Currently Tinkering: Cherry Mobile Flare 2X

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I replaced my phone to the latest “Quad-Core ng Bayan”. Here are my thoughts about the new Cherry Mobile Flare 2x.

Since my Cherry Mobile Titan was stolen a few months ago, I temporarily used a phone called Cherry Mobile Click (provided by the office). That was my phone until I was able to save up for a new phone. I needed a phone that’s not expensive but good enough featured phone. The Cherry Mobile Flare 2.0 (PhP3,999) and the Cloudfone Excite 450q (PhP4,999) was something I was considering at first. Both phones almost have identical specs except for the Cloudfone had a stronger battery. When I heard that Flare 2X was going to be released and it will be having almost the same specs but with a 1Gig ram, only for an additional PhP500 it seems worth the price.Took me a while to look for this since I checked out SM Makati and they priced the Flare 2X at PhP4,999. Seems unfair since they SRP is Php4,499. It turns out that a seller near our home just got stocks and I was able to purchase one there. They said I was the first one to buy the particular model since it just got shipped at the same day.

 

As soon as I got the device I installed a lot of my usual apps and launcher. Nova Launcher, Swiftkey, Waze, GPS Status, aCar, Battery Doctor, SMS Backup+, CallTrack, Beautiful Widgets and more. So my screen is not the default one. I never hesitate to download these because in my experience, it has made my life with an Android phone a lot better than the stock widgets, launchers and keyboards that they have.

 

Here are the specs:
  • 4-inch WVGA (480 x 800) 3-point touch screen LCD (233ppi)
  • 1.2GHz Qualcomm 8225Q quad-core CPU
  • Adreno 203 GPU
  • 1GB of RAM
  • 8 megapixel AF rear camera w/ LED flash
  • 4GB of internal storage
  • up to 32GB via microSD
  • VGA front-facing camera
  • 3G, WiFi, GPS, Bluetooth
  • Dual-SIM capacity
  • 1,550mAh battery
  • Android 4.1.2 Jellybean
Physically, it looks like a very impressive phone. At first glance can make you think that you are looking at an iPod. The plastic back cover is a dead giveaway that it’s not though, but it looks very good.

 

Back side

Back side

Bottom: MicroUSB Plug

Bottom: MicroUSB Plug

Headphone/Microphone Jack

Top: Headphone/Microphone Jack

Right Side: Volume control

Right Side: Volume control

8 Megapixel Camera

8 Megapixel Camera

Speakers

Speakers

Screen looks amazing. The screen is 233ppi, so far this is one of the clearest screen I’ve ever seen. Since based on my tests the CM Titan and iPad Mini is around 150+ ppi, CM Flare 223ppi, CM Click is at 165ppi, and my ever reliable Samsung Galaxy Player 4.2 is at 222 ppi. So, the Flare 2X is the only one that surpassed the image quality of my Galaxy Player. The image details looks great.
Flare 2X in comparison with the Samsung Galaxy 4.2 Media Player

Flare 2X (left) in comparison with the Samsung Galaxy 4.2 Media Player (right)

Flare (left), Flare 2X (middle), Click (right)

Flare (left), Flare 2X (middle), Click (right)

Touch response is pretty good too. I haven’t experienced any delays. I think the 1.2ghz quad core processor is helping here. Switching from one app to another is quite quick.
If you hold it upright, if you check the screen from the bottom or on the side, the screen looks flawless. But if you look at an angle from the top, it somehow the color shifts. So when playing a game while holding the device horizontally in which you tilt it, the color can get a little weird on certain angles. Feels like it wasn’t designed to be held horizontally.
One of my frustrations with this device, compared to Click, Titan and Flare; is that the quick switches are not available when you swipe down. Click, Titan and Flare has a lot of options like the wifi, brightness, data, sound, airplane mode, bluetooth, auto rotate and others. Here you only have wifi, brightness, data, bluetooth and auto rotate. I mean, it shouldn’t be that much of an issue, since you can access airplane mode and sound somewhere else. But here, it’s not the case. Note that there are no other sound profile options like the other phones I mentioned.

