Kata M1 Review: This Phablet Can Go On Forever

Kata M1 Review: This Phablet Can Go On Forever


Kata’s gigantic phablet is definitely a smartphone to consider!

Today, we’ll be reviewing Kata’s newest offering, the M1. The M1 is the company’s latest smartphone right after their impressive I3, and is their first ever phablet offering. We had high hopes for the M1 when we got our review device, simply because the company managed to impress us with the I3, which at the time it was launched, had a very compelling price for the hardware being offered. Kata hasn’t strayed too far from that playbook with the M1, which should delight potential buyers everywhere.

Kata M1 specs

  • 1.5GHz quad-core MediaTek MTK 6589 processor
  • 2GB of RAM
  • 16GB of storage expandable via microSD
  • 5.7-inch full HD LCD display, 1080 x 1920 resolution
  • 13-megapixel rear camera with autofocus and flash
  • 5-megapixel front camera
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS, A-GPS
  • Dual-SIM, dual standby
  • 3G
  • 4000mAh battery
  • Android 4.2
  • 165.1 mm (L) x 81.6 mm (W) x 10.0mm (D)
  • Php 9,999 (pre-order price)


Gigantic body, beautiful display

The Kata M1 is definitely not for dainty hands. At 165.1mm tall (6.5-inches) it’s a monster of a phablet, and is almost impossible to use with one hand. But even though it’s pretty massive, it’s also a looker. The M1 has gentle curves and rounded corners that give users a positive grip on the device. The gloss white finish of the device is pretty well done, as gloss finishes usually make a gadget look cheaper than it actually is. That’s not the case with the finish of the M1, and we daresay it actually makes the phablet more premium than it actually is.


As for button placement, the M1 follows the standard button layout of most Android phablets – volume rocker on the left, with the power button on the right. The 3.5mm jack and USB port are both located on the top of the device. The camera module on the back is offset to the left side of the device, alongside the LED flash. The speaker grille is near the camera, located on the center near the top of the device.


The overall build quality of the M1 follows the I3, in that it’s a pretty well built piece of kit. There are no obvious gaps in the device, and exhibits zero flex. It’s a bit hefty, but not overly so, which is to be expected from a device of this size. The Kata is also offering a simple case for the M1 that has a small window much like the one on the Galaxy Note 3. The only difference here is that the M1’s protective case isn’t a smart one like the one on the Note, attaches via double sided tape and doesn’t really scale the phone’s display to the small window.


The display of the Kata M1 is frankly, very beautiful. The 5.7-inch IPS, full HD display has excellent contrast and is able to produce nice, deep blacks. Color reproduction is very good as well, and the display produces bright, punchy colors. While the company did not mention it, we think that the M1 may also use OGS for its display (although we may be wrong). Because of the exceptional quality and size of the display, the M1 is definitely the phablet of choice if you want to watch full HD movies.


Processor is quick, but full HD may just be too much

The Kata M1 is armed with MediaTek’s 1.5GHz turbo quad-core processor paired with 2GB of memory. This in theory should mean that the Kata M1 would be able to handle most of the tasks that users ask from it without any issues. By and large, this is true – the Kata M1 performed well during its time as our daily driver, with minimal lag and almost buttery smooth transitions and effects while navigating through the phone.

The problem arises when you start playing very resource heavy games on the M1. We installed Asphalt 8 on the M1, and found that on max settings there was definitely very noticeable lag while playing. This lag only disappears when you set the game’s visuals to medium. Other games, like Zombie Tsunami, for example, also exhibited some lag, although it was very minimal. With NBA 2K14, the lag issue is non-existent, which means that there are only a few games that are more susceptible to the lag issue. It only makes sense – a processor and GPU needs to work harder with a bigger, higher resolution display, and the 1.5GHz quad-core MediaTek MTK 6589 processor on the M1 can only do so much.






Alright camera, but isn’t mind blowing

The 13-megapixel camera on the Kata M1 is generally capable of taking good photos, and locks into subjects relatively quickly. It’s also capable of producing decent bokeh effects if the conditions are right, which is pretty impressive.

Battery: the Kata M1 just keeps on going, and going, and going….

One of the main selling points of the Kata M1 aside from gigantic full HD display is its massive 4000mAh battery. We knew that with that battery life, it’s capable of going the distance, we just didn’t know how far. Well, it managed to clock in an amazing 2 days of battery life on a single charge with moderate use. Heck, at one point we only charged it up to 30% and used it as our primary phone for a day and it still had power the next morning, though it was only at 5% at that point.


Verdict: definitely a phablet to consider if you’re looking for a smartphone that can last for a while before charging

As big and unwieldy as the Kata M1 is at times, it’s still one of the better phablets we’ve seen in the market. While its processor may lag on a few, graphically intense games,  overall it’s still capable of powering the Kata M1 through a variety of tasks without any issues. Combine that with a massive battery that make the device seem to go on forever, and a phenomenal display, and you have a phablet that can pull double duty as a multimedia device.

A slight note on price: Kata originally announced that the M1 would have a pre-order price of Php 9,999, with the price reverting to Php 11,999 after the pre-order period.






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