Many of you may not know, but there are many companies developing quality smartphones.
The term “Chinese phones” is used for nearly all Asian smartphone manufacturers, however not all come from China. One of those companies is Blackview. Based in Hong Kong they have quite the lineup of phones so far and are regarded as a quality brand with a good price tag.
Today, I’ll be reviewing their latest flagship phone – Blackview P2.
Blackview P2 First Look and Packaging
Blackview P2 looks and feels extra premium. From the great Matte Black coloured metal body, to the camera lenses and textured power button ensuring you got a premium device in your hands.
Blackview P2 also has a very good screen/body ratio making the phone easier to use with one hand compared to other 5.5″ devices. Navigation keys are capacitive and not backlit.
Inside the box, Blackview has packed many goodies for their buyers.
You also get a Fast Charger, USB-C cable, OTG cable, earphones a silicon case, sim tray pin, screen protector and warranty. It’s probably the best package you can get at this price.
Blackview P2 User Interface and Features
I really appreciate the effort Blackview took making the premium colour skin. Most noteworthy being the excellent choice of wallpapers and black gold icons.
Apart from that, you get a pure Android experience, no bloatware. Blackview implemented a screen recording, app-locking and extra audio modes that really make a difference listening to music or watching a movie. Topping it all up with a compass app/sensor to really make it shine.
Running Android 6.0 Blackview have announced Android Nougat will come to the P2 in the next few months.
The fingerprint scanner is fast and accurate, another big plus for the P2.
Blackview P2 Specs and Benchmarks
- Android 6.0 Marshmallow
- 5.5-inch Full HD 2.5D Glass Display, 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution, ~401ppi
- 1.5GHz MediaTek MT6750T octa-core processor
- Mali-T860 MP2 GPU
- 4GB RAM + 64GB storage, expandable via microSD
- 13-megapixel Samsung rear camera with phase detection autofocus, LED flash
- 8-megapixel front camera
- 4G LTE
- USB Type-C 2.0, Magnetic(compass), Proximity, Light, Orientation Sensors
- Fingerprint scanner
- Bluetooth, GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS
- Dimensions: 15 x 77 x 9.8mm
- 6,000mAh battery w/ fast charging
Benchmark scores are good with scores around Snapdragon 430 level which puts the Blackview P2 specs-wise about the same as Nokia 6.
With plenty of RAM and fast storage, multitasking is a breeze. General performance is very fast.
You rarely wait for apps and can leave a few games running in the background with your social media and browsing without worries of reloads.
Heavy games on high setting will lag a bit, but light to medium 3D games runs great on the P2. Blackview P2 comes with a compass sensor, but no gyroscope. I found that decision odd and P2 owners will have to live without 360 youtube videos.
Although I didn’t encounter any software bugs I found out that games like Modern Combat 5 and Asphalt 8 were missing from the playstore on my P2, which was weird. Late I found out that was due to the apps themselves not supporting this particular software build. Blackview assured me that an OTA is on its way to fix this and make improvements to battery life and camera quality.
Blackview P2 Battery Life
Battery life was not what I expected, although I presume there’s a software issue behind the problem. P2’s battery runs great when playing videos and games from the phone, but downloading large files and streaming really hurts the battery.
For instance, I played 2hrs of FHD video from the phone and it drained only 9% of battery, however, a 2hr youtube video drained it by 23%. To summarise, you can get a full day with the P2 on heavy usage, maybe a bit more, but not much. Currently, you can get 6-7Hrs of screen-on-time but with the next OTA you should be able to get up to 10. Luckily, the fast-charging capabilities were awesome, charging the entire battery from 0 to 100% in just over 2hrs.
Blackview P2 Camera
Camera performance is something that lesser brands really suffer with and the P2 is no exception.
Picture quality is more than adequate in good lighting conditions but suffers as light becomes scarce. Shutter speed and focusing are very fast which is at least some compensation.
I personally think the sensor is more capable than it shows, but without a proper camera app to adjust exposure time and focus manually you can’t even test it.
The culprit here is the same old functions-barren MTK camera app. Hopefully, after the OTA there are some optimisations to the algorithm.
Making best use of the camera is to leave the auto-scene detection mode ON all the time and switch to HDR when the app tells you to.
Video quality is usable from the back cam. Recording at FHD there is a good amount of details and the sound is loud and audible.
Front Camera experience wasn’t great. Even in very good conditions, pictures lack details unless you turn on HDR, so make sure you do.
Front cam video is only 480p so far, not very good even for vlogging.
Blackview P2 Conclusion
Blackview P2 is a very well built phone with fast performance and good specs. Things that knock it back are the front camera and battery life. Battery life should be fixed with the next OTA update soon.
+ Premium Built Quality
+ Fast performance, great multitasking
+ Better Audio, Compass app, screen recording and app-locking feature.
+ USB-C and a fast and accurate fingerprint scanner
+ Premium box and goodies inside
+ 4GB RAM 64GB expandable storage
– Average camera performance, let down mostly by not investing in a better camera app.
– Battery life not stellar at the moment
– Heavy 3D Games lag
– Capacitive navigation keys are not backlit
– No gyroscope