 

Tested the game Real Racing 3 and it was almost flawless. So much better than playing it on the iPad Mini (with iOS7). Had to calibrate the GSensor though to get the game running properly. My first play through on the Flare 2X was a little skewed because it wasn’t calibrated properly. My issue with games is that the Adreno 203 processor is not great for gaming in general. It’s adequate enough to display a 3D game, but that’s just it. It’s like you just kept an Intel graphics card for your desktop computer just because it’s there and you didn’t bother to upgrade it. But I suppose that’s why nVidia is stepping up the plate with Tegra processors.
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I also did a 3DMark test and it ran quite fine. I was actually impressed that it ran about 8-14 frames per second depending on the scene. Although in comparison to a iPad Mini, the Flare 2X just lost a few points. Still, it’s not that bad. Considering I can play more properly in the Flare 2X instead of the iPad Mini says a lot. I did the same test on the original Flare, but the memory was low and it didn’t show the demo. But it still gave me some score to refer to. The points difference is a couple of hundred, but that wasn’t what mattered to me when I did the test. What mattered is that the demo didn’t run because of the low memory. So, that alone proves that the 1gb memory of the Flare 2X gave it a real good advantage.

 

Pictures look good on the 8 megapixel camera, although looking on closer inspection, it does make some images look like it’s made out of water color. It’s not that bad actually, since you only notice it when you look at images zoomed in. Flash works fine, good enough to take some decent pictures during the dark. Image saved has a resolution of 3200×2400. It’s possible that I just got used to looking at images from my Fujifilm HS25EXR camera which has almost the same effect. The front facing camera is okay, it was a bit disappointing but what can you expect with VGA (640×480) anyway?  I find it interesting on how to use the panorama setting, since it’s not most cameras I’ve used. Most of them takes several pictures and it merges them into one. The resolution can vary depending on how you take them, but it’s generally around 2200×550 (not exact). In the Flare 2X, it doesn’t feel like your taking pictures, but taking a video. But the results are pretty good.
Photo result of using the 8MP camera

Photo result of using the 8MP camera

Photo Result using the 8MP camera at night.

Photo Result using the 8MP camera at night.

Photo result using the VGA front facing camera

Photo result using the VGA front facing camera

Panorama Shot (day time)

Panorama Shot (day time)

Panorama Shot (night time)

Panorama Shot (night time)

Experimented on video capture. By default it recorded on 720p using 3gp file format. Uploading it on YouTube was a breeze. As you can see in my video, it worked flawlessly. I also liked the feature where you can continuuosly keep the LED light on when taking a video, I just can’t imagine why you’d keep that on since the 1500maH battery is very weak to keep on going for a long period of time.

I can’t use any other headset except for the one included in the pack. Each time I tried using a different set of headset, sound seems like all the voice has been removed. I can only hear the music and the voice is very faint. I tried a few configurations I have at home and none worked. I was told that this is because I need to use a headset without microphone support. I generally use my Samsung headset provided with the Galaxy Player. Maybe this is the cause of the issue.

 

Battery can last more than a day on regular use, but if you play a lot of games, don’t expect it to last that long. I also tried using the internet at tethering, but it should only last you half a day.
AnTuTu Benchmark:
Samsung Galaxy Player 4.2: 3990
Cherry Mobile Flare: 7712
Cherry Mobile Flare 2X: 9305
022
Quadrant Benchmark:
Samsung Galaxy Player 4.2: (test ran but won’t display score)
Cherry Mobile Flare: 2628
Cherry Mobile Flare 2X: 2688
021
3DMark:
iPad Mini (iOS7): 2668
Cherry Mobile Flare: 2337
Cherry Mobile Flare 2X: 2585
023
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So, what do I think about Flare 2X? For the price that you are paying, it has 1gb RAM, which is twice the size of the original Flare 2.0. And the only phone I can compare this at the moment is the Cloudfone Excite 450q which is priced at PhP4,999 which is technically the same as the Flare 2.0 but with a bigger battery. The 1Gb RAM gives me more flexibility and it shows a lot. I understand there are problems here and there, but still, it’s not bad for what it can do for the price. I really enjoy this phone and I think it’ll be a while before I replace this one.
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46 Comments

  1. Planning on getting this phone before december, do you think I should buy this phone? from a scale 1-10, how satisfied are you w/ this device?

