ZTE ZMAX (T-Mobile/MetroPCS USA)

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Senior Member
Feb 28, 2014
Tucson, AZ
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I just came across this phone on T-Mobile's website, released earlier this week.

5.7" 720x1280 (258ppi) TFT screen
Quad core Snapdragon 400 1.2GHz, Adreno 305
16GB built-in storage, microSD card up to 32GB
8MP camera, 1080p video
Android 4.4.2
LTE on band 4 and T-Mo's upcoming band 12 (and a couple other bands used by other companies in North America)

All for $252 off-contract (or $10.50/mo over 2 years).

I gotta say, I'm intrigued by this new phone. There's some obvious drawbacks/shortcuts; it's big for the screen size, the camera isn't fantastic, the screen is a bit dim/bland (according to a cnet review), no NFC, etc. But it's got a frugal, adequate processor with a big battery, runs a lightly skinned, nearly stock Android, has LTE (and T-Mo's LTE speeds here are amazing) and best of all, 2GB RAM, so it shouldn't lag or stutter.

I'm somewhat interested in this phone for myself, but I'll probably just wait to get a Nexus Shamu. But a friend (who's broke) of mine wants a bigass phone to watch Netflix on and play some games and emulators. Obviously the lowish pixel density is a drawback, but for what he'd use it for, it's perfectly fine.

For $252, this seems like an amazing bargain. Where else are you going to find a phablet with LTE at this price? But I'm not very familiar with ZTE. Build quality, longevity, software stability, updates, etc, are all in question for me.

Has anyone picked one up yet, or checked one out at a T-Mobile store? What have been your impressions on other ZTE devices?
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King Ice

Apr 3, 2014
I have personally had and android phone since the T-Mobile Samsung Vibrant. I've also had the Galaxy s 2, 3, 4, Galaxy S relay 4g, Note 2, 3, my touch 4g, lg my touch, and now the Zmax. All of them were rooted. I understand rooting just fine and couldn't remember my old account so I made a new in order to post. I personally am not new to this scene by far. So not everyone coming here are new, majority, maybe.


Mar 5, 2012
Forgive me for possible dumb question. I'm just and older dude and I was wondering what purpledrake is? Googled it but no help for me.

Sent from my Z970 using Tapatalk


Senior Member
Jan 25, 2011
Masury, Ohio

SOME ONE is so butt hurt by my earlier POSTING, AKA the TRUTH, that they are sending me vulgar and intimidating hangouts messages.
Lmmfao! Really bro? You really have that little to do in your life?

That is really funny and pathetic idk who Don Dbag or Dan Droopynuts is but he just got put in his place.

I apologize to all the respectful and non aholish people here that have to read this. But before you message me WITH SOME BS KNOW THAT I'M A GROWN MAN AND I HAVE AN OPINION OF MY OWN AND A FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHT TO SAY WHATEVER I WANNA SAY. AND If you don't like IT you go cry to your mommy not me! Cuz I don't wanna hear it! Mmm Kay!




Hmmmm...... I may move this thread to off topic? :silly:

Guys, as said many times, many places.... Don't feed the trolls!

Enough of the flame wars. And sorry, but rants about off-site happenings is definitely very off-topic.

Let's keep things constructive and simply ignore or report anything you feel should be ignored or reported.

Do we have a deal? There's not much to talk about root wise at the moment.... Let's not turn on each other cause we're bored. Again, honestly... Off topic threads aren't generally allowed outside of the off topic section.... Or battleground threads. ;)

Thanks for your understanding..... I have apple pie to get back to.

Forum Moderator
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Senior Member
Apr 14, 2011
Don't forget I asked about purpledrake first. Anyone?

Sent from my Z970 using Tapatalk

Don't feel bad man. I'm 20 and an avid hip-hop music lover and have absolutely no idea what "purpledrake" is lol.

If I had to guess, it's "chopped and screwed" drake music lmao (a form of music by canadian rap artist drake in which the pitch and tempo are severely slowered and mixed in a choppy fashion. Very popular amongst weed heads and people who drink "lean" lol)
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    I tried getting as much confirmation from the ZTE guy as I could.

