Cherry Mobile Flare S 7 Plus Review
Design and Construction
I got excited when I first saw the Flare S 7 Plus, not because it’s a new offering from the company, but because it sports a design that is trending in smartphones this year. And by that, I mean it now has a large display with a notch. Yes, the Cherry Mobile Flare S 7 Plus now features one of the trendiest smartphone design cues nowadays.
Although no longer a new feature, the notch provides the Flare S 7 Plus with advantages like sporting a large 6.18-inch display while keeping the footprint small.
The design of the notch reminds us of the iPhone X. It’s wide, but understandable considering that it houses the earpiece, 16 MP front camera, and the IR camera for the face unlock feature.
Cherry Mobile has been relatively quiet during the first half of the year and has not released anything big that would stir up the crowd. And just when I’m starting to wonder what they’re up to, they have unveiled the new Flare S 7 series a couple of months ago, and leading the pack is the Flare S 7 Plus.
Looking at the rest of the body, we have the hybrid SIM tray on the left, while on the right are the volume and power/lock buttons. They’re easy to reach, firm, and click..
Found at the bottom are the main microphone, the USB-C port, and the loudspeaker. There’s no 3.5 mm audio jack but Cherry Mobile included a USB-C adapter in the package.
At the back, there’s the dual rear cameras and the fingerprint scanner. Not sure if you’ve noticed, but this device has no Cherry Mobile branding on it.
In the hands, the Flare S 7 Plus feels premium thanks to the metallic frame and glass back that curves to the sides. It’s relatively wide so it can be a bit of a challenge to navigate it with one hand. Like with most smartphones with glossy backs, it’s a smudge and fingerprint magnet. Good thing Cherry Mobile included a clear case in the package to help protect the device
It also has Flare Moji which is Cherry Mobile’s take on animated emojis that is also found in other smartphone brands. It work’s fine as it uses the IR camera for guidance, but the animation is not as smooth compared to, let’s say, the iPhone X and the characters available are still limited.
mages produced are quite good. In bright conditions, the details are sharp with plenty of details, good contrast, and rich and accurate colors. H DR also works well to bring out details in dark areas. Auto focus is also fast although I noticed some inconsistencies when shooting in macro. Some shots are spot on, while others are blurred
File shots produced in bright conditions are good, I can’t say the same thing when the lights go down starting in the late hours of the afternoon or when shooting indoors. The cameras struggle to get as much light as possible by bumping up the ISO..
When it comes to imaging, the Flare S 7 Plus is equipped with a 16 MP + 5 MP dual-rear B SI cameras, while selfies are handled by a 16 MP camera. The cameras are AI-assisted with scene recognition, Night mode, Face Beauty, H DR, Panorama, Pro mode, Time-lapse, Slow motion, Group selfie, and Live Photo..
Display and Multimedia
The Flare S 7 Plus is equipped with a large 6.18-inch L T PS display with a 19:9 aspect ratio. Cherry Mobile calls it the True View display. Protecting it is a Corning Gorilla Glass 3 and comes with a screen protector in the package. It has a Full H D+ resolution which equates to 403 p pi which is good considering the screen size. The display quality is sharp with good viewing angles and punchy colors.
If you’re worried about the notch, the Flare S 7 Plus allows you to hide it by going to Settings ->>>> Features -.>>>> Notch Screen Gesture. Once activated, just slide down from the upper left corner of the screen to switch to 18:9 aspect ratio.
When it comes to audio, the single down-firing speaker is loud enough for casual listening to music, watching videos on YouTube, or gaming. The audio is crisp and full with almost no distortion, but like most smartphones in this price range, the bass is weak.
Previous Cherry Mobile Android smartphones came with ads that pop up in the interface. I’m glad to report that the Flare S7 Plus doesn’t have that. In addition, it didn’t have a lot of pre-installed apps, just Facebook, Instagram, Firefox Rocket, and Chums Live. The rest is handled by Google’s own apps
The Flare S 7 Plus is running on Android 8.1 Oreo skinned with a custom U I meaning it has its own wallpapers and icons. The interface has been tweaked as well but still similar to Android stock.
