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ZTE Blade V - budget quad core phone coming to the UK


ZTE are bringing the Blade V, the latest in the Blade range of affordable Android devices that are aimed at the low to mid-range market, to the UK in partnership with Virgin Media.

The first Blade device was very popular in the UK back in 2010 when it was launched by Orange as the San Francisco and ZTE quickly followed up with the mildly successful Blade 2 and Blade 3 devices.

The specifications of the Blade V are:
  • 4’’ WVGA (800x480) 16M TFT capacitive touch IPS screen
  • Weight: 130 gram
  • Size: 126 x 64 x 10.9 mm
  • 1.2 GHz Qualcomm MSM 8225Q, quad-core processor
  • Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean)
  • Memory: 4GB eMMC + 1G DDR2 SDRAM, 2GB accessible to the user
  • Supports Micro SD memory card up to 32 GB
  • 5.0 MP AF camera with 4 x digital zoom + VGA front camera
  • Mobile standards: HSDPA (7.2Mbps) /HSPA/HSPA+/UMTS/GSM/GPRS/EDGE
  • Audio standards: MP3, AAC, AAC+, MIDI, AMR-NB, Ogg Vorbis, PCM/WAV
  • Video standards: MPEG4, H.263, H.264
  • Wireless communications standards: Bluetooth™ 4.0, A2DP1.2, GPS, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
  • Battery capacity: Li-ion1800 mAh
  • FM radio

Interestingly, the specifications are quite similar to the HTC Desire 500 which is more than 3 times the price of the ZTE device.

Virgin Media will be offering this device from Wednesday 4th September from as little as £13 a month on contract or £89.99 on Pay As You Go. Existing Virgin Media customers with a TV, Broadband or phone contract can get 20% off the price bringing it down to £71.99. The phone must be bought with at least £10 top-up credit.

Posted Image

About the author

flibblesan's Photo
A member of the Android community since 2009, Simon made a big name for himself by producing the well-known FLB-Mod ROM for the T-Mobile Pulse which helped boost membership and activity on the MoDaCo forum.

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37 Comments

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Chrisund123
Sep 01 2013 07:46 PM
Good value for PAYG, I'd like to see a review!
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Shame display res is quite poor rest looks amazing ! For value
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hands on video (not in English but gives a good a look at the phone)

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Shame they couldn't get at least qHD in there. Plus 5mp camera is pretty poor these days especially as ZTE cameras are usually rubbish anyways. I'm still intrigued as i have a soft spot for ZTE but if you're brave enough to order from China you can get much better bang for your buck.

Plus adreno 203 is pretty much a fossil isnt it?
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nice phone. £90 is cheap, phones with similar spec from htc, sony and samsung cost a lot more. Huewei's phones also cost a lot more, i think £90 for that phone is a very nice price. I do wish that it launched with atleast android 4.2 though, i wonder if 4.2 or 4.3 firmware updates will be released.

The £13 contract is a 24 month contract btw, it is £22/month on a 12 month contract.

p.s, where did you find this info from? Does the £89.99 include topup or do we have to buy £10 topup too?

another foreign video review:
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This is from the latest Virgin Media buyer's guide

Posted Image
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Shame they couldn't get at least qHD in there. Plus 5mp camera is pretty poor these days especially as ZTE cameras are usually rubbish anyways. I'm still intrigued as i have a soft spot for ZTE but if you're brave enough to order from China you can get much better bang for your buck.

Plus adreno 203 is pretty much a fossil isnt it?


You seem to be trying to talk yourself out of buying one Frankish!
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Shame they couldn't get at least qHD in there. Plus 5mp camera is pretty poor these days especially as ZTE cameras are usually rubbish anyways. I'm still intrigued as i have a soft spot for ZTE but if you're brave enough to order from China you can get much better bang for your buck.

Plus adreno 203 is pretty much a fossil isnt it?

You really don't. Most people on these forums are interested in ROM customization and there isn't much chance for that with these Chinese MediaTek devices. Sure there's xposed framework etc these days but you're still stuck hacking your stock ROM no matter what. There's no chance for your favorite AOSP based ROM (CyanogenMod, AOKP, AOSPA, RootBox, PAC, and the list goes on) on MediaTek platform, when there's no such problem with Qualcomm devices. Performance-wise msm8x25q should be in par with recent MediaTek quad-core platforms. And SGX544 GPU used in those is ancient too.

