OPPO A71 Review: A Good All-Rounder

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Oppo launched their latest mid-range smartphone, the OPPO A71, that has a 5.2-inch HD display, a MediaTek octa-core processor, 3GB RAM, and an Android 7.1 Nougat OS. For a budget under Php 9k, will this device satisfy the budget conscious power users and selfie fanatics? Let’s find out.

OPPO A71 Specs:

  • 5.2-inch HD IPS display, 282ppi
  • 1.5GHz MT6750 octa-core processor
  • 3GB RAM
  • 16GB internal storage
  • Expandable up to 256GB via microSD
  • 13.0MP f/2.2 rear camera
  • 5.0MP f/2.4 front camera
    4G LTE
  • Dual SIM (nano-SIM)
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/b
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • GPS, A-GPS
  • microUSB
  • USB OTG
  • ColorOS 3.1(based on Android 7.1 Nougat)
  • 3000mAh battery
  • 148.1 x 73.8 x 7.6 mm
  • 137 g
  • Gold, Black

Design and Construction

The OPPO A71 is a simple but sleek looking device. While the gold color version presents itself as elegant and premium-looking, the black version is low-key and subtle. It’s perfect for people who doesn’t want their phones to catch attention.

On the front, we have the 5.2-inch display, the phone receiver, the 5MP selfie camera, and sensors. On the chin, we have the three navigation buttons, which are not backlit. It might be an issue for some but it is something to take a note of.

On the left, we have the volume buttons, while on the right are the power and lock buttons and the triple card tray, which accommodates two nano-sized SIM cards and a microSD card. This is good news for people who love to expand their disk space without compromising the dual-SIM feature.

On the top, we have the headphone jack; and at the bottom, we have the microUSB port flanked by two sets of holes for the microphone and speaker.

On the back, we have the 13MP camera with dual LED flash and the OPPO branding.

The phone’s chassis feels smooth and solid to the hand. The back panel curves to the sides that helps for a much sturdier grip. The matte finish really helps on the grip and repels fingerprints as well. Adding to the back panel is a jelly case provided by OPPO to further protect the phone from damage.

Display and Multimedia

The OPPO A71 has a 5.2-inch IPS LCD display with 720p resolution or equal to 282 ppi density. Yes, the resolution is quite low by today’s standards but it’s still very decent for viewing photos and watching videos. The viewing angles and color reproduction of the display are excellent and it’s bright enough to use outdoors in direct sunlight.

As for the audio quality, the speaker can deliver. The clear and crisp audio quality is very useful for voice calls and casual listening. Though, it could do better with more bass and loudness. For that, you might want to use a pair of earphones or external speaker instead.

Apps, OS and User Interface

The phone runs on ColorOS 3.1 on top of Android 7.1.1 Nougat. The user interface is still similar to other OPPO devices, like the use of multiple home screens instead of an app drawer. Swiping down from the top will now just bring the notifications. For the shortcuts, you will need to swipe up from the bottom, similar to the iPhone’s iOS interface.

Pre-installed apps are mostly Google’s default apps like YouTube, Gmail, Chrome, etc. and the only third-party app we see is Facebook. When it comes to storage, we’re only limited to 16GB with less than 9GB left for the user when you consider the system apps installed. Thankfully, we can better take advantage of the dedicated microSD card slot to store our multimedia files.

Camera

The A71 uses a 13MP f/2.2 rear shooter and a 5MP f/2.4 front camera. The quality of the pictures are excellent for its calss. Autofocus is quick and produces natural colors and sufficient details. It has a 2x digital zoom feature that you can take advantage of if the situation needs it. It looks sharp and still great to look at.

As for the selfie camera, it’s great in a well lit environment but a bit slow and noisy in dark areas. That’s expected for a budget phone but I would say that the aperture sure does take in enough light to process a good image. Some modes that are a staple nowadays are the Beautify and Depth of Field effect modes, which are running great on this camera.

When it comes to video recording, the A71 can shoot at 1080p resolution at 30fps in MP4 format. The quality is good. It has nice colors and enough details.

Performance and Benchmarks

Powering the A71 is an old MediaTek MT6750 octa-core processor clocked at 1.5GHz and 3GB RAM. So far, it was able to keep things running smoothly including gaming. We played Arena of Valor and we never experienced any lag or crashes during gaming. The phone can be warm after hours of gaming but not enough to be uncomfortable.

  • AnTuTu – 42550
  • Geekbench – 638 (Single-Core), 2,645 (Multi-Core)
  • PCMark – 2662 (Work 2.0)

Connectivity and Call Quality

The A71 features basic connectivity that includes 4G LTE support for Bands 1/3/5/7/8/20/28/38/40/41. There’s WiFi 2.4GHz b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, and GPS. No fingerprint scanner here but so far, connections on these components are quick and working well. Call quality is solid as long as your provider’s signal is strong enough in your area.

Battery Life

Powering the A71 is a 3,000mAh non-removable battery, which is an average capacity in today’s standards. Given the 720p resolution and mid-range internals, it was able to last for a whole day and into the night if mostly used for browsing, social media, and photography.

PC Mark’s battery benchmark rated it at 10 hours and 52 minutes, which is excellent considering the 3,000mAh size of the battery.

Conclusion

The OPPO A71 almost has everything you need from a mid-range device – a nice design, capable processor and RAM, decent cameras, triple card slot, and above average battery life. With competitors such as Huawei’s GR3 2017, it could have been nice if it was competitive enough to pack a 1080p resolution, a newer CPU, and a 32GB starting storage.

For Php 8,990, the A71 is still an affordable alternative, however, its competitors with better specs aren’t far behind. Here’s hoping that OPPO will respond in a much more competitive stance to its competitors, which would most importantly benefit the growing budget consumer market.

The Pros:

  • Good camera performance
  • Above average battery life
  • Triple card slot

The Cons:

  • Low storage
  • 720p resolution display
  • Old MediaTek processor

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