Elephone P6000 Daily Driver Review

With the release of Android 5.0 as a default and preloaded operating system on the P6000, the device has begun to be my daily driver for most of my daily activities (keeping in touch, checking the news), while the THL 5000 became my gaming and data device due to its high battery capacity. How will the P6000 hold up as a daily driver then?

Note: Review uses version 3.3 of the AOSP 5.0 ROM provided on the Elephone forum.

General usage: The device is extremely smooth, with almost no lags. Keeping many apps in the background will not drain the battery, especially with the screen off (a common thing in MediaTek devices). Elephone has still brought forward a really stable ROM, in fact so stable that it can be considered for daily usage, and also the first stable 5.0 ROM to arrive on a MediaTek device.

Battery life: On standby, the phone could easily reach up to (or even over) two days of standby time. On normal usage (i.e. Text messaging, listening to music, installing apps, and browsing the web) the phone can last up to one day, depending on usage. I had to charge the device nightly (as I do with most of my devices), which may reduce the battery life after prolonged usage.

Connectivity: As usual on my telco, 3G connectivity is really unstable. However, a 3 to 4 bar signal could be obtained most of the time, even underground. 4G was not tested though, as I do not have a 4G-enabled SIM. The device, unfortunately, does not come with NFC, making file transfers a little troublesome between my THL and the P6000. Bluetooth connectivity also works perfectly when tested with a pair of JBL Bluetooth headphones (thanks to Ennzerothreetwo for the headphones!). The GPS on the device, paired with GLONASS support also makes navigating a breeze without much location drifts and jumps.

Gaming: The device was not used for active gaming, and still isn’t, but when tested with games like Geometry Dash, it was found that games which run on 2D graphics would get odd stutters and frame skips, while 3D games worked extremely smoothly. There are no problems with rhythm games like School Idol Festival though.

System: The AOSP 5.0 ROM that I flashed on the device is extremely stable and smooth, and only showed signs of lag occasionally. The ROM is almost completely vanilla, and aside from SuperSU binaries and Elephone’s support app, nothing has been skinned at all. While MediaTek has not released their source code for Android 5.0 to the OEMs (if they will ever release any source code to the public and comply with GPL), the ROM can be considered a major step forward for Elephone. How they did it is almost completely unimaginable, as most of MediaTek’s source code, albeit leaked ones, are convoluted and a huge mess.

MediaTek hipster filtersHardware: The device, unfortunately, has a camera that does not take decent photos. The photos are usually somewhat blurry, and are not exposed right. While this is a known bug in the 5.0 ROM, users of the 4.4.4 ROM have also reported that their cameras are having problems, or just simply not taking photos that are on-par with industrial standard photos. The new 64-bit chipset does mean that MediaTek camera filters are supported though. HDR capture is also sped up and improved vastly. What is a little surprising to me is that the front camera actually performs a little better than the back camera, leaving aside the resolution.

Aesthetics: The device certainly does not look cheap, and actually looks a little like Xiaomi devices. Its capacitive buttons are certainly what made the device look really cool, but its port placement (USB on the bottom, audio jack on the top) was a little inconvenient for me, as I usually want everything on top. The device is also certainly great for portability too, as it is lightweight and small, thanks to its 5 inch screen.

Overall: No major problems have occurred to me on this device, aside from the fact that I was unable to take decent photos on the device, but it is a good device if you are using it solely as a phone and not for heavy gaming. If you are looking for performance on budget too, this device is certainly one for you. (Just… Be sure you know it runs on a MediaTek chipset, and MediaTek does not release its sources…)

That is all for the P6000, do let me know if you want to see something posted on the page!