ZTE is a China born telecommunication company with multinational presence. The brand has deep presence in the sector of telecommunications equipment manufacturing. It operates from headquarters in Shenzhen, China.
To get a bite in the most volatile business, the ZTE has been launching some unique multi feature smartphones. In today’s review article, we are looking at the ZTE Nubia Z9 Mini, which is available exclusively at Amazon India with a price tag of 17000 rupees.
Because of high-end specifications and affordable price tag, the smartphone gets rated well almost in all segments. This is a gaming friendly smartphone with top noted specifications. So far, we have seen such specifications only in a 30 to 35 thousand rupees smartphones. Also, it is an affordable premium smartphone under 20000 rupees.
Sales Box Content
After paying 17000 rupees, user gets a ZTE magic box, which contains Handset with Battery, Charger and USB Cable. I am surprised to see missing earphone or headset. Perhaps this is a drill to cut cost considering premium specifications of it.
Build and Design
The china made smartphone is a multi touch gadget with nice curve that overlapped by shiny silver metal bezel runs around all sides. Its total gross weight is 147 gram and thickness limited at 8.2 mm. We accept the weight and thickness of the smartphone as it puts out some uniqueness and built-in 2900 mAh battery does add to the gross weight. The Nubia Z9 mini measures in a 141.3 mm in length and 69.8 mm in width.
We can summary the overall build in a simple term; we are talking about a smartphone with a solid craft yet quite premium with standard look. I am impressed with looks and design side of the ZTE Z9 mini.
3.5 mm audio jack finds place at the top alongside second noise cancellation mic. 16 MP rear camera with single LED flash finds place the upper side of the back panel. Two control buttons wherein the first is volume rocker and the second is power button finds place at the right side. Coming to the bottom, we find a USB data port alongside calling mic and main loudspeaker.
Having speaker at the bottom avoids sound muffling while it is regularly placed on a table, but horizontal orientation during gaming or watching movie, renders possibility of sound block due to natural palm placement.
Left side of the Nubia Z9 mini features a SIM card trey that accepts two SIM cards which has to be in nano shape to get in.
The Z9 mini build is a combination of glass and metal. According to the ZTE, both glasses are in premium quality and quite effective against scratch and finger prints. In this smartphone, home button works as notification light.
5 inch Display
Before I get into the deep digging of display, I would like to mention here, I am going to introduce you an outstanding display, rarely seen in a smartphone available pocket friendly price tag.
The ZTE Z9 mini sports a 5 inches screen with FHD display wherein pixel density reaches at 441 PPI. This is an IPS LCD display technology protected by Corning Gorilla Glass variant 3. Display has an excellent viewing angle that goes upto 155 to 173 degree. In terms of display depth, black looks natural black and colour reproduction is awesome. Having a 441 PPI pixel distribution guarantee that user does not face pixilation issue even it is tilted at an extreme angle.
The Nubia Z9 Mini earns full score for FHD display. After a week of usages, you will feel, 17000 rupees price is justified thank to great display feature here.
The ZTE Nubia Z9 Mini runs on Android Lollipop 5.0.2 and having Nubia user interface 2.8 on the top. All icons are stored at the home screen. The ZTE user interface is dedicated to smooth operation and easy navigation. Having single hand operation with ease, the end user will not face transition lag between two application and homepage. Though, I am big fan of default Android user interface, but having something new without compromising performance is always welcomed.
This is a Dual SIM smartphone wherein both SIM optimized for LTE 4G networks. Yes, it supports Indian 4G band. The Z9 mini is one of the few medium budget flagship smartphone with dual 4G/3G network support.
In terms of hardware connectivity, we can tick the checkbox for USB 2.0 and Bluetooth 4.0. Since it is a flagship smartphone, I was expecting NFC and DLNA connectivity features, which is missing here.
The operating frequency band support starts from 850 MHz and goes upto 2600 MHz support. Under the 1G connectivity, it supports 850 MHz and 900 MHz frequency band. In 2G network support, it features drop less connectivity to 900, 1800, 1900 MHz band. Finally, 2100, 1900, 900 and 850 MHz band is supported for network browsing.
User will experience endless connectivity on 4G network since the smartphone has supporting frequency range from 1900, 2300 and 2600 MHz under TD-LTE. In India, big player like Airtel and Reliance Jio is using TD-LTE network. The Reliance Jio 4G network frequency is 2300 MHz and 900 MHz.
