Tesco VX1 Party Phone review: Tesco VX1 Party Phone

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CNET Editors' Rating

3 stars Good

Average User Rating

4 stars 2 user reviews
Review Date:
Updated on:

The Good Tiny size; ridiculously cheap; can be operated easily by weary drunkards; fairly robust build quality; decent call quality; long battery life; you won't regret losing it after one too many tipples.

The Bad Cheaper phones do exist; texting is a deeply unpleasant experience; alarms fail to sound if the phone is in silent mode; only enough room to store a few text messages.

The Bottom Line As a substitute for your favourite phone when you're out on the razzle, the Tesco VX1 Party Phone performs admirably. Attempting to use it as your main phone for any length of time may see you consigned to a padded cell, however, unless you need a phone purely for making calls

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Tesco wants you to party like it's 1999 with the VX1 Party Phone. Capable of little more than making calls and sending texts, this phone will make you feel as though you've stepped into a time warp and come out in the last millennium.

But its low price and simplicity make it disposable, and that's the whole point -- if you lose it during a night on the tiles, you'll neither be stricken with remorse nor substantially out of pocket, as you would be if you lost your expensive smart phone. We took the VX1 out on the razzle to find out if it's any good.

It's available SIM-free direct from Tesco for £9.49 -- about the cost of three Snakebite and blacks.

Won't bulge in your trousers
The VX1's dimensions are eminently suited to a thrilling night of debauchery. It's slightly smaller than a credit card in terms of height and width, and it's only 10mm thick. That means it'll fit in pretty much any pocket, and won't cause much of a bulge in the skin-tight breeches of a Shoreditch hipster. Its black plastic case also feels sturdy enough to withstand being repeatedly sat on. On the left side is the phone's sole connection, a micro-USB charging port.

The soft buttons give a satisfying click when pressed, and a blue backlight means you'll be able to see which keys you're poking at in even the dingiest of watering holes. The tiny, monochrome screen also has a blue backlight, but is capable of showing only about three lines of a text message at a time -- around 13 words. Texts can be scrolled though quickly using the four-way navigation pad though.

Alarm fail
The navigation pad also provides shortcuts to what few features the VX1 offers. You can access your contacts list, text messages, see your call records and set up to three alarms. Note that if you put the phone in silent mode before you collapse into bed, your alarm will go off but it won't make any noise, so you'll probably be late for work in the morning. Thanks, Tesco.

Two other dedicated shortcut keys give access to the menu and a calculator, which will let you keep a tally of how much money you've wasted on shots of crème de menthe. In terms of features, that's it. There's no music player, no FM radio, no camera and certainly no Web access.

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Where to Buy

Tesco VX1 Party Phone

Part Number: CNETTesco VX1 Party Phone

Typical Price: £9.49

See manufacturer website for availability.