In order for a smartphone brand to stay relevant in this tightly competitive local market is to offer something new and combine it with the best features. And that’s what Starmobile did to the Starmobile Up Max – combining the best features on a smartphone and adding Digital TV. But how does it fare on everyday use? Let’s find out and read on.
Starmobile Up Max:
- 1.3GHz Quad Core Mediatek MT6582M processor
- Mali 400MP2 graphics
- 1GB RAM
- 16GB internal memory expandable via MicroSD up to 32GB
- 5-inch HD IPS LCD display (1280 x 720 pixels)
- 13 megapixel rear facing Sony Exmor IMX 135 camera with BSI sensor, autofocus and LED flash
- 5 megapixel front facing camera
- Dual SIM (regular + micro) Dual Standby
- 3G/HSPA+, WiFi, WiFi hotspot, Bluetooth, ISDB-T TV tuner
- GPS, A-GPS
- 5,000 mAh Li-Po battery
- Android 5.0 Lollipop
- SRP: P7,490
- Status: Available at Starmobile stores, kiosks and retailers
Related article – Starmobile Up Max Unboxing and First Impressions
HARDWARE AND DESIGN:
Well, the Starmobile Up Max is not the sexiest nor the sleekest smartphone but despite its obvious thickness and added weight due to the big battery, it is still very comfortable to hold. It is also manageable to hold in one hand due to the smaller 5-inch display. Overall build quality is impressive as it is very solid. We do love the rough back cover because it gives some added grip.
We never had issues with the 5-inch HD IPS display. It is bright under direct sunlight and dim when inside a dark area like a cinema. Viewing angles are good too.
SOFTWARE AND PERFORMANCE:
The Up Max is the second Starmobile smartphone to run on Android 5.0 Lollipop. This version of Android is buggy and does not run some apps well. It is a common issue to many smartphones running this version. The good thing here is Starmobile is working to update it version 5.0.2 which is a more stable version. If you are the type of a user who checks their social media frequently, listen to Spotify or play Clash of Clans, all of these apps run well here. Overall experience is smooth. Lags and stutter usually happens when we play intense games and watching Digital TV too long.
Speaking of Digital TV, the Up Max does not have any antenna found on the Starmobile Knight Vision and Up Vision. Instead there’s a cable antenna you have to plug it on the 3.5mm headset jack. At the end of the cable antenna, you can plug in your earphones. We found out that plugging in an earphone can get better DTV signal. If you own an ABS-CBN TV Plus black box, all of the channels listed there can also be found on the Up Max but you can’t access exclusive channels like Yey, Cine Mo, DZMM Teleradyo because they encrypted on the black box only. You can watch free to air channels like ABS-CBN, GMA, and TV5 on High Definition. These three major networks also has a low resolution version.
The 13 megapixel rear camera takes pretty decent pictures. Although the camera takes some time to focus so be careful when taking photos because you might get a blurry shot.
Here are some of the photos we’ve taken:
We inserted our Smart and Sun SIMs on the Up Max and HSPA+ connection is quite decent. Calls are clear and crisp on both ends on the line. WiFi and Bluetooth worked fine as well.
What do you expect from a smartphone with a 5,000 mAh battery? We have been using the Up Max for two weeks and we never experienced getting low battery. On moderate use, we got around two full days without charging. We pulled it out of the plug at 7am and plug it again two days after. On our heavy use, we managed to get 14 hours with 19% battery left. We had around 6 hours and 45 minutes of screen on time in which we used the phone mainly for games, You Tube and watching free to air channels on Digital TV. That was impressive!
The Starmobile Up Max is perfect for people who watch TV a lot but does not stay at home. You’ll never miss your favorite teleseryes and watch it freely while stuck in traffic. Worry not about battery because the phone can go on for hours of intense use. We think Starmobile got the ingredients right here. The occasional bugs and slow camera focus can be forgiven though. 🙂