Cherry Mobile One Review

Android One Experience at Php3,999

The Cherry Mobile One, is Cherry Mobile’s Android One device that is already in our market. It retained the interestingly cheap price of Android One ($99) for our market at just Php3,999.

I decided to grab one as it is a no doubt, a good valued smartphone under Php4k. It runs on stock Android 5.0 Lollipop, and will continuously receive new Android updates in the future. The device’s specification is balanced as per its price tag, but the biggest selling point here is: it is Android One.

Cherry Mobile One Review

Quick Look on Cherry Mobile One Specs

  • Android 5.0 (Lollipop)
  • 1.3 GHz Quad Core
  • 4.5″ TFT Capacitive Asahi Glass LCD
  • 8GB ROM, expandable up to 64gb MicroSD
  • 1GB RAM
  • Dual Micro Sim
  • 5MP Main Camera with BSI support, 2MP Front Camera
  • 1780mAH Battery Capacity
  • *Receives 2 year update from Google

Cherry Mobile One Unboxing

Cherry Mobile One Unboxing

Out of the box, here are the stuff you’ll get:

  • Cherry Mobile One unit, battery and 8GB micro SD card included
  • wall charger
  • USB charging and data cable
  • earphones
  • manuals

Here’s an unboxing video I made:

Accessories

Cherry Mobile One Charger

The Charger is at 1A output and it reminds me of the design of my Xiaomi Mi3’s wall charger. It won’t charge as fast as a 1.5A or 2A charger but at least its on the safe standard.

Cherry Mobile One USB cable

The cable is pretty much a generic one but it is not too thin nor too stiff. Luckily, I did not experienced ghost touch or grounding issues while using this charger on the Cherry Mobile One. All good.

Cherry Mobile One earphones

Earphones with soft ear buds, gone are the days of those hard plastic ear buds that sore my ears due to its size. No volume control though, only a button for maybe answering and ending a phone call. Audio output performance, decent.

An 8GB micro SD card is included for free which is also a nice deal.

As for other accessories, no accessories yet available as the Cherry Mobile One is just fresh on the market.

Design and Build

Cherry Mobile One Front

I like the design of the Cherry Mobile One. It is not like the other older released smartphones with bulky bar design, when you hold it and grip it with your hand, you won’t even think its just a Php3,999 phone. The front side of the device is clean simple, no capacitive touch buttons on the bottom part.

Cherry Mobile One Back

The back has a slight darkish silver coat, or space-gray tint which is elegant for my taste. Cherry Mobile’s signature on its every device is its logo text on the middle portion of the back plate. On the lower part is the Android One logo text along side the speakers. On the upper part, situated is the non-protruding circular camera lens with a circle LED flash as well.

Cherry Mobile One Top

The headphone port is on top.

Cherry Mobile One Bottom

Micro USB port on the bottom.

Cherry Mobile One Right Side

On the right side is where the volume rocker and the power button is located.

Cherry Mobile One Left Side

Nothing in particular on the other side.

Cherry Mobile One Internal

Two slots for micro-SIM cards, and an SD card slot is what you can see underneath. These aren’t hot-swappable as the battery blocks the way in/out. The battery included is a decent 1780mAh which is removable.

Overall, the Cherry Mobile One has that ergonomic feel, perfect for one-hand operation. The size makes grip comfortable, let alone the weight as if you are not holding anything. (this is coming from a long-time user of a 5-inch Xiaomi Mi3 with a Rock Case) That is also why I have been mistakenly pressing the volume rockers instead of the power button on the Cherry Mobile One as it has the reversed placement on my current phone.

It doesnt have capacitive touch buttons but the big gap from the bottom bezel seems odd for me. It really looks like that space was intended for those buttons, or maybe I am just being OC.

Display

Cherry Mobile One Display

The Cherry Mobile One has 4.5 inches display with FWVGA resolution of 854x480pixels. Papers says its TFT, not IPS but when I try to look at it on different angles, I can still see the display so clear.

Having my eye trained on looking at my full HD and retina devices everyday, I can somehow tell the difference of looking at this 218ppi display of the Cherry Mobile One. However, I’ll give a verdict to the display of the Cherry Mobile One as not being the worst, but the sweet spot for its price tag. If this will be your first Android smartphone, then there will be no issues for you as the pixel density won’t be noticeable.

Display is 5-point multi-touch.

