Most helpful positive review
55 of 57 people found the following review helpful
Outstanding cost/benefit, despite some issues.
on September 15, 2013
My feeling is that the BLU Studio 5.0s has an outstanding cost/benefit, especially because other unlocked smartphones here at amazon.com, with similar specs, would be priced around $300 or more. The quad core 1.2GHz CPU and 1GB memory makes the response time of this android device quite quick. The GPU is lacking a bit, but this won't be an issue for non-heavy gamers, because it can handle most of the current 3D applications quite well anyway. In overall, I'm really satisfied with my purchase.
I also experienced some of the issues the other reviewers were reporting. For instance, since I also use only 1 SIM (for a T-Mobile, prepaid service), it displays at the bottom of the locked screen a message indicating that only emergency calls are allowed (because SIM 2 is empty), and if we accidentally touch that message (when trying to unlock the screen) the phone will send you to the dialing screen, which is quite annoying.
The above issue is not a big deal if you change the screen unlock method to something other than "swipe", because it is not so easy to touch the "emergency call" by accident when your unlocking method is PIN, password, or some special "pattern".
Additionally, as also stated by another reviewer, the portion near the main camera gets quite hot, especially when I use it while plugged to power cord. I believe that region is where most of the core components of this phone are concentrated, so I'm concerned about overheating.
No surprise, when the phone (i.e. the place near the camera) got hot at a certain degree, the touch screen started to get very wild (actually, the touch sensor, not the display itself). In my case, when I touch somewhere in the screen (and keep it touched, for example), the sensor suddenly started to detect multiple touches in nearly random places, so it started to press lots of links and accidentally deleted some of my icons (that's when I first realized the problem). In such situation, it gets practically impossible to use the on-screen keyboard, because it will start inserting lots of letters randomly.
Fortunately, this never happened when the portion near the camera was sufficiently cool.
From the spec I saw in other web sites, they mentioned the phone comes with A-GPS feature too, but I could not find a place to see if it was really enabled. I had to install an application called "A-GPS Switch" to see if A-GPS was enabled (wasn't enabled in my case), and to turn it on.
Some apps also detects presence of a magnetic field sensor, but not sure if this is a valid report, because I never tried using the sensor for something.
Since this is very thin, I found the back cover hard to open (I was afraid of braking the plastic and/or my nail), so I took a while to insert the SIM/battery/SD card. I'll use a small flat-head screwdriver (in order to insert it to the slit and gently twist it in order to remove the back cover) the next time.
In summary, the followings are the cons and pros I could identify so far:
- heat (associated with the fact that touch sensors may get really wild);
- quite difficult to open (a problem perhaps caused because it is thin);
- BLU's manual/website/documentation were not very helpful.
- 4GB of internal storage, but considerable portion used by OS and default files/applications, so about 1.4GB is allocated for user files, and about 1.4GB is allocated for user application (so, you may need an SD card for your files and application, but not all applications can be installed in SD cards, unless you root your phone);
- Adobe Flash is not actually enabled (I needed that, because I used to develop flash assets myself - so wanted to test them in my new phone). I had to install it "manually", because it is not supported in Android 4.X anymore. However, HTML5 is supported, so most of new and elaborated web sites should work fine. Note: this is not a problem only on this phone, because it seems to be an issue on all Android 4.X phones.
- Adreno 203 GPU is not so good compared to other competitors (but it is reasonably good, because could play some 3D games normally),
- It's only around $20-$30 cheaper than BLU life play, which seems to show better performance (but the battery life of studio 5.0s seems to be better, and the design of studio 5.0s is nice, so not entirely sure).
- Quad core processor is fast for ordinary usage;
- 1GB memory works very well, unless you try to run lots of applications in parallel.
- Thin, nice design.
- 5-touch large screen, which is also easy to see (you may find it difficult to find compatible cases, pouches or holsters, though).
- Great cost/performance (way better than competitors), so you can eventually use the money you saved in order to buy better accessories, like fast SD cards, or perhaps a holster to carry it, you choose.
- 8MP main camera works nice. The secondary camera also fills the need (e.g. video conference).
- Equipped with GPS, accelerometer, proximity, luminosity sensors (well, most of contemporary smart phones also do, though).
- Good battery life so far.
The cons looks larger in text, but I'm overall satisfied.
As in any android device, this one will only start "working" after you finish configuring everything and install your favorite applications. I strongly suggest you to also buy a class 10 (or faster, if there are) SD card (limited to 32GB maximum size, though) in order to guarantee enough space for large applications/files, while keeping the speed consistently fast, so data access won't become a major performance bottleneck.
And don't forget to install some antivirus, especially if you are going to enable your phone to install applications not "signed" by google play (e.g. adobe flash). ;-)
After 1 year of usage, the power button started to fail (sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't), so I had to use some apps to use the proximity sensor to make it sleep or wake up.
I guess this power button (and related components) is not made to last. Of course, I need to also consider the fact that I was sometimes hit by rain when carrying it in a pocket (and the product description obviously doesn't say it's water proof).
Other things seem to be working fine, though. Surprisingly, the battery is still fine, even though I thought this would be the 1st thing to die.