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Cricket Icon Smartphone Review: A 5.5-Inch Affordable Phone

Find out in this Cricket Icon Smartphone review how this device can be your on the go communication device. Discover the complete features here.

Cricket Icon Review

Cricket Icon Smartphone was released in 2019. It’s the first product coming from the Icon brand by Cricket Wireless. We’re curious how this phone will fare among its competitors, hence this Cricket Icon Smartphone review.

On the first impression, we could see the 5.5-inch display this phone offers. The phone has a textured back casing with the Cricket logo on it.

Further, we discover that a quad-core Mediatek processor is on its CPU. The RAM is 1GB, and you’ll get a 5MP rear camera. The phone runs on Android 9 Go.

Offered to the public at a low price, let’s find out if the phone is worth it. Our initial verdict showed this device could be a choice for a buyer on a budget.

Key Specs

Cricket Icon Smartphone specifications:

  • Weight: 172g
  • Dimensions: 150 x 73 x 9.9mm
  • OS: Android 9 Go
  • Screen size: 5.5-inch
  • Resolution: 960 x 480
  • CPU: 1.5GHz, Quad-core MediaTek MT6739
  • RAM: 1GB
  • Storage: 16GB
  • Battery: 2,500mAh, Removable
  • Rear camera: 5MP
  • Front camera: 2MP

Design

Cricket Icon Image

Cricket Icon Smartphone has a dimension of 150 x 73 x 9.9mm. It is a phone of average size and has an average weight too at 172g. This phone uses poly-carbonate plastic as its body material.

The back cover’s design features a rough texture that can increase friction when holding the phone. Therefore, the phone doesn’t feel slippery and provides a good grip. Some would argue that it doesn’t look sleek, though.

The front design consists of the rectangle display, enclosed by bezels. The framing is thick but also rounded in its four corners. Another point for Cricket Icon to make its design ergonomic. Additionally, buttons are neatly arranged on one side of the phone.

However, it’s worth noting how the entire design would seem plain to most people. Without new “modern” elements like a notch or bezel-less display, you wouldn’t call this phone up-to-date. But this is an affordable phone. So, users might not plan to make a statement with it. It’s not a phone for show.

Read also: Cricket Icon Smartphone User Manual

Display

Cricket Icon Display

Cricket Icon Smartphone comes with a 5.5-inch display with quite a low resolution. At 960 x 480 in pixel size, the display offers low density at 195 ppi. The phone’s display type is an LCD one.

The low resolution translates into less sharp images and icons. In some cases, you can spot it immediately by examining the corners of an icon. If you find it pixelated, that’s because the display is not sharp enough.

It affects pictures as well. We felt photos look less lively although the color output is accurate. Perhaps, it’s the lack of vibrancy the display has.

At least, the good thing about the display is the Dragontail glass protection. It protects the display from light damages, therefore increasing the lifespan of the screen.

Another good thing lies in the display size itself. At 5.5-Inch, we found it perfect for a phone in a budget category. It’s not too big to slide into your jeans’ pocket too.

Camera

Cricket Icon Camera

The back camera on cricket Icon employs a 5MP lens with an LED flash. Meanwhile, it’s only 2GB on the front-facing camera. In our opinion, this camera choice by the manufacturer is kind of below average.

Cricket Icon Smartphone could do better, especially about the front camera. The lens produces poor quality selfies, especially if it was taken under low light conditions. Videos are slightly better because the camera can produce an HD output.

The back camera, at 5MP, delivers better images and 1080p videos. Users can utilize all the camera features like Beauty Modes and filters to enhance quality. Results are decent enough to display on your Facebook, though you shouldn’t be jealous when a friend with a better phone camera posts a more beautiful-looking photo.

If a buyer insists on a good camera, you will need to reconsider. With Cricket Icon’s camera, there’s only so much you can achieve.

Read also: Cricket Icon 2 Review: Very Cheap Basic Smartphone

Storage

For file storage, this phone assigns 16GB of internal memory for buyers to use. Depending on how someone would use the phone, it can be either enough or inadequate capacity. Especially when what’s left for users is around 11GB.

