Alcatel Launches The 6-Inch Hero 2+ With Cyanogen OS

Hero 2

Alcatel is one of the latest smartphone companies to launch a touchscreen mobile device in North America, with the latest Hero 2+, a six inch phablet that comes with Cyanogen OS 11 pre-installed.

"We promised big things for ALCATEL ONETOUCH in North America for 2015, and with our partnership with Cyanogen and the launch of the HERO 2+, we're delivering on our promise," said Steve Cistulli, Senior Vice President of North America for Alcatel One Touch. "We will continue to invest in strategic partnerships -- like we have with Cyanogen -- which not only helps build our brand here in North America, but also helps us challenge expectations when it comes to the devices we bring to market here."

The Hero 2+ comes with a 2 GHz octa-core Cortex A7 CPU from Mediatek; it has a six inch 1080p display, a built-in stylus, a 13MP rear camera, a 5MP front-camera for selfies, 2 GB of RAM, 16 GB of storage with support for 32 GB more via microSD cards, and LTE connectivity.

Hero 2

The device runs Cyanogen OS 11, which unfortunately is still based on the older Android KitKat 4.4.4 version. However, it comes with some extra features, such as a more advanced camera app with many filters and a theming engine which gives users many options to personalize their phones.

It also has SMS-based end-to-end encryption (Whisperpush), compatible with other Cyanogen phones and with the TextSecure/Signal app on other Android devices and iPhones. The Cyanogen OS has a Privacy Guard feature as well, which can block unwanted app permissions either by default or by asking the user before the permissions are enabled within the app, post-installation.

Alcatel isn't a too popular brand in smartphones right now, so it makes sense for the company to partner with an OS vendor such as Cyanogen, which can also handle the development of the OS completely for its devices. This should help Alcatel cut costs with OS development and also take away the burden of having to build a competitive customized OS for the market.

The Hero 2+ device will arrive in the U.S. and Canada in Q2 2015, unlocked and selling for $300 on Alcatel's web store.

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Lucian Armasu
Lucian Armasu is a Contributing Writer for Tom's Hardware US. He covers software news and the issues surrounding privacy and security.
  • dstarr3
    Well, considering the S6 looks like it's going to be rubbish this time around, this might be a good alternative phone to pick up.
  • ammaross
    Well, considering the S6 looks like it's going to be rubbish this time around, this might be a good alternative phone to pick up.
    At least the battery is likely removable and this has an SD card slot (albeit with only 32GB support). Should be fairly easily to upgrade to CyanogenMOD 12 since I don't see them purposely NOT supporting the phone. Either way though, this phone doesn't compare as a alternative to the S6. The One M9 is more of an alternative (and the one looking viable IMHO) unless Samsung realizes the error of their choices and release a Note 5 or "Alpha" with the proper features.
  • fabienio1
    Finally a true competitor to the One +
    The specs, the look, Cyanogen and price. All gathered for a success, but the interest of one+ under cyanogen is the ROOT, as well as unlocking the bootloader are covered by the guarantee, therefore, but we don't know if ALCATEL done the same or not

    __________________________________________________________galaxy note 4 prix iphone 5s prix