    Reply
    • For the price, I highly approve of the device. For PhP4,500, this is a great phone. But you also have to consider what you really want. The Cloudfone Excite 450q has a bigger battery and will last you 2-3 days before recharging. But the 512mb memory is a drawback because it limits the amount of software that you can use. The 1Gb memory for this device is the biggest advantage.

      Of course you can get a better phone if you have a bigger budget. If you have 7K I suppose the Cherry Mobile Apollo is a good option. if you have anything around 9-11k then the Cosmos series might be more attractive.

      If I rate it from 1-10 (10 is the highest)… I’d rate it as a 7. It could be higher if the battery was stronger.

      Reply
  2. Pam

     /  October 9, 2013

    Hi! How would you rate the battery of CM Flare 2x?
    How long does it last? I’m thinking of buying this phone but I’m having second thoughts because of the battery. I’m not really a heavy user when it comes to gaming. I’m more on social networking site and slight page browsing.

    I hope this is not like Alcatel OT Soleil. 4 hours max for the battery. 😐

    Reply
    • It depends on how much you use. Every single feature you use will eat up battery. Basic use, as in no games or wifi or 3G will last you almost a day (more or less).

      Play 3D games, it heats up pretty quick. It will reach up to 3-4 hours possibly.

      3G with tethering will get you 4-6 hours possibly, depending on the amount of devices that you hook it up with.

      Use as minimal applications as possible and don’t use too much features and it should last you a while. The 1550mAH battery is not much, but if you know how to manage, it should be good for a day.

      If you’re planning to get this, use a battery manager. It might help you take care of your battery with tips and suggestions and battery monitoring.

      But if you plan to get something with a stronger battery, so far Cloudfone has a good selection of phones at a reasonable price too. They are slightly expensive… only slightly. But the battery they usually offer is strong enough to last you 2-3 days, depending on the model you get.

      Reply
  3. sirc

     /  October 11, 2013

    Can i replace the battery with higher power and not destroying the unit ? thnks ..

    Reply
    • I haven’t asked if there is any battery replacement for this. Will look into it more when I have the time. If you have an idea, you can share it here on the website. 😀

      Reply
  4. sirc

     /  October 11, 2013

    what brand of battery i can use .. thanks again

    Reply
  5. Pam

     /  October 12, 2013

    Thank you! This really helped me decide. 🙂

    Reply
  6. Frank(17)

     /  October 16, 2013

    Anong theme po ang ginamit ninyo?
    and what can I do to make the battery last? Apps?
    Kakaibili ko lang po kasi and my first ever android phone is this one 😉 Thanks!

    Reply
    • I currently use Nova Launcher as my home launcher. I didn’t use the standard one.

      My clock is Beautiful Widget, it’s a paid app, but I know there are other clock widgets that look the same.

      To manage your battery, I suggest using Battery Doctor. It will monitor on how you charge the phone and give you tips and suggestions.

      Also, be mindful of the features you are using. Turn them off when you are not using them. Any feature like wifi, tethering, data connection through phone network, GPS and Bluetooth will eat up a lot of battery. Turn them on only when you need them. You’ll notice that any one of the features can heat up the phone quite fast, especially if you use them all at once.

      The brightness setting, make sure it’s either in automatic or at the lowest setting. The bright screen can drain the battery too.

      Also, the more screens and widgets that you use will also eat up some battery. So customize it to your hearts content, but also use only the widgets that you really need.

      I hope this information helps. 😀

      Reply
  7. Marlou

     /  October 28, 2013

    Will Nba 2k13 work on Flare 2x?

    Reply
    • I haven’t tried that yet, since I don’t have a license to use the game. But there are some games that don’t work well on Flare 2x. I tested Galaxy on Fire 2, and the graphics didn’t show up well. It seems that it had a hard time displaying to colors right. While Real Racing 3 worked fine considering it’s also a graphic heavy game too.

      Reply
  8. bakit po ung video recording ko nag choppy pag nka 720 hd pero pag ka nka 480 sd ok nmn po ska po bkit mas mlinaw po camera ng flare ko kesa po dto sa flare 2x ko dpat po bng ppalitan ko po ito? reply please….

