Now that Apple has entered the “phablet” game, it has become the smartphone to beat in the world of over-sized smartphones. Of course, Apple is always seen as the standard, but just how hard is it to beat them? Can a Chinese manufacturer really take on the iPhone 6 Plus?
Hint: it’s definitely up there. The power of Chinese manufacturing is unmatchable. And Meizu has not only created a strong brand in the Chinese market, but their devices carry great price tags, stunning specs and advanced software modifications. Without further ado, let’s release the gargantuan beasts into the ring!
iPhone 6 Plus specs
- 5.5-inch LED 1920x1080p Retina Display
- A8 processor with 64-bit architecture
- M8 motion co-processor
- 1 GB of RAM
- 16/64/128 GB of internal storage
- 8 MP rear-facing camera
- 1.2 MP front-facing camera
- 2915 mAh battery
Meizu MX4 Pro specs
- 5.5-inch 2560x1536p display
- Samsung Exynos 5430 octa-core processor
- 3 GB of RAM
- 16/32/64 GB of internal storage
- 20.7 MP Sony EXMOR rear-facing camera
- 5 MP front-facing camera
- 3350 mAh battery
Design and build quality
Meizu is no bad contender in this department. The device looks good and has that “iPhonesque” feel to it. I will have to say the iPhone 6 Plus feels a bit more nice, though. I say “feel”, because such may not actually be the case. After all, you may very well bend your iPhone 6 Plus just by carrying it in your pocket.
This is why I will give the upper hand to the iPhone 6 Plus in terms of design, but the Meizu MX4 Pro has a better build quality. It won’t easily bend, which is a huge plus for a phone you will keep for a significant amount of time.
Performance and software
In terms of performance, both devices are very fast and powerful. Both will feel just as snappy, and this is because they carry high quality processors. You will find the Meizu MX4 Pro is a bit better in terms of multi-tasking, though.
Those who say iPhones are all-powerful machines and never slow down are lying to themselves. iPhones do slow down, and sometimes their 1 GB of RAM may make you wait more than you should. You won’t see de device lagging, but you will often find that recent apps have to be re-loaded when opened.
This is because 1 GB of RAM is not much to keep them all running. It needs to let go and close more recent apps than a device with 3 GB of RAM. Otherwise, they are both just as fast and will handle any app or game you throw at them.
Now, software… that’s a whole other story. We all know iOS is completely different from any Android iteration we can find around. The software is designed to be simple, fast and to the point. All your apps are right there and “it just works”.
On the other hand, Meizu does have an Android skin that highly resembles iOS. The icons are now flatter, and there is no app drawer. Meizu did add a lot of cool features you would never see in iOS, though. The notification area, for example, is full of widgets and shortcuts. The multi-tasking window shows some interesting features like locking apps, and so forth.
It’s hard to say one is better than the other. Those of you who love iOS will not find anything else like it. But if you open your mind to customizability and a more open software, you will find that the Meizu guys have done a great job with Flyme OS.
Oh, the display. Will the Retina display ever be beaten? We are here to tell you that it definitely can be, and it already has. The iPhone’s display is always bright, colors are accurate and images look gorgeous. The Retina Display is famous for having the best resolution, though, and that is simply not the case.
In fact, Apple smartphones fall far behind on screen resolution. The iPhone 6 Plus only has a 1080p screen! Now don’t get us wrong, 1080p screens can be amazing for a 5.5-inch display. The Meizu MX4 Pro easily beats it with a QHD 2560x1440p resolution, though.
Meizu’s device shows crisp writing and amazing video/photo quality. On the other hand, color accuracy and vibrant colors are better in the iPhone 6 Plus. The Meizu MX4 Pro screen quality is great, but the iPhone 6 Plus may show a slightly better experience in everything other than definition.
It’s not easy to beat the iPhone 6 Plus camera. After all, Apple’s new device takes stunning photos. The Cupertino giant sets the standard in cameras every year, but this time they outdid themselves.
Can Meizu compete with that? Maybe not on its own, but they got help from almighty Sony, which is a monster in the imaging industry. The Meizu MX4 comes packed with a famous Sony EXMOR 20.7 MP cameras. Manufacturers around the world partner with Sony for this sensor. Having Sony’s branding in a mobile camera just screams quality.
But let’s get to the point, shall we? Which one is better? I have tested both and have to say I often prefer the iPhone’s camera. Don’t get me wrong, I take great pictures with this sensor on the Xperia Z3v, but I have seen the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus cameras do wonders.
The iPhone 6 Plus is famous for its great battery life. The iPhone had never seen a 2915 mAh battery in the past. The Meizu MX4 Pro came to the market pushing the big boys aside, though. With a 3350 mAh battery inside, the MX4 Pro was able to give us up to two days of real-world usage!
That is simply insane!
Ultimately, it’s all a matter of preference. Which one would I take? I would go for the Meizu MX4 Pro in a heart beat, as hard as that may be to believe for some of you. The Meizu MX4 has a great screen, amazing battery life and great specs. It still has Android, and I happen to love the customizations and features. Oh, and its price starts at only CN¥2,499, which is equivalent to about $410 USD).
Some of you may love the brand power that Apple carries, though. Their customer service is always great and their devices look, feel and work great. The UI is simple, battery life is still awesome and the camera is simply stunning. You do have to pay at least $749 (off-contract), though. I think we can clearly see which one offers more bang for your buck.
For more details on the Meizu MX4 Pro, you can check out our video review right below. A written review is coming very soon, so keep your eyes open for that too.