If you’re looking for a 4G LTE smart phone on budget, BenQ’s value for money 4G LTE smart phones are even more affordable with its year end promo. The BenQ F5 and BenQ T3 smart phones are getting extra RM100 off and they come bundled with additional free screen protector and casing.
The BenQ F5 which used to be priced at RM799, can be yours for only RM699 while its entry-level BenQ T3 has been reduced from RM599 to RM499. The BenQ T3 is probably the most affordable 4G LTE smart phone right now, undercutting the Oppo Neo 5 that’s priced at RM598. Despite its low RM499 price tag, the BenQ T3 gets a better 4.5″ display that pushes qHD (960×540) and a higher 8MP main camera which also supports Ultra-Sensitivity Low light mode. Powering the T3 is a proven 1.2GHz Quad-Core Snapdragon 400 processor with 1GB of RAM and it is juiced up with a 1,900mAh capacity battery.
The BenQ F5 stands out for having a much generous 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage and a larger 2,500mAh capacity battery. That’s quite a lot in comparison with other 5″ smart phones like the ASUS ZenFone 5 and Moto G 4G LTE edition. The BenQ F5 processor is identical with the BenQ T3 and it gets a better 13MP BSI main camera and a front facing 2MP shooter.
You can get more details of both devices in our earlier BenQ announcement post.
Getting a mobile device is a big deal because they cost a lot. Even if you’re going for a budget device, it still costs money and the risk of losing or damaging the device is high, and most of the time it’s your wallet that’s going feel the pitch.
It’s a good thing then there is now a service the protects your mobile device from accidental damage and then some.
From RM179 per year (depending on the price of the phone), the Ingram Micro Cover Plus – Essential service protects your device and accompanying accessories against accidental damage including liquid or water damage, as well as phone bill and contract burden up to RM1,000 for pre-paid and post paid subscribers on any mobile network. The service is underwritten by Zurich Insurance Malaysia and offers repair and replacement for your mobile device up to RM3,500 in value.
You also get worldwide coverage, free pick-up and delivery for repairs and replacement with like-for-like device. There’s 3 months warranty on all repairs made and an additional 3 months extended warranty on top of your device manufacturer’s warranty. There is also a dedicated toll-free technical hotline which operates from 8a.m. to 8p.m. (Monday – Friday) to assist and guide noobs on how to use their mobile devices.
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Chinese smart phone manufacturers are usually slower than the rest when it comes to software updates. Xiaomi which is trying to expand internationally would definitely need to step up their software game if they plan to take on its bigger rivals. In an interview with Hugo Barra, who was the face of Android previously, says that upgrading to the latest Android Lollipop would be his number 1 priority from a product perspective for its global business.
As MIUI is heavily customised with its own look and feel, the challenge is to consolidate Google’s new Material Design with its own custom interface. Xiaomi’s hi-end Mi devices would be getting Android 5.0 Lollipop by Q1 2015 as an MIUI 6 update. Meanwhile its affordable Redmi series will be getting it too but they can’t give an exact timeline just yet.
The interview also shared Xiaomi’s interest in Google’s new Android One program of making affordable smart phones with stock Android OS. They definitely want to jump on board but it all depends on timing. Currently their main focus is to push 4G handsets in India and they recently launched the Redmi Note 4G over there.
It is the year end season and most people would be clearing their leaves ahead of 2015. If you’re travelling abroad, Maxis is now offering unlimited voice calls made overseas when you subscribe to its RM38/day DataRoam pass at 25 selected countries. This is only applicable for MaxisOne Plan, MaxisOne Plan Lite, Business One Plan & Business One Plan Lite subscribers that currently enjoy limitless voice calls.
The 25 countries are Australia, Brazil, Cambodia, China, Czech, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Macau, Mexico, Norway, Philippines, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, UK and USA. The unlimited voice call promo covers calls made back to Malaysia, current country and 3rd country. All you’ll need is to subscribe to its DataRoam package by dialling *100#. According to its FAQ, if a call is being made before 12AM and ends after the DataRoam expiry, the voice call might be charged with standard voice call roaming rates. Take note that answering incoming calls while roaming is still chargeable. This unlimited roaming call offer expires on 31st December 2014.
With Maxis’s worry free proposition, you’ll be automatically connected to their Roaming telco partner at supported countries. This means you won’t need to worry about connecting to the wrong foreign telco that might result bill shocks due to standard pay per use charges. In case you didn’t know, Maxis also offers 4G LTE while roaming in Hong Kong, France, Taiwan, Brunei, Philippines, Japan and Korea. While DataRoam is listed as unlimited, there’s a Fair Use Policy of either 250MB (selected 16 countries) or 50MB/day depending on country. There’s no excess charge but speeds might be throttled.
