TCL 20 Series: Here’s everything you need to know about TCL’s 2021 lineup!
After a well-received TCL 10 series, the company showed off its TCL 20 series at CES 2021 and it’s now available to buy in the US as well as the EU. The new lineup consists of multiple smartphones, targeting different price segments. TCL is focusing on its strengths and taking on the mid-range and budget segments, as the premium space is dominated by the likes of Apple and Samsung. There are six phones in the TCL 20 series — TCL 20 Pro 5G, TCL 20 5G, TCL 20L, TCL 20L+, TCL 20S, and TCL 20 SE launched across various regions. Here’s everything you need to know about the lineup.
Navigate this guide:
- Display & Design
- SoC, RAM, Storage
- Android Version and Updates
- Best Cases and Accessories
- Pricing and Availability
TCL 20 Series: Specifications
|Specifications||TCL 20 Pro 5G||TCL 20 5G||TCL 20L||TCL 20L+||TCL 20S||TCL 20 SE|
|Dimensions and Weight|
|RAM and Storage|
|Connectivity|| || || |
Display & Design
TCL has opted for the same display size and resolution for all phones in the 20 series, except TCL 20 SE. TCL 20 Pro 5G, 20 5G, 20L, 20L+, and 20S come with a 6.67-inch screen with full-HD+ (1080 x 2400 pixels) resolution and a hole-punch design. The TCL 20 SE includes a 6.82 inch LCD screen with HD+ (720 x 1640 pixels) resolution and a waterdrop-style notch.
In other display specifications, the TCL 20 Pro 5G uses an AMOLED panel with HDR10 support, whereas the other phones have an LCD screen with HDR10 support. The top brightness levels of the 20 series phones are also different — while the 20 Pro 5G tops out at 700 nits, the 20L and 20L+ have a peak brightness of 500 nits. The other three phones come with a typical brightness of 450 nits.
While the presence of the vertical camera module in all TCL 20 series phones gives the lineup some sort of design uniformity, there are quite a few design differences in these phones to stand them apart from each other.
TCL 20 Pro 5G has a fusion of matte and glossy finishes with a glass sandwich design to offer a premium look. The TCL 20 5G, on the other hand, ditches the back glass but keeps the matte and glossy finish.
The TCL 20L+ and 20S come with a back design that’s embedded with prismatic crystals and reflects the light to offer a gleam. Whereas, the TCL 20L and 20 SE have a nano-patterned back that shimmers. Overall, there are enough design elements in all six TCL 20 series phones to make them look interesting.
On the imaging front, the TCL 20 series phones are slightly different from each other. The TCL 20 Pro 5G comes with a quad rear camera setup that’s headlined by a 48MP snapper with optical image stabilization. The other three cameras include a 16MP ultra-wide shooter, a 5MP macro camera, and a 2MP depth sensor. The main camera is capable of taking 4K videos at 30fps. The TCL 20 Pro 5G also includes a 32MP selfie shooter that can capture 4K 30fps videos.
The TCL 20 5G, on the other hand, packs a triple rear camera setup that includes a 48MP super wide-angle main camera, an 8MP depth sensor, and a 2MP macro shooter. The main shooter on the 20 5G can also take 4K 30 fps videos. For the selfie needs, there’s an 8MP camera on the front that can only capture 1080p 30fps videos.
In other phones, the TCL 20L and 20L+ include quad-camera setups. While the main shooter on the 20L is a 48MP camera, the 20L+ packs a 64MP snapper. Among the other three cameras, you’ll get an 8MP wide-angle shooter, a 2MP macro camera, and a 2MP depth sensor on both phones. The two phones are also limited to 1080p videos. Moreover, there is a 16MP selfie camera on board with support for 1080p 30 fps videos.
The cameras on the 20S are the same as the TCL 20L+ but the 20S main shooter can capture up to 4K 30fps videos. The rest of the setup is exactly the same, including the selfie camera.
Lastly, the TCL 20 SE comes with two different camera setups, depending on the region. In select markets, including the US, you’ll get a quad-camera setup headlined by a 48MP snapper, whereas the other regions will get a quad camera setup with a 16MP main shooter. The rest of the camera setup is the same everywhere and includes a 5MP super wide-angle shooter, a 2MP macro camera, and a 2MP depth sensor. The selfie camera is also going to be different, based on the region. The US and select regions will get a 13MP shooter, whereas an 8MP snapper will be included at other places.
TCL 20 Series: SoC, RAM, and Storage
Coming to the processor, RAM, and storage in the new TCL phones, the 20 Pro 5G, which is the flagship of this series, houses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 750G SoC, paired with 6GB of RAM and 256GB of onboard storage. The phone also includes a microSD card slot that supports up to 1TB cards.
