So from the pleasing X5 from last year we take a look at GTeL’s latest offering. The GTeL X6 Plus. From the title you may have already gotten an idea of what we are dealing with here.
Oh and the blue just looks amazing in the sun. Very amazing. Let’s get on with the details now shall we.
The following is a technical review of this device. For a simplified summary scroll down to the ‘In a nutshell’ section at the bottom of the review.
The contents of the box are pretty generous as you would expect from a high end smartphone. Big boxes usually translate to lots of goodies inside and the GTeL X6 Plus box is right there on the bulky side.
- x1 GTeL X6 Plus smartphone
- x1 microUSB cable
- x1 charger head
- x1 pair of earphones
- x1 sim ejector tool
- x1 user manual
- x1 transparent rubber pouch
- x1 warranty card
- x1 pre-installed plastic screen guard
- x1 tempered glass screen protector
- screen protector accessories
Our review unit also came with a 16GB memory card pre-installed. Not too sure if retail units will come with those as well.
With the X6 Plus, GTeL has gone with the times and adopted the taller displays with 18:9 aspect ratio or 2:1 for all those nitpickers out there.
The display is an HD LCD unit of a resolution of 1440×720. That resolution is spread on a spacious 6 inch footprint which takes a toll on the sharpness of the display. The taller display does make the phone feel like its all screen. Bezels look much smaller than they were on previous models.
The glass panel covering the face is also curved at the edges and its quite a looker. The display does protrude from the body of the phone just like it did on the X5 raising some durability questions. Good thing they included a tempered glass and rubber pouch in the box.
Above the display from the left you have an 8MP wide angle selfie camera perfect for some group shots or just your face and some landscape in the background.
Next to it is a 20MP selfie camera good for some seriously sharp portraits. Next to it is the earpiece followed by some sensors and the front flash.
Below the display is a completely barren chin. Yes we have on-screen navigation buttons on this one.
The top edge of the phone is bare as well, the right edge has some volume buttons and a very very welcome textured power button.
The left edge is where you get the hybrid sim slot. It takes either a micro sim and nano sim combo or you can sacrifice the nano sim for a memory card. A dual sim plus dedicated memory card slot offering would have been a welcome option but hey you can never always have what you want right?
The bottom of the phone has a headphone jack. Next to it is the microphone followed by the microUSB slot and lastly the loudspeaker.
The back is blue!! Its a mesmerizing shade of blue painted over a metallic back with a satin texture to it.
Its very slippery and as much as it is very pleasing to look at you might wanna roll with a case on this one for some extra grip…Thank GTeL for offering us a clear case.
From the top we have 2 more cameras. A 13 MP main camera as well as a 5MP one. This set-up is for some depth of field effects were the subject you are taking a photo of is nice and sharp and the background is properly blurred out.
If you were counting you might realize that we have reached 4 cameras here. How about that? Below the array of cameras is the fingerprint scanner which is always on.
This allows you to instantly unlock your phone without pressing the power button or swiping. Just tap and you are in.
Did I mention its pretty quick? Its so quick I had to check with an unregistered fingerprint to find out if its actually scanning before unlocking.
Below it is the GTeL logo then another GTeL logo and some bit of text.
4 Cameras and impressive resolutions. 20 + 8MP at the front and 13 + 5MP at the back. Just from those numbers you can tell its focused on the selfie lovers out there.
The 20MP sensor has some impressive detail and does a good job of brightening up the photos. If your environment is a bit too dark the front facing flash takes over and illuminates your face a little more.
If you are a selfie lover you are at some point going to want some company in your selfies and fitting them all in the frame might be a challenge with the normal angle 20MP camera and this is when the other 8MP 120° wide angle camera shines.
It offers a wider field of view allowing you to add more stuff into the selfie either some family selfies or a selfie with your vast plot of maize. You do however sacrifice some precious detail because of the smaller sensor. Again you just cant have it all.
While the selfie combo was focusing on normal and wide angles, the rear takes on a slightly different approach. Here the 13MP main camera gets some assistance from the 5MP camera to give aggressive background blur in portrait images.
The common name for this effect is Bokeh and it is a feature that in inherent in those big, chunky professional cameras. This dual camera set up tries to pull that off with software and 2 cameras.
