Cherry Mobile Flare Review: Dual-core ICS Flavored Smartphone
The Flare is one of CM’s Smart Social phones which translates to this Android device being optimized for Facebook and Twitter. The nitty gritty: the Flare is a cheap but fast smartphone with average display and weak battery life. But with Android smartphones from international brands still priced high, is the Flare a good alternative? Let’s find out after the break.
The Flare doesn’t look expensive nor does it look cheap. All its curves reminds of my old Cherry Pad Turbo although unlike that tablet, the CM Flare’s rear is far from a fingerprint magnet (thanks to its matte finish). I liked how they made the branding and other labels in the back small as it agrees with the simple aesthetics of this smartphone. Rounding up the items on the back are the 5 MP shooter and its flash and a small speaker grill.
Eating up the front of the Flare is the 4″ 800 x 480 display covered in protective glass. The display renders colors well with good contrast. Viewing angles are poor though and the lack of anti-glare coating makes it almost impossible to use on a sunny day. The side bezels are thin but the top and bottom ones are a little tall. A 0.3 MP (VGA) camera peeks on the upper right side and four touch buttons reside on the bottom.
Grope the Flare’s top part and you’ll find the power button and the 3.5 mm headphone jack. Doing the same on the left part and you’ll find the volume rockers and the microUSB port. A microSD port is included but you’ll need to remove the battery to access it. BTW, the Flare’s internal storage is only 4 GB so you’ll need a bigger microSD card.
Performance and Battery Life
Having Ice Cream Sandwich as its OS rather than Gingerbread helps the Flare not only visually but also on performance. Of course, the dual-core 1.2 GHz Snapdragon S4 MSM8625 CPU is also to blame. I still experienced a few stutters when testing the device and some apps could take longer to open than some. But overall the Flare performs well enough that you won’t throw it out of the window because of frustration.
With regular use, the Flare should last around 11 to 12 hours. Regular use here would mean auto-brightness, a few calls and text and a few minutes of gaming. Abuse the Flare by regularly downloading apps via Wi-Fi while playing Temple Run 2 and the smartphone will die out in the fourth hour.
|Cherry Mobile Flare|
|OS||Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich|
|Display||4" 800 x 480 Capacitive IPS LCD|
|Storage||4 GB with microSD slot up to 64 GB|
|CPU||Dual-core 1.2 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 MSM8625|
|Camera||5 MP (rear) w/ Flash / 0.3 MP (front)|
|Battery||Li-Ion 1500 mAh (11 hours regular use)|
I think P3,999 is the right price for the Flare. While it does have a better CPU than most, you can’t pay more than that amount for a smartphone with average looks and battery life. If you are looking for an Android smartphone but can’t afford the ones from big names, the CM Flare is a good alternative.