Mlais M7 review of the most affordable smartphone with a fingerprint scanner and MT6752 processor
The Mlais M7 smartphone is one of the three devices that were the first to receive the MT6752 processor from MediaTek and a fingerprint scanner, along with the Elephone P7000 and Ulefone Be Touch. Therefore, many compared the Mlais M7 with these two smartphones long before their official release, and we, in turn, even ordered it for testing in our studio along with the same advertised opponents.
Basically, Mlais M7 is more like Ulefone Be Touch as it has the same screen resolution and similar battery capacity. However, the fingerprint scanner in the Mlais M7 is located on the back panel, like in the Elephone P7000 smartphone, and the sensors are absolutely identical.
The purpose of our testing of the Mlais M7 was to find out if the product from the less famous company Mlais could compete with two famous models from manufacturers with consonant names. Or maybe the Mlais M7 is the better choice, as it's priced a few tens of dollars lower than its rivals.
We tried to answer these questions in detail in our video review of the Mlais M7 smartphone, which was presented to your attention a little earlier. And now we propose to get acquainted with this interesting smartphone in more detail, as well as our conclusions drawn from the results of its testing, in this text review.
And we will start, as usual, with our first impression of the Mlais M7 - with a description of its packaging, delivery set and appearance of the smartphone.
Overview of equipment and appearance Mlais M7
The Mlais M7 smartphone comes in a compact blue branded package with the manufacturer's logo on the front side and a specification on the back of the box. The device itself is additionally packed in a plastic bag with the manufacturer's logo and outside in an anti-stress film. So we have no complaints about the quality of packaging, however, many Chinese manufacturers have already realized that it is not worth saving much here. Next, we'll move on to the package.
Mlais M7 delivery set is as follows
- Smartphone Mlais M7
- Charger for our 1.0A sockets
- 2600 mAh battery for our smartphone
- MicroUSB cable for connecting to charger or computer
- Manual in English
As you can see, the scope of delivery of this smartphone is rather meager. Therefore, in addition to this set, we also ordered a branded protective glass, as well as a cover-book with a round neckline.
The back of the case is transparent, and the top is made of leatherette. The smartphone in the case sits quite securely, and when the lid is closed, a clock appears in the round cutout, which can be changed to a music player with a swipe to the right.
In general, the package is fully in line with the smartphone's price range, so we advise you to spend a few more dollars to purchase additional accessories that will come in handy.
Overview of the appearance of Mlais M7
The front panel of Mlais M7 is made of protected glass Corning Gorilla Glass 3. You will not find any 2.5D technologies here, the frames to the left and right of the screen cannot be called narrow either. But the fields above and below the screen are quite small, so the smartphone turned out to be more compact in height than its competitors. Mlais M7 dimensions are 149.5x76.8x8.6 mm.
At the bottom of the front panel there are 3 standard touch buttons "Back", "Home" and "Call the menu". The buttons are backlit, which is now quite rare even in smartphones in this price segment.
At the top of the front panel, we see a 5-megapixel camera eye, a speaker, and a window for light and proximity sensors. The event indicator in Mlais M7 is not provided.
The frame of the smartphone is made of metal with a black coating. The spraying is resistant to abrasion, and thanks to it, the Mlais M7 looks more stylish and strict than its competitors. In the version with a white body color, the frame is completely silver, with a matte texture in the middle.
On the left side of the frame are the power and volume buttons.
At the top end there is a 3.5 mm headset jack and a Micro-USB port with OTG support.
On the bottom end of the frame, you will find only a hole for the microphone, and the right side of the frame does not carry any elements at all.
The rear panel of the device is a removable black plastic cover. It is matte, does not collect fingerprints and is pleasant to the touch.
At the top of the rear panel, we see a square window of the main camera with 13 megapixels and a single LED flash module. Under them is a round window of the fingerprint scanner.
And at the bottom of the rear panel we see an engraving of the manufacturer's logo in silver color and a slot of a rectangular external speaker.
