Meizu M2 Review
Display and Multimedia
The Meizu M2 has a 5-inch HD display mounted with AGC Dragontrail glass for protection. No mention of IPS but it has decent viewing angles. Resolution is also decent with a pixel density of 294ppi. Colors are good but not that punchy. If you think the display needs some work, you can go inside settings and tweak its color temperature.
As for the loudspeaker, it’s sounds tinny but very audible. Bass also feels weak but has decent trebles. Still it will suffice for some private music listening.
Handling the imaging department is a 13 megapixel rear camera with a single LED flash and a 5 megapixel front shooter. Image quality is good in very bright conditions like outdoors and produces clear images with accurate colors. However, when indoors, performance feels inconsistent. Auto-focus becomes slow and often requires that you use tap-to-focus to make sure that the camera is focusing on the right subject. Exposure is sometimes a bit off and tends to over-expose images in dim environments.
The M2 has cool in-camera features for an affordable phone. It has filters, HDR, Manual mode, Slowmotion, QR Code scanner, Panorama, Beauty, and Light Field which shoots multiple photos in different focal points allowing you to adjust focus after the shot was taken or merge them in one all-focused image. See screenshot below.
As for its video recording, the M2 can shoot videos up to 1080p at 30fps. Slow motion video on the other hand is limited to 640 x 480 resolution. See sample below.
OS, UI, and Apps
Software-wise, the M2 uses the company’s Flyme OS 4.5.3 based on Android 5.1 Lollipop. If you’re familiar with Flyme then you’ll know that Meizu did a lot of customizing on it. Although very much Android-like, the layout is different.
It doesn’t use an app drawer and has all the apps directly accessible from the home screen similar to Apple’s iOS or Xiaomi’s MIUI. Apps sport Flyme’s own set of icons with flat yet appealing color and design. Drag down the notifications bar and you’ll see a grid of switches just like on stock Lollipop but with a different design and mono-tone icons.
Go inside Settings and here you’ll see the major change which can be both convenient or confusing even to long-time Android users. Instead of the usual single column and multiple rows, Flyme uses two columns with tabs for quick access which eliminate the need to use the back button to go through between categories. It will take a while to get used to it but it’s a nice layout nonetheless.
When it comes to navigation, Meizu employs a different strategy in comparison to other Androids. Instead of the usual Home button plus two other buttons for Return and Back, the M2 only has a special physical home button with a capacitive input surface. To go to the main screen just press the Home button. If you want to just go back, instead of pressing, you just tap on the surface. This one takes some getting used to as there are times we closed an app because we accidentally touched the Home button.
As for the recent apps? Just swipe up starting from that empty space on the left or right side of the home button and it will bring up a row of your most recently accessed apps. Swipe up on the apps listed to close.
Other notable features:
* Easy mode – turns the M2 into a phone with large icons with basic features
* DND mode – stops all incoming calls and disables sound and notifications
* Gesture wakeup
* SmarTouch – an assitive on-screen button similar to iOS
* Scheduled power on and off
When it comes to preinstalled apps, we’re glad to say that the M2 almost don’t have any except from the Google app. Meizu included its own app store called the AppCenter but only Chinese content is available as of the moment. That being said, the M2 has 16GB of internal storage with 14.56GB as usable. You can use a microSD card but at the expense of the other SIM slot. USB OTG is also supported.