There’s a new low-cost, high-performance smartphone in town. Not that the Philippines is short of compelling choices in the sub-P10,000 price point. Meet the Firefly Mobile Intense 64 LTE (Ulefone Be Pro in other regions), a 5.5-inch Android KitKat phone built around MediaTek’s new MT6732 processor that supports 64-bit applications and 4G LTE connections, if your carrier allows it. A self-explanatory name if we ever saw one. (We get it, Firefly Mobile.)
The quad-core device is priced at P7,999, squaring it against the ASUS Zenfone 2 and Meizu M1 Note, though the two should easily come out on top in terms of raw power and synthetic benchmarks as a result of having a more capable CPU. However, what the Intense 64 LTE lacks in performance, it makes up for with a ton of freebies: one smart cover, two back covers, two screen protectors, plus a feature phone valued at P449.
According to Firefly Mobile’s Facebook page, the Intense 64 LTE is now available in stores nationwide.
Specs of the Firefly Mobile Intense 64 LTE (Price in the Philippines: P7,999):
* Dual SIM
* 1.5GHz quad-core MediaTek MT6732 processor
* Mali-T760 GPU
* 2GB RAM
* 16GB internal storage
* microSD card slot
* 5.5-inch IPS display with Asahi Dragontrail glass (720 x 1,280 resolution)
* 13-megapixel rear camera with LED flash
* 8-megapixel front camera
* 2,800mAh removable battery
* Android KitKat 4.4.4 (upgradable to Lollipop)
RAMON LOPEZ’S TAKE: There’s never been a better time to upgrade (or downgrade) to a mid-ranger than now. The current mobile landscape is dotted with devices that offer high-end specs but cost less than half of their deluxe counterparts. And the positive buzz is no longer confined to the ASUS Zenfone 2 — and its gazillion variants.
There’s never been a better time to upgrade (or downgrade) to a mid-ranger than now.
Which is why I don’t expect ASUS to pull the rug out from under its rivals this year. The new Zenfone, capitalizing on the success of the original, will be a top-of-mind choice for many, sure, but it’s poised to face stiff competition from Cherry Mobile, Lenovo, Xiaomi, Meizu, and heavy underdogs like Firefly Mobile.
Regardless of what happens in the coming months, one thing’s for certain: Consumers win as manufacturers continue to duke it out, churning out even better phones at better prices.