Lenovo PHAB Plus Review
When we sat down with Lenovo way back during MWC 2015 earlier in the year, they managed to pique our attention when they teased to us an early prototype of this phablet-esque device they were developing. Despite it being non-functional, the chassis alone got us intrigued because of its premium construction and svelte footprint. That prototype, nevertheless, turned out to be the Lenovo PHAB Plus – a 6.8-inch phablet monster that’s priced inexpensively. Now that it’s here in the flesh, can it still deliver the same level of intrigue?
The package contains:
- Lenovo PHAB Plus
- microUSB cable
- Wall charger
You’d think it’s an iPhone 6 Plus clone based on its uncanny resemblance.
Using it as a daily driver, its size is what draws the most attention when we’re using it deliberately or inconspicuously in public. It certainly doesn’t have any issue commanding attention, primarily because of its sturdy metal chassis, skinny profile, and relatively substantial build quality. For a phone with a 6.8-inch screen, Lenovo does reasonably to trim off as much of the fat as they can – though, it’s still wide in the hand.
Another thing worth pointing out is just its uncanny resemblance to the iPhone 6 Plus. From the two screws flanking the microUSB port, to the positioning of the antenna bands on the back, and just the overall resemblance of the phone, there’s no denying it’s almost a clone! Regardless of that, it’s just incredible how much attention it’s able to stir up with its design. Undoubtedly, it’s the kind of thing that’s always a conversation starter when you’re with a group of friends and decide to whip it out.
Looking around the PHAB Plus, the power and volume controls are placed on the right edge of the phone, offering good feedback when they’re pressed. Their positioning is standard, but we feel it might have been smarter if Lenovo moved them a bit lower down the edge, making it easier to reach them on such a large phone. The 3.5mm headphone jack is positioned on the top left corner, while the microUSB port and microphone are found on the bottom. As for the speaker, it occupies a good chunk of space along the top section of the back.
The punchy color tones of the display make it striking, but it’s the vast size that normally accrues more of the attention.
In true phablet fashion, the Lenovo PHAB Plus draws a lot of attention for its 6.8-inch 1080 x 1920 IPS-LCD display. While its 324 ppi pixel density isn’t ground breaking, it’s more than enough to comfortably visualize sharp details on the screen from a normal distance. Without question, though, its vast size lends its usefulness for multimedia consumption.
Visually speaking, our eyes fancy the punchy colors it produces; it just has that polarizing glow to catch our attention. And even though it doesn’t necessarily hit all the target values in the sRGB color spectrum chart, its color reproduction is well within the threshold of making it perceived as accurate. Its ~7200K color temperature gives the panel a slight cold tone, but it's not such a big deviation from the standard. The biggest challenge for the display is its weak peak luminance of 255 nits, which makes it unusable outdoors.
Quickly glancing on the specs, there’s nothing that really jumps out, but at the end of the day, it’s the generous 6.8-inches of real estate that gives it more precedence over the typical phablet.