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Saturday, December 22, 2012

ZTE Acqua (ZTE-U V880E) Smartphone Review

Recently, I've received a set of ZTE Acqua smartphone for review. The smartphone device is also known as the "ZTE-U V880E" and it's different from the ZTE Skate Acqua which has a slight higher camera megapixels and only available in other foreign country. So for Malaysia, we have this ZTE Acqua.

The simple white box of ZTE Acqua.
For those who have not heard about the brand ZTE before, it's actually a chinese brand made by ZTE Corporation (formerly Zhongxing Telecommunication Equipment Corporation) which is a multinational telecommunications equipment and systems company headquartered in Shenzhen, China. It is the world's fourth-largest mobile phone manufacturer measured by 2012 unit sale and the world's fifth-largest telecoms equipment maker measured by 2011 revenues (after Ericsson, Huawei, Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia Siemens Networks).

I'm currently still using the ZTE Blade that runs on a 600Mhz chip processor and to my surprise it's still  serving me well despite a year of utilizing the smartphone with a few cases of unintended drop test (hehe...)

First look of the ZTE Acqua. Sleek and stylish design with chrome metal sides and touch sensor button at the bottom.
Out of the box, below picture shows what you will get from the package.


A limited warranty card, quick start guide, the set itself, handsfree, micro usb cable, the 1,600 mAH capacity battery and the plug for as the phone charger. It would be great if they can provide better quality handsfree which competitors like Sony and HTC in order to experience better audio quality.

As for the battery, it's now slimmer but increase in size. Definitely can last longer than my current ZTE Blade's battery which only holds a capacity of 1,250 mAH. I have no problem with the charger plug, the current one still working pretty well. Here's some of the technical specifications with personal comments included.

The back of the smartphone, I like the texture of the back cover and the simplicity of the camera part.
The ZTE Acqua is running on Android OS 4.0.4 (no official update on Jelly Bean yet) with 1Ghz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor (middle range processor with slight lagness in the IU). RAM memory size is 512mb with internal storage of 4GB and external storage up to 32GB of microSD card (not included in the package).

It has a 3mgpxl rear autofocus camera and a 0.3mgpxl (VGA) front camera. The rear camera is actually pretty sharp compared to my ZTE Blade and also it has a touch autofocus point anywhere on the display compared to the fixed autofocus point on ZTE Blade. The only thing that bothers me is the awfully slow autofocus which can be a big headache when it comes to capturing fast pace events or sports. Also the flash is designed to be too close to the camera lens and most of the shots with the flash on will have a flaring effect and pictures can become blue-ish. That makes two things that bother me!


The ZTE Acqua is not supposed to be going against the ZTE Blade due to the difference in range and the most ideal smartphone from its own is ZTE Skate, if only I have one with me.


The display of ZTE Acqua is a 4 inches LCD with 800 x 480 px (223PPI) capacitive touchscreen type.
The screen seems to be sharper, less pixelated compare to Blade and can be enhanced to be even brighter when viewing it under the bright sun.


The back cover of both ZTE smartphones, it's a very wise move to make the speaker on the back instead of the side (Blade) where my palm normally will cover it almost 90% of the time. 


ZTE Acqua - height: 4.72 inches, width: 2.52 inches, thickness: 0.43 inches & weight: 0.29 pounds that makes it thinner, longer, wider but heavier compared to Blade.

Below is a photo sample from ZTE Acqua without flash on. 

Taken at Coffea Coffee at Telawi 2, Bangsar.
The camera function is still quite basic to me without ISO control, antishake, panorama mode and a few other features that enhance the experience of using a smartphone camera. The volume button can be used as a capturing button instead of zooming button.


My conclusion: Experiencing the ZTE Acqua feels like the same as Samsung GALAXY Ace 2 or Samsung GALAXY S Advance but of course we are paying a much lower price at RM699 (RRP) compared to the other equivalent brand in the market. The IU might not be as smooth as those high end smartphones like HTC One X or Samsung GALAXY SIII but if you are just looking for a decent smartphone to browse Facebook, tweet and check emails then this is for you. The camera is far from good though but it's acceptable if you just want to take pictures and post them into your Instagram. Design wise, I had to salute their designers and it's definitely better than some of the big brands out there.


Last but not least, ZTE Acqua has won the Best Value Phone Award in Go Mobile 2012.

For more info about the ZTE Acqua and other products, check out their
.: Peace Out :.
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