Meizu launched their budget smartphone back in October which competes against the highly acclaimed Xiaomi Redmi 3S and Redmi 3S Prime. The Meizu M3s runs on Android 5.1 Lollipop-based Flyme OS 5.1. The handset boasts a premium metal construction along with a 2.5D full laminated HD IPS LCD panel.
The device comes in two variants on the basis of storage and RAM. The base model costs Rs. 7,999 and sports 2 GB of RAM and 16 GB of onboard storage. The 3 GB / 32 GB top-end version has a price tag of Rs. 9,299. Today let’s take the Meizu M3s out for a spin and see how it fares against its competitors. First, have a look at the complete set of specifications of the phone.
Meizu M3s: Specs
|Key Specs||Meizu m3s|
|Display||5.0 inch IPS LCD|
|Screen Resolution||HD 720 x 1280 pixels|
|Operating System||Android 6.0 Marshmallow|
|Processor||Octa Core 1.5 GHz|
|Memory||2 / 3 GB|
|Inbuilt Storage||16 / 32 GB|
|Storage Upgrade||Yes, with microSD|
|Primary Camera||13 MP with f/2.2 aperture, PDAF, dual-LED flash|
|Video recording||1080 @ 30 FPS|
|Secondary Camera||5 MP with f/2.0 aperture|
|SIM card type||Dual SIM, hybrid slot|
|Price||2 GB - Rs. 7,999
3 GB - Rs. 9,299
Display and Build Quality
Externally, the Meizu M3s looks surprisingly premium. Its beautiful metal body is surely a class apart. Measuring 8.3 mm in thickness, the smartphone is fairly thin and quite handy too. Single hand usage will never be an issue. The 2.5D curved display is an absolute stunner and ramps up the premiumness of the mobile.
In the front, at the top of the device, lies the earpiece, sensors, and the selfie shooter.
Below the display, there is a single home button with an inbuilt fingerprint scanner. The same button acts as the back key too. An upward swipe from the bottom of the screen gives access to the multitasking functionality.
Right at the bottom of the device, lies the speaker grill, primary microphone, and the microUSB port.
The 3.5 mm headphone jack sits at the top.
The power button along with the volume controls resides at the right edge.
The hybrid dual SIM slot is at the left.
Coming to the performance, the octa-core MediaTek MT6750 does a fantastic job. With eight ARM Cortex A53 cores clocked at up to 1.5 GHz each, it has more processing power than the Snapdragon 430 of the Redmi 3S. The dual core Mali T860 GPU is reasonable powerful to run the HD (1280 X 720) display. The Flyme OS 5.1 built upon Android 5.1 Lollipop is very fluid. The Meizu M3s performed pretty well, and we never experienced any significant lag whatsoever.
It did a fair job in multitasking and gaming. Although you will notice lags while playing high end games but that is occasional. The phone did feel slow after long term usage, when more memory was occupied with apps and data. So, not recommended for aggressive users.
One good thing is that I did not find it getting hot so often, despite the metal build. It did get warm after continuous usage or gaming, but pretty well to cool it down on the other hand.
The 13 MP primary camera shoots acceptable images. The 5-lens shooter is equipped with PDAF (Phase Detection Autofocus), f/2.2 aperture size and dual tone LED flash. The Meizu M3s can record Full HD (1080 x 1920) videos at up to 30 fps. At the front, lies a standard 5 MP selfie snapper. Check below for the camera samples.
Meizu M3s: Camera Samples
The rear camera is quite impressive in day light in terms of autofocus speed and exposure control. The colours and details are produced nicely, and look close to natural. Looking at the price, I would say the camera is good in most cases. I tried clicking pictures in artificial light, and I was quite convinced.
Front camera is also a pretty decent compared to competition in the same price. Expecting a lot in dim light conditions from it would be unfair, so we can surely call it a decent setup.
The Meizu M3s comes with a 3020mAh Lithium-ion cell. While this looks tiny with respect to the 4100mAh unit of the Redmi 3S, in real world scenario it gives an ample of battery life. Under normal conditions, the M3s can easily surpass a single day usage.
It took 1 hour 5 minutes to charge from 0-50%, thankfully there is enough battery so that you don’t have to charge it more than once a day.
Like most other Chinese smartphone manufacturers, Meizu too has its own modified version of the Android operating system. Called as the Flyme OS or UI, functionality-wise it is quite similar to the MIUI and EUI of Xiaomi and LeEco respectively. There is no app drawer, and all the apps are arranged just on the home screen itself.
While I personally always prefer vanilla Android, the Flyme OS didn’t irritate me much. Truly speaking, I am amazed by its snappiness and top notch memory management. Meizu has included every necessary feature in its modified user interface and integrated a few additionally functionalities along with some core level optimizations.
The Meizu M3s is a beautiful looking device with an excellent spec sheet. It has an exceptional display and powerful hardware coupled with an average camera performance. One of the major cons of the smartphone is its lack of VoLTE support. However, Meizu is expected to push an OTA update to enable VoLTE soon. Interestingly, the Chinese version of the handset supports VoLTE, and you can flash the China version of the Flyme OS to get it. Comment below if you want to know how to do it.
Apart from this, the Meizu M3s is a solid performer, and there is no reason why you shouldn’t buy it.