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Slow down with the ZTE Speed (pictures)

Take a closer look at Boost Mobile's ZTE Speed -- a 4.5-inch handset with a bargain $100 price tag.

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Lynn_La2.jpg

Lynn La

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1 of 7 Josh Miller/CNET

ZTE Speed for Boost Mobile

Currently available from prepaid carrier Boost Mobile for the competitive price of $100, the ZTE Speed is an Android 4.4 handset that has a 5-megapixel camera, 4G LTE and a 4.5-inch screen.

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Quad-core specs inside

The device is powered by a quad-core 1.2GHz processor, and a 2,000mAh non-removable battery, which has an estimated talk time of up to 14 hours.

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Preloaded apps and Android KitKat

The handset runs Android 4.4 KitKat and features apps from Google like the Chrome web browser and Gmail, as well as preloaded apps from the carrier such as Mobile ID and Boost Wallet.

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Compact but thick

Though it's compact at 5.3 inches tall and 2.6 inches wide, and rather lightweight (it weighs only 4.8 ounces), the Speed is thick, measuring 0.4 inches on its side.

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Low-res LCD touchscreen

The phone sports a 4.5-inch LCD display with a 960x540-pixel resolution. Though text and images are still legible and easy to see, they didn't look sharp or crisp.

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Rear 5-megapixel camera

The rear camera can shoot 1080p video and has a few features, including a timer; eight different shooting modes including panorama, HDR and macro; and 11 Instagram-esque filters.

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Big on savings, but lackluster on performance

A hundred dollars for a prepaid smartphone is a good value. Unfortunately, the ZTE Speed isn't the only bargain phone currently in existence, and there are plenty of better alternatives worth exploring. Click here for more of CNET's coverage of ZTE handsets.

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