The Meizu M2 is here and it's a lot of phone for a shockingly affordable MSRP of less than $100. Meizu is one of the growing stars in the phone industry: a brand from China, it has quickly expanded its presence throughout most of Europe, and while it has not conquered the United States yet, you can still buy its phones via multiple third party resellers (for a slight premium over their official asking price).
Naturally, buyers in the Western world might be wondering if there are any caveats to a phone offered at such a low price: the short answer is 'no'. In fact, this price tag is standard for the affordable tier of phones in China, where the Meizu M2 will enter direct competition with Xiaomi's Redmi 2 and the Lenovo K3 (among others), offered for the same price.
Could this be the best 5-inch affordable phone?
What makes the Meizu M2 stand out, however, is its clean and extremely smoothly-running Flyme UI running on top of Android 5.1
Lollipop on the M2. The skin has smooth animations and impressive performance (it also comes with the Google Play Store pre-installed and Meizu phones can be rooted with a single click, a stock software feature).
Here is a quick run-down of the specs of the Meizu M2:
Platform: Android 5.1 with Flyme 4.5 skin
Screen: 5-inch 720P LCD display (294ppi)
System chip: MediaTek MT6735 (1.3GHz Cortex A53 quad-core CPU, with Mali T720 GPU)
RAM: 2GB LPDDR3
Internal storage: 16GB (expandable to 128GB via microSD cards)
Cameras: 13-megapixel f/2.0 main cam, 5-megapixel front cam
Colors: white, blue, pink, gray
Price: $96 (599 yuan)
When compared to its extremely popular affordable phablet sibling, the 5.5-inch Meizu M2 Note
, one can see that the Meizu M2 cuts some corners: the 5-inch screen features a 720 x 1280-pixel
resolution (vs 1080p on the M2 Note), and the system chip is the less capable MT6735 (vs the MT6753). We would not consider those deal-breakers in any way, though: the display is still sharp with pixel density close to that of, say, the iPhone, while the system chip is on par with the Snapdragon 410 used in devices like the new Moto G
(however, the Moto G costs twice as much).
One thing that we're particularly curious about, though, is the camera. The Meizu M2 features the same 13MP/5MP (rear/front) camera setup as the M2 Note, and we're hopeful that it will also deliver the same very good quality from those snappers.
Overall, the phone has dimensions just slightly larger than the iPhone 6
(if we were to compare it with a mainstream device) and it will offer the now traditional for China dual SIM configuration (one micro SIM slot and a nano SIM slot that doubles as a microSD card slot).