    Reply
    • So far, mukhang okay naman ang 720p on my end. Recorded a quick test on my end just to make sure. Also compared it to 460p, and the results were almost the same.

      A video sample by AveryAndre is a good sample too on how smooth the video recording is.


      Check mo rin ang mga software na naka install sa device mo. Some apps might be hogging the system kaya nahihirapan mag record.

      Reply
      • kelangan ko po cguro ppalitan to tnx po sa reply.. ung akin po kc pag nag take ng video after 10second prng xang nagpapause ng 1second tpos tuloy ulit…

      • Sorry to hear that. Yes, unusual nga yung response ng camera ng flare 2X mo. Although, can I ask, what type of memory are you using? Anong class?

      • nung friday lng po to bnili micro sd hc po ang nklgay sa memory nung bnili ko po kc to 4999 me ksma ng memory card tpos halos parehas lng po cla settings ng unang flare q po pero mas mlinaw po tlga cam nung flare q po kesa ho dto s flare 2x.. 😦

      • Ang isang possibility is yung memory card mo. Depende sa “Class”. The lower the class, mas mabagal ang read and write niya. So, baka nagkaka problem ka kasi mabagal ang read and write ng memory card mo. You can check naman yung memory card mo kung anong Class yan. Usually naka label yan sa harap.

      • hc po nkalagay 4gb tnry ko po tanggalin ganun pa dn po lag pa dn po ang video nia…

      • HC means High Capacity, pero it doesn’t mean it’s fast sa pag read and write. The class number should have a circle on it. Kung wala, baka mabagal sa memory card yan.

      • last question na po normal na po ba tlga ang pag init po nito mlapit sa camera?

      • Yes, mabilis siya uminit depende sa apps and services na ginagamit mo. Sa akin umiinit yan ng mabilis pag naka on ang GPS, internet at Wi-Fi. Kung samahan ko pa ng tethering, sa sobrang init paminsan minsan nag re-reset siya ng kusa.

  9. Raul Flaga

     /  January 13, 2014

    I bought the Flare 2X last November 3 2013 and by December 3 2013 the battery stopped working. Took it to CM service center in SM North the same day under J.O. 83008. Until now January 13 2014 still no battery replacement available. They cant even provide a temporary replacement battery. I literally begged them to at least do something but my request landed on deaf ears. CHERRY MOBILE AFTER SALES SUCKS. SUPERIOR QUALITY SHOULD BE BACKED BY AN EXCELLENT AFTER SALES SERVICE…..AVOID AT ALL COSt!!!..

    Reply
    • It’s hard to tell, based on service, I’ve only had a problem with my Titan and this was only because of an upgrade, I brought it to SM Dasmarinas and it took me 3 hours. The lines are pretty short there so service is quite quick compared SM North. A friend of mine had his phone fixed too, this is because a part of his screen was not responding, he brought it to SM Southmall if I remember correctly and it took them a month to fix. Hopefully you can get a fix soon.

      Reply
  10. Raul Flaga

     /  January 13, 2014

    Please HELP!!… May makukunan ba po ng Flare 2X battery or at least something that might work? Paki usap lang po HELP!!.. Please email me at raul.flaga at gmail dot com

    Reply
    • I was able to buy a battery at Cherry Mobile SM BF Sucat. It wasn’t easy to find, since I tried looking at a lot of places too.

      Reply
  11. or like how can i download an app and installed it in the external SD card?

    Reply
    • Hello Nadi. make sure you are already registered a gmail account for the phone to download apps properly through Google Play. Once you can download apps, you can go to settings or Manage Apps. Go to Downloaded TAB. Select an app and check if there is a “Move to SD card” option. If yes, then the app can be moved to the SD. Note that it only install a large portion of the app, not the entire program to the SD.

      Also note that not all apps can install on SD. Some of them are required to run on the phone or device.

      I hope that helps you Nadi.

      Reply
  12. armand

     /  February 1, 2014

    hi!! why nba 2k13 in flare 2x is super log!! why?? thnx!!