Generally speaking, nice too see Snapdragon 200 devices finally hitting the market in Europe. These are planned as entry level devices so you can't expect miracles anyway. Seems that ZTE has hit a nice price point for that (at least for countries where Nexus 4 is not available at Play Store price :P).

I do wish that it launched with atleast android 4.2 though, i wonder if 4.2 or 4.3 firmware updates will be released.


Officially it won't. Qualcomm only supports Cortex-A5 platforms (msm7x27a, msm8x25, msm8x25q) up to Android 4.1. Surely it would run Android 4.3 great in form of CM10.2 for example. ;)
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For the money I think it's a decent budget buy - specially when existing Virgin Media customers can pick one up with top-up for £82!

The device ticks two very important boxes: Decent CPU and 1GB RAM. Normally the cheaper devices have fairly decent CPUs but are let down by 512MB or lower RAM like the Huawei G510. ZTE have (finally?) done the right thing by releasing a budget device that should perform pretty well.

It should be a nice hackable device. Mediatek devices are a pain in the backside as Mediatek don't like to share source even though they are supposed to!
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For the money I think it's a decent budget buy - specially when existing Virgin Media customers can pick one up with top-up for £82!

The device ticks two very important boxes: Decent CPU and 1GB RAM. Normally the cheaper devices have fairly decent CPUs but are let down by 512MB or lower RAM like the Huawei G510. ZTE have (finally?) done the right thing by releasing a budget device that should perform pretty well.

It should be a nice hackable device. Mediatek devices are a pain in the backside as Mediatek don't like to share source even though they are supposed to!


Does it include a top up. Or. Is it 89 PLUS top up.

Thanks
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Officially it won't. Qualcomm only supports Cortex-A5 platforms (msm7x27a, msm8x25, msm8x25q) up to Android 4.1. Surely it would run Android 4.3 great in form of CM10.2 for example. ;)


Are you volunteering to make a cyanogenmod 10, 10.1 or 10.2 for this phone? Please say yes!

review: http://www.knowyourm...rst-impressions

flibblesan, do you have a link for the info saying 20% discount for virgin media customers, i just looked on here but i can't see anything: http://www.virginmed...bilephones3.php
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hugobosslives
Sep 02 2013 10:50 AM

Does it include a top up. Or. Is it 89 PLUS top up.

Thanks


virgin customers get 20% off.

its 89 plus top up so virgin would 89.99*0.8+10= £82

without this you are looking at 99.99 inc topup
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Are you volunteering to make a cyanogenmod 10, 10.1 or 10.2 for this phone? Please say yes!

Well, I can't do something like that for a device that I don't have. ;)

There's currently some outstanding issues what comes to developing for ZTE devices. There is no kernel source available for this device. Without a kernel source, there really isn't much point in even trying to port CyanogenMod. Actually all kernel sources that are on the ZTE website currently only return 404 error. You can't download anything for any device and this has been going on for at least two months! In addition they've taken a lovely approach to ignore all my emails after I've kindly (and then not so kindly :P) reminded them of GPL. There's also no stock firmware available for this device on the ZTE website (yet). That could be used as an excellent ROM dump and would provide easy way back to stock in case something goes horribly wrong.

But yeah, msm8x25q as a platform should be something that I'm familiar with (it's basically nothing but a quad-core msm7x27a ;)). Not so sure that I'm that exited about ZTE anymore.
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flibblesan, do you have a link for the info saying 20% discount for virgin media customers, i just looked on here but i can't see anything: http://www.virginmed...bilephones3.php

I've scanned the page. Oddly, pages 28-29 don't show the Blade V but it's on the main page so should be in the offer. Pick up Septembers Virgin Media Buyer's Guide in-store before buying the phone just incase the staff say you can't have 20% off or something. It's the issue with Iron Man 3 on the front.

Posted Image
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Well, I can't do something like that for a device that I don't have. ;)

There's currently some outstanding issues what comes to developing for ZTE devices. There is no kernel source available for this device. Without a kernel source, there really isn't much point in even trying to port CyanogenMod. Actually all kernel sources that are on the ZTE website currently only return 404 error. You can't download anything for any device and this has been going on for at least two months! In addition they've taken a lovely approach to ignore all my emails after I've kindly (and then not so kindly :P) reminded them of GPL. There's also no stock firmware available for this device on the ZTE website (yet). That could be used as an excellent ROM dump and would provide easy way back to stock in case something goes horribly wrong.