The TCL 20 5G, on the other hand, comes with Snapdragon 690 SoC, coupled with 6GB of RAM and 128GB onboard storage (256GB in select regions). There’s a microSD card slot in this phone as well that supports up to 256GB cards.
Both TCL 20L and 20L+ pack Snapdragon 662 SoC and a microSD card slot with support for 1TB cards. While the 20L will be sold with 4GB RAM in select markets, other countries will get 6GB of RAM. The onboard storage will remain the same at 128GB in all regions. Whereas, the TCL 20L+ will get 6GB RAM and 256GB of internal storage everywhere.
Coming to the TCL 20S, it features Qualcomm Snapdragon 665, paired with 4GB of RAM and 128GB built-in storage. You also get a microSD card slot with support for 1TB cards on the 20S.
The TCL 20 SE is stuck with the least powerful processor in the series – Snapdragon 460 – coupled with 4GB of RAM and a microSD card slot (up to 256GB). The built-in storage will either be 64GB or 128GB in the phone, depending on the region.
TCL has added 4,500mAh batteries in 20 Pro 5G and 20 5G with support for up to 18W fast charging. The company is also going to include an 18W fast charger in the box for both phones, depending on the region.
The TCL 20L, 20L+, and 20S come with a 5,000mAh battery, which also supports up to 18W fast charging. Surprisingly, the TCL 20 SE supports 18W fast charging in some markets, and not in the others (including US).
Same as the TCL 20 Pro 5G and 20 5G, the other TCL 20 series phones will also get an 18W fast charger in the box, depending on the region.
Connectivity and Fingerprint Sensor
As their names suggest, both TCL 20 Pro 5G and 20 5G include support for 5G connectivity. The other phones in the lineup however only come with 4G support. The TCL 20 series also includes a USB Type-C port, NFC, and dual-SIM support (depending on the region). Dual-SIM models will come with hybrid slots, meaning you can either use two SIM cards or one SIM and one microSD card.
Among other connectivity options, the TCL 20 Pro 5G and 20 5G feature Wi-Fi 802.11ac and Bluetooth 5.1, whereas TCL 20L, 20L+, and 20S include Wi-Fi 802.11ac and Bluetooth 5.0. The Vivo 20 SE, on the other hand, comes with Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n and Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity.
A fingerprint sensor is present in all 20 series phones; however, its placement is different. While the 20 Pro 5G gets an in-display fingerprint sensor, the 20 5G, 20L, 20L+, and 20S have a side-mounted fingerprint sensor. The 20 SE is the only phone in the lineup with a rear fingerprint sensor.
Android and Software Updates
All TCL 20 series phones, except the 20 5G, run Android 11 out of the box. The 20 5G comes with Android 10, but will receive the Android 11 update. TCL is also promising two major Android updates for 20 Pro 5G, and the phone is already getting the Android 12 beta. The 20S is also set to get the Android 12 update, but the update situation is not clear for 20L, 20L+, and 20 SE.
In terms of security updates, TCL will push security updates for the 20 Pro 5G and 20S until April 2024, whereas 20L and 20L+ will get the security updates till April 2023. Android security updates will continue till November 2023 for TCL 20 5G; however, the 20 SE security updates will end in January 2023.
Note that previous TCL phones could not be bootloader unlocked. So if you care about modding your smartphone and changing out ROMs frequently, TCL is a brand that you skip.
Third-party Cases and Accessories
If you’ve picked up one of the phones from the TCL 20 series and are looking for some nice accessories to go along with the phone, we have compilations of the best cases, screen protectors, and even chargers that you can buy for all the phones.
Common for the entire TCL 20 series i.e. TCL 20 Pro 5G, TCL 20 5G, TCL 20L, TCL 20L+, TCL 20S, and TCL 20 SE –
TCL 20 Series: Pricing and Availability
TCL has been slowly rolling out the various 20 series phones across the world. Select European markets, like the UK, Italy, and Portugal have already got a number of the 20 series phones. The company has also launched the TCL 20 Pro 5G, the 20S, and 20 SE in the US. Select APAC and LATAM markets will also be getting the phones in the coming months.
Here’s what we know about the starting pricing and color options of the new TCL phones in Europe and the US:
|1.||TCL 20 Pro 5G||Moondust Gray||€549||$500|
|2.||TCL 20 5G||Placid Blue, Mist Gray||€299||–|
|3.||TCL 20L||Eclipse Black, Luna Blue||€229||–|
|4.||TCL 20L+||Milky Way Gray, North Star Blue||€269||–|
|5.||TCL 20S||Milky Way Gray||–||$250|
|6.||TCL 20 SE||Aurora Green, Nuit Black||€149||$190|
This is everything about the new TCL 20 series. We’ll update this page as and when any new information pops up for the TCL phones.