In terms of connectivity, the Nubia Z9 Mini is much better than any other smartphones available in market. 850 MHz band support confirms that user will get full connectivity in every part of country. Most of Indian Telecom Company still using 850 MHz frequency for voice and data protocol. You must have heard about GPRS that is data protocol over 1G network.
With the ZTE Nubia Z9, user will get better calling quality on Uninor, BSNL, Aircel, Videocon and other mediocre telecommunication companies still using 850 MHz frequency.
Storage and Battery
The ZTE Nubia Z9 mini packs a 16 GB internal storage wherein 11 GB is free after the first boot. Memory expansion is supported upto 128 GB.
Lithium-ion 2900 mAh battery is non-removable. Battery backup is really good. We cannot confirm on exact talk time or standby as the company has not listed online. However, during our test we had witnessed 14% drop in battery after extensive usages of 4 hours. User can trust this phone for good battery backup.
In India, Snapdragon is a familiar chipset or processor manufacturer. Having a Snapdragon processor guarantee that user will get lag-free experience during gaming and multitasking.
The Nubia Z9 mini runs on Octa core processor architecture. It features a combination of two processors wherein both have four core to execute queued up tasks. The first quad core processor has a clock speed of 1.5 GHz whereas second processor remains idle with four core and clock speed of 1 GHz. Brand new Snapdragon chipset 615 variant recently launched as a successor of the 4G oriented Chipset 415. This chipset family is designed for online TV, HD video calling and easy dual 4G connectivity.
Adreno 405 graphic user interface is one of the best GPU in market and it has been integrated well in this smartphone. Absolutely no lag, no frame drop or hiccup. Smooth HD and 3D gaming. I would recommend this smartphone for better gaming.
Snapdragon processor executes all tasks in virtual memory that is limited at 2 GB. After the first boot, 985 MB RAM was available from 2 GB of installation. Considering the selling price, 985 MB free RAM seems a fair specification.
The Smartphone Gadget does get heat up after regular multitasking. I do not find any hardware imbalance yet it gets heat up. In my opinion, the brand ZTE should release a patch to correct the integration of software and hardware.
Snapdragon 615 processor supported by a brand new Adreno 405 GPU and 2 GB RAM is sufficient for a gaming gadget. However, a galaxy of sensor makes a smartphone truly gaming console. The Z9 Mini packs Accelerometer, Compass, Gyroscope and Proximity sensor. Gyroscope sensor is one to read 6-axis tilting during the excitement of gaming.
16mp 8MP Camera
Once again we are giving full mark for camera performance. The rear 16 MP auto focus camera is simply mind-blowing. With integration of Exmor-R CMOS image sensor, user can take any distance shot with good about of details, natural colours and 100% real appearance. We had spent sufficient time in analyzing the primary camera. I can assure that user will not be disappointed with overall shooting capability indoor or outdoor.
Single LED flash is powerful enough to lighten up the subject in low light ambience. Digital zoom won’t disappoint you. Yes, we can record FHD video that is also in production quality at 30 frames per second.
The real store is 8 MP Selfie shooter. After Panasonic Blink Play concept, the Z9 Mini features a new twist with auto selfie features. The moment you bring smartphone near to your face, it starts securing some of best facial expression. You do not need to bother to press camera button. Sensor and camera software technology is smart enough to detect your face and start shooting the best quality selfie.
Thank to this brilliant selfie shooter, I could capture some of my good looking Selfies. I am sorry; I am not going to add those photos here.
In terms of multimedia, it has a easy and fact connecting FM tuner, loud speaker and audio 3.5 mm Jack. You can play FHD video or watch HD movie at FHD display without lag. 11 GB free memory and 128 GB microSD card support is more to add in to storage requirement of multimedia contents.
- Neither big nor small 5 inches FHD brilliant display
- Best Specifications under 17000 rupees
- Stylish and Premium Look
- Excellent Camera and brand new technology in Selfie shooting
- Does get heat up on regular high usages
- Earphone is missing in sales box
I am for this smartphone. This is a perfect selfie smartphone. Also, it is a true gaming smartphone.
|SIM||Dual, Nano, 4G+4G|
|OS||Android Lollipop 5.0.2|
|Screen||5 Inches, FHD, 441 PPI|
|Processor||Octa Core, Snapdragon, 1.5+1 GHz|
|Memory||2GB RAM, 16 GB ROM, 128 SD Support|
|Camera||16 MP[P], 8 MP[F], FHD Recording|
|Body||147 g [W], 8.2 mm [Th]|
|Connectivity||4G, 3G, BT, Wi-Fi, GPS, USB|