Starmobile UP Ultra Review
The recent announcement of Starmobile‘s UP Ultra not only offers an affordable LTE device, but also includes additional freebies just like with the Zenfone Deluxe Special Edition. In partnership with SMART Communications, the company is throwing in Php4,000 worth of free data for 12 months using a prepaid SIM pre-loaded in the device.
Additionally, the bundle also comes with 6 months of free iflix ready to be used. Will these, together with the phone, be a good bundle for the average consumer? Read our full review and find out.
Design and Construction
The Starmobile UP Ultra carries a 5.5-inch display which covers the entire face of the handset. By making this move, they were able to make the device look a bit more premium. On-screen buttons are also implemented, making the overall UI look neat and presentable.
Tucked in the center and near the base of the device, there is a small LED light for notifications. This, for us, is the most overlooked feature in smartphones, but definitely makes day-to-day usage easier.
Lined up at the upper area of the screen are the sensors for light and proximity, speaker for calls, and the 5-megapixel front camera with fixed focus.
Positioned in the middle is the 13-megapixel rear camera accompanied by a single LED flash. The company mentions that the UP Ultra’s optics are made using Samsung’s sensor so it should, at some extent, be worth checking out.
The backplate is designed with a leather-like texture as to add a bit of character to the smartphone. There are three color models available, namely: dark blue, coffee, and gray.
The right side is populated by the volume rocker and power/lock button. These two are the only physical buttons you’ll see on the device and are easily reachable by the thumb.
From this angle, we also see the chrome lining that surrounds the handset, giving it a dash of elegance. Additionally, there is another trimming surrounding the display up front.
At the top we have the 3.5mm audio jack, microUSB port for charging and transferring files, and an IR blaster for controlling appliances (such as TVs, AC units, and DVD players) at home.
Popping off the plastic back cover reveals the UP Ultra’s removable 2500mAh battery, the dual-SIM slots, and storage expansion slot. As mentioned earlier, a Smart SIM card has already been loaded in the device and comes with Php4,000 worth of data for 12 months.
The device, which maxes out at 8.1mm thin, feels secure in the hand and doesn’t slip easily. Using one hand for navigation is also not that hard, but people with smaller hands might opt to go for both hands.
The device is also very light which could both be a good and a bad thing, depending on the user. Personally, I prefer devices with a bit of heft in them since they feel more stable on my hand.