Comparative Review: Mijue M10, first under-USD150 8-core Smartphone Vs. Cubot X6
The good: USD150 is a very acceptable price for Chinese phone with mainstream chipset. Mijue M10 is as fast and smooth as Cubot X6. Display is good with more details.
The bad: Though Iíve saw lower-than-mediocre back cameras like Cubot X6ís, the M10 is even worse, which, however, has a better front camera. Money on useless and crap gesture sensing shouldíve been saved or used to enhance other features.
Bottom Line: Mijue M10 did not surprise me finally by functioning, but it has a right price.
The cheapest 8-core Chinese smartphone was USD40 cheaper in about 2 months, and now we see Mijue, a never-heard brand, make a debut with its M10 for USD150 or so. The M10 and Cubot X6 (USD190) share the same components except that the Mijue handset has a smaller Nand flash memory. According to a friend of mine on the sourcing market, 8Gb makes a price gap of approximately USD 5, which doubles on retail.
It seems that an overall markdown of USD30 dollars in MTK6592 mobile phones is destined for now or the few months to come. Before making that sure, we should figure out whether Mijue M10 is a normal phone or itís priced low for reasons, because a crap, however cheap it is, is a crap.
The performance of Cubot X6 proves that the collaboration of MTK6592 Octa-core CPU plus a 4-core Mali-450 GPU well powers a 720p-display smartphone (http://forum.xda-developers.com/show....php?t=2647933). Huawei Honor 3X, with the similar components, is fantastically better.
And now, Iím showing you what a phone Mijue M10 is by comparison with Cubot X6 bit by bit.
1. What the hell?
The M10 is equipped with a gesture sensor, which is useless from my point of view. Whatís more, it takes great efforts to keep your palm neither too close to nor too far from the screen when you make ďairĒ gesture Ė I mean you have to nearly touch the screen but not really touch it.
Sometimes, people donít appreciate the existence of something or grieve on the loss of it even if it was perfect by itself. The first rule of making a cheap phone is not to add such an embarrasing burden on it, so you can save money for something else that people really cares, for example, a good look.
Cubot X6, which costs you USD40 dollars more, has no fancy to flaunt, but is good as a common boy.
If someone had only half an hour to design a cellphone and no afflatus flashed through his mind, he would bring out Mijue M10. In fact, this Mijue handset is that kind of stuff you think is the copy of something at first sight even if you canít recall which one. Just as you may guess ďs/he should have committed suicidal many years agoĒ when the poster of Marilyn Manson leaps to your eyes, for no special reason.
However, the Chinese producer didnít do anything stupid like leaving wide seams on the body or many physical buttons on the edge. Besides, the phone is thin and its matte-finish back cover is not cheesy, so generally itís a neat phone without much to complain about.
Now Cubot X6 looks far more inspiring. Its copy of Arc S can be taken as a tribute to the past and the aluminum bordering the camera lens is, anyway, unique.
To my surprise, Mijue M10 is equipped with a better display than Cubot X6 in terms of both resolution and contrast. The two phones have the same face value of 720 by 1280 pixels, but Mijue M10 delivers more details of the same picture. Have a look at the left lower part of the landscape photo. On Cubot X6, you can only tell it was a lot of grass, while on the M10, you can almost distinguish one piece from another. And of course colors are more vivid on the Mijue handset.
As for webpages, apps, or anything with white background, Mijue M10ís display is colder with a little bit sepia, which I donít like, while you can see pure white on the X6.
In the same light condition, Cubot X6ís back camera takes better photos than Mijue M10 with crispier details and livelier colors, while their front cameras were quite the contrary.
5. Operating system.
The Android 4.2.2 pre-installed on Mijue M10 is the original version with everything essential such as the Play Store.
On the X6, the OS differs a little bit from the pure Android 4.2.2. Every apps icon has a background, which is lovely and helps make the interface more compact. Besides, the apps and widget sections are separate, so you donít slide across them.
There is something weird about the results on benchmark apps, but I will mention it later in case it affects your judgment. First of all, have a look at the real performance of the two smartphones.
You may not observe from the video the subtle difference that I felt in reality, but switch of home screens and pictures was indeed a little smoother on Mijue M10. On the other hand, cars of NFS Most Wanted run in the same speed on both phones, sometimes a little bit faster on the X6.
From my 3-day experience, Mijue M10 and Cubot X6 belong to the same level in terms of smoothness, and they notched similar scores on GFX Bench. Though the Cubot handset is nearly 6,000 behind the M10 on Aututu, I still believe in my feelings.
The most weird is that both Antutu and GFX say the powerhouse of Mijue M10 is MT6592 which has 6 cores. I tried two sets of the model, and the results were not different. MT6592 with 6 cores! We all know MT6592 is an 8-core CPU, which is proved true on any other mobile phone. I personally canít explain the absurdity.
Battery is most peopleís top concern but I couldnít give exact time of duration in my previous reviews. This time I let a 720P music video loop on the X6 and M10 when they are watched over by the Battery Monitor Widget. With the same 2,200mAh capacity, Mijue M10 and Cubot X6 lasted 4.5 and 5 hours respectively. I hope the numbers help you anticipate their durations in normal use.
Anyway, Mijue M10 is the cheapest 8-core mobile phone presently, where no major drawbacks have been found during my short trial. Regardless of how they will perform in the long run, I personally think the M10 is better worth its price than Cubot X6, or any other Octa-core stuff.
History tells us that USD150 is the ultimate mainstream price for Chinese-branded smartphones with mainstream components, so we can expect quite a number of 8-core 720p-display 1GB-RAM phones with worse-than-mediocre cameras to emerge around the price before the release of the next generation of the MTK chipsets.
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18 Sep 2014
By Tomek Kondrat
XDA Developers was founded by developers, for developers. It is now a valuable resource for people who want to make the most of their mobile devices, from customizing the look and feel to adding new functionality. Are you a developer?