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The Cherry Mobile Flare P1 Plus is the third device in the company’s new P1 series, and is basically a more pricey version of the P1 with its larger 5.5-inch screen, a seemingly more powerful CPU, and of course, dual cameras.

So does this device redeem the younger sibling from its shortcomings? or does it carry the same problems, just now on a bigger and more expensive package? Let’s find out.

First, a quick giveaway announcement: Get your best and unretouched face on Facebook comment on this post and get a chance to win a Cherry Mobile Flare P1 Plus! Oh, c’mon you got this!

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Flare P1 Plus
Better Design, Solid Build Quality

p1plus u18Compared to the P1, the P1 Plus sports better build quality as well as a more premium and stylish design. It feels more solid when held, and the look reminds me of the Flare Infinity, which is probably the prettiest device that I’ve seen from the brand.

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There’s 2.5D glass covering the display, along with the notification LED, front camera, other sensors, and the familiar capacitive buttons, which are unfortunately, not illuminated.

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Along with the dual camera system and LED flash, the back panel also houses a fingerprint sensor and some branding. It does feel a bit slippery, so investing in a case might be a good idea.

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The power button can be found on the right side along with the SIM card slot, while the volume rocker is placed on the left side. While the buttons complement the design well, they are wobbly, and are too thin for my liking.

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Up top is the headphone jack, while the bottom section houses the speaker, microphone, and a standard microUSB port.

Decent Display

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The 5.5-inch FHD display boasts a more balanced color temperature, which makes it easy on the eyes. It’s not boring, but not exactly fun to look at as well. Saturation is good, and the screen can go very bright if you need it to.

Better Performance

As far as simple daily tasks go such as web browsing, social media, taking photos and listening to music, the P1 Plus managed to perform slightly better than expected. There were no stutters when navigating the interface, nor were there any random crashes or restarts.

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Gaming performance wasn’t stellar, but it handled Mobile Legends well, though the graphics quality isn’t exactly great. You can also play NBA 2K17 on this device, but you’ll have to turn down the settings to the lowest to even to achieve a decent framerate.

Still a Hype-Only Camera

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The P1 Plus sports a dual rear cam system which uses a 13MP main sensor, and another 5MP sensor to achieve a depth of field effect.

Unfortunately, it’s plagued by the same issue of poor implementation, as the bokeh effect also seems unpolished. In some instances, areas which are not supposed to be blurred are blurred and vice versa.

The amount of detail however, is slightly better compared to the P1. Colors accuracy is on point as well.

Selfies taken by the 8MP front camera are decent at best, as details are basically acceptable, but sharpness needs some work. At times, there’s also a bit of unneeded blur in the background.

The Camera app only offers a few shooting modes, so investing in a 3rd party app may be a good choice.

Good for a Music Player

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If you’re going to use the P1 Plus as a music player, plug in a pair of decent headphones, as the speaker falls short in just about everything, bass, detail, you name it.

With a pair of headphones, the experience is just so much better. The default sound signature leans more on being balanced. I wanted a bit more bass, but the clarity is more than enough to compensate, and is especially evident when playing a vocal track.

Stock Experience

The P1 Plus runs on Android Nougat out of the box, and while the stock experience may look a bit plain and boring to some, it contributes to better performance, which is what this device needs. Navigating the user interface was smooth most of the time, without any noticeable hiccups when switching between apps.

Cherry Mobile does include a couple of their own apps such as Cherry Fun Club and Cherry Play, and while the fact some of them can’t be uninstalled isn’t exactly appealing, you can still disable them from the apps menu.

Still Below Average Battery Life 

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Even with only light to moderate usage, the P1 Plus’ 3,000mAh battery will only last you a few hours before the end of your work shift. Charging the device takes 2.5 hours from zero to full, which is at least slightly better than its smaller sibling.

Verdict

The Cherry Mobile Flare P1 Plus is definitely a step up from the P1 in terms of performance. The display is satisfactory, the sound quality with headphones is a treat to the ears, and the software is well optimized.

Sadly, it still suffers from the same issues that made P1 a letdown, such as the unrefined depth of field effect, the underwhelming sound quality from the speakers, and the poor battery life.

For what it offers, i’d say it’s an okay choice for the price (PhP5,999), but if you’re thinking of saving a bit more to get even better value, there are better devices out there.

The Good

  • Design and Build Quality
  • Display
  • General and Gaming Performance
  • Sound Quality (Headphones)
  • Minimal Bloatware
  • Stock Android Experience

The Not So Good

  • Camera Performance
  • Sound Quality (Speakers)

Cherry Mobile Flare P1 Plus Specs:

  • 1.5GHz MediaTek MT6737T Quad-Core Processor
  • 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage expandable via microSD card (up to 64GB)
  • 5.5-inch Full HD IPS LCD Display with 2.5D Glass
  • 13MP + 5MP Dual Rear Cameras, AF
  • 8MP Front Camera
  • 4G/LTE, Dual SIM
  • Android Nougat
  • 3,000mAh battery
  • Sensors: Proximity, Ambient Light

Emman has been writing technical and feature articles since 2010. Prior to this, he became one of the instructors at Asia Pacific College in 2008, and eventually landed a job as Business Analyst and Technical Writer at Integrated Open Source Solutions for almost 3 years.