It seems that high-end Android smartphones are still set to come in all shapes and sizes, with Sony Launching a new Xperia Z1 Compact device, ZTE has gone the other way and launched a 5.5-inch phone. Here’s our ZTE Grand S 2 hands-on review.
On paper, the ZTE Grand S 2 looks like a solid high-end Android smartphone, it ticks all of the specs boxes and looks great. The big 5.5-inch 1080p HD (401ppi) screen is incredibly bright and clear; the 13MP rear-camera is plenty; the Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 has more than enough oomph to drive the phone; 2GB of RAM is ample; 16GB of internal storage is okay especailly when coupled with a microSD card slot. And from our brief time with the device, we found that the phone operated smoothly for the most part, however there was the occasional moment of lag when flicking around the home screen, which isn’t a great sign for a brand new smartphone.
The ZTE Grand S 2, felt good in our hands, it was pretty solid and didn’t feel flimsy at all even though it has a removable plastic rear. As with any 5-inch and above smartphone there were places on the screen that we couldn’t reach with our thumb when using one handed, however ZTE has a nifty solution for this. ZTE has a unique be of software that allows you to float a shortcut menu and return/back buttons anywhere on the smartphone, so you can still operate your big screen smartphone one handed. This is a great feature of the ZTE Grand S 2 and previous ZTE smartphones.
There is another piece of software that ZTE were keen to show off on the Grand S 2, and this was a Car Mode voice recognition mode that recognises different individuals voices and will respond accordingly. The idea behind this is that a driver can enable Car Mode when driving with hands-free activated and still be in control of his/her smartphone, all without other passengers interfering. This is something we will be testing in full when we get a review unit sent into the office.
The question that we keep asking ourselves is how does this measure up to the already established big screened Android smartphone market. The harsh truth is that on first impressions, the ZTE Grand S 2 only seems to be keeping pace with the market. The specs and performance of this handset have no wow factor, and if anything, are a little behind the front runners such as Sony, LG and Samsung. The one key feature that this phone as is the individual voice recognition Car Mode and unless
ZTE give this smartphone a budget price tag, the early signs suggest that it is going to be hard to recommend buying the ZTE Grand S 2 over its established competitors.
We will be reviewing the ZTE Grand S 2 in full in the coming weeks.