    He wasn't lying, if his information was accurate.

    As far as the tmo rep at the CEO of tmo's office, we may consider her cc mail to me, was a official response to my complaint of unlocking bl and she was responding to the FCC on the complaint. Note it is dated back on Feb. 4, 2015 . I believe it was the same time as the other Executive Response email came from other user here. Also note I left her tmo ceo number showing in attached jpg of her email cc to me.
    Here is her c.c. email to FCC attached.

    I got this same email in PDF form before the FCC complaint when I receive the true followup from T-Mobile via snail mail which takes 1-2weeks so roughly 1 week left, I will scan it and upload. I can promise you it will be happening and am actually waiting for the file from ZTE engineering department as we speak. I had a conference with ZTE's tech support and that department earlier today. As I said once and will say again, I have no reason to troll. I will say however if I get one more threat or accusation that says otherwise I will disregard this thread only reply to a few people in this thread that have been here with me from day one.

    Also like to point out root has been obtained on this phone for over 3 weeks. The reason its still to be posted is it being worked into a app and its not perm yet. If you guys can't be patient and support the people fighting and helping you out do not comment or go buy a mainstream phone with more support.
    I'm not going to read all those posts above.

    So here is what i ahve to say,

    I was told over and over that an unlock was coming out.
    I've been battling multiple lung infections since late december.
    I have work, family etc.
    I was just in an car accident (my poor truck!, hopefully i get it back monday!)
    I have other things I have to complete at this time (SunShine3)
    Everyone needs to understand that we aren't dealing with mom and pop companies here. These are multi billion dollar corporations. People, myself included, said that we were emailing about kernel source for months, did you all break out the pitch forks when it didn't happen when you wanted it to? No. Give him a break. I doubt any of you got as far as he did in terms of getting a response, and he did this with his own time, so don't give him all this flack because it makes people not want to work on behalf of you, which is the opposite of what XDA stands for.

    He gave us a screenshot of his email to them. Could he have faked it? Maybe. But for what? I have faith in him, and if they put in the letter that they can't do it, then so be it. It just lights more fuel for us to use to fight for what we want like the petition did. We got kernel source, which is the absolute hardest thing to get from an OEM. BL is just going to require some patience. I don't know how much root is riding on the bootloader unlock, but if it's anything like HTC, meaning you had to unlock your phone through htcdev.com in order for root programs to work, then Root will follow. [emoji2]

    Last thing, it is likely that ZTE (or T-Mo) is having to concoct a method to unlock the bootloader in the first place. NO button combination gets us to it, which means its registered as a low level mode that only they probably have access to. They'd have to set up a user friendly way of doing it, kind of like HTC does (using them as a reference again), and even the way devs manipulate Samsung Kies to flash rooted firmware. Its better than nothing. This is not over night. I've only written a script once and it was a headache inducing process. Can you imagine having to reposition employees and dedicate them to creating a GUI for a bootloader unlocking program (or even a website), something I'm sure they didn't factor in at the board meetings, whether its T-Mo or ZTE producing it, just to satisfy customers. They might not be perfect, but they have your money and they have waved the white flag with the kernel source, which shows us they can cooperate. Give them, the FCC, T-Mobile AND ESPECIALLY the guy that even brought these two conglomerates to the table a break will ya? He doesn't deserve all this doubt, nay say and threatening, because he doesn't get a dime from this unless you find it in your heart to buy him a beer.
    Too late just bought one.
    Some of you guys' behavior has gotten ridiculous. To think its funny to trash talk a guy who dedicated his time for free to get a breakthrough with ZTE and T-Mobile, not just for himself but for ALL of us, is plain pathetic. Trash talking someone who tried to help because you didn't get results quick enough is akin to an impatient 6 year old throwing tantrums. And the mods need to swarm all over this thread because I've seen threats of harm to person and property, as well as unnecessary racial slurs.... Over receiving charity. Its become beyond annoying that some of you can't calm yourselves down and chill out over a $99 phone. All of the above is WAY uncalled for.