly price point.

Additionally, the TCL 40 XE 5G (TCL T609J) features a 2MP depth sensor, which helps in focusing on subjects with precision. However, the macro capabilities of the 2MP sensor may not yield the best results in low light or indoor settings. If you're looking to snap detailed close-ups, you might find limitations with the macro functionality.

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When it comes to video recording, the TCL 40 XE 5G supports 1080p recording at 30fps for both front and rear cameras. While the quality is decent for a budget smartphone, it may lack some stability. So, brace yourself for shaky footage if you're capturing action-packed moments.

Battery Life and Charging

One of the standout features of the TCL 40 XE 5G (TCL T609J) is its impressive battery life. With its 5,000mAh battery capacity, this smartphone can easily last two days with light use, including social media browsing, music streaming, and web surfing. Even with heavier usage, such as extended video playback or gaming sessions, you can expect a day and a half of usage, providing you with the freedom to go longer without worrying about recharging.

To keep up with your fast-paced lifestyle, the TCL 40 XE 5G supports 18W wired fast charging. With the included 9V2A wall charger, you can quickly charge your device from zero to full in approximately an hour and forty-five minutes. Say goodbye to long charging times and hello to convenience.

Alternatives to Consider

While the TCL 40 XE 5G offers exceptional value, it's always good to explore alternatives before making a purchase decision. Here are a few smartphones you may want to consider:

Samsung Galaxy A14 5G: A close rival to the TCL 40 XE 5G, offering similar features and pricing.

TCL 40 X 5G (TCL T609J): An older model but still a viable option, providing a balance between performance and affordability.

OnePlus Nord N300: A budget-friendly device from OnePlus, known for its clean user interface and strong performance.

Motorola Moto G Play: Another budget-friendly smartphone that delivers a reliable and feature-rich experience.

Take your time to compare these alternatives and determine which one aligns best with your needs and preferences.

What I Liked and My General Feel

I am genuinely impressed by the TCL 40 XE 5G smartphone. It strikes a remarkable balance between affordability and functionality, offering a budget-friendly option without compromising on key features. The phone's sleek design and premium look caught my attention right away, making it appear more expensive than its actual price tag.

During my testing period, I found the TCL 40 XE 5G to be a reliable companion for everyday use. The 6.6-inch HD+ display with a 90Hz refresh rate provides smooth scrolling and enjoyable multimedia consumption. While I would have preferred a higher resolution for a crisper viewing experience, the screen still managed to deliver satisfactory visuals.

Powered by the MediaTek Dimensity 700 5G processor, the TCL 40 XE (TCL T609J) performed admirably for everyday tasks and light gaming. It handled casual usage with ease and efficiently managed power consumption, ensuring the battery lasted for extended periods. Although graphically demanding games showed some limitations, the phone remained capable of most gaming needs.

One aspect that pleasantly surprised me was the camera performance. With a 13MP primary shooter, the TCL 40 XE captured vibrant and colour-rich photos in well-lit conditions, surpassing my expectations for a budget smartphone. The additional 2MP depth sensor added clarity to focused subjects, although the macro capabilities were somewhat limited. The video recording quality was decent but could be slightly shaky at times.

Battery life was undoubtedly a standout feature of the TCL 40 XE 5G. It easily lasted me through two days of light usage, including social media browsing, music streaming, and web browsing. Even with more intensive tasks like extended video watching or gaming, the battery managed to hold up well, providing around a day and a half of use. The inclusion of 18W fast charging support was appreciated, allowing the phone to quickly recharge when needed.

While there were a few downsides, such as the poor update policy and average speakers, I believe the TCL 40 XE 5G (TCL T609J) offers tremendous value for its price. It may not have all the bells and whistles of higher-end smartphones, but for those seeking a reliable device that meets everyday needs without breaking the bank, this phone is a strong contender.

TCL 40 XE 5G - Device Picture 02TCL 40 XE 5G - Device Picture 03
TCL 40 XE 5G Device Picture 04TCL 40 XE 5G - Device Picture 01

Final thoughts

The TCL 40 XE 5G is a remarkable smartphone that offers excellent value for money. With its sleek design, immersive display, reliable performance, and impressive battery life, it caters to the needs of budget-conscious consumers who desire both functionality and style. While there are a few limitations in terms of camera capabilities and gaming performance, the overall package makes the TCL 40 XE 5G a standout choice in the affordable smartphone market. So, go ahead and embrace the TCL 40 XE 5G (TCL T609J) experience without breaking the bank!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) (TCL T609J)

  • Q1: Does the TCL 40 XE 5G support expandable storage?
    • A1: Yes, the TCL 40 XE 5G supports expandable storage of up to 1TB via a microSD card.
  • Q2: Does the TCL 40 XE 5G have a headphone jack?
    • A2: Yes, the TCL 40 XE 5G comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack for easy audio connectivity.
  • Q3: Can I play graphically demanding games on the TCL 40 XE 5G?
    • A3: While the TCL 40 XE 5G can handle casual gaming and lighter titles well, it may struggle with graphically demanding games at higher settings.
  • Q4: Is the TCL 40 XE 5G compatible with 5G networks?
    • A4: Yes, the TCL 40 XE 5G supports 5G connectivity, allowing you to enjoy faster download and browsing speeds in supported areas.

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Review Overview
Unleash the power of affordability with the TCL 40 XE 5G – the budget-friendly smartphone that redefines value for money. 4.1
Design and Build Quality 4.5 out of 5
Display 3.5 out of 5
Performance 4 out of 5
Camera 3.5 out of 5
Battery Life 5 out of 5
Connectivity and Network Performance 4 out of 5
Audio Quality 3.5 out of 5
Value for Money 5 out of 5
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By Martin Guay Chief Editor
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I write, talk about technology, gadgets, the latest Android news as much as any other fellow geek, nerd, or enthusiast does. I work in the IT field as a System Administrator, and I enjoy gaming when possible. I'm into plenty of things, and you can usually find me around Ottawa, Canada!For all business inquiry email business-inquiry [@] cryovex [dot] com.
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