The assembly of the Mlais M7 smartphone leaves a pleasant impression. All elements are well fitted to each other, nothing creaks or backlash.
Under the back cover, which can be removed without much effort or tricks, you will find the battery compartment, and above it are slots for a Micro-SD memory card with a capacity of up to 64 GB and for SIM cards, one of which is regular and the other is Micro. The back cover is also very easy to put on.
In general, we really liked the appearance of the Mlais M7, and even more than the Elephone P7000. The device also sits very comfortably in the hand, and in comparison with the same P7000 it absolutely does not look like a kind of brick, since the Mlais M7 is a little thinner and shorter. But his weight is the same - 160 grams.
Let's move on to the technical part of the device, starting, as usual, with the display.
Overview of the Mlais M7 display
The display diagonal is 5.5 inches, and its resolution is 1280x720 pixels. As we said at the beginning, according to this indicator, Mlais M7 is inferior to Elephone P7000 and is identical to the Ulefone Be Touch smartphone.
In the manufacture of the display, an IPS-matrix was used, and it is covered with protective glass Gorilla Glass 3, as we said earlier. There is no air gap between the glass and the matrix, since they are made as a single whole using the so-called OGS technology. The manufacturer of the display is not named, but we did not have any complaints about it.
The viewing angles are wide, the brightness margin is good, and the MultiTouch test showed the standard result of supporting 5 simultaneous touches.
Overview of the interface and software platform Mlais M7
The device runs on Android 5.0 Lollipop operating system. We were very pleased with the speed of the screen response to touch. And the picture on the screen, despite the low HD-resolution, looks pretty nice.
Three touch buttons in the device perform their standard functions. When you hold down the Home button, the tabs of active applications open.
A double swipe down from the status bar opens a shortcut menu to the main functions - turning on WiFi and Bluetooth, activating flight mode and selecting sound profiles, turning on the flashlight, adjusting the display brightness, etc. From here you can also go to the main settings menu.
In general, the shell in this smartphone has remained almost standard for Android 5.0 Lollipop. From the settings, we separately highlight the possibility of wireless firmware update, which really works, since during the testing process we managed to download a new firmware version and install it successfully. In the smart functions menu, everything is also as usual - unlocking the smartphone with a double tap, the ability to activate the camera, calculator and music player with special gestures, etc.
Let's not disregard the fingerprint scanner setup menu, as this is one of the important features of the Mlais M7. Fingerprint registration is quite fast, just like in Elephone P7000. Although this is not surprising, since the fingerprint scanners are identical. We also liked the work of the scanner, since fingerprint recognition is fast and with a high percentage of accuracy.
Otherwise, the interface and operation of the smartphone did not cause us any comments, and in this Mlais M7 is in no way inferior to its main competitors Elephone P7000 and Ulefone Be Touch.
Let's check how Mlais M7 behaves when tested in various benchmarks.
Performance testing of Mlais M7 in various benchmarks
Recall the main technical characteristics of Mlais M7. The smartphone runs on the Android 5.0 Lollipop operating system, and the 64-bit 8-core MT6752 processor with a clock speed of 1.7 GHz, paired with the Mali-T760 graphics chip, is responsible for computing in it.
Mlais M7 display diagonal is 5.5 inches, and its resolution is 1280x720 pixels. The smartphone has 3 GB of RAM and 16 GB of built-in memory, of which about 12.5 GB is available to the user. The device also has a slot for Micro-SD memory cards with a capacity of up to 64 GB, but we will not need it for testing in benchmarks.
After the test in the Antutu v5.7.1 program, the Mlais M7 smartphone scored 41630 points, which is a fairly common result for this hardware stuffing, although with the same hardware Ulefone Be Touch scored 4 thousand points more.
Perhaps the whole point is in the optimization of the software manufacturer for this device, since even taking into account the questionable objectivity of this test, the difference is too significant.
