The ZTE Axon 7 Mini takes a whole lot of what we liked about the astonishingly good ZTE Axon 7 and shrinks down everything to some – slightly – more compact size without compromising too much about the great spec.
It’s somewhat easier to maintain one hand should youn’t possess meaty paws and it is slightly easier on your wallet also, as a result of the cheaper price point.
ZTE Axon 7 Verizon Review, fingerprint scanner and high-end facing speakers. However, is it worth going for the ZTE Axon 7 Mini and losing the additional dimensions and power of the high-end phone we gave 4.5 stars to last year? And does the 7 Mini stand up to affordable competitions like the Honor 6X?
ZTE Axon 7 Mini price and release date
* Came out in the US and UK in September
* No word on if Australia will get it done, but It Is Going to eventually come
* Prices $299 or #249 (about AU$400)
You’re going to have the ability to purchase it for $299 or 249 from a number of different retailers, such as ZTE itself.
ZTE has declared the Axon 7 Mini will be making its way to Australia in the future, but it is not currently on sale there from any major retailers.
Layout and screen
* Complete metal unibody design which is easy to hold in one hand
* Fingerprint sensor on the rear is easy to tap after holding the phone
* 5.2-inch Full HD screen offers great picture quality
It’s becoming easier to find a mid sized Android phone that’s made of something other than vinyl in 2017, and the ZTE Axon 7 Mini adds yet another acceptable choice to the growing list.
It is an all-metal phone sold at an inexpensive price, which competes with much higher-priced handsets from the likes of Samsung, LG, HTC and Apple. The plan could fool anyone into believing this costs more than it does, and helps it create a stronger first impression compared to similarly priced phones like the Moto G4 Plus.
Although manufactured of steel, the ZTE Axon 7 Mini is just 153g and still feels light and easy to hold in 1 hand. This was a gripe with the original ZTE Axon 7, and this telephone is certainly a whole lot easier to handle.
The metal back can feel a little slippery when gripping the phone, but since the Axon 7 Mini is smaller it is easier to wrap your entire hand across the phone and hold it tight.
A big part of the layout is that the speakers around the front of the ZTE Axon 7 Mini — you won’t have the ability to miss them , but the grilles in the very top and bottom of the display aren’t awful.
It is not a look everybody will like, but it makes the telephone stand out in contrast to a boring looking mid-range handsets we have seen in recent years.
The fingerprint scanner is on the back of the phone, just below the camera detector, making it effortless to tap your finger on it when you wish to unlock the handset.
On the front of the phone there’s a 5.2-inch Total HD AMOLED screen, which is quite a downgrade in contrast to the 5.5-inch 1440 x 2560 AMOLED display on the ZTE Axon 7.
Despite that, it looks stunning and the slight drop in size makes it possible for the phone itself to be marginally smaller. Though given the title a few will probably be a little disappointed that the Axon 7 Mini doesn’t feature an even smaller screen – it is just 0.3-inches smaller than the original cellphone, and far from compact.
The phone is not ready to work with Google Daydream, therefore using a higher resolution display, especially at this dimension, isn’t really crucial. Sticking to a 1080p screen offers up 423 pixels-per-inch but won’t drain the battery as fast as the display onto the Axon 7 – though battery life is still a issue here, as we’ll discuss later.
Viewing angles are also powerful on the Axon 7 Mini — we found it worked well from most viewing factors, so you will be able to put this down in front of you on your commute to view videos with ease.
Interface and reliability
* Running Android 6 applications using ZTE’s overlay on top
* Apps have a strange redesign that does not always look good
* Insufficient program drawer may be a problem for some Android fans
That’s last year’s applications from Google, and ZTE has then placed its own interface over the top.
As with many phones from Chinese manufacturers, it can be quite an overwhelming style for those who are used to inventory Android. App icons will seem different and there are a whole lot of added features compared to your regular Android device.
The ZTE Axon 7 Mini has a great looking interface though.
Perhaps the strangest part of ZTE’s program is the absence of an program drawer. This means that your apps will be organized over pages on your telephone, instead of in a separate place, much like when you utilize an iPhone.
