Over the past few years, a lot of new names have been dominating the smartphone market. Names like Oppo, Vivo, and Huawei, are quickly becoming today’s Nokia and Sony. Much like the latter , these new brands bring innovation to the forefront of their product lineup. Today, we look at one of these products, the updated Huawei GR5 2017.
Right out of the box, this phone looks elegant. The glossy white frame that surrounds the 5.5 inch display and the 8MP front cam almost reminded me of a classic Apple device. And in my book, if your device can invoke a minimal yet rich aesthetic, you win. In addition, the rounded edges are a welcome touch as they make the device feel comfy when grasped. Similarly, the back of the phone looks metallic, complete with a very smooth surface. The back also has the two rear cameras, the flash, and the fingerprint sensor.
On the left side, you will find the SIM tray, while the lock screen and volume control are on the left. The top of the phone has the audio jack and at the bottom is the USB port and speakers. Finally, the front buttons usually found at the bottom bezel are on the screen itself.
As an entertainment device, this phone gives its maximum performance. I had a lot of fun watching high resolution videos on it, because the details were pretty clear, and generally easy on the eyes. At full brightness, it did not hurt my eyes and I really liked the wide viewing angles. For the audio, I noted that it isn’t really audible until you set the volume to the middle. But, from there to the max, the audio is pretty good and did not sacrifice quality. I was able to distinguish bass sounds and all that. Even when watching movies on speakers I was able to understand the dialogue. At 32GB, the internal storage may be average to some but it can hold enough media to keep you entertained.
Lastly, playing games on this device was enjoyable as well. I tried three different games: Dead Trigger 2, NBA Live Mobile, and Angry Birds. All three games played well, with minimal lag, without sacrificing the quality of the graphics.
Under the Hood
I hoped that the GR5 would perform well, especially considering that other similarly-priced phones did worse. We can attribute the smooth gameplay to a 2.1 GHz octacore processor, 3GB of RAM, and its MALI-T830 GPU. On top of that, the phones UI ran smoothly. Based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow, the EMUI 4.1, is smooth, and fairly easy to navigate. It may take some getting used to but, the overall arrangement of it looks like it was designed for efficiency.
I also noticed that the phone did not have a lot of pre-installed apps. It only had the standard Google apps, and other GR5 exclusives like the Gameloft and CNN app. In summation, I give the Huawei GR5 some major plus points for this because it definitely frees up useful storage space.
We ran the phone through our usual benchmark tests and the results are below:
The GR5 is capable of taking some very beautiful photos. The big plus factor here is that the 12MP rear shooter paired with a 2MP camera helps deliver a crisp bokeh effect. Not only that, but the GR5 features a great set in-camera features like Beautify and modes for food photography.
This phone takes great videos, too. With the ability to take FHD videos, this should prove useful to anyone who wants to capture memorable events on film.
Here are some photos taken by the Huawei GR5 2017:
Huawei GR5 2017 sample
It is a dual SIM device and supports 4G LTE connectivity as well as 3G, and WiFi. It also has Bluetooth, and sports a MicroUSB 2.0 port. All in all, I have no complaints about calls on this device, whether it comes to data or phone calls
Sporting a 3,340 mAh non removable battery, this phone lasted longer than expected. With moderate use of data, calls, and apps, you can get as much as 8 hours of use. The only major downside here, though, lies in the battery’s temperature during extended heavy usage. Finally, for the video loop, we got 7 and a half hours of the GR5 2017 playing a looped movie at maximum brightness.
For a midrange level phone at Php 11,990, this phone is definitely a great deal. What else can I say? Simply put, the camera is great, the UI feel efficient, and the overall experience is exceptional. Specs-wise, you might think it’s ‘just’ a midranger, but in practice, this phone goes above and beyond. If you’re on a tight budget and you want a smart device that feels and acts like a premium phone, look no further.