When testing graphics in Epic Citadel at ultra-high quality for HD resolution, the Mlais M7 achieved 50.1 frames per second, and in 3DMark at the highest possible graphics settings, our test sample scored an astonishing 5177 points. These results were also significantly lower than in Ulefone Be Touch with the same screen resolution.
And now let's move on to testing the Mlais M7 in the Asphalt-8 game, paying special attention to possible lags and slowdowns, as well as to the heating of the device case. As it turned out, the Mlais M7 smartphone coped with the game without any problems, but the heating of the device after 10 minutes of the game turned out to be noticeable, although somewhat lower than in the Elephone P7000.
Next, we will get acquainted with the built-in sensors in the Mlais M7 smartphone.
Built-in sensors and GPS testing (see video for details)
The Sensor List program showed the presence of the following sensors on board the Mlais M7: an accelerometer, a magnetic field sensor, an orientation sensor, illumination, proximity, a Hall sensor, and a pressure sensor, which, of course, is not actually in the phone. In terms of sensor equipment, there are no differences here compared to competitors, including the presence of a phantom pressure sensor, which was present in both Elephone P7000 and Ulefone Be Touch.
And now let's check the operation of GPS navigation in the Mlais M7 smartphone. It turned out that without a WiFi connection and after a cold start, the device connected to the satellites in about 25-30 seconds. Mlais M7 finds GLONASS satellites but does not connect to them. We encountered a similar situation in Elephone P7000 and Ulefone Be Touch. And we hope that this situation will change for the better in future firmware updates, since according to the specification, GLONASS support by the MT6752 processor is guaranteed.
Mlais M7 camera testing
According to the manufacturer, the IMX135 sensor from Sony is used as the main camera module in the device. This is a more budget sensor than the well-known IMX214, although the manufacturer explains its absence in the Mlais M7 by the shortage of these sensors, and not by the desire to save money.
It is also worth noting that the manufacturer equipped the Mlais M7 with just a single LED flash module. The same situation was observed in the Elephone P7000, although the manufacturer used a dual LED flash in the Ulefone Be Touch.
In practice, the quality of photos from the main camera of Mlais M7 turned out to be quite decent, and in our subjective opinion it surpassed the quality of photos from Ulefone Be Touch with a more advanced camera module. The pictures are of good sharpness and color reproduction, including at night shooting.
The camera interface is pretty standard. In the settings, you can select the panoramic shooting mode, HDR mode, burst mode, Live Photo mode, timer shooting mode, and scene selection mode. There is the possibility of applying various effects (negative, sepia, etc.) and linking photos to the map (geo-tagging), as well as the ability to select ISO, exposure compensation and select white balance settings. It also features image stabilization, face detection, and gesture control of the camera. Focusing can be done both automatically and by clicking on the screen area. There is also a digital zoom. The volume up button acts as a shutter release. The maximum photo size is limited to 13 MP (4128x3096 pixels).
The maximum video recording resolution is Full HD, while video is recorded at 30 frames per second. There is also a slow motion feature in the video settings. The rest of the settings are pretty standard. Autofocus does not work very fast, but in general, we have no complaints about video recording.
As for the front camera, a 5 megapixel sensor is used as its module. Its manufacturer is not reported, however, most likely, a sensor from OmniVision is used here. The maximum photo size from this camera is 2560x1920 pixels, and the video size is 1280x720 pixels. In general, no peculiarities were noticed in the work of the front camera. It shoots no better, but no worse than in competitors' devices.
As we mentioned above, the claimed battery capacity of the Mlais M7 is 2600 mAh, which is almost the same as the battery capacity of the Ulefone Be Touch. With such a battery capacity and MT6752 processor, it would be reckless to hope for high autonomy.
In practice, it happened, because in our testing, Mlais M7 in the AnTuTu Battery Test program showed results similar to Ulefone Be Touch. In this test, at maximum load, the device worked for about 3.5 hours before the battery was completely discharged. And this means that in real life, with standard use of the Mlais M7, you will have to charge every day.