The blur on the edges is a hit or miss stunt but when it does work it produces some really amazing portrait shots.
Camera settings are A LOT and spread out everywhere. They really tried to cater for everyone and every situation with options like translation, business card scanner and document scanner built into the camera app.
There is also a professional mode that gives you total control of camera functions with settings like Manual focus, shutter speed adjustment, white balance, exposure and ISO. Only part that left us wanting is lack of Optical Image Stabilization OIS which makes it hard to take smooth, shake-free videos and sharp pictures in low light.
None the less the images are good with great color and sharpness. Auto focus is relatively quick at grabbing a lock and if you tap to focus you get the option to brighten up the object in focus. A very useful option that one.
The loudspeaker is very loud thanks to some Maxx Audio tuning. Not only is it loud but it also has some healthy bit of bass offering a rich, balanced sound even at maximum volume.
No rattling or distortion is present and the sound experience is probably the best we have come across in all the devices we have tested.
Wired audio via the 3.5mm headphone jack is just as spectacular. You get a balanced audio experience with equally impressive volume levels. It could use just a little more ooph in the bass but that is nitpicking. Audio is flagship grade.
The X6 Plus is a dual sim device supporting both GSM and CDMA so your Powertel and Africom lines are welcome here. Point to note though is that one sim slot is a micro sim and the other is a nano sim slot which also doubles as a memory card slot.
This device also supports Dual LTE so you can enjoy superfast 4G services on both lines at the same time.
The battery is of the sealed variety/non user replaceable but a pretty generous 4010 mAh unit. There is no specific mention of fast charging but for a battery of its size, the sprint to 50% is rather brisk
In our endurance test it managed to lose 42% of it’s juice after an hour each of video streaming, video recording and gaming.
A very commendable effort indeed thanks to an efficient processor, conservative display resolution and a generous battery pack. It is good for over a day of moderate usage.
This is a completely artificial test which allows us to provide a uniform test environment for all of our devices for purposes of comparison.
Running the works in the X6 Plus is a Mediatek MT6767 CPU and a Mali-T880 GPU. Coupled with the rather conservative display resolution animations are super fluid. Multitasking is almost flawless thanks to a very generous 4GB of RAM.
An impressive feat during benchmark as well and endurance testing was how cool it stayed. It only got slightly warm but nowhere near uncomfortable.
This is usually a sign of a very efficient processor and in turn some impressive battery life. You get a heavily customized Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box
|O.S||Android 7.0 Nougat|
|CPU||2.6GHz Octa core Mediatek MT6767CD|
|Display and Protection||6 Inch HD+ IPS LCD 720x1440 pixels|
|Main Camera||13MP + 5MP
Full HD video @ 30FPS
|Secondary Camera||20MP + 8MP
Wide angle lens
64GB Internal Storage
|Connectivity||GSM, 2G, 3G, 4G
Step detector and counter
|Endurance||42% battery drain after an hour each of
Continuous video streaming
Continuous video recording
|Antutu 6 Score||65 728|
|Price $||$500 (Estimated)|
|Loudspeaker Loudness||78dB (Very Good)|
There is a very brisk and well placed fingerprint scanner which is always on relieving the rather nicely textured power button of it’s duties.
Useful accessories to get you going including the transparent rubber case and tempered glass screen protector. The microfiber cloth is a lovely gesture too. All those optics need some healthy polishing now and again.
In A Nutshell
+ Taller display looks fantastic, covers up for the bit used up by the navigation buttons and makes the phone look compact
+ Satisfying camera experience all round
+ Beautiful metallic blue paint job and very welcome satin feel
+ Generous battery life good for a full day of usage with change
+ Stays cool under heavy usage
+ Selfie flash
+ Many goodies in the box
+ Textured power button
+ Heaps of storage
– Tall display can be a nightmare for one handed use
– microUSB in 2018 is not on for a high end smartphone
– so is lack of fast charging (even though it does charges bit briskly)
– Camera could use some stabilizing especially for smoother video
– Choosing between dual sim and a memory card
4 cameras is just bananas, the taller display is spacious, the battery is generous and the audio is solid. Already you can tell that the X6 Plus is a heavy multimedia tool. It ticks all the boxes in that regard and does so in the most glamorous of fashion.