ZTE ZMAX Review

Call Quality

More times than none, you’re going to ask you callers to repeat themselves frequently.

Voices through the earpiece exhibit a subtle robotic tone, but its volume output is ample enough to discern our callers under noisy environments. However, that’s not the case with the speakerphone – not only because of its weak output, but also due to the hollow voices it produces. On the other end of the line, though, our callers have no complaints about the rich and clear voices they’re given.

Battery

A big phone deserves a big battery! And boy is it long lasting.

Stuffed inside its body is a massive sized 3400 mAh battery, which permits us close to two days of normal usage from a full charge. No doubt, it’s pretty darn good, but it even reaches a great mark in our battery benchmark test – where it achieves an impressive tally of 10 hours 53 minutes.

We measure battery life by running a custom web-script, designed to replicate the power consumption of typical real-life usage. All devices that go through the test have their displays set at 200-nit brightness.

hours Higher is better
ZTE ZMAX
10h 53 min (Excellent)
Huawei Ascend Mate 2 4G
11h 26 min (Excellent)
Samsung Galaxy Mega 5.8
5h 11 min (Poor)
Sony Xperia T2 Ultra
10h 16 min (Excellent)


Conclusion


Looking at the overall package, we can say that the ZTE ZMAX is as generic as they get, but for a phablet, we’re content to know that it’s accompanied with an affordable price tag of $252 outright. Certainly, it’s the least features rich phablet we’ve come across, as it mostly provides a stock Android experience. Then again, for those looking for a competitively priced phablet that won’t break the bank, it provides enough quality elements to give consumers a valuable offering they can surely grow to love.

Software version of the review unit:
Android Version: 4.4.2
Baseband Version: P892T57B01
Kernel Version: 3.4.0-g9b6969a-00468-g8a5deba



Pros

  • Inexpensively priced phablet
  • Impressive battery life
  • Mostly stock Android experience is simple & intuitive
  • Multi-tasking element when it comes to playing videos
  • Camera app has a lot of useful shooting modes & manual controls

Cons

  • Generic looking design
  • Zero software features that would enhance the experience
  • Slow focus & snapshot with the camera, which results in blurring
  • Visible distortion at wide viewing angles
  • Speakerphone is weak for phone calls

PhoneArena Rating:

8.0

User Rating:

9.3
9 Reviews

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8 Comments

1. bugsbunny00

Posts: 2264; Member since: Jun 07, 2013

better than xperia T2 ultra

2. Telemike

Posts: 43; Member since: Nov 30, 2012

I can't believe it's taller than the Huawei. I have held the ascend Mate 2 and it's big and has a bigger screen at 6.1" for $50 more although you can't finance it thru T-Mobile and it doesn't have wi-fi calling

3. Adrian38

Posts: 142; Member since: Nov 05, 2012

Such a shame that this device is only for T-Mobile. If they would have sold it unlocked, I would have definitely picked one up.

4. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

You can still buy one outright and have it unlocked, can't you? It just so happens to support AT&T's other LTE bands...

5. Planterz

Posts: 2120; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

Thanks for the review John V. I'm only mildly interested in this phone (gonna save instead for a Nexus 6), but a friend of mine is extremely interested. He's not wealthy, and wants something BIG, but can't afford something like a Note 3. He just wants it for Netflix, some games (mainly emulators), etc. I think this is the perfect phone for him, and LTE is just icing on the cake. Are there plans to review the Samsung Galaxy Avant from T-Mobile? It's a well-priced low-mid end device, and the fact that you can download an app to carrier unlock it and use it on AT&T (or other North American GSM carriers) makes it an intriguing and slightly puzzling phone.

6. griffin8r73

Posts: 1; Member since: Oct 19, 2014

Yeah, here's your review of the Avant. It's a piece of crap. It crashes at the slightest app taxation. Its battery capacity is worse than most flip phones. Garbage, garbage, garbage. Really a disappointment from a company like Samsung, as though they wanted to put out something that would make sure broke people wanted to over-extend themselves to get the good stuff, rather than make a decent phone for a mid-range price.

7. MoonlitTear

Posts: 52; Member since: Jun 09, 2008

I feel kinda bad for as I got this phone for a steal. My Walmart sells Univision Mobile. A T-Mobile MVNO that just happened to carry the ZTE Max @199 dollars. But last week, we had a clearance fire sale of them. I picked this up for 58.43 after tax and 2 Yr Replacement plan. I LOVE it!! It is doing everything I need it too, and it's SOOOOO big. My only qualm is I think I am gonna have to root if I want Android 5.x on this. But overall I am thrilled with the phone, although getting it for only 58 bucks helps too. Check out your local walmart people! :D

8. youngkim3000

Posts: 1; Member since: May 10, 2016

I have had this phone for over a year and I really like it. For the price, it is unbeatable. I paid only about $129. I like that it has a large screen, is very thin, and is quite reliable and sturdy. The battery lasts all day. Sure, maybe the iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy 6 is better, but they cost over 4 TIMES as much. Customer support is good too. I highly recommend it. Have a blessed day everyone! :)
ZMAX
  • Display 5.7" 720 x 1280 pixels
  • Camera 8 MP / 1.6 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 400, Quad-core, 1200 MHz
  • Storage 16 GB + microSDHC
  • Battery 3400 mAh(14h talk time)

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