The volume of the external speaker of Mlais M7 turned out to be significantly higher than in Elephone P7000 and Ulefone Be Touch. As for the sound in headphones, it seemed to us about as good as in Elephone P7000, and better than in Ecoo E04 Aurora Plus . Although we are not talking about any special music chip here, it's all about the sound quality settings by the manufacturer.
Well, now it's time to sum up the results of our testing of the Mlais M7.
Let's start with the advantages of the device:
1) Appearance Mlais M7 and its more compact dimensions compared to its main competitors.
2) The fingerprint scanner that works in Mlais M7 is almost flawless.
3) The presence of illumination of three touch buttons on the front panel. It seems to be a trifle, but in fact its presence can be found far from often.
4) The progress of the Mlais company, since this is their first product, to which we practically had no complaints. The over-the-air update really works, the device has a loud external speaker and a good screen. And we hope that this trend will continue.
5) The cost of a smartphone. Taking into account the characteristics and the presence of a fingerprint scanner, the cost of Mlais M7 did not exceed $180, and with coupons you can save about $7 more, which is at least $30-40 cheaper than you would pay for other competitors with the same filling.
Let's move on to the disadvantages :
1) No event indicator. Again, a trifle in terms of costs, but very useful and clearly not worth saving on it.
2) Low battery capacity. With such dimensions, it would be quite possible to place a 3000 mAh battery in the device.
As you can see, during our testing with the Mlais M7 smartphone, we were very satisfied. It turned out to be even slightly better than Ulefone Be Touch, although it showed more modest results in performance tests.
It is worth noting that the Mlais M7 smartphone has a clone, which is produced under the Mstar brand and has the name S700. Their characteristics are almost identical, with the exception of the battery capacity, which allegedly is 3000 mAh. And although we doubt the reality of this figure, the cost of the Mstar S700 is even lower than the Mlais S700. And although both of these models will be inferior to the new Ulefone Be Touch 2 , but the price difference leaves them at a very competitive level.
So, if you need a smartphone with an MT6752 processor, a fingerprint scanner and a low price, and charging the device every day is not a problem for you, then Mlais M7 will suit you like no other. Believe me, this smartphone is worth every dollar spent on it.
Video review of Mlais M7
In conclusion of the review, we present all the characteristics of Mlais M7
- Device type: smartphone/phablet.
- Available colors: black, white.
- Housing materials: plastic, metal frame and glass.
- Operating system: Android 5.0 Lollipop.
- Networks: GSM 850/900/1800/1900 (band5, band8, band3, band2)
WCDMA 850/900/1900/2100 (band5, band8, band2, band1)
FDD-LTE 800/1800/2100/2600 (band20, band3, band1, band7)
- SIM cards: Dual SIM (SIM+MicroSIM), Dual Standby
- Processor: 64 bit, 8 cores Cortex A53 x 1.7 GHz, MT6752
- Video accelerator: Mali-T760MP2, 700 MHz
- RAM: 3GB LPDDR3 800MHz
- Storage: 16 GB + microSD slot up to 64 GB
- Fingerprint Reader: Rear, 360º, 0.1 sec.
- Interfaces: WiFi 802.11 (b/g/n), Hotspot, Bluetooth v4.0, MicroUSB v2.0, OTG, 3.5mm audio, OTA
- Applications: FM radio
- Screen: IPS 5.5'' with a resolution of 1280x720 pixels, OGS, 267 ppi, Gorilla Glass 3
- Cameras: 12.78 MP (4128x3096, Sony IMX135 Exmor RS, autofocus, OIS, LED flash (continuous shooting, digital zoom, geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, HDR, panorama, ISO selection, exposure compensation, white balance, timer, scene selection), video 1080p@30fps + 4.92 MP (2560x1920), CMOS
- Navigation: GPS, A-GPS
- Battery: removable, capacity 2600 mAh
- Dimensions: 149.5 x 76.8 x 8.6mm
- Weight: 160 g