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MyPhone Rio 2 Hands On Review

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Smartphones running Google’s latest OS, Android Lollipop, remains to be low but efforts to upgrade current smartphones from Samsung, Sony and LG are underway. But how about local smatphones? MyPhone has just recently announced the Rio 2 and Rio 2 Lite which both are running Android Lollipop. We have here the Rio 2. Is it worth the upgrade? Let’s find out with this review.

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MyPhone Rio 2:

  • 1.3GHz Quad Core Mediatek MT6582 processor
  • 1GB RAM
  • 8GB internal storage expandable via MicroSD up to 32GB
  • 5-inch HD IPS LCD display (1280 x 720 pixels) 294 ppi
  • 8 megapixel rear facing Sony camera with autofocus, Blue Glass filter and LED flash
  • 5 megapixel front facing camera
  • Dual SIM, Dual Standby
  • HSPA+, WiFi, WiFi hotspot, Bluetooth
  • GPS, A-GPS
  • 2,800 mAh battery
  • Android 5.0 Lollipop
  • SRP: P5,499
  • Status: Available on MyPhone stores, kiosks and retailers
  • Buy on Lazada

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VIDEO REVIEW:

Related article – MyPhone Rio 2 Unboxing and Hands On

HARDWARE AND DESIGN:

The MyPhone Rio 2 not just had an upgrade on the software but on the hardware as well. The Rio 2 is thinner, lighter, sexier and smaller in dimensions. It does retain its 5-inch screen size but it seems like it is smaller than any other 5-inch smartphones we’ve reviewed in the past. We have the white one here but there are other colors options to choose from.

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Let’s check the buttons and ports – nothing on the left, volume rocker and power/lock button on the right, microphone and USB charging port at the bottom, 3.5mm earphone jack on top, the circular earpiece, at the front are the sensors, 5-inch display and 5 megapixel front camera, and 8 megapixel rear camera with flash and pill-shaped speaker at the back. We were just hoping that the power/lock button could be placed a little higher on the right so that we could not accidentally press it when we should press the volume rocker.

Because of its slim profile, it is very comfortable to hold and easy to slip to your pockets. Audio output coming from the back firing speakers is loud which we like by the way. It is one of the loudest we’ve reviewed so far. Our Spotify experience is generally good as the Rio 2 supports 3rd party earphones.

DISPLAY:

To our surprise, the 5-inch display has excellent outdoor and sunlight visibility. In fact, it is one of the best we’ve seen on a local smartphone. Auto brightness is very responsive as it senses different lighting conditions quickly. It go very dim when in cinemas and go very bright under direct sunlight. It is really at par with the Samsung Galaxy S5 and Galaxy S6’s brightness output. Well done, MyPhone!

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Using the MyPhone Rio 2 under direct sunlight. Astig ang display!

Color reproduction is good and it is more color accurate than any local smartphone we’ve tested even those more expensive ones. The display has a cooler tone which we prefer.

SOFTWARE AND PERFORMANCE:

We’ve read news and articles about Android 5.0 Lollipop being buggy and laggy. That’s the reason why Google quickly released Android 5.1 Lollipop update. The Rio 2 runs on Android 5.0 Lollipop. It does have some bugs here and there but it won’t bother you much. The device can be updated to Android 5.1 soon so no need to worry. Performance is quite inconsistent due to sometimes it is fast when opening apps but sometimes it takes 2 to 3 seconds to open an app.

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The company has its own UI on top of Android Lollipop. It ditched away the app drawer so all your apps are on the home screen. You can create folders to organize them. If you don’t like the UI, we recommend you download the Google Now Launcher and have a taste of pure vanilla Android Lollipop with its signature material design.

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MyPhone decided to use the tried and tested Mediatek MT6582 quad core processor which is also used on the first generation Rio. Gaming performance is decent as it can run Clash of Clans smoothly. Even graphic intense games like Dead Trigger 2 runs well here. It does warm up a bit when playing games too long but it will not come to point that you have to worry about overheating.

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CAMERA:

One of the first generation Rio’s strengths is the camera and it doesn’t change on the Rio 2. In fact, it even better. MyPhone added Blue Glass filter on the 8 megapixel rear camera which gives photos more natural colors and helps the camera responds to different lighting conditions better. As a result, pictures are simply better than any local smartphone we’ve tested. The 5 megpixel front camera takes nice selfies on good lighting conditions.

Here are some of our camera samples:

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Selfie from the 5 megapixel front facing camera

CONNECTIVITY:

Calls are clear using either Globe or Smart SIMs. HSPA+ speeds are also decent using both SIMs. Bluetooth works fine too.

BATTERY:

One complain of first generation Rio owners is the battery. Well, MyPhone fixed that by putting a larger 2,800 mAh battery. It is, however, non removable. The phone lasted 8 hours 40 minutes of HEAVY usage. We repeat, HEAVY usage. That was impressive! Our battery drain test includes heavy gaming ( 2 hours of Dead Trigger, 1 hour of Sky Force and 30 minutes of Clash of Clans), 2 hours of You Tube and I Want TV, hours of calls, email, and social networks at auto brightness and WiFi/3G on. The phone had 15% battery left after that. On casual use, we managed to get 2 days before it reached 20%. Hands down to the battery!

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VERDICT:

After reading our review, do you have any reason not to buy the Rio 2? One word to describe the MyPhone Rio 2 – IMPRESSIVE! We give the MyPhone Rio 2 a perfect 10.  It is the best budget local smartphone for 2015!

If you already bought one, please do share your experience with us. Got questions? Tweet and follow @filipinotechie on Twitter and @immarkmarcelo on Instagram.