The Tecno Camon 18 is the latest series from the Chinese manufacturer to launch in Kenya. At the moment, the Camon 18 series in Kenya comes in two variants, the standard Camon 18 and the Camon 18 Premiere. These devices are available for Ksh 22,000 and Ksh 37,000.
I have been using the Tecno Camon 18 ever since it launched in Kenya and in this post I will be sharing my experiences on it. At its price the Camon 18 is competing with some other good devices from other brands and knowing what it has to offer is important before making your final decision.
Before we get to the full review, let us first look at the key Tecno Camon 18 Specifications.
- Display: 6.8-inch; 1080 x 2460 pixels
- Chipset: MediaTek Helio G88
- RAM: 4GB RAM
- Storage: 128GB
- Rear cameras: 48MP + 2MP + 2MP
- Front camera: 16MP
- Battery: 5,000mAh
Design and Build Quality
I will first start by focusing on the design and the build quality of the Tecno Camon18. The Camon 18 feels well built and worth the money. It does look modern and quite an improvement from previous Camon devices.
The back is made of plastic but does not feel cheap. This back cover has a glossy finish with the triple camera setup housed in a rectangular module at the top left corner. On the right side of the phone we do get the volume buttons and the power button which also has the fingerprint scanner embedded on it.
The dual SIM tool with microSD card slot is on the left of the phone with the USB C port, speaker grille and headphone jack at the bottom.
The weight balance of the phone is quite good and overall the design is good.
The Tecno Camon 18 has a 6.8-inch display with a resolution of 1080 x 2460 pixels. This display is quite good, vibrant with sharp colours. It is also very responsive to touch and I have not had any issues during the review period.
This display has a 90Hz refresh rate for smooth scrolling animations. If you do not want this high refresh rate that can consume more battery, you can lower that to 60Hz through the settings menu. The best option for me has been to set the refresh rate to automatically switch between 60 and 90Hz depending on what I was doing.
The display is big enough for those who like working on the go and can even be excellent for gaming. The refresh rate is not the highest but it still offers a good experience when playing most games. With good colour accuracy and reproduction, you will enjoy using this phone.
This display gets bright enough to use under direct sunlight and its auto brightness option does a good job in adjusting to the ambient light around you.
Performance and Software
The Tecno Camon 18 is powered by the MediaTek Helio G88 processor that has been paired with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage space. The Helio G88 processor is capable of handling most tasks with ease. This is not the powerful Helio G96 processor as that is only available on the more expensive Tecno Camon 18 Premier.
During my review period, I did not experience any performance issues with the Camon 18. The processor seems capable when it comes to simple tasks or even with demanding applications and games. It does a pretty good job as expected for a phone within its price range.
The 4GB of RAM was also enough as multitasking did not present any serious issues. I could easily switch between apps without any problems.
For the software, the Camon 18 comes with Android 11 out of the box with HiOS 8 custom UI. This custom UI is not that different from previous versions as it has some subtle aesthetic changes.
Tecno Camon devices are all about their cameras and the Camon 18 is not different. It does have a triple camera system at the back made up of a 48MP main sensor that takes really good shots. The dynamic range is good but not necessarily the best. Some shots appear washed especially when there is too much light. Even with that said, the shots you get will be good enough for most people.
Night mode on the Camon 18 lets you take shots with enough details even when the lighting is not so good. I was really impressed with this as the shots I got were much better than I expected.
The selfie camera is a 16MP one that also takes good shots during the day. It does struggle a bit at night with the shots appearing a bit grainy.
With a 5,000 battery, the Tecno Camon 18 will easily last you an entire day. Tecno has always done a good job when it comes to battery management and that is exactly what you get with the Camon 18. Most days I could go to be without even charging the phone and on days when I was not actively using my phone that much, I could have close to 50% battery remaining by the end of the day.
The Camon 18 supports 18W fast charging that can speed up the charging process which is key considering the size of the battery.
The Tecno Camon 18 is honestly good value for money. The phone does a good job when it comes to performance. The phone handles all you throw at it and that is what you expect when buying it. Its processor is not the most powerful but it does a very good job. The camera performance is also good and I was especially impressed with the night mode.
Its design and build is also good and very modern. Tecno did take time to build this phone and it clearly shows.
Lastly, the battery is something you will love. It will last an entire day even with heavy usage.