We go hands-on with the Cherry Mobile Selfie!
Cherry Mobile’s Flare series of smartphones are easily the company’s most prolific and most popular of the phones that they offer. Keeping track of all the Flare devices released this year is fast becoming a Herculean effort, and they’re not done yet. The company invited us to their office today to take a look at their recently leaked and upcoming smartphone, the Flare Selfie. Priced at Php 7,999, it’s the most expensive of the Flare devices to date but it’s easily the most feature-packed of the bunch.
Cherry Mobile Flare Selfie specs:
- 1.3GHz octa-core processor
- 3GB of RAM
- 5-inch HD display, 720 x 1280 resolution
- 16GB of expandable storage
- 16-megapixel rear camera with AF, flash and BSI
- 16-megapixel front camera with flash and AF
- 3G, LTE
- WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, A-GPS, Fingerprint sensor
- 3000mAh battery
- Android 5.1 Lollipop
Initial impressions: a swanky, powerful selfie-focused phone
Cherry Mobile’s been improving the look of their Flare series of devices, adding metal frames to otherwise all-plastic designs. The Flare Selfie is no exception to that design shift, and also sport a nice gold-colored metal frame that’s chamefered on the sides. The phone uses a gloss white plastic back, and we’re not sure if there’s a black version of the device available.
The phone sports a nice 5-inch IPS display with an HD resolution which is nice and bright and has excellent viewing angles. The overall size of the phone make it easy to hold and use one-handed, something that we can’t say for the company’s bigger Flare X device. The phone has rather thick upper and lower bezels despite the phone utilizing on-screen navigation keys.
Up top you’ll see the 16-megapixel front camera, along with the rather weak LED flash on its side. The 16-megapixel front camera has beautification features built into the app, and has autofocus as well.
Flip the phone over and you’ll see the 16-megapixel rear camera on the upper left side along with the dual LED flash. You’ll also see the round fingerprint scanner that’s reminiscent of the ones in the current crop of Nexus devices, at least visually. The volume and power buttons on the right side, while the 3.5mm jack is on the top. The USB port is located on the bottom, along with the speaker grille.
The fingerprint scanner on the back of the phone deserves applause, as it’s relatively fast and easy to use. During our short time with the Flare Selfie, it managed to unlock the device every time we used it, and even though our finger wasn’t completely on the sensor it still unlocked the phone. The fingerprint scanner also works as the camera shutter button, which is great when you’re trying to take a selfie.
The phone uses MediaTek’s tried and tested 1.3GHz MT6753 octa-core processor paired with 3GB of RAM and 16GB of storage. We’ve seen that hardware combination before in Cherry Mobile’s other Flare smartphones, and its performance is more than enough for daily use.
We are a little annoyed that the Flare Selfie in our possession uses a custom UI overlay that approximates the look of iPhones, essentially taking out the app drawer and laying all your apps out in the open, though you can switch it back to default easily. We also had issues with Google’s Play Store in our device, which necessitated us to download and install a previous version of AnTuTu. Other devices that was lent out to other tech bloggers during our first look did not have this problem.
The Flare Selfie slots under the Php 7,999 price range, which isn’t bad, considering it’s the most feature packed of the Flare series of phones so far. As far as availability goes, the Flare Selfie will be going on sale next year, though Cherry Mobile has not given us a firm release date as of yet.