Sunday, June 9th, 2013
After the release 2 months ago, we got our hands on the Cherry Mobile Hyper. We’ve played around with the device for a couple of a weeks now, and so far it feels solid and well-made. Packing a 5-inch display, a dual-core CPU and a 2,000mAh battery, the Cherry Mobile Hyper goes through our full review.
We already have our first impressions here, tackling most things that are found in the surface. Read on to see what lies underneath.
Design and Construction
When I was with handling the device, a lot of people mistook the Hyper for a Galaxy Note; only if you look closely, you’ll see that it has differences. It feels very bulky, as it is wide and thick all around. The impression it leaves us with is just that, with a little mix of solidity.
On the front side of the phone is the 5-inch display with three capacitive buttons and a microphone below that. Above are a few sensors, the front-facing camera and the chrome-colored earpiece.
Found on the top left part of the phone is the power button alongside the place for the 3.5mm audio jack and the micro USB port, and on the right side of the phone is what seems to be the secondary microphone and the volume rocker; there is nothing found on both the bottom and the left side of the phone.
The rest of the phone is wrapped around in white, and it attracts quite some dirt. While it isn’t made out of glossy plastic, we have to say that it doesn’t feel premium in the hand either. The Hyper feels durable and well made, however the ergonomics and the experience in handling this heavy device takes the fall for it.
The 5-inch display on the Hyper runs on a resolution of 480 x 800, giving a pixel density of merely 187ppi. It responds very well for the most part, but we weren’t as impressed with the colors and the viewing angles.
Its washed out colors are a pain to look at, and everything else lacks in contrast. On the other hand, the viewing angles of the device from both sides show discoloration; only from the top and the bottom parts you’ll find decent angles.
Moreover, a 5-inch display with a phone of this size is hard to navigate. As we mentioned above, the power button is found on the top left corner of the phone, which is hard to reach. Everything about navigation proves to be difficult, so be ready to use your two-hands with this phone because even the larger Galaxy Note 2 feels easier to use.
OS, Apps and UI
The phone runs on the Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich. It’s quite outdated for our taste, but it gets the job done nonetheless.
The Hyper features the usual apps from CM – Fun Club & eWarranty, with a couple more additions such as a third-party keyboard, a stopwatch and more. It’s easily one of the cleanest phones we’ve handled in a while, but we’re still wishing that it could run a more updated version of Android.
Multimedia & Camera
Sound quality brought by the speakers of the Hyper sounds a little muffled; the volume on the other hand is decent and workable. We found video playback to be smooth and pleasurable because of the size of the display.
When we previewed the shots that we took with the camera of the Hyper, we felt that it wouldn’t be impressive at all – we were wrong. The display of the Hyper hid the beauty of the photos taken, and we only appreciated it when we took the shots to the big screen. The images were sharp enough, and all the colors were vibrant and natural.
In low-light conditions, as expected, it didn’t do as great as it was very noisy. Anyways, there is a flash to make up for it.
Taking video is the mess here, as we were presented with different shooting modes that most consumers won’t recognize – D1, FWVGA, WVGA and so on, all the way to QCIF. We shot one in FWVGA (480 x 854), and we were presented with very slow frame rates. We took another in D1, and results barely changed. To cut it short, you’re not going to have a good time using this camera for video.
Performance & Battery Life
The phone is fairly fast as it runs on a 1.2GHz dual-core Snapdragon CPU, and casual gaming works very well. There are slight hiccups here and there at times, and we think the blame should be put on the memory, the 512MB RAM.
- Antutu – 5,924
- Quadrant – 2,945
- Nenamark 2 – 32.3fps
Placing the phone in a video loop with 50% volume and 50% brightness caused the battery to deplete more or less 60% in 5 hours. On standby, it didn’t do much better too as we saw it draining half in a day without use.
For us, the Hyper is a tough pick at the moment. Cherry Mobile has a lot in line for this year, and most of them are running on much updated hardware and software. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the Hyper is a joke – the device actually does a couple of things well.
If you simply want a huge phone for watching video and browsing content, if you take photos more than you take video, and if you simply want a solidly built phone for Php4,990, the CM Hyper is the one for you.
However, if you can’t stand a washed out display, a huge and bulky phone and if you really need decent video recording, you might want to save a little more and just wait. The good thing about Android devices is just, you’ll always have options.
Cherry Mobile Hyper specs:
5-inch capacitive display @ 800×480pixels, 187ppi
Qualcomm MSM8625 Snapdragon 1.2GHz dual-core processor
Adreno 203 GPU
4GB internal storage
microSD up to 32GB
GPS w/ a-GPS support
5MP AF camera w/LED flash
720p@30fps HD video
VGA front-facing camera
Android 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich)
Li-Ion 2,000mAh battery
What we liked about it:
- Solid build and construction
- Camera takes great photos in good lighting
- Clean UI, not much bloatware
What we didn’t like about it:
- Hard to navigate, heavy & thick
- Muffled speakers
- Bad video recording
- Washed out display
- Android ICS is outdated