Doogee Mix

£135 inc VAT from fave.co/2C8PH4v

Android Advisor - - Contents -

Doogee might not be a brand that in­stantly sparks recog­ni­tion (or if it does it’s about a TV show star­ring a very young doc­tor), but this Chi­nese man­u­fac­turer has much to of­fer those look­ing for an in­ex­pen­sive An­droid phone.

The Mix is it’s lat­est cre­ation, and ticks many of the im­por­tant boxes for po­ten­tial buy­ers. But, what com­pro­mises do you have to make for a sub-£200 de­vice? We take a look.

Price

As Doogee doesn’t have a di­rect re­tail pres­ence here in the UK, you’ll need to im­port one from an on­line re­tailer like Gearbest. While this is per­fectly fine, and some­thing that UK buy­ers are in­creas­ingly do­ing, you will want to weigh up the pros and cons of do­ing so be­fore you spend any money.

De­sign

The first im­pres­sions made by the Doogee Mix when you take it out of the box are pos­i­tive. A metal chas­sis with glass front and back, lends the de­vice a pre­mium feel, and this is matched by a sturdy 193g weight which cer­tainly feels sub­stan­tial in the hand.

Most of the front panel is taken up by the 5.5in dis­play, with only a lower bezel in­ter­rupt­ing the glass. Here you’ll find a fin­ger­print sen­sor that also dou­bles as a ca­pac­i­tive but­ton for some func­tions. We found this to be fast and very re­li­able at un­lock­ing the phone, which isn’t some­thing we al­ways say.

Then there’s the cu­ri­ously po­si­tioned selfie cam­era, which oc­cu­pies the bot­tom right cor­ner of the bezel mim­ick­ing the Xiaomi Mi Mix. When launched, the cam­era presents a mes­sage that you should turn the unit up­side down to take a pic­ture. This does seem a bit ab­surd. On the right flank there’s the power but­ton and vol­ume con­trols, while the op­po­site side is home to a dual-SIM card slot with the sec­ondary place also sup­port­ing mi­croSD cards up to 128GB. The bot­tom of the unit houses twin speak­ers and a Mi­croUSB charg­ing port. We’d like to have seen USB-C here, as that is now the norm, but we re­al­ize that a

few cor­ners have to be cut when you’re work­ing in this price range.

One in­clu­sion that we’re happy about though is 3.5mm head­phone jack. Glad to see that Chi­nese man­u­fac­tur­ers didn’t get the memo about the stupid de­ci­sion to re­move it from mod­ern de­vices. It’s just a shame that Google did on one of our favourite An­droid phones – the Pixel 2. Turn­ing the Doogee Mix over re­veals dual cam­eras on the back, which is a nice touch for a de­vice un­der £200.

Closer in­spec­tion of the hand­set does show up a few clues that con­struc­tion stan­dards might not be as high as you’d hope. The phys­i­cal but­tons on the side are a lit­tle loose, and the dual-SIM tray doesn’t

sit flush when you put the card in. But nei­ther are deal-break­ers.

Dis­play

Doogee has in­cluded a 5.5in AMOLED dis­play on the Mix, which looks bright and spacious. The thin edge bezels might not be the curved va­ri­ety that make the Sam­sung Galaxy S8 so at­trac­tive, but they do give the Mix some­thing ap­proach­ing an edge-to-edge dis­play.

The blot on this land­scape is that the panel it­self is only ca­pa­ble of a 1280x720 HD res­o­lu­tion. In gen­eral use this isn’t a big deal, and to be fair we found the dis­play to be very pleas­ant, but if you want to use the phone for VR or de­mand Full-HD on your de­vices, then the Mix is go­ing to come up a bit short.

We think that would be a shame though, as the colour range, bright dis­play, and clear text rep­re­sen­ta­tion is per­fectly ac­cept­able on a de­vice of this type. The lower amount of pix­els to push should also grant a boost to bat­tery life and per­for­mance over higher spec­i­fied ri­vals at this price point.

Per­for­mance

Un­der the hood you’ll find a He­lio P25 octa-core CPU, with 4x Cor­tex-A53 2.5GHz and 4x Cor­tex-A53 16GHz, all of whom are com­ple­mented by 6GB of RAM, and 64GB of stor­age.

