Tecno has two new devices under its Spark series that have been selling for a few weeks now. Even months when you factor in one of them, the superior Tecno Spark 3 Pro.
The two devices have lots of similarities. They have the same battery capacity, cameras, display, chipset, operating system…
Besides sharing a name and the above-stated specifications, both the Tecno Spark 3 and Spark 3 Pro differ in a number of ways.
While the Tecno Spark 3 Pro had a recommended retail price of Kshs 12,500 at launch, its sibling the standard Spark 3 goes for a little less and is well-placed to attract the buyer who is about one or two thousand shillings short given its sub-Kshs 11,000 pricing (or more depending on where one shops).
The accessories that one gets in the box with their purchase are largely identical in both cases. However, it did not escape my eyes that Tecno includes a clear jelly case in the Spark 3 Pro’s packaging while going with a hard plastic back shell for the Spark 3. The latter looks very good when snapped on to the Spark 3 while the former is rather ordinary-looking on the Spark 3 Pro.
While the Tecno Spark 3 manages to ape the Spark 3 Pro’s glass-like design on the back, the plastic back is removable, unlike on the Spark 3 Pro. One has to remove the Spark 3’s back in order to access the microSD card and SIM slots.
Still on the design, the Tecno Spark 3 takes a step back and takes us back to a few years ago when smartphone speakers were predominantly placed on the back. That is not the case with the Pro model which keeps them where we have come to expect them on most smartphones: the bottom.
Lastly, there is the small matter of the Spark branding directly below the back cameras. This is the case on the Spark 3. On the Tecno Spark 3 Pro, there’s just “AI Camera” indicated followed by the aperture size. On the former, the words “AI Camera” second the Spark branding. This is petty nitpicking, I know, but hey, it’s there for everyone to see.
Both devices run on Android 9 Pie which, until Android 10 rolls out later in the year, remains the latest version of Android available to end users.
However, while it is not known how things will pan out for the Tecno Spark 3 with regards to Android 10, those who go with the Tecno Spark 3 Pro have a certain level of assurance that they might get Android Q.
This is informed by the fact that the device is one of the 15 smartphones that were paraded at Google I/O earlier this month that were joining Google’s own Pixel smartphone lineup to beta test Android Q before the expected public rollout later in the year.
At 32GB, the Tecno Spark 3 Pro has twice the Spark 3’s internal storage. Both devices let users expand this storage space using microSD cards, something that those who opt for the Spark 3 will especially appreciate.
Notice anything different in the two photos below?
There is 4G LTE branding on the Tecno Spark 3 Pro’s display sticker while the same is missing on the Tecno Spark 3’s. That’s because the latter can only connect to 3G networks. It has no 4G connectivity.
Are these differences between the two devices convincing enough for you to pick one over the other?