We go hands-on with Cherry Mobile’s newest Flare phablet!
Aside from the two game-changing Flare phones released earlier today, Cherry Mobile also announced a more premium model – the Flare S4 Plus. Unlike its two smaller brothers, the Flare S4 Plus isn’t meant as a game-changing bang-for-the-buck phone – instead, it’s more of a refinement of the critically acclaimed Flare X for people who want something more stylish.
Cherry Mobile Flare S4 Plus
- 1.3GHz MediaTek MT6753 octa-core processor
- 3GB of RAM
- 5.5-inch full HD OGS IPS display, 1920 x 1080 resolution
- 16GB of storage, expandable via microSD up to 64GB
- 16-megapixel rear camera, BSI
- 8-megapixel front camera, BSI
- 3G, LTE
- WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, A-GPS
- 2800mAh battery
- Android 5.1 Lollipop
- Php 7,999
Initial Impressions: the nicest looking Flare there is
When we say that the Flare S4 Plus is more stylish than the Flare X, we mean it – the phone sports a metal frame, with absolutely gorgeous bevels on the sides of the frame. The phone kind of reminds us a little bit of Huawei’s Mate 7, what with its rounded corners, bezels, and overall styling.
The phone is hefty and feels absolutely solid. It’s definitely a more premium device, but you’ve probably guessed that from the higher Php 7,999 price tag. The good news is that the extra cost was put to good use – we really can’t find a fault in the overall construction of the device, but lovers of removable batteries may not like the sealed back of the phone. Because of the design, you’re also forced to choose over an extra SIM card or expandable storage since the phone can’t accommodate both.
Looking at the specs of the Flare S4 Plus, we’d forgive you if you thought it was a downgrade compared to the Flare X. While the Flare X carried MediaTek’s beastly 1.7GHz 6752 octa-core processor, the Flare S4 Plus continues the trend of companies utilizing the relatively lower clocked 1.3GHz MT6753 octa-core processor. RAM is still 3GB, and while you’re getting a lower-clocked processor, you’re also getting Android 5.1 onboard, which may explain why many companies opted to go with that particular processor.
To be honest, it’s not a bad processor anyway – the similarly specc’d Alcatel Flash 2 worked particularly well with that SoC, though that phone is HD as opposed to full HD, which is the case with the Flare S4 Plus. Navigating through the phone was pretty okay, though there were some miss-presses on the screen that we’ll attribute to the device we were handling – it was a pre-production device, and not a retail example.
As you’d expect the AnTuTu score of the Flare S4 Plus wasn’t as high as other people were expecting, but that’s okay – if you really want a heavy lifting phone in terms of gaming, you’re better off getting the cheaper and more powerful Flare X.
And that’s it – we had limited time with the device, so there are a lot of things we weren’t able to cover during our brief hands-on. We’ll be getting a review unit from Cherry Mobile to fully take the phone through its paces, so you can come back next week for a deeper hands-on (possibly a video).