Oppo Find 7a Review
Interface and functionality
Double-tap-to-wake is a must for this form factor, and the Find 7a has it! It's also packing a skinned, but ultimately simplistic and user-friendly mod on Android.
Powering the Find 7a software-wise is Oppo's ColorOS, on top of of Android 4.3 Jelly Bean. We felt like ColorOS strikes a fine balance between offering extra functionality and keeping things simple and accessible. On the whole, ColorOS differentiates itself from your average Android handset in three main ways. Considering the size of the device, we're definitely happy to see that Oppo is joining up with manufacturers like LG by offering double-tap-to-wake type functionality to the 7a – simply tapping the screen twice will both wake and put the screen to sleep.
We also dig Oppo's inclusion of gestures. Two of those come by default, and can be drawn directly on the screen when it's locked – a shortcut to the camera (draw an “O”) and one for the flashlight (draw a “V”). You can create your own gestures and define their behavior (i.e. open a specific app, or directly call your mom), but these won't work if the screen is off. Instead, you'll have to swipe the top left side of the status bar to open the so-called gesture panel, which kind of defeats the idea of quick access.
The third and last more interesting feature of the 7a is its access to the very extensive treasure troves of themes available right through a built-in app. So you can change the look and style of both your home and lock screens – for example, you can easily transform the Find 7a to look alike stock Android. Of course, the settings menus and built-in Oppo apps will only see a change in icons – everything else will look as the manufacturer initially intended it.
Speaking of those, ColorOS leaves no stone unturned. Essential apps like the Dialer, Contacts, Calendar, Messages, and E-mail, all have seen intervention from Oppo, but we, again, like their simplistic, down-to-the-point, but modern look and standard functioning. Of course, Oppo hasn't missed the opportunity to add some extra apps, and most of these are actually useful. For example, we found that the built-in Guest mode is one of the better implementations of the functionality: you essentially can get two unlock patterns working simultaneously – one for you, and one for your children. In the same vein, we found the pre-loaded App encryption app handy – it essentially allows you to lock certain apps, like the Gallery, where you may have sensitive content. Last, but not least, the Permission Monitor app allows you to keep track of which apps are making use of what kind of data and functionality on your phone. What's more, you can deny certain privileges on a per-app basis.
Processor and memory
It's simple: the Find 7a offers more power than you'll know what to do with.
The Oppo Find 7a finished in the top 5 of our best performers when it came to synthetic benchmarks, and that's not surprising in the slightest. Packing a monstrous, 2.3GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 chip and 2GB of RAM, neither apps, nor games, can manage the feat of pressuring the silicone inside. The Find 7a powers through everything, from the basics, like navigating around the UI, through heavy gaming titles almost with a smirk.
You'll find 16GB of storage on board with the 7a, but you do have the option to expand through a microSD card for up to 128GB more.
Internet and connectivity
With such a beastly processor ticking underneath the Find 7a's exterior, it should be no surprise to hear that browsing on Oppo's new device is a frills-free experience. The phone loads even heavier pages quickly, and navigating even full-sized websites is a breeze thanks to the responsive nature of the built-in Chrome browser.
As can be expected, the 7a also offers a sizable cache of connectivity options. There's Bluetooth 4.0, NFC, 5GHz Wi-Fi, and A-GPS, along with FDD-LTE with support for bands 1, 3, 7, and 20.