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Cherry Mobile Flare Selfie Hands-on, First Impressions: A Selfie Phone On Steroids

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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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

CAMERA SAMPLES

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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.

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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.

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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.

John Nieves

John is a veteran technology and gadget journalist with more than 10 years of experience both in print and online. When not writing about technology, he frequently gets lost in the boonies playing soldier.

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20 Comments

    1. what’s wrong with you? would you rather have only one phone brand,selling only one phone model,whose specs dont change because no one else is selling a better one?
      you’re weird.

      1. Except when phones being released left and right are ESSENTIALLY IDENTICAL to previous releases for the sake of releasing a “new” device instead of a good initial device to begin with!

        Consider that Cherry Mobile released Flare X at first with a 1.7GHZ processor, then another Flare X with 2GB RAM (the original one has 3,) then “improved” the 3GB Flare X with a 1.3GHZ processor. This Flare Selfie has the EXACT same processor and RAM as Flare X with a lower resolution display for essentially the same price.

        Instead of releasing essentially identical devices with trivial “upgrades” and botched software support, why not release ONE OR TWO devices and make for killer software and accessories support, like what Motorola is doing?

        1. i love you paolo, haha, no need to answer, same thoughts, although I’m not ranting about how saturated the smartphone market was. It’s just that too many phones = too many choices, very hard to decide

          1. wow, so many phone choices is a bad thing? talk about 1st world problems. lol.
            of course phones will have more or less the same specs,it now depends on how much they’ll sell it, the lower price the better.
            as for motorola, can’t really say they had a killer phone in recent time, remember lenovo had to buy them to keep them from getting bankrupt.
            so what i said stands, more phones the better, as they make prices go down.
            doesn’t mean you have to buy all of them.

      2. Analysis paralysis is a serious (and legitimate) problem. And calling people who don’t think like you weird is not an opinion, it’s condescension – basically disrespect.

    2. Because this guy talked about the marketing principles. And thia guy here talked about it stuffs. I love you baenay. Saturated market is a bad thing. Nagiging hypercompetitive na kasi tong pinas eh. Peace brothers. Happy new year!

  1. Gave cherry mobile a chance with me but they still fail in the after-sales department. If you guys but this brand make sure you’re prepared for mediocrity in quality and beyond-failing services. Call me a basher but I’m speaking from experience. I’m still hopeful for Filipino brands but I’m making Cherry Mobile and exception in the next 2 years.

      1. typo error using a cm phone, i saw what you did there lol. had a not-so-fine experience with a cm phone too twice, and i swore never to buy from them anymore.

  2. Were you able to test the phone’s no. of multi-touch points? planning to buy one despite the price since I need a clear cam and a phone for gaming, and I need all the multi-touch points i can get for its gaming aspect lol + the phone design looks almost flawless, save for those excess black lines around the phone screen. I’ve had bad experiences with other CM phones built with only 2-point multi touch and I never wanna go through that again.

  3. It’s too tempting to buy this what’s holding me back is the cherry mobile branding if it was Myphone maybe I’ll have a second thought.,

      1. I tried twice.. I just kept on levelling-up my CM.. They have great specs with affordable price.. And it will last if you handle it with care.. Imagine, i have friends w/ samsung S4 and S3, but they keep on insisting to use my CM Cosmos Z2 w/ 18 and 8MP, rear and front respectivley to have our selfies and food porn.. And i feel like, give my phone a break~ haha.. But this brand is really good.. My mom and boyfie introduced this to me.. And i’ve never been this satisfied~ ?

        Now i’m drooling for this model~ ???

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