As for features, it has its own System Manager, Smart Gestures, Data Clone, Customiz able Navigation bar, and Suspend button which works like the iPhone’s Assistive Touch.
When it comes to storage, the Flare S 7 Plus comes with 64 GB with 52.42 GB as usable. This can be expanded via micro SD using the SIM 2 slot and USB O.T.G.
Connectivity and Battery Life
The battery part is where I’m disappointed as it only has a 3,050 m Ah battery. For a phone with this kind of configuration, I was expecting at least 3,500 m Ah. Mixed usage only got me around 7 to 8 hours of battery life. PC Mark rated it at 5 hours and 34 minutes which is poor, while our video loop test yielded 12 hours of playback which is not bad. Charging, on the other hand, takes a little over 2 hours.
The Flare S 7 Plus is equipped with your standard connectivity features which include 4 G L TE, WiFi, Bluetooth, and GPS. So far these features work as advertised as I had no problems using mobile data, Bluetooth speakers, and location-based apps like Google Maps or Grab.
Performance and Benchmarks
In terms of gaming, the Flare S 7 Plus can pack a punch as it was able to run games like Asphalt 9 and PUBG Mobile in H D graphics and High Frame Rate. There was some drop in frames in busy scenarios but not that noticeable. Warming is felt at the backside just above the fingerprint scanner but not enough to be a serious concern. Check out the benchmark scores below:
• An Tu Tu – 137,837
• 3 D Mark – 1,047 (SSE – Open G L ES 3.1), 932 (SSE – Vulkan)
• PC Mark – 7,679 (Work 2.0)
• Geek bench 4 – 1,497 (Single-Core), 5,792 (Multi-Core), 5,417
Powering the Flare S 7 Plus is a Media Tek Helio P 60 octa-core CPU, Mali G 72 MP 3 GPU, and 4 GB RAM. With this kind of configuration, I’m getting good mid-range performance as apps launch fast, navigation is smooth, and switching between apps is quick. When it comes to biometric performance, the Face Unlock feature works well and can recognize our face in different lighting thanks to the IR camera.
Connectivity and Battery Life
The battery part is where I’m disappointed as it only has a 3,050 m Ah battery. For a phone with this kind of configuration, I was expecting at least 3,500 m Ah. Mixed usage only got me around 7 to 8 hours of battery life. PC Mark rated it at 5 hours and 34minutes which is poor, while our video loop test yielded 12 hours of playback which is not bad. Charging, on the other hand, takes a little over 2 hours.
The Flare S 7 Plus is equipped with your standard connectivity features which include 4 G L TE, WiFi, Bluetooth, and GPS. So far these features work as advertised as I had no problems using mobile data, Bluetooth speakers, and location-based apps like Google Maps or Grab. Call quality is good as well but that depends on your location and if the signal is good.
Cherry Mobile Flare S 7 Plus is like a statement that the company is capable of producing a smartphone with features found in more expensive devices — a high-resolution screen, good-performing mid-range chip set, 4 GB RAM, 64 GB storage, decent cameras, IR face unlock, and wireless charging. What’s even more impressive is its asking price of P HP 11,999. It has its imperfections but considering the benefits mentioned, it’s still a good offering.
Cherry Mobile Flare S 7 Plus specs:
6.18-inch L T PS F H D+ (2246 x 1080) True View display, 403 p p i
Corning Gorilla Glass 3
Media Tek Heio P 60 2.0 GHz octa-core processor
ARM Mali-G 72 MP 3 GPU
4 GB RAM
64 GB internal storage
expandable via micro SD card up to 256 GB (uses SIM 2)
16 MP + 5 MP B SI rear cameras with LED Flash
16 MP + IR front camera with AI Selfie
4 G L TE with Band 28 support, Carrier Aggregation
Dual SIM (nano, hybrid), Dual Standby
WiFi 801.11 a/b/g/n
GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS
Android 8.1 Oreo
3,050 m Ah battery (non remove able) with fast and wireless charging
155 x 75.5 x 7.85 mm (dimensions)
200 g (weight)
What I liked:
• Good build
• Good display
• IR Face Unlock
• Good performance
• Affordable price
• Wireless charging
What I didn’t:
• Small battery
• Poor video recording quality
• No 3.5 mm audio jack