But yeah, msm8x25q as a platform should be something that I'm familiar with (it's basically nothing but a quad-core msm7x27a ;)). Not so sure that I'm that exited about ZTE anymore.


The HTC Desire 500 uses the same chipset so if there is any development being done for that device then it'll be a decent starting point. The great thing about being a Qualcomm device is that Android is relatively easy to build for them. Unlike Mediatek devices...
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A shame I just bought a Lenovo a760 with the same internals, but 4,5" and qhd for $113. I'm sure the Gf would've liked to have a smaller phone like the ZTE..
This should be a killer phone, small form Factor, 1gb ram and cheap as chips.
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Know your mobile dot com claim its available for £89.99 sim free.

I'd love to know where.

Article here: http://www.knowyourm...rst-impressions
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Know your mobile dot com claim its available for £89.99 sim free.

I'd love to know where.

Article here: http://www.knowyourm...rst-impressions


I get the feeling that was some miscommunication by the ZTE rep. I can't see it being £89.99 sim free when it's £89.99 on Virgin Media and it looks like the device may be exclusive to Virgin in the UK.
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Lister Of Smeg
Sep 02 2013 08:15 PM
Damn, I wished I knew about this sooner... I only went out couple of days ago and bought the rubbish G300 :(

Already I'm hating the device.... and look to be selling it soon... :(

My trusty ZTE Blade has been brilliant over the last 3x years... and yet Ive had the G300 about 3x days and hate it... :( As much as I appreciate the hard work the Devs put in, the ROMs are well out of date compared to the ZTE equivilent...

Lets hope this comes out on the 4th, I may try and sell my G300 and get this instead.... :)

Cheers, Lister
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You seem to be trying to talk yourself out of buying one Frankish!


I admit it will be realllllly tough not to buy one of these at this price point! Very tempted.

You really don't. Most people on these forums are interested in ROM customization and there isn't much chance for that with these Chinese MediaTek devices. Sure there's xposed framework etc these days but you're still stuck hacking your stock ROM no matter what. There's no chance for your favorite AOSP based ROM (CyanogenMod, AOKP, AOSPA, RootBox, PAC, and the list goes on) on MediaTek platform, when there's no such problem with Qualcomm devices. Performance-wise msm8x25q should be in par with recent MediaTek quad-core platforms. And SGX544 GPU used in those is ancient too.

Generally speaking, nice too see Snapdragon 200 devices finally hitting the market in Europe. These are planned as entry level devices so you can't expect miracles anyway. Seems that ZTE has hit a nice price point for that (at least for countries where Nexus 4 is not available at Play Store price :P).


I see what you're saying in regards to roms and customization etc i totally get that point. My bang for buck reference is more down to the core specs, screen, slightly better gpu. Some of these MTK phones have an almost fully AOSP 4.2 so are great to buy just AS IS. I bought mine with the aim of installing MIUI as it's officially available.

I'm sure i'll end up with the ZTE though as i say i loved my "San Francisco".
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Was thinking of upgrading from my trusty Blade to a Huawei Y300- I'm on O2 so I can get that for £70 as a PAYG upgrade. But this looks interesting. Worth the extra?
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100% worth the extra the Y300 is slow, 512mb of ram simply isn't enough at all.
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100% worth the extra the Y300 is slow, 512mb of ram simply isn't enough at all.


y300 has dual cortex a5 1ghz cores, this has quad cortex a5 1.2ghz cores so you'd expect a pretty nice cpu performance boost too, especially if someone can create a cyanogenmod rom for it using android 4.2/4.3.
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Thanks gents. From what I've read, I think much of the performance issues with the Huawei are down to the Emotion UI, and that can be dumped with a new ROM or a bit of hacking, and the Blade works well enough for my needs with 512MB, but the Blade V certainly sounds like the better bet.
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well its what you pay for ,you get nothing more .looks a good backup phone .it will be out tomorrow and will be a good seller for the budget buyer.il wait for people to buy it then get it at cash gens as usual lol
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