Tecno has been known to deliver cheap devices for most of their offerings for a while now, usually cheaper than the competition but at the expense of hardware. That is still true in their camera-centric Camon series, where the newest offering in this series is the Tecno Camon 12 Pro, which has been available since September 2019. In addition to Phantom 9, this Pro line is probably the other only one to use an AMOLED screen which is a significant development. The aesthetics are great but hardware optimization is still not their strongest forte. Here is a breakdown.
Design and display of Tecno Camon 12 Pro
The Tecno Camon 12 Pro comes with a 6.35 inch AMOLED display with an Infinity U teardrop notch design to accommodate the front-facing camera, helping it achieve a screen to body ratio of 81.3%. The screen is not the best out there but it is still better than an LCD display, especially when in use outdoors. The build is a plastic polycarbonate, both frame, and back, with a shimmering design that gives off-color hues that make the phone aesthetically pleasing without unnecessarily looking cheap. It has a triple camera module and the back, and interesting enough, makes use of the on-screen fingerprint scanner, much unlike most of the phones in the Tecno lineup. It has the 3.5mm jack thankfully but we still keep the microUSB connector.
Performance and storage
The chip on board the Tecno Camon 12 Pro is still the MTK6762 Helio P22 processor, much like its non-Pro version. It has an octa-core 2.0 GHz CPU in addition to a PowerVR GE8320 still, which is solid in entry-level performance. We don’t expect any awards won by this processor but it has been used enough times in other variants to be considered reliable and optimal in power use. The phone is augmented by generous memory onboard, 6GB for RAM, and 64GB for internal mass storage, in addition to a dedicated microSDXC slot that houses the expandable storage card. This is by and large sufficient at this performance range so multitasking and light graphics are absolutely nothing to worry about.
Just like the other Camon devices before it, the Tecno Camon 12 Pro’s camera is where it stands out, relative to other devices within this particular price range. It has a triple camera set up, starting with a 16mp primary wide camera, an 8mp ultrawide, and a 2mp depth sensor. The camera is capable at optimal lighting conditions but will often struggle in low light. The camera is advertised as an AI camera but it is still not very optimized, often not photographing better than humans. The rest of the modes come out decent at best, but then at this entry-level segment, that is just enough. It can shoot video at 1080p in 30fps. The selfie camera boasts of a bigger sensor, 32mp wide lens, which happens to have front-facing flash too. The pictures are usable but a little overexposed. This camera can also shoot video in 1080p at 30fps.
Unlike its non-Pro brother, the Tecno Camon 12 Pro comes with a smaller 3500 mah non-removable Li-Po battery, which is a stepdown from the 4000 mah. It will still last the whole day but the brighter screen is a little power hungry so it might need that charge by the end of the day. Since we get microUSB connection instead of USB-C, we don’t get any kind of fast charging. We are left with standard charging which takes about 3 hours. It is a compromise but it would have been great to have some fast charging for once.
The Tecno Camon 12 Pro comes with Android 9 Pie-based HIOS 5.5 with a possible upgrade to Android 10. The software is disappointingly full of bloatware, ranging from preinstalled apps to a system-wide service that seems to pop randomly everywhere, irrespective of the app in use. This becomes increasingly annoying as time goes by, but they were gracious enough to add a toggle here one can turn it off. In my opinion, the ads are totally unnecessary and an unusual irritant when compared to other custom UIs from other OEMs. Other than that, the UI is satisfactory in terms of speed and responsiveness though it might still take some getting used to.
Overall, the Tecno Camon 12 Pro is one of the better offerings from Tecno, with a better screen, an under-display fingerprint scanner, and a decent camera.at its price point, this is not a bad consideration, with the only drawback being its software that is riddled with massive bloatware. Of course, for a repeat user, it might be easier to navigate through it but it might be unsettling for a new user.
Tecno Camon 12 Pro Specifications
|2G||GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 - SIM 1 & SIM 2|
|3G||HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1700(AWS) / 1900 / 2100|
|4G||LTE band 1(2100), 2(1900), 3(1800), 4(1700/2100), 5(850), 7(2600), 8(900), 20(800), 28(700)|
|Dimensions||158.6mm x 75.5mm x 7.8mm|
|SIM||Dual SIM (Nano-SIM)|
|Size||6.35 inches (81.3% screen-to-body ratio)|
|Type||AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, with 16M colors|
|Resolution||720 x 1600 pixels, 20:9 ratio, (276PPI)|
|Operating System||Android 9.0 (Pie); HIOS 5.5|
|Chipset||Mediatek MT6762 Helio P22 (12nm)|
|Processor||Octa-core 2.0 GHz Cortex-A53|
|Micro SD Slot||Yes, up to 256GB - dedicated slot|
|Back||Triple: 16MP, PDAF + 8MP + 2MP, depth sensor|
|Features||Quad-LED flash, panorama, HDR, 1080p@30fps|
|Front||Single: 32MP, f/2.0|
|Features||LED flash, HDR, 1080p@30fps|
|Alert types||Vibration, ringtones|
|WLAN||Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band,WiFi Direct, hotspot|
|GPS||Yes, with A-GPS|
|Fingerprint||Yes, (under-display, optical)|