This storage will soon run out, hence the memory card slot is for. Allowing up to 64GB SD card, it can offer plenty of space for story pictures, downloads, and more. Keep in mind that it doesn’t mean you can install more apps. For that purpose, internal storage is all that you can utilize.

Performance

Cricket Icon’s CPU consists of a 1.5GHz Mediatek processor and 1.5GB RAM. An entry-level combo for an affordable phone, we think the specs justify the price. However, you need to prepare with some performance setbacks.

Overall, the performance is decent on day-to-day tasks. The phone handles casual app surfing and communication activities well. However, the longer you use the phone, you may expect a lower execution speed. For example, when you launch a new app while so many apps open in the background, the phone becomes slower.

Gaming is another activity you need to keep on the down-low with Cricket Icon. The integrated GPU on this phone is only for basic image-related tasks. It is certainly not for 3D games.

Cricket Icon installed Android 9 Go as its operating system. The Go version is kind of special. You can see it as a watered-down version of Android. The developer designed it to cater to low-performance devices. Their trick is by removing unnecessary features the phone doesn’t need.

The Go version helps increase the phone’s performance. Cricket Icon doesn’t take long to boot or restart. It also automatically recommends lite apps when you browse apps on Google Play Store. Meanwhile, pre-installed apps are already on their lite version.

The Android Go makes the most of the 1.5GB RAM this phone has. It is designed to thrive in a low specs environment. Optimization is one of Go’s strengths. We could see it when we compare Cricket Icon with other low-range phones with the regular Android.

We also liked how the Android looks. It’s minimalist and easy to navigate. For people who are new to Android, you can get familiar with the OS quickly. Drawing the Apps screen only needs a single swipe up. You can see shortcuts of the most common apps on the Home screen. Later, you can customize them if you want.

Further, this phone has the latest rating on Hearing Aid Compatibility (M4/T4.) With Android Go, the phone doesn’t exclude Google Assistant too. Hence, for ease-of-use, our Cricket Icon review is nothing but positive.

Connectivity

Cricket Icon is a smartphone capable of 4G LTE. Users can take advantage of this fast network ability to have good quality phone calls and the internet. Specifically for calling, Cricket Icon is also equipped with the HD Voice feature.

Surfing the web using this phone is also relatively fast. Not counting the occasional performance lag, websites launch quickly enough. Using the mobile hotspot feature, you can use this phone as a portable Wi-Fi router.

In another scenario, users are also welcomed to use Wi-Fi instead. Switch from 4G and enjoy faster internet. Often it’s more economical as well. If you have a Bluetooth earbud laying around, you can also use that with this phone.

Cricket Icon still uses the old type of USB and MicroUSB. It’s not something that surprised us due to the low price tag of this phone. 

Battery

The 2,500mAh on Cricket Icon is only two-thirds of what other budget phones offer. In short, there’s not a lot of juice the phone uses to get through the day. This low battery capacity is due to the phone’s specs that are already minimal. The logic is, the phone won’t need a lot of power.

But bigger is always better. You can only squeeze the battery performance for one day max. The phone is not as long-lasting as we hoped. The good news is the removable battery. Therefore, you can carry a spare when you need refueling and when charging is not possible.

Is the Cricket Icon Smartphone a good phone?

Cricket Icon Smartphone is undoubtedly a decent phone for those with a limited budget. For $9.99, you can snag this piece from the Cricket Wireless store. Customers will get everything they need in an Android smartphone, from the 4G LTE support to a beautiful-looking OS.

The downside comes in many forms. As we mentioned in our Cricket Icon Smartphone review above, we aren’t excited about the camera. Furthermore, the battery has a low capacity. Although this phone has a sizable display, the quality is not satisfactory.

Those are the things to keep in mind before purchasing. If you are a demanding customer, we suggest looking for other models. However, if you only need to get a decent smartphone at the cheapest price possible, Cricket Icon is the one to consider.

Cricket Icon Smartphone Pros

  • Large display
  • Android Go
  • Complete connectivity features
  • Cheap price

Cricket Icon Smartphone Cons

  • Poor camera
  • Average performance
  • Small battery