If you're looking for premium looking smartphone but with low budget yet made in local, well not exactly, then you're looking for Ninetology! Over the year, Ninetology had been working hard building their own port folio in Malaysia. So for those who are still not aware of them and interested to know more, click my previous post when Ninetology launch the U9 series smartphones. Of course, here I mainly reviewing one of their latest smartphone in U9 series, the U9Z1.
To recap, here the Ninetology U9Z1 Key Specification :
- 5.7″ IPS HD display with 1280 X 720 resolution
- 1.2 GHz quad core MediaTek MT6589 chipset processor
- PowerVR SGX544 GPU
- 1GB RAM
- 16GB Internal Memory with expandable microSD
- 12MP back facing camera
- 5MP front facing camera
- 2,600 mAh
- Android 4.2
- 161 X 82.5 X 9.3 mm
- Come with Black / White colors
- Wireless Charging
- Price : RM 1,199
As usual, I will go on my review with different section.
Design & Built Quality
Earlier, I just mentioned premium isn't? When come to premium one to expect a great looking and good material to built the smartphone. Ninetology U9Z1 back housing was built by full aluminium while the front, plastic of course. On first glance, one could easily mistake it as one of the Samsung phone or the back actually resemble alot on HTC Sensation XL. Well, I don't expect much originality on design for company that lack of design or creative team. Just my assumption k?
However, I still admit it look and feel solid when you hold it when I am putting the design aside. The power button is located on right side while volume rocker on left side. On top, the 3.5mm jack phone can be found while the micro USB connector located at bottom. The speaker is placed at back like most of the phones manufacture.
The Ninetology U9Z1 come with dual sim slot and also microSD slot. The slots can be reveal once take out the top part like the picture.
Beware of putting any key or coin in your pocket with the phone as the back aluminium casing easily get scratch. I gotta praise the great IPS display in the phone.
User Interface (UI)
Nothing much to shout on the user interface. It is exactly like vanilla android (Nexus devices) with a minor custom customization by Ninetology.
It has all the features you can find in Vanilla Android Jelly Bean such as home screen widget, user control panel and the photo gallery.
The Ninetology U9Z1 come with 12mp back facing camera that also capable in recording 1080p video @ 30fps.
The camera UI is straight forward. All shooting mode is located on left side while shutter button on right. One of the mode that worth mentioning will be beauty mask which it also works on it's 5MP front facing camera. Bet alot girl gonna love this. My personal opnion, it is too smooth for my liking.
Here some photos sample of Ninetology U9Z1.
Disclaimer : All shot are captured using auto mode. No editing is done on the photos except resizing.
The U9Z1 focus speed is not impressive. It is slow and focus hunting. What worst is it couldn't focus at all during lowlight. I am force to turn on the flash to act as assist light for it focus. The white balance is not balancing at all. It tend to change from warm to cold (most of the time it'll pick warm). However on daylight and outdoor, it perform excellently eventhough the AF speed still slow.
Video & Song Playback
I have no complain watching video in Ninetology U9Z1. The IPS screen perform impressively with color look natural. Not to mention the 5.7" screen size contribute a better viewing leisure.
I am not a serious audiophile. For me, Ninetology U9Z1 perform quite well for the speaker. It is loud enough to get your attention when your phone ringing or when you're listening to song. However, I guess I am still spoiled by HTC One Boomsound.
Packed with 2600 mAh battery I can safely say the Ninetology U9Z1 can survive whole day with average usage. The SOT can easily achieved around 4-5 hours with continuous web browsing, social apps and some gaming.
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It is a phone created with budget concious. But the price wasn't speak so. For me, RM 1,199 price tag is a bit too steep as consumer tend to add abit more to get others brand that already has good profile. Not to mention, there are alots more China phone Android that came with higher quality and spec but lower price tag than this. Ninetology U9Z1 definitely not the only budget phone that come with low price. You can easily grab Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3 or Huawei Ascend Mate which only cost a little bit more. Not to mention Galaxy Mega 6.3 come with LTE. I guess Ninetology need to work hard on revising their strategy and pricing.