The Chinese market is booming and has tons of smartphone makers. Recently, we got the Mlais M7, courtesy of Gearbest, and bought you the hands on and detailed first impressions. Today, we bring you the Mlais M7 Review, to check whether if it is worth your money or not! Lets start.
Mlais M7 Review: Video
Mlais M7 Review: Hardware & Build Quality
Lets do a quick recap of the specifications of the M7, which is currently priced at $186.59 on Gearbest. The Mlais M7 features a 5.5-inch HD IPS display, protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 3. It is powered by octa-core MediaTek MT6752 chipset, clocked at 1.7 GHz and has Mali-T760 GPU on board. It has 3 GB of RAM, 16 GB internal storage – expandable up to 64 GB. It runs on Android 5.0 Lollipop out of the box. It boasts of a fingerprint scanner touch ID at the back below the rear camera. The M7 comes with a 13 megapixel rear camera and a 5 megapixel front-facing camera. The phablet is 8.6 mm thick and weighs 160 grams. It supports Dual SIM (micro + normal) with dual standby mode. The M7 includes 4G LTE (800/1,800/ 2,100/ 2,600 MHz), 3G HSPA+, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS/A-GPS, GLONASS as connectivity options. The phablet packs in a 2,600 mAh battery under the hood.
Now, coming to the hardware, we have the 3.5 mm audio jack and microUSB port on the top. It is followed by the display at the middle and on top of that, we find the 5 megapixel front-facing camera with couple of sensors and the hearing grill. Below the display, we have three capacitive buttons and they are backlit. However, only the Home button is visible when the screen is not on. At the bottom, we just have the primary mic followed by both the volume rocker and power button on the left. There is nothing on the right. Coming to the back side, we find the 13 megapixel rear camera along with LED flash on the right of it. The fingerprint scanner TouchID is placed below the camera and it surprisingly works accurately and is very fast.
Talking about the build, it feels quite solid and not bulky at the same time. It doesn’t look like the display is 5.5-inches due to the compact form factor and slim bezels. It should not break if it has a fall or two. The back cover is so tight, that it’s tough to get it out for putting in the battery. It has an aluminium magnesium alloy chassis around the body which makes it sturdy and also gives it a ‘feel good’ factor while holding it. The phone can be used with one hand without any fuss. The back panel is glossy, however, it is not too shiny and not slippery as well. Thus, it offers good grip.
Mlais M7 Review: Photo Gallery
Mlais M7 Review: Display
The M7 features a 5.5-inch HD IPS display which has a resolution of 1280 by 720 pixels. It is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 3. The display is very bright, even on minimum brightness, you can use it under bright sunlight. The colours are quite real and it does not look they have been faked (no over saturation). The hue and saturation are perfect as well. Thus, nothing to complain as far as the display is concerned. It has varied viewing angles. The touch is quite good, very responsive. Watching Full HD videos on the phone was a pleasure to the eyes. It felt like I had a small TV in front of me, a Full HD TV. So, consuming rich content on this display will be soothing to your eyes.
Mlais M7 Review: Performance and Gaming
The Mlais M7 is powered by a 1.7 GHz octa-core 64-bit MediaTek MT6752 processor with Mali-T760 GPU. The phone performs really well considering its price. It did not seem to lag any time, even with most of the applications running in the background. It can easily perform and power the day-to-day applications and tasks without any hiccups or frame drops. So, that should put rest to all your doubts about its performance. The call quality was crisp with no call drops at all. The speakers are just average and certainly not the best for a mobile device.
