Home GADGETS This new Cricket phone will ‘outlast’ your existing handset at a fraction...

This new Cricket phone will ‘outlast’ your existing handset at a fraction of the price

Are you proud of that new mid-range phone you purchased ahead of the holidays and the amazing deal you made during Amazon’s recently concluded Prime Day sale? Prepare to doubt yourself (at the very least) upon seeing what Cricket Wireless is selling for the low, low price of $109.99.

The AT&T-owned prepaid wireless service provider and budget phone master appears to have released with little to no fanfare a device called Cricket Outlast at some point in the last few days. Although we can’t know for sure what company is behind the actual manufacturing of this ultra-affordable bad boy, which makes it hard to vouch for its reliability, long-term durability, and software support, that spec sheet is essentially impossible to rival right now in the sub-$150 US market segment.

Everything is pretty standard… apart from the battery size

The jumbo-sized 6.8-inch Outlast comes with a decidedly modest screen resolution of 1640 x 720 pixels, an unspecified but respectable-sounding 2.2 GHz octa-core processor, a decent 4GB RAM count, no less than three rear-facing cameras (one of which rocks a 50 megapixel count), a surprisingly poor 2MP selfie shooter, pre-loaded Android 13 software goodies, and last but certainly not least, a 6,000mAh battery.

Yes, ladies and gents, this super-low-profile Cricket-branded mid-ranger packs a larger battery than… any other handset available stateside at the time of this writing. That includes all of the best Android phones from the likes of Samsung, OnePlus, and Motorola (yes, even the ultra-high-end ones that cost $1,000 or more), although in other countries around the world, you can find a few mid-end models with the exact same cell capacity, like the Samsung Galaxy M34 and Moto G54 Power Edition.
As far as real-world battery life is concerned, it’s definitely a little odd that Cricket is not making any bombastic two-day or three-day advertising claims, but while we’d normally find something like that to be grossly exaggerated, this is by no means a “normal” phone, and even with its unexpectedly smooth 90Hz screen, its endurance between (fast 18W) charges should be a total knockout.

The other new Cricket phone doesn’t look great on paper

We obviously can’t say the same thing about the Cricket Debut S2, which is another low-cost Android phone that seems to have recently debuted (pun intended) with absolutely no ballyhoo… and a terribly modest 3,000mAh battery under its hood.

This device is naturally even cheaper than the Cricket Outlast, at $79.99 for both new and existing Cricket Wireless customers, but it’s difficult to recommend it as a wise purchase in this day and age with a notched 6.1-inch HD+ display also in tow, as well as a MediaTek MT6761 chipset, single 8MP rear-facing shooter, single 5MP front-facing camera, 64GB internal storage, 10W charging capabilities, and Android 13 software (with presumably zero chances of ever seeing a major OS promotion).

Surprisingly or not (given what year we are in but also how incredibly cheap these smartphones are without a contract, obligatory monthly installment plan, device trade-in, or number port-in), both the Cricket Outlast and Cricket Debut S2 come without 5G support, and if history is any indication, their availability will never expand to AT&T’s postpaid subscribers, let alone other major (or minor) US carriers.

Also based on the history of budget-friendly models like the Cricket Ovation 3, Innovate E 5G, and Magic 5G, these two new apparent bargains should become even more accessible to the masses in the near future, possibly going down to $0 with eligible number port-ins from rival operators. Whether or not it’s smart to wait for those inevitable deals is ultimately up to you…

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