Meizu M1 Note be officially launched in India on Monday, with a price of around Rs 14,000-15,000 – taking on the Xiaomi Mi 4i and the Zenfone 2.
According to our sources, Meizu M1 Note could even be priced at parity with Xiaomi Mi4i – or at Rs 13,000, as a way to create an initial buzz.
UPDATE: The phone is being sold on Amazon.in at Rs 11,999, making it the cheapest full-HD 4G phone in India.
UPDATE 2: Price has been cut to Rs 9,999 on Amazon ahead of M2 launch.
That said, the Note is a superior phone in terms of functionality compared to the Mi model, and a price of around Rs 14,000 is seen as most likely. That will make it the cheapest 5.5-inch LTE phone in India.
At present, that distinction is held by the Rs 14,999 Zenfone 2, which comes with an Intel Atom Z3560 quad-core Processor and 2 GB of RAM. The cheapest full HD, LTE phone in India is the 4i, which has a 5-inch display, smaller than the other two models.
As we reported earlier, the Meizu M1 Note is currently available on eBay and via unofficial channels at Rs 16,500. However, customers will have to depend on seller warranty for their purchases, unless they are able to produce an official purchase bill.
Pricing the Note at Rs 13,000 will throw a challenge to Xiaomi, and will help Meizu generate a lot of social media buzz.
The M1 Note was originally released in January. Another Meizu model, the quad-HD Meizu MX4 Pro, has been released recently. However, it is unlikely to be released on Monday. Or it could be announced, but will not be available this month. However, the M1 Note will be available in stores starting next week.
The biggest advantage of the M1 Note over the Mi4i is the bigger screen. While the difference of 5 inch and 5.5 inch may sound small, in actual usage, the 5.5-inch screen feels much bigger because the difference in area between a 5-inch display and a 5.5-inch display is 21%.
Does it really matter? In our experience, it does, though we’ve seen some people who actually prefer a compact phone, especially women. In fact, sensing the shift, brands like HTC have moved from the 5-inch form-factor to the 5.5-inch form-factor in a big way.
One of Meizu M1 Note’s competitors in India is the 5.5-inch, full-HD, LTE-enabled HTC Desire 826. However, the Desire 826 is priced at Rs 25,500 in India. The Meizu M1 Note, in contrast, is priced at just Rs 16,200, making it an excellent value buy right now. In comparison, the Samsung Galaxy E7, which has very similar specifications including a 720p AMOLED display, is priced at Rs 19,500.
In fact, spec for spec, it can be argued that the Meizu M1 Note is almost as good a phone as the Desire 826, priced at Rs 23,500. The only major difference is in the front-camera resolution, with the Desire 826 sporting a 13 MP front shooter, while the Meizu model comes with a 4 MP camera on the front.
When it comes to battery, the Meizu M1 Note scores over Desire 826 with a 3.14 Ah battery while the HTC model comes with a 2.6 Ah power unit.
Of course, it’s too early to say that M1 Note is the best LTE value phone in India, but it certainly deserves that title if you are looking for a large display model. The only other competitor is the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4g, priced at Rs 10,000. However, the RedMi Note comes with a 720p display.
Another thing to note is that the Meizu M1 Note is one of the first phones in India to come with the new MediaTek MT6752 64-bit chipset.
The MediaTek platform is often compared to the Snapdragon 610 Octacore chipset, but in terms of power, the MediaTek MT6752 scores about 50% higher in benchmarking tests. The Snapdragon 610 is found in the HTC Desire 826.
Meizu, like Xiaomi, has a reputation for designing phones that ‘remind’ buyers of iPhones. However, Meizu is not just another Apple copycat. It has been in the news for being one of the first manufacturers globally to put a non-Android, mainstream Linux operating system on its phone – Ubuntu.
The Ubuntu-powered Meizu MX4 was exhibited at the Mobile World Congress in March, and garnered a lot of attention.
It is expected that with the launch of Cortex A72-powered chips over the next two to three months, phones will finally have enough power to be used as a ‘normal’ computer by connecting them to a full-size display and keyboards. When that happens, more people are likely to install Desktop-originated operating systems like Ubuntu on their phones.
At present, Meizu phones are being sold under ‘seller warranty’, under which the seller undertakes to replace or repair the phone if something goes wrong in the first six months. However, according to industry sources, the Chinese company will soon launch its models officially in India as well, offering manufacturer warranty.