User Interface and OS

Cherry Mobile One Interface

The Cherry Mobile One runs on Android 5.1 Lollipop, the Material Design for its apps and the overall general UI is nothing but pure pleasure. The feeling of using stock and full vanilla Android is satisfying. Only one non-Google app is present with the Cherry Mobile One and that is the eWarranty app of Cherry Mobile.

Navigation drawer pops out quickly and lag-free. Transitions are really smooth, and the overall goodness of the material feel is all thanks to Android L.

Performance

The Cherry Mobile One is equipped with the MediaTek MT6582m quad-core processor that is clocked at 1.3GHz. Paired with that is the Mali-400 GPU, it is a common configuration for affordable quad-core phones in the market nowadays. Performance-wise, this configuration is enough for your daily use, be on apps or games, it will be able to deliver a satisfying experience.

Benchmarks

For the geeks, here are some benchmark tests results:

Gaming Tests

With the Mali-400 GPU, we can expect decent performance enough to play casual games. Clash of Clans runs smooth. I have yet to try other demanding games, if you have suggestions or requests please let me know.

Camera

Cherry Mobile One Camera Review

The camera on the Cherry Mobile One is just a 5MP shooter in the rear with LED flash, and a 2MP front-facing camera. Nothing stellar, but still not a bad performer. Cheap price of the device means cheaper optics so we cannot really complain.

Here are some test shots, just click on the image for the full size:

IMG_20150224_041503

IMG_20150224_041613

IMG_20150224_041515

IMG_20150224_040149

IMG_20150224_040850

IMG_20150224_041043

IMG_20150224_035605

 

At default settings, the Cherry Mobile One’s camera blurs out what’s not in focus. However, the I feel that the camera takes some time to finally snap the image. The camera app here is Google’s official Google Camera app.

Here’s a sample of the camera shot, indoor, night time.

IMG_20150224_054855

without flash

 

IMG_20150224_054840

flash fired

Here are sample selfie shot on the 2MP front camera.

IMG_20150224_035946

daylight, outdoor

 

IMG_20150224_054406

night time, indoor

With the Google Camera app, you can take photos while video recording. Here’s a sample one:

IMG_20150224_040320

There are also Panorama, Motion Blur and Photo Sphere shooting modes for the Cherry Mobile One. Here’s a sample of the Motion Blur shot:

IMG_20150224_040227

Here’s a sample of the Panorama shot:PANO_20150224_041057

As per the Photo Sphere, I still cant figure out how to make a good one. Haha.

For video shooting, here is the rear camera video recording:

Here’s a front camera video test:

Battery

The Cherry Mobile One has 1780mAh battery, we cannot expect much at this capacity but thanks to Lollipop, the Cherry Mobile One isn’t much of a power hog. I kept the device idle with wifi on, overnight and the battery didn’t drop by noticeable percent. I will update this post for a more detailed battery usage statistics after a few days.

Misc

Cherry Mobile One boot time is just less than 30 secs. Here’s a video:


However, at first boot, when you recently bought the device, it will take up to 5 minutes before it fully boots up. It will say, starting apps, optimizing, etc. It is ART doing its job. This will only occur at the very first boot.

Screenshot_2015-02-25-15-14-58

At fresh boot, 620MB+ free RAM is available.

Screenshot_2015-02-25-15-15-11

Out of the 8GB ROM configuration, you’ll have 5GB of usable internal storage space.

Screenshot_2015-02-24-04-44-58

Android L tells you how much more minutes you need to fully charge the Cherry Mobile One.

No OTG support for the Cherry Mobile One, I tested it and yes it doesn’t detects removable storage drives via OTG. Also, no file manager pre-installed, however you can easily download one from the Playstore. No move to SD card support for installed apps and games.

Conclusion

The Cherry Mobile One is an impressive device, talking about its price-point, specifications and the Android One itself. If you are looking into getting a smartphone, and your budget is just Php4k tops, this one is definitely a good buy. Although using Android L to its fullest capabilities with its new features, transitioning from Kitkat will need some time for one to grasp. “Sabagay, sanayan lang yan, masasabi ko maganda talaga itong Android One.”

The biggest selling point of the Cherry Mobile One is its Android 5.1 Lollipop OS and the guarantee of new Android updates in the future.

I only have the device for 2 days, I will continue to update this review when necessary.

Things to update:

  • detailed battery usage statistics
  • gaming tests
  • sms/call functionality (haven’t bought a micro-SIM yet)
  • bugs encountered

Post on the comments sections below for other stuff that interests you and I missed.

UPDATE: Battery Test and Gaming Test

Search terms:  cherry mobile one otg update, fast charge xiaomi

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