For gaming, we tested a variety of games – from high-end games to average 3D games, and the results were actually surprising. Small 3D games like Crossy Road or 8ball pool perform really well. No frame drops or lags here. Response time is also great. But these kind of games are a cakewalk for today’s low-budget devices as well. It’s all about the performance of ultimate high-end graphic intensive games. So, we tested Asphalt 8, Riptide GP2, and Mortal Kombat X. The games do run very smoothly. That is something, we did not really expect from this phone. However, once in a blue moon, there were minor frame drops, not really something to worry about. After spending sometime to these GPU hungry games, the phone starts to get a bit warm on the back and on the top part of the screen. But not too hot, that you cannot hold the phone. This kind of temperature is normally seen on most high-end devices and we have nothing to worry here.
Mlais M7 Review: Camera
Coming to the camera, it is not the best thing on this phone, focusing being the major problem with it. Firstly, it takes a lot of time to focus on the subject, However, if you manage to get the focusing right, you’ll be impressed with the image quality, for sure. While the images are amazingly sharp, accurate to the smallest details, the colours aren’t real (over saturated). They aren’t the same as the subject. The rear camera also takes a second or two to click the picture. The camera app has a lot of inbuilt features like – live filters, which might be a good thing for some, but certainly not to my liking. It has a variety of modes, which aren’t really useful, like a face beauty mode but you might find it amusing. The front facing camera is quicker than the rear, and is also quick and accurate in focusing. The colours are also quite real, as compared to the rear camera. We believe all the problems associated with the rear camera are just flaws in the software and the camera algorithm, which can of course be fixed with future updates. Check out the detailed camera samples below taken in different modes.
Mlais M7: Camera Samples
Mlais M7 Review: Software, Battery life & Connectivity
The Software on the Mlais 7 is based on Android 5.0 Lollipop with close to zero bloatware. It has the ultimate stock experience, which is really great.
The phone features lots of gestures like the commonly seen ‘Double Tap to Wake’, Control Music, Launch Camera, etc. It also has an option to assign a pre-defined task to certain gestures, like the letter ‘W’ can be used for WhatsApp. The app drawer is quite different, and better than the other devices running on Lollipop. It features a complete black (colour) app drawer which looks really great. To be honest, I really hate the default white app drawer. The fingerprint scanner, of course, has an added benefit, of unlocking certain apps with your fingerprint, instead of using a code or a pattern. The feature is enabled out of the box and you do not have to download third-party apps to protect your messages and other apps. However, that’s all there is to the fingerprint scanner. New features can be added via OTA updates. One thing that I certainly would have liked, is using fingerprint scanner to sign into various services.
For the battery, the phone roughly takes an hour to fully charge the 2,600 mAh battery on board. It easily lasts more than a day and half with normal everyday activities. With gaming, browsing, watching videos, it lasted for a day which is good enough. It has good battery life on standby mode and during the night, it only loses about 2-5 % of battery life.
The Mlais M7 has Dual SIM support with dual standby mode and one tray takes in micro SIM and a normal SIM on the second tray. It has 4G LTE support with the following bands (800/1,800/ 2,100/ 2,600 MHz). The usual WiFi, Bluetooth and GPS are on board too.
Mlais M7 Review: After sales support
One of the major requirements for any device being purchased in India or any other country, is to have a great after sales support. However, this is an imported unit and is not available locally in any country other than China. Even though it sells on Gearbest, with free worldwide shipping at $186, it has a better after sales support than many other so-called ‘reputed’ companies. It really has an amazing support team, but the support is only available via email though. The response time is amazing ranging from 5 minutes to 2 hours. You will get a response to your email, whether you mail them at night or day time of any timezone. They are there to help you out, and we have experienced it.
Mlais M7 Review: Final Verdict
The Mlais M7 costs quite less in the first place. To back up the value for money quotient, it has amazing specs which also translates into performance. It is a yes from our side, if you’re in need of budget phones and want to try out something fresh and new. However, if you take mobile photography seriously, we wouldn’t recommend it now, but with timely updates the issues can be fixed. The performance, is what, that has impressed us the most. Being cheaper than a lot of the other devices with similar or higher specifications, it performs very well. If you are interested in buying Mlais M7, check it out on Gearbest.