When we think of 5-inch Androids, we quickly think of the Samsung Galaxy Note series. Other sub-brands don't even ring a bell. That is, until recently.
A few weeks ago Cherry Mobile, arguably the strongest player in the local mobile phone industry, released together with the Cherry Mobile Flare, the Cherry Mobile W500 Titan. The Titan is a 5-inch Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich device powered by a 1GHz dual-core processor. And for the ample time we spent with it, we found it great.
Interested on having this affordable device? Read on for our Cherry Mobile W500 Titan review.
The Cherry Mobile W500 Titan is one rectangular smartphone. To the untrained eye, it looks like the first Galaxy Note, or even something from LG (yes, the design is well enough to pull this off).
The biggest feature of the Cherry Mobile W500 Titan is its titanic 5-inch display—puns intended. The screen comes protected with a plastic film right out of the box by the way because it's all glass. The front also carries the secondary VGA camera, three standard haptic buttons (sans the search button), and the contemporary earpiece grill.
The backside of the Titan is ideally clean, with just three stamps overall. The rear plate is of matte material, and is really thin. One wrong drop and it could spell disaster. Fortunately, the device comes with two plates: one that's normal, and one that comes with a leather flap. And yes, the camera adds even more to the already premium look of the device.
The device's speaker grill is located beside the camera, unusual positioning but effective. More on sounds later.
The sides of the Titan is tapered with a smoke-black bezel all around. You'll find nothing here but the sleep/wake button, the volume rocker, and the 3.5mm headphone jack. Now that's clean.
The device's back plate has a fingernail slot at the lower left area, but ample care should be paid since as I've mentioned it is thin and can break.
With regards to handling, it's pretty comfortable in my hands, unless you have really small hands though. It would still fit in your jeans pocket too, albeit it has the tendency to swing loose because of its fairly heavy weight relative to contemporary devices.
|Samsung Galaxy Note 2 vs Cherry Mobile W500 Titan|
The Cherry Mobile W500 Titan sports a 5-inch WVGA 2-point capacitive touch screen. But as huge as its screen is, it only has 800x480 for its resolution. It's not as high-res as you would like it to be, but for its price what you see is what you get.
There's also this issue with the screen being washed out and of display ghosting. Ghosting is heavily observable at the device's stock Android 4.0 UI, but it stops at that. Games and apps show no signs however.
The display's maximum brightness is comparable to a contemporary unit's medium brightness.
The Cherry Mobile W500 Titan is powered by a 1GHz dual-core Mediatek Cortex-A9 processor coupled by 471MB RAM. These innards really sound powerful so we took them to the usual benchmarking tests.
The Quadrant Standard benchmark gives the Titan a 2719, a shining third place for the 5-inch behemoth.
AnTuTu's more updated benchmarking app places the Cherry Mobile W500 Titan well below a list of devices at 5445, just under the LG Optimus 2X.
Meanwhile, Qualcomm's Vellamo test gives the device a 1075 and a 346 for both the HTML5 and Metal tests. To give you an idea, the HTC One X ranks 1625 and 613 respectively, a few hundred points above the Titan. And for its score, it's pretty decent. It evens out with other local brands bearing the same specs.
In real world usage, these tests prove just how fast the Cherry Mobile Titan is. Sure it may not be at par with a Samsung Galaxy S III, but if you're a new user coming from a feature phone or even an iPhone, you'll really enjoy this.
One point of interest for the Titan is its noticeable lag when waking up after a long sleep then proceeding to the home menu. The device would slow down but would be speedy again after it loads (yes this happens even on a clean load, without too much background apps running). It's probably more software than hardware, then again the device runs on stock ICS. Summing that up, this only happens when the device is transitioning from sleep to wake to home menu.
Surfing the web with the Titan—with its native browser renders and washed out display (and the pinching ghosting)—is okay at best.If you find your experience poor, better get a browser at Google Play. We heard the UC Browser was good.
Audio and Video
You'd think that with the Titan's poor resolution everything would be ruined. That could be true to some extent, but viewing HD videos with the device gives—and this I emphasize—a somewhat fair experience.
There's some pixelation present in HD videos, so if you're touchy about clarity this device isn't for you. Imagine watching from both an LCD and LED TV at the same time, the LCD is the experience from the Titan.
Playing sounds on the other hand is quite nice. As I've mentioned above, it's not a Samsung Galaxy S III, but the quality is passable. That plus the built-in FM app and you can use this as a radio of sorts.
Gaming is a joy with the Cherry Mobile W500 Titan. With its huge display you get to see everything that's happening on-screen. Unfortunately the display only supports 2-point touch, so no five-finger fruit slashing on Fruit Ninja for you.
I ran a handful of games on the device as well and I should say it went smooth. Lag is little to non-existent, so it really doesn't affect game performance.
The device warms up after some period of playing.
The Cherry Mobile W500 Titan sports a 5-megapixel rear camera with autofocus and flash. A couple of months ago 5MPs were all the rage, but its now the minimum standard.
The photo above is the Titan's good-looking camera, situated near the speaker and the dual-SIM slots/microSD slot. And here's some sample photos taken using that snapper.
The photos produced by the Cherry Mobile W500 Titan looks good at small to medium scales, but on closer inspection the noise of the images show. It also doesn't portray colors vividly as you would in other more expensive phones. Fortunately the device comes with a built-in ICS photo editor. You can just easily autofix lighting and add some warmth, and you're good to go.
The Titan's flash is quite strong it easily turns into a flashlight, provided you use a flashlight app that really uses the flash's potential.
At a 2350mAh rating, the Cherry Mobile W500 Titan's battery is one of the best out there in the local market. Similar devices that boast the same specs coupled with an IPS display have lower battery capacities. That is to say that the Titan definitely owns this category.
The Titan charges up pretty quickly, relative to other local brands that go on for four hours or more.
With regards to usage, the Titan has a pretty awesome battery life. At max brightness, alternating WiFi and data connection, some moderate gaming, plus surfing and messaging (on dual-SIM), I was able to get around more or less 14 hours with it.
Dual-SIM dual standby - The dual-SIM dual standby feature doesn't seem to affect the battery life, at least for me;
3G Connectivity - The 3G antenna of the Titan is great. It loads data properly at the approximate data usage without loading too much then failing. I unfortunately experienced this with another local brand. Data speeds also depend on network quality;
The Cherry Mobile W500 Titan is a great substitute for those aspiring to have an updated Android with a huge display. Sure its display quality might be well below expectations, but you have to be kidding if you nag at that despite the awesome PHP 6,499.00 tag price.
It's fast, it's reliable, it's got everything you need covered. The Cherry Mobile W500 Titan is a solid device that'll give you an awesome Android experience.
The Cherry Mobile W500 Titan is now available at all Cherry Mobile kiosks and concept stores nationwide at PHP 6,499.00. Get one now for Christmas.