The "1-Minute" Review
- 16GB storage
- Limited availability
- Large size
- No MicroSD support
Lenovo has had a hit-or-miss track record so far with its venture into mobile devices. Their latest attempt, the Vibe Z, ventures into phablet territory with some serious specs to back it up. Does it live up to the hype? Reviews indicate this could finally be the hit that Lenovo is looking for.
Like many devices in this size bracket, the Vibe Z is, above all else, large. However, the polycarbonate plastic appears to be winning over many reviews. Between its thin chassis and light case--just scant 5.12 ounces--most reviews note how surprisingly light and easy to hold the phone is. Lowyat noted, "the textured back cover is actually great for increasing grip on the device, which interestingly feels smaller than what it actually is."
Combined with some software enhancements to make one-handed use easier, and the phone really challenges the typical design and use of the 5-inch plus market. Tech Radar was happy with the subtle changes, stating, "I've seen nothing this clever."
The phone houses a 5.5-inch 1080p IPS display. While it is still a phone, it is about as large as one gets before venturing into tablet territory. The large display is protected by Gorilla Glass 3 to prevent unwanted scratches and dings. Unfortunately, many reviews noted a few color reproduction issues, with NDTV Gadgets saying "The screen is sufficiently crisp, but not especially vivid."
Powering the display is fast 2.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon and 2GB of RAM. While no longer bleeding-edge, from gaming to video streaming, the hardware should provide plenty of performance for whatever you might want to do. Reviews generally agreed. NDTV pointed out, "Videos play very well though, and even our heaviest clips didn't stutter. However, the Vibe Z did get uncomfortably hot while gaming." Giz Beat applauded the Vibe Z saying, "The call quality on both ends is amazing."
All of this is fed power from a 3000mAh battery. While heavy usage and video streaming is likely to go through a battery quite quickly, Lowyat and Giz Beat found that under regular use patterns, a full day's use on a single charge was more than possible.
Lenovo also went with premium camera options for the Vibe Z. With a 13MP front-facing camera and a 5MP selfie shooter, there is plenty of detail to go around. Giz Beat said, "the camera is impressive as is Lenovo’s stock camera app."
If there was a weak link pointed out by most reviews it would have to be storage. The phone is only available with 16GB of storage space. Lack of MicroSD card support means you will probably want to find a good cloud provider or pick and choose your movies, music or pictures that you keep on your device.
Overall, the reviews for the Vibe Z seem to indicate that Lenovo has finally hit its stride with this latest device. TechView states, "If you want a good cost effective device with the best in performance, the Lenovo Vibe Z is perfect" while Giz Beat declares "Long story short, this phone is an animal."
What the Critics Are Saying...
Prices (Where to Buy)
Lenovo released the Vibe Z on March 5, 2014.
Lenovo backs up the Vibe Z with a 1 Year parts & labour warranty.
If your Vibe Z has problems and is still within its warranty period, you could contact Lenovo support or the retailer you purchased the phone from. You'll find Lenovo's contact information here. If your phone is off warranty and needs repair for a physical problem such as a broken screen or bad battery, you should visit an authorized service centre or a local phone repair shop. You can also connect with others in The Informr Community Forum to find and share answers to questions.
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