Just when you thought that Chinese smartphones couldn’t possible be any more affordable, Mlais launched the M52 Red Note, a 64-bit 4G LTE Android smartphone that’s inspired by (and competes against) Xiaomi’s Redmi Note and Meizu’s M1 Note.
Mlais is a fairly new player on the Chinese smartphone market, having launched the sub-$100 octacore M9 not long ago. However, this company is very ambitious, as it wants to go against Xiaomi and Meizu, which are literal giants in the local industry. To do so, it launched the M52 Red Note, the most affordable 4G Android smartphone sporting Mediatek’s latest octacore 64-bit MT6752 SoC.
The 64-bit Cortex-A53 (ARMv8-A) CPU and the Mali-T760 GPU are paired with 2GB of RAM to deliver great performance on a 5.5-inch 1280×720 IPS display. Considering how high of a resolution modern smartphones have today, this might not sound like much, but the pixel density of 267 ppi is more than enough, especially considering that the human eye can’t discern anything higher than 300 ppi. Besides, HD displays are more forgiving on the battery, whereas their high-res counterparts often lead to shorter battery lives. Add to that the fact that the MT6752 is more power-efficient than Mediatek’s older chipsets, and you should get a lot of playtime out of the 3,200mAh battery the M52 Red Note comes with.
With an advertised Antutu score of 42,000, Mlais M52 is on par with the Meizu M1 Note and well above any version of Xiaomi Redmi Note, but we’ll have to wait until this phablet is available in order to see how it stacks against those two in real-life scenarios.
One aspect most people are concerned about is the software support. The Mlais M52 Note will get Android 5.0 Lollipop as an over-the-air update at first, and then it will come with this version out of the box, with the hope to get more OTA updates as they become available. Regardless if the phablet will come with vanilla Android or a custom ROM, it won’t be able to compete against Xiaomi’s MIUI or Meizu’s FlyMe OS, at least in the beginning, but assuming that Mlais will have a considering following that provides feedback constantly, the Android version might improve in time.
For the sake of diversity, the M52 Red Note will be available in four different colors: black, white, peach red and blue. While the overall build quality can only be assessed after the phablet is officially launch, one can’t help but notice how the design follows similar lines to the Xiaomi Redmi Note, while the color options could make one think of the Meizu M1 Note.
Mlais M52 Red Note can be pre-ordered on GearBest for $136 with the coupon code GBM52. The pre-sale will end on March 29 and orders will be shipped soon after. It should be noted that several other Chinese stores are running a pre-sale for this Android smartphone, but it’s nowhere as affordable as at this one.