ZTE Blade A711 Review
After the announcement that the ZTE Blade A711 (internationally known as Blade X9) will be available in the Philippines, we managed to get our busy hands on a demo unit from Lazada. It has attracted some serious attention from potential buyers due to its set of nice features like a fingerprint sensor and an all-metal body for a good asking price. How well do all these features perform? Read our full review of the device.
Design and Construction
The Blade A711 sports a 5.5-inch IPS display with some noticeable bezels around the panel. As a usual setup for smartphones, we have the speaker for calls up top and they are flanked by sensors and the 5-megapixel front-facing camera for selfies and video chats. The device has rounded corners which is dictated by a thin plate-like frame surrounding the screen.
It employs three capacitive buttons namely Options, Home, and Back. The Home button has an LED light that helps when you’re using the phone in the dark. It also adds a nice aesthetic touch with its glowing blue hue that glows when the phone is charging or when someone messages you.
The upper right side of the handset is where all the physical buttons are grouped together. Here we have the volume rocker just above the power/lock screen button. Additionally, the Blade A711 has an average thickness of 8.6mm.
At the back, we have the eye-catching 13-megapixel shooter outlined by another blue accent. We noticed that this part protrudes and is a bit off-putting and distracts from the elegant build it’s got going on. The rear shooter is accompanied by a single LED flash for capturing photos in low-lit areas. Also prevalent on the rear is the built-in fingerprint sensor which has a chrome trimming and hints a classy touch.
Down below, we see the lonesome speaker grill situated under the company’s branding. We commend the logo having been engraved instead of simply being printed. This results in a more premium look in general.
At the top left is where the dual SIM tray resides. Just like the other smartphones today, the SIM 2 slot also acts as the expansion for memory thru a microSD card.
At 160 grams, the smartphone isn’t that lightweight but handles just right when you use it. The smooth metal back feels good to the touch, but makes the device a bit slippery. Its overall form factor and ergonomics aren’t something new, so users who have previously handled a 5.5-inch phablet will feel familiar with the Blade A711.