Not everyone is willing to pay $600 for a new Android smartphone. Thankfully, there are budget-friendly alternatives to the otherwise high-priced handsets like the Samsung Galaxy and Google Pixel. Android Go is a line of entry-level Android smartphones that sell for less than $100. Up until now, though, they’ve only been released in emerging markets like India. As reported by Ars Technica, that has since changed as the first Android Go smartphone was recently launched in the United States.
Available for $79.99, the ZTE Tempo Go is an inexpensive Android Go handset that’s perfect for casual users. It features a quad-core Snapdragon 210 processor chip, 8GB of storage space, 1GB of RAM, a 5-megapixel primary camera, a 2-megapixel secondary camera, a non-removable 2,200mAh battery and an 854×480 touchscreen display.
Some consumers may turn their head at the thought of using an Android handset with only 8GB of storage space. However, the Tempo Go features a microSD slot for additional storage space. Once you’ve filled the handset with 8GB of data, you can add a microSD card to increase its capacity. Considering there are 512GB microSD cards now available, storage space shouldn’t be a problem for most users. The Tempo Go also features a LTE connectivity, Wi-Fi, a 3.5mm headphone jack and support for GSM and CDMA wireless carrier bands.
Like all Android Go handsets, the Tempo Go runs a special slimmed-down version of Google’s Android Oreo. Known as Android Go, it was designed specifically for handsets with 1GB or less of RAM. Android Go looks like Google’s standard Android Oreo mobile operating system. However, it’s been optimized to reduce data usage by enabling the system’s Data Saver mode automatically. It also uses a special version of Google’s app suite to reduce resource consumption. Furthermore, the Play Store highlights apps that work well with Android Go devices.
Although it’s currently the only Android Go smartphone offered in the United States, others are expected to launch in the near future. Manufacturer TCL, for instance, says it will launch the Alcatel 1X handset in the United States later this year. Assuming it attracts buyers, we’ll probably see more Android Go phones launched stateside in the months to follow.