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Vernee announces the Apollo Lite: an affordable metal beauty

Advertorial by Vernee: the opinions expressed in this story may not reflect the positions of PhoneArena! 

It's a great time we live in when a cool metal construction and a fingerprint scanner lock aren't limited to just the most expensive of smartphones. Fierce competition and aggressive pricing from various up-and-coming manufacturers have raised the bar, and a smartphone can't hope to sell well unless it packs a respectable hardware and the looks to boot. Smartphone slinger Vernee shows that it understands these unwritten rules with its recently-announced handset – the Apollo Lite.

Design


Wrapped in metal, with a Gorilla Glass 3 panel at the front that is arched at the corners, and an ergonomically curved back, the handset looks decidedly modern. The screen is built with Sharp IGZO technology and has a 5.5-inch diagonal and a 1080 x 1920 pixel resolution. Thanks to an impressive screen-to-body ratio of 72%, its footprint is still fairly manageable, measuring at 5.98 x 3 x 0.35 in (152 x 76.2 x 8.9 mm). The Apollo Lite has a set of sleek-looking hardware buttons on its right — a power key and a volume rocker. There are no capacitive navigational controls on the front, since the phone utilizes Android's own virtual buttons. There's a fingerprint sensor at the back, which also has the capability of waking the screen, and can unlock the phone for as fast as 0.1 seconds.

Hardware and camera


On the inside, it's powered by MediaTek's own Helio X20 SoC with with 10 cores split in three clusters, each designed to handle a different type of workload (Tri-Cluster technology). It has 4 GB of LPDDR3 RAM and 32 GB of internal memory, which can also be expanded via microSD of up to 128 GB. The handset's USB port is of the reversible Type-C variety and also supports digital audio output, if you happen to own a pair of Type-C earplugs, but there's also a standard 3,5 mm audio jack to be found at the top. The device comes with a pure, untampered with Android 6.0 Marshmallow, but if you want a Vernee signature experience, you will be able to download the company's own VOS operating system from its support forums.


The phone's non-removable battery has a capacity of 3,180 mAh, which can be charged to 50% in just 30 minutes, thanks to MediaTek's Pump Express 3 quick charging technology. 

For its main camera, the Apollo Lite utilizes Samsung's 16 MP S5K3P3 sensor tucked behind an F2.0 aperture lens. The sensor utilizes Samsung's ISOCELL technology, which places physical barriers between individual pixels to eliminate color crosstalk. The snapper is assisted by phase detection autofocus and a dual-tone LED flash, while on the inside, a pair of image signal processors take care for the picture quality. On the front, we have a 5 MP selfie camera with Samsung's 5E2 sensor — one that Sammy uses on its own midrange smartphones.


As always, if you are planning on buying an exotic smartphone, you need to make sure that it supports your carrier's bands. The Vernee Apollo Lite supports WCDMA 900/2100MHz for 3G, FDD-LTE 800/1800/2100/2600MHz for 4G, and GSM 850/900/1800MHz for some good-old 2G telephony.

Price and launch


Vernee currently has the phone up for pre-sale, posted on the pages of various 3rd party retailers (officially endorsed at Vernee's own "Buy now" page). It's available in "Space Grey" or "Moonlight Silver", priced at $229.99, and there's a $30 discount coupon offered if you participate in a giveaway by sharing the company's page. The pre-purchased handsets are meant to ship out on July the 20th, after which date, the Apollo Lite will be available for instant purchases.

Official pre-sale website: Vernee Apollo Lite

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