There’s no doubt that Cherry Mobile is well-known when it comes to producing budget-friendly tablets. Just name a budget under Php10k and you’ll be given a slew of options. One of them is the Superion Odyssey which also features full phone and text functionality. Check out our review of this slate after the break.
Design and Construction
In terms of design, i’ll tell you right away that the Superion Odyssey is reminiscent of the iPad mini and you can actually mistake it for one if you don’t look carefully. That means that it sports a slim form factor and thin bezels but with some physical alterations to slightly deviate from the original.
Found on the front is the 7.85-inch display along with the earpiece and front-facing camera placed above it. If this is the iPad mini then there should be a physical home button at the bottom, but in the case of Odyssey, there is none, not even a set capacitive buttons. This gives the tablet a minimalist yet elegant look.
Placed right on top are the power/lock button, microUSB port, HDMI out, and headset jack. Found at the bottom is the pinhole for the microphone. The volume buttons are placed on the right side while the left side are devoid of any physical keys. Take a look at the backside and you’ll see the 5 megapixel rear camera and two speaker grills at the bottom part.
Most of the Odyssey’s backside is covered in aluminum which in turn adds a premium feel to the device in return for some heft. The upper part, however, is made of plastic since it is designed to be removable so you can access the SIM and microSD card slot hidden inside. It’s a bit cumbersome to remove though and feels like it’s going to break when you pry it open. Good thing it’s sturdy and flexible enough to resist easy breakage.
Overall, the CM Superion Odyssey feels well-made in terms of construction. It may not be original in terms of designn but it looks good nonetheless. Construction wise, the only concern we have is for the removable plastic cover which might break after some time especially if you change SIMs often.
The Odyssey sports a 7.85-inch IPS display with a resolution of 1024 x 768. That equates to pixel density of 163ppi – decent resolution for a screen of this size.
In terms of quality, we’re very much satisfied with colors and viewing angles thanks to the IPS panel on board. It also performs well outdoors just make sure that you boost the brightness manually since it doesn’t have an ambient light sensor.
OS, UI, and Apps
Running the software side for the Superion Odyssey is Android 4.2.2 Jellybean. Cherry Mobile barely touched the UI and kept most of it stock. However, Cherry Mobile still opted to use the Android Honeycomb-style navigation interface which feels outdated. You can always download your favorite launcher and customize but it still won’t change the interface.
As for preinstalled apps, it comes with the usual Cherry Mobile Fun Club app and eWarranty app. Kakao Talk and Opera Mini comes pre-installed as well but can be uninstalled if you don’t have use for it.
The Odyssey has 8GB of internal storage listed on its spec sheet. However, when looking inside the settings, the tablet shows two storage spaces – 1.97GB for internal storage and 4.04GB for USB storage, which is weird. All in all it gives you a total of 6GB of internal storage.
Camera and Multimedia
The Odyssey comes with a small 5 megapixel rear shooter and a basic 2 megapixel front-facing. We don’t expect a camera of this caliber to do wonders but the photos taken are good enough for uploading to social media sites granted that you shot them in bright conditions.
The camera app also comes with a slew of features like HDR, Panorama, and a few filters. If you like shooting videos, the Odyssey can record videos at 720p resolution without the effects and filters.
As for its multimedia performance, the display works great when watching movies. The two speakers provides very sufficient amount of sound and is loud enough to fill a small room.
Performance and Call Quality
Powering the Odyssey is a quad-core MediaTek MT8389 CPU clocked at 1.2GHz, PowerVR SGX 544 GPU, and 1GB of RAM. So far things are smooth when it comes to basic stuff like navigating the UI, using social media apps, and texting or calling. Casual games are very much playable but don’t expect it to perform perfectly well on graphic intensive apps. If heavy Android gaming is your thing, you’re better off with the Nexus 7 (2013).
As mentioned in the introduction, this slate is capable of making calls and sending and receiving text messages. Everything works normally in this department, however, we strongly advise that you use the free headset that comes bundled with it instead of slapping it on your face whenever you take or make calls. In our opinion, the real feature here is the support for 3G/HSPA+ connectivity, while the call and text features come as bonuses.
We did our usual round of Benchmark tests on the Odyssey and here are the results:
* AnTuTu – 12,956
* Quadrant – 4,866
* Vellamo HTML 5- 1,469
* Vellamo Metal – 484
* NenaMark2 – 39.6fps
The Odyssey comes with a 4,000mAh non-removable battery. We did our usual test playing a 1080p movie in Airplane mode with brightness set to 50% and volume set to 0%. The result is 5.56 hours worth movie playback which is below the usual 7 to 8 hours we get from other tablets.
The Cherry Mobile Superion Odyssey is a strong offering for those who are looking for budget Android tablet that comes with data connectivity and full phone and text functionality. Although very much inspired by the iPad mini, the design cues turned out to be a great feature for the Odyssey. It’s a double-edge sword though as some might perceive it as just “second-rate, trying hard, copy cat.”
On the bright side, the Odyssey is slim, well-built, performs well, and packs a good display which is essential for a tablet. So how much do you need to cash out for the slate? Php7,499. And at that price point, it’s pretty much a good deal.
Cherry Mobile Superion Odyssey specs:
7.85″ IPS LCD (1024 x 768), 163ppi
1.2GHz quad-core MediaTek MT8389 CPU
PowerVR SGX544 GPU
8GB internal storage
up to 32GB via microSD
5 megapixel rear camera w/ LED flash
2 megapixel front-facing
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
Android 4.2.2 Jellybean
What we liked about it:
* Good build
* Looks like an iPad mini
* Good display
* Data connectivity
* Full phone and text functionality
What we didn’t like:
* Removable plastic cover at the rear is hard to pry open and might break over time
* Not suited to be used as a normal handset when it comes to calls
* Mediocre camera
* Below average battery life