This makes the Mix a pretty nippy de­vice, with only the oc­ca­sional pause when launch­ing apps. Of course, it’s still a bud­get phone, so you won’t be able to do any­thing that re­quires heavy lift­ing – graph­i­cally de­mand­ing 3D gam­ing for in­stance – with­out a

no­tice­able drop in per­for­mance. We ran the usual bench­mark tests to see how the Mix fared, and re­sults were pre­dictably found to be in the low to mid-range bracket. Geek­bench 4 scored it at 849 (Sin­gle-core) and 4059 (multi-core), GFXBench’s T-Rex was 1,911 frames, Man­hat­tan re­turned 1,195, and Man­hat­tan 3.1 chalked up 1,015. For surf­ing, emails, mes­sag­ing, video play­back and things along those lines it’s fine. Just don’t ex­pect a pow­er­house.

From a full charge in the morn­ing, and with a mix­ture of Wi-Fi surf­ing, lis­ten­ing to mu­sic, What­sApp mes­sag­ing, and a few YouTube videos, we were happy to see around 30 per­cent of bat­tery life still re­main­ing by late evening. This kind of stamina proved con­sis­tent, so if you want an all-day phone then the Mix should do the job.

Cam­era

The dual cam­eras are 16- and 8Mp units, which can give a x2 zoom. Re­sults var­ied quite a bit, with oc­ca­sion­ally a nice photo ap­pear­ing, but for the most part shots were ac­cept­able rather than im­pres­sive.

There are a few fun set­tings, such as one that adds make-up, an­other that blurs back­grounds in a Bokeh fash­ion, and even a Pro mode that of­fers a wide range of con­trol over ex­po­sure, ISO speed, and colour tem­per­a­ture. But, you have to work hard to get a great shot. Again, it’s fine for so­cial me­dia snaps, but you’ll want a bet­ter unit for im­por­tant photos you in­tend to keep. Video cap­ture is de­cent, but you’ll want to hold the cam­era very still to avoid shaky footage. If you do you’ll be re­warded with up to 1080p at 30fps.

Soft­ware

Doogee has in­cluded An­droid 7.0 Nougat as the de­fault OS for the Mix. There is the oblig­a­tory skin run­ning on top – Doogee OS V2.0 – but it’s light­weight and for the most part feels like pure An­droid. The only real clues are a news­feed app that ap­pears when you swipe right on the Home screen, and a cat in a teacup that dan­gles from the top of the dis­play. The lat­ter is only on the Home screen and is a quick link to the Doogee themes store. We thought it would be an­noy­ing, but ac­tu­ally found it quite fun as it doesn’t in­ter­fere with op­er­at­ing the phone.

You’ll also find var­i­ous set­tings avail­able that ex­pand the per­son­al­iza­tion of but­ton place­ments, quick links, that sort of thing, but all can be turned off. It’s a nice, clean ver­sion of An­droid.

Ver­dict

There’s plenty to like about the Doogee Mix. The dis­play, while only 720p, is bright, colour­ful and de­tailed, plus the slim bezels make it seem big­ger than the ac­tual 5.5in size. An un­fet­tered An­droid ex­pe­ri­ence is wel­come, and the bat­tery life means you’ll make it through the day with­out a prob­lem.

Cam­eras are a bit hit and miss, but you get good re­sults if there’s plenty of light. Al­though, those want­ing a gam­ing de­vice will find the hard­ware can’t quite cope with any­thing too de­mand­ing.

For around £200 you’re get­ting an at­trac­tive, highly us­able de­vice, that stands out from the crowd. Not bad at all. Mar­tyn Casserly

Spec­i­fi­ca­tions

• 5.5in (1280x720, 294ppi) Su­per AMOLED dis­play

• An­droid 7.0 Nougat

• Octa-core Me­di­aTek He­lio P25 (4x 2.5GHz ARM Cor­tex-A53 and 4x 1.6GHz ARM Cor­tex-A53) CPU

• Mali-T880MP2 GPU

• 6GB RAM 64GB stor­age up to 128GB mi­croSD

• Fin­ger­print scan­ner

• Dual 16- and 8Mp rear-fac­ing cam­eras 1080p video cap­ture at 30fps

• 5Mp f/2.2 front-fac­ing cam­era

• Dual nano SIM

• LTE Dual-band

• Wi-Fi a/b/g/n

• Blue­tooth 4.1

• FM Ra­dio

• Mi­cro-USB

• 3.5mm jack

• 3,380mAh bat­tery

• 144x76.2x7.95mm

• 193g

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