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THL W11 Monkey King Unboxing: 5″ Full HD with 13MP Front and Back Cameras

A quad-core smartphone with 13MP front and back cameras! Intriguing!
A quad-core smartphone with 13MP front and back cameras! Intriguing!

Super Selfie Smartphone with Full HD 5-inch Display

We first heard about the THL W11 Monkey King smartphone on Engadget when they first published a piece about it 3 months ago. It immediately caught our attention because it had two major things going for it — a Full HD 1080p 5-inch display and dual 13MP cameras for the front and back! That probably makes this the ultimate selfie machine since all the other top front cameras of local brands here in the Philippines just go up to 8MP, hehe. The awesome news is that we were able to pick up a review unit. We’ll share first our unboxing but expect the full review (with tons of selfies) soon.

Here’s the complete spec sheet for your reference.

THL W11 Monkey King Spec Sheet

  • 1.5GHz Quad-core Processor, MTK6589
  • PowerVR SGX 544
  • 1GB RAM
  • 16GB Internal Storage
  • 5.0-inch Full HD Display (1080p)
  • 13.0-inch primary camera with LED flash and Autofocus
  • 13.0-inch secondary camera (HD video recording)
  • WiFi, WiFi Hotspot, Bluetooth, 3G, HSPA+, GPS with aGPS, FM Radio
  • Dual SIM, Dual Standby
  • 8.6mm thin
  • Android Jelly Bean 4.2.1
  • 2,000mAh
  • SRP: Php11,999

Our only main worry is the storage since it’s not expandable. While it says 16GB internal storage the useable amount will probably be just around 11GB-12GB. That’s a bit of a downer since it would have been perfect to watch 1080p video on this thing because of the high-quality and sizeable display.

Helping us out for this special unboxing is Cobra’s Storm Shadow (Collectible Figure from Hot Toys)!

Packaging and Unboxing

The THL W11 Monkey King comes in a very unassuming plain white solid carton box. When we first heard about the phone we thought that the box would either be comical or at the very least colorful (because of the name). Instead we got a premium looking hard box that you’d usually see with global flagships. So to that… two thumbs up!

For the actual unboxing it was a straightforward affair. We removed the circular tape (all the gadget boxes seem to have those) and pulled off the top lid. We were immediately greeted by the 5-inch W11 Monkey King. By the way, at this point of the unboxing we’re still looking for the monkeys, lol.

Storm Shadow gets ready...
Storm Shadow gets ready…
Go Storm Shadow!
Go Storm Shadow!
Hmm.. Wala naman monkey ah.
Hmm.. Wala naman monkey ah.

When we picked up the phone we were amazed at how light, compact, and solid it was! The W11 Monkey King is actually quite thin with the following measurements: 144 x 71.2 x 8.6mm. Most 5-inch smartphones are closer to 10.0mm when it comes to thickness so this is one of the more thinner options out in the market.

Usual stuff inside
Usual stuff inside

Other than the phone we found the usual stuff inside the box. There was the micro USB to USB cable, wall charger, and the earphones. Good to note that the earphones used a flat cable. Makes it less prone to tangling up. Also there’s a surprisingly thick user manual. We didn’t pay any attention to this but when we turned the phone on we realized the value of the manual, hehe.

Hardware Inspection: Well-made Solid Chassis

Not a bad phone at all
Not a bad phone at all

The body of the device is mostly made from plastic. They were able to make it as compact as possible though so the device actually feels very solid and well-made in your hand. Gripping won’t be a problem as well thanks to the curved back and edges. Thanks to the thinness and the curves the phone is much easier to handle with one or two hands.

Nice build
Nice build

On the sides are the trays, ports, and buttons. The micro SIM card slot needs to be opened via a pin key (comes in the box) while the second sim card can be inserted at the top (just open the tray for it). At the back we have the 13.0-megapixel camera with a red metallic accent and the external speakers at the bottom. Up front is all glass, no physical buttons. The secondary 13.0-megapixel camera is at the top as well.

Back reminds of HTC hehe
Back reminds of HTC hehe

The back plate and battery are not removable.

Software Inspection: Heavily Customized

The Android experience on the THL W11 Monkey Key is, to say the least, fascinating. They heavily customized the user interface so that it resembles a mix of iOS and Android. The implementation is very similar to the Huawei Emotion UI wherein there’s no Android app tray. Instead all the apps are on the home screens and you just swipe across them. You can still put widgets and bunch em together in folders though if you like.

No app usual Android app tray. All the apps are in the home pages.
No app usual Android app tray. All the apps are in the home pages.

The fun part is picking what theme you want to use. There’s a built-in theme store with lots of free and premium themes that you can download. The theme will automatically come with widgets, change the icons, and even change the sound effects. Were were able to download the Transformers themes as well as an Avengers comical one. Some photos below.

You can pick and download themes from the build-in theme store. There are a lot of free options though so yay!
You can pick and download themes from the build-in theme store. There are a lot of free options though so yay!
THis is a comical take on the Avengers
THis is a comical take on the Avengers
Close-up so you can see the icons better
Close-up so you can see the icons better
Here's one for the Transformers.
Here’s one for the Transformers.

Funky right? They even customized the lock screens! The Bumblebee theme that we downloaded has a nice Bumblebee face lock screen but the animation did lag a bit. It’s definitely refreshing take on Android but not everyone will probably like it.

By the way, we’ll cover this more in the full review but we just have to say that the display quality on this smartphone is stunningly beautiful. Colors are vibrant, images are sharp, and it’s like they’re floating on the screen. THL definitely did a fantastic job with the display.

Full Review Coming Soon

Storm Shadow signing out!
Storm Shadow signing out!

The THL W11 Monkey King is definitely an intriguing and interesting smartphone. For the review we’re keen on testing the capabilities of the 13MP front-facing camera and we also want to check out over-all power and performance. Hopefully we can have the review out for you guys by next week. We kinda have a huge backlog of devices to review so this might take a while, hehe.

The THL W11 Monkey King is now available in select gadget stores with an SRP of Php11,999.

Carlo Ople

Carlo is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of Unbox.ph. During daytime he’s the Managing Director and Partner of a Digital Marketing Agency in the Philippines and by nighttime he’s living out his passion as a gadget enthusiast and story teller through Unbox.

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