For more information, visit Maxis’s DataRoam promo page.
The Chinese smart phone makers are making headlines this year and we’ve seen OPPO, Xiaomi and mostly recently Meizu making their way to Malaysia. The OPPO N1 can be regarded as one of the early pioneers for selfie-centric smart phone thanks to its rotatable 13MP main camera. Most recently they have replaced it with a better and motorised version on the N3.
If you think that’s cool, wait until you check out the Doov Nike V1, another Chinese smart phone that seems to mimic OPPO’s camera approach.
For starters, the Desire EYE is a selfie-centric device that comes with 13MP camera and dual-LED flash on both front and back. Despite its mid-range “Desire” name, the Desire EYE is on par with its flagship devices as it runs on a familiar 2.5GHz Quad-Core Snapdragon 801 processor with 2GB of RAM, along with 16GB of on-board storage.
Also included is a microSD expansion slot, 4G LTE, NFC and WiFi 802.11ac. To capture moments in more situations, the Desire EYE is also water resistant with IPX7 rating (1 metre deep for 30 minutes). The battery is quite small though, at 2,400mAh capacity. Apart from its hardware, HTC has also introduced its EYE Experience on its camera app, that opens up new imaging possibilities. The HTC EYE Experience was recently rolled out to current HTC One M8 devices via OTA (over the air) update.
At the moment, the Desire EYE imported unit is being sold at RM1,759.
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The OPPO N3 which was announced recently is finally open for pre-orders in Malaysia. The 5.5″ Selfie-centric device with its 16MP self-rotating camera is priced officially at RM2,098 and it will be available on New Year’s day (1st January 2015).
Similar with their ultra-thin OPPO R5, they are giving extra freebies worth RM406 to those that place their RM100 booking deposit. For the first 3,000 OPPO N3 pre-orders, they are giving out a rapid car charger, screen protector and an O-Click 2.0 bluetooth remote which can be used to control the camera. The pre-order starts from today, 26th November until 20th December. You can place your RM100 booking deposit at their authorised outlets nationwide. The OPPO N3 is currently offered in white colour only.
Lenovo Malaysia has finally brought in its Vibe Z2 Pro, its flagship phablet that could take on the likes of the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and Huawei Ascend Mate 7. The Vibe Z2 Pro is offered at RM2,299 and Lenovo is bundling a JBL E-40 Bluetooth headphone worth RM428. Earlier this month, the Vibe Z2 Pro was offered at RM2,199 for its grey import unit.
The Vibe Z2 Pro is quite a beast in both size and specs. The front gets a 6.0″ Quad HD display that pushes a highly dense 490ppi (pixels per inch) while underneath it is running on a 2.5GHz Quad-Core Snapdragon 801 (MSM8974AC) processor with 3GB of RAM and has 32GB of storage which is non-expandable. Considering Quad HD resolution could take a hit on battery life, the Vibe Z2 Pro packs a massive 4,000mAh capacity battery but it still manages to be slim at just 7.7mm thick. Overall, it weighs a little bit heavier at 179 grams.
Honor Malaysia will be introducing its Honor 3C Lite smart phone, an affordable version of its cheap and cheerful Honor 3C. The retail price is listed at RM449 but VMall.my online store will be offering it for only RM399 when pre-order starts this Friday, 28th November 2014. As an added bonus, Honor is also giving 10 lucky buyers a chance to win a holiday trip to Langkawi.
To recap on the specs, the Honor 3C Lite retains most of the Honor 3C hardware which includes a 5″ HD 720p display, dual-SIM 3G capability, Quad-Core 1.3GHz MediaTek processor and a 8MP BSI main camera. Being a “Lite” device, it gets just 1GB RAM (Honor 3C: 2GB), a smaller 2MP front facing camera (Honor 3C: 5MP) and a 2,000mAh (Honor 3C: 2,300mAh) capacity battery.
On the flip side, you do get double the on-board storage at 16GB. For expansion, it also supports microSD cards up to 32GB and out of the box it runs on Android 4.4 KitKat along with its EMUI. For better peace of mind, the Honor 3C Lite is backed up with a 1 to 1 swap warranty within 180 days of purchase.
If you’re interested, the pre-order will be happening at VMall.my at 10:00AM this Friday.
The non-removable back cover is held together in place with adhesive. After that, almost everything else is fasten together with typical T3 Torx screws and there are 22 of them. The battery and its wireless charging coil are glued on, making it tougher but not impossible to replace.
For its 13MP camera, it uses the popular Sony IMX214 Exmor RS camera that’s assisted by Optical Image Stabiliser. For the screen, the digitiser is fused together with the front display making replacements a little more costly. Overall, iFixit gave the Nexus 6 a repairability score of 7 out of 10.
Check out the teardown video and step by step guide after the break.