Here's what $160 get you in China: a 5.5'' 1080p phone with a 13MP Sony cam, octa-core processor and 3GB RAM

By now, most of you will know that most Chinese handsets come dirt-cheap, even if they're filled to the brim with flagship-level hardware. Xiaomi, OnePlus, Huawei – all three of those offer exactly that and you can usually rest assured that you're getting a quality handset. But there are also smaller companies that still offer you that, and there's no other as recent example of that as the just-announced Jiayu S3.

Now, the name Jiayu is unlikely to ring a bell with... well, pretty much all of you, but it's actually one of the well-established Chinese makers and the company definitely has some experience under its belt. We've had some hands-on time with some of its more recent devices, and we definitely dug what we saw. The problem was, those were a bit on the expensive size (for China, anyway). With the S3, however, Jiayu shows that it is very much capable of changing its strategy.

So, what's the Jiayu S3? Well, it's a 5.5-inch device with a 1080p LTPS display, an LTE-enabled, 64-bit octa-core procoessor (MediaTek MT6752) with eight ARM-A53 cores clocked at 1.7GHz and a dual-core Mali-T760 GPU with support for OpenGL ES 3.0. There's also a 13-megapixel, 5-element Sony IMX214 camera with wide, f/2.0 aperture and a dual LED flash to be found at the back, and a Samsung-made, 5-megapixel, f/2.4selfie snapper at the front. Two SIM slots are available, as well, and so is a small cradle for a microSD card that will allow you to expand storage beyond the 16GB the S3 comes with. All of this is powered by a 3000 mAh juicer and Android 4.4 KitKat. 

And the price? ¥899 or ¥999 ($146/$162) depending on the version – one has 2GB of RAM on board, while the "advanced" model offers 3 gigs. Unfortunately, Jiayu is only accepting pre-orders for the time being, so it might take a while until this budget beast reaches the market.

source: Jiayu (translated) via GizChina



1. D.Aceveda

Posts: 433; Member since: Jun 30, 2012

So a decently spec'd phone can be sold on the cheap. I guess Apple never got that memo.

18. sid07desai

Posts: 290; Member since: May 03, 2012

ummm. Oneplus One? Heard of it?

20. imkyle

Posts: 1116; Member since: Nov 18, 2010

you need an invite so it doesn't count.

23. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

Seriously... The OnePlus One is like tree house club... Do you have an invite? What's the password...? "New England Clam Chowder... Is that the red or the white?" +1

36. ikkuh

Posts: 42; Member since: May 22, 2011

I have one. So for some ppl it counts :)

32. D.Aceveda

Posts: 433; Member since: Jun 30, 2012

A OnePlus One costs more than $160. Are you taking stupid pills today or what?

34. SaintHelena

Posts: 397; Member since: Nov 05, 2014

OnePlus One use qualcom not mediatek. Both were cheap compared to the rest of the pack that use the same chipset.

37. ikkuh

Posts: 42; Member since: May 22, 2011

yes but is is still less than half the price of an iPhone.

2. fouadqr

Posts: 326; Member since: Nov 21, 2012

Cheap crap

5. duartix

Posts: 311; Member since: Apr 01, 2014

Like what? Your comment? For the record, I've been running on a Jiayu G4 for the last year and a half and it's been the most stable, software bulletproof, long enduring smartphone I've ever owned. Apart from the poor GPS (which is common to all MTK6589 chips) this machine has never failed me. Unlike some smartphones from big name companies where the first thing you have to do to get the phone working is to replace the manufacturer's ROM. Funny thing was most of the initial reactions were: "Wow! Is that the new iPhone?"

13. iluvsonynokia

Posts: 161; Member since: Aug 27, 2013

that means you have to buy new phone after 160 days

3. rantao333

Posts: 346; Member since: May 21, 2013

overprice Samsung!!! no wonder they are running downhill.

9. pwnarena

Posts: 1129; Member since: Feb 15, 2013

that's a really stupid comment. they're a business so they will most definitely want to raise their profit margins as much as possible. if you've been reading business news, youi'll realize how stock prices fall when stockholders think the companies they are investing in are underpricing their products. i am not trying to defend samsung. i am trying to defend sanity and reasonability. you have a wide variety of choices. why get mad when you can't afford something? go for the cheap options as you please.

25. Taters

Posts: 6474; Member since: Jan 28, 2013

Samsung shouldn't be the first thing to come to mind. Overpriced is clearly Apple's forte. Out of all the major OEMs, Samsung has the most reasonably priced flagships, and that's what got them to the top. It remains to be seen if the same strategy will work for one of these China companies eventually.

4. laughmi

Posts: 283; Member since: Oct 28, 2014

Chinese will eat up Apple one day.

8. rantao333

Posts: 346; Member since: May 21, 2013

but 1st, samsung died 1st, follow by LG, HTC, SONY

38. ikkuh

Posts: 42; Member since: May 22, 2011

Samsung is still sells most smartphones.

6. everinm

Posts: 9; Member since: Jan 05, 2012

It's make in China like the iphone, about the same quality! LOL

7. pwnarena

Posts: 1129; Member since: Feb 15, 2013

great specs, zero warranty. buy at your own risk.

11. realjjj

Posts: 375; Member since: Jan 28, 2014

Actually Jiayu has some inernational stores, including many in the EU and EU has mandatory 2 years warranty ,unlike the US where everybody offers just 1 year.

10. Cicero

Posts: 1144; Member since: Jan 22, 2014

I really don't understand the price policy of Apple, Samsung, HTC, Sony and Motorola. Also I can't understand why a good western distribution chain do not supply with this hardware and price wise phones from China. Something might be wrong with this. At the bottom line we are talking business here. Whyyyyy?

27. ronako

Posts: 5; Member since: Aug 01, 2014

All these companies you mentioned are publicly traded companies. Their business is to make money. These china phones are so cheap either due to cheaper parts, the intent to build a customer base, or just trying to establish marketshare. I'd imagine their profits are razor slim, or heck they're losing money per phone.

12. itsdeepak4u2000

Posts: 3718; Member since: Nov 03, 2012

Hell... I wanna go to China.

14. greenelektron

Posts: 537; Member since: Sep 10, 2014

If its from China, it must be a real deal. LOL to xodiom.

15. Hamid.Z

Posts: 8; Member since: Dec 03, 2014

Other companies should follow in their footsteps !!!!

16. kaikuheadhunterz

Posts: 1157; Member since: Jul 18, 2013

I hope they ship to most, if not all countries. Would love to buy one of these

17. MTT84

Posts: 50; Member since: Sep 20, 2014

You can buy all Chinese phones on a lot of Chinese webshops.

19. starandmountain

Posts: 53; Member since: Apr 01, 2012

just sent them an email, i gonna give it a try

21. rinque85

Posts: 20; Member since: Mar 12, 2014

Does it support AT&T's LTE?

28. ronako

Posts: 5; Member since: Aug 01, 2014

I doubt it. Unless specifically sold in the US, I doubt it supports AT&T LTE. I think it just supports the LTE in china.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.