    Reply
    • I’m not sure. I haven’t tried installing nba2k13 on flare. I have tried a few games, a lot of them work fine, but some don’t even work at all. Just like a PC, don’t expect every game will run properly. But, if you are doing everything to make it run, see if it runs after a factory reset. See if it runs or not. If not, then the hardware is not up to making it work. I experienced the same thing when I played Galaxy on Fire HD. It just didn’t run even if I tried to. If the game runs after a factory reset, it means that some software is conflicting with the game.

      Reply
  13. ronnie caringal

     /  April 11, 2014

    san po nakakabili ng battery ng flare 2x at mgkano? tnx!

    Reply
    • I haven’t checked how much a new battery is yet. I did try asking for it recently, but they didn’t have stock for it.

      Reply
      • I was able to find a battery at Cherry Mobile SM BF in Paranaque. Note, it’s not easy to find it, I actually tried looking for it at a lot of places. Price is PhP500.

  14. Anamarie Boiser

     /  June 15, 2014

    Hi po pls help me i have a cherry mobile flare 2x i bought it last year. My problem is bigla syang mag rerebot when i used facebook or any site. What should i do? Pls help me. That is the only problem i encountered so far. Nakaka inis lang sya biglang namamatay . 😦 Help me guys. Thank you.

    Reply
    • Try to do a factory reset. An Android phone is like a computer, the longer it ages and being installed with a bunch of software and used for a long period of time, it just get a little slower and sometimes unusable. Doing a factory reset will revert it back to it’s original state before you even installed any software. Then reinstall all the software that you use again.

      Make sure you backup everything first (especially your contact list and such) before doing the factory reset.

      I hope that helps.

      Reply
  15. Hey, im having difficulty in choosing btwin these 2 cm flare 2x or lg optimus L4 dual (both 2nd hand) can u help please..?

    Reply
  16. Oh sorry lg optimus L4 ii dual

    Reply
  17. Yes. Thats it. specs flare 2x is definetly superior but its 2nd hand so.. do u think its wiser to buy the Lgbrand? Lol. Sorry for the burden.

    Reply
    • Don’t worry, it’s not a burden. Keep on asking if you want. I’d like to help as much as I can.

      In terms of specs, yes, the flare 2x is superior, but if you plan to use the device for a long time, like more than 2-3 years, then I suggest you research if parts are available (like the replacement battery). Personally, that was part of the downside of having the flare 2x, the battery wasn’t easy to find a replacement.

      Also, in terms of reliability, the LG model you mentioned has a stronger battery. 1700mAh compared to the flares’ 1500mAh. If you don’t play too much games or movies, I do suggest the LG is a good choice. But if you need more power in terms of gaming and movies, the Flare 2x is a better choice.

      If you are buying 2nd hand, make sure if the device is not damaged or anything. In general I don’t have any problems with it, but it’s best to be careful. Note that Lithium Ion batteries can only last 3 years maximum from the release from the factory, regardless of how much you care for it.

      I’m still using the Flare 2X I bought last year. I’m still happy with it, I just replaced the battery which took me some time to find. The last battery failed because I did abuse my phone for a long time by using every major feature all at the same time for several days forcing it to drain fully on a regular basis and damaging the battery in the process. Now that I have replaced it, the battery lasts me 2 days or more before it gets drained.

      Reply
  18. Thank u so much. I think ill go for the Lg unit. Im not into games and when it comes to videos as long as i can figure out what im viewing regardlsss if its pixelated,im good with it. Haha well there goes the answer to my question. I just want another opinion from a pro. Thank u.

    Reply
  19. andrea

     /  June 3, 2015

    helo po… ask ko Lang po.. kc ung flare2x ko lage namamatay kpg ng open AQ ng apps.. dahil po ba un sa battery, o sa phone na po UN? pag po ba pinalitan ko ng bTtery magiging ok na sya.. salamat po..

    Reply
    • Na try mo na mag reformat or mag hard reset ng Flare2X? Baka may conflict sa software more kaya namamatay yung phone. Pag nagawa mo na yung hard reset or reformat at ganun parin ang problem, then baka phone na yung problem mo.

      In terms of battery, there is a maximum of 3 years (from manufacturing date) lang talaga yung lifespan ng battery regardless kung kelan mo nabili yan. Pero based on what you said, it can only be software or hardware, but not the battery.

      Reply
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