The biggest gripe we have with the interface is that the redesigned app icons. The ZTE possessed apps, like the camera or phone book, look great, however, the icons for third party services have been boxed in.
In the screenshot above you’ll see a few examples — for example, Messenger, Spotify and Wunderlist are all surrounded with a big white box. Even Google’s Play Store has this problem, and that ought to be an integral app.
If you enjoy a uniform appearance to the apps on your phone, you might struggle to get along with the design on the ZTE Axon 7 Mini. If not, you are going to have the ability to handle this minor gripe easily.
On the plus side, the ZTE Axon 7 Mini does come with all the Android 6 Marshmallow features. ZTE has yet to confirm if the telephone would be updated to Android 7 in the near future though.
Music, movies and gambling
* The speakers on the Axon 7 Mini make for an excellent listening experience
* There’s 22GB of room left over following software to fill with movies and games
* Should be able to play the latest games, but may struggle with a few
If you would like a phone that can play audio, the ZTE Axon 7 Mini will be a excellent choice for you.
It comes with 3D stereo sound that is made possible through a dual-loudspeaker at the ends of the telephone and Dolby Atmos technology packed in also.
This tech allows you to play music with less distortion and strong bass. Put this next to almost any other telephone and you’ll notice a difference in the music quality.
It rivals, and might even beat, HTC’s BoomSound tech. It is possible to take this phone around with you and see a film or listen to audio onto it with no headphones and still experience great sound.
There’s a 3.5mm headphone jack on top of the phone that will enable you to utilized wired headsets. That is something disappearing from a lot of high-end phones right now, so it’s good to see it is sticking around for the Axon 7 Mini.
You will also have the ability to use Bluetooth headsets around the Axon 7 Mini — we found they connected fast and easily at our testing. Sound quality was great, but relative to other handsets it was nothing like as impressive as the speakers on the front of the phone.
For films, you will likely want to install your own apps such as Netflix or Amazon Instant Video.
There’s a Videos program on the Axon 7 Mini which works nicely and will make complete use of the stereo speakers, but it is just for documents that you upload directly to the phone.
The display is a fantastic size and a great resolution to watch films.
There is theoretically 32GB of storage to play around with, but pre-installed applications takes up almost 10GB of that distance, which means you’re likely to be restricted to just 22GB of usable space, which will soon disappear as you download your apps.
There’s also microSD support for cards of up to 256GB, however, so you may want to invest in a large card to make certain you can fill your phone with as much media as you can.
In terms of gambling, there aren’t any good names pre-installed on the Axon 7 Mini — you will need to get exactly what you would like to play in the Google Play Store.
Some load times around the Axon 7 Mini were very long, but every game we tried on the telephone did finally load and has been playable.
Pokemon Go particularly took a very long time to load the Axon 7 Mini, and there was sometimes a slight stutter in certain graphically intensive names, but you’d expect that at this price point.
The dimensions of the phone also makes this type of remarkably comfortable gaming experience, especially if you’re using the powerful speakers.
Specs and benchmark performance
* Packs the Qualcomm Snapdragon 617 octa-core chipset
* Includes 3GB of RAM, but didn’t do well in benchmarking scores
The chipset might be the biggest downgrade on the ZTE Axon 7 Mini in comparison to its larger and more capable sibling.
The Axon 7 Mini comes with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 617 octa-core program on a processor.
During our time working with the phone, we consistently found it to be more dependable and ready to handle almost any programs you throw it, but it was especially slow with some apps.
Intensive tasks took a little longer than you’d expect for, but that’s mainly the character of using a cheaper phone.
When you look in Geekbench scores the ZTE Axon 7 Mini doesn’t come across quite well though.
The ZTE Axon 7 scored 5,393, while this telephone scored 2,106. That’s embarrassingly low compared to the similarly priced Honor 6X, that scored 3,275, or even the lower priced Moto G4 which scored 3,104.
Should you need a phone that’s capable of running the latest apps, the ZTE Axon 7 Mini will be OK. If you’d like a phone that will have the ability to load them as swiftly as possible, this won’t be the ideal choice.