Alongside the Flare S6 Plus is another mid-range smartphone, the Cherry Mobile Flare S6 Selfie. This device boasts the same 16MP front-facing camera sensor for much, much less. For the social maven on a tight budget, the device seems more than ample.
Design and Construction
The Flare S6 Selfie takes cues not just from the lower-end Flare S6, but also from the Flare S6 Plus. It does come with a home button just below the 5.2-inch FHD display, as opposed to the latter. Beside it are the LED notification light and other sensors. Below, much like most Samsung devices, the fingerprint scanner sits flanked with Android navigation keys on either side.
The right side of the phone holds the power and volume buttons. On the other hand, the SIM tray sits opposite, at the left side.
Unlike many a foreign flagship, the Flare S6 Selfie still rocks a headphone jack, found at the top of the phone. The charging port and the speaker grilles sit down below.
Turning the phone over, the lone camera, LED flash and Cherry Mobile branding decorate the otherwise clean back. The phone also sports a unibody aluminum chassis, hence the premium feel. Like the S6 Plus, it feels just as cold (and, just as slippery) to the touch. On the one hand, it does come with a solid, compact build; on the other hand, it can come off a little slippery. A case would’ve mitigated the issue, but Cherry Mobile didn’t include one in-box.
OS, UI, and Apps
Like its more expensive sibling that is the Flare S6 Plus, the Flare S6 Selfie also features Cherry OS. Built on Android 7.0 Nougat, the skinned version of the software runs smoothly with day-to-day use. The launcher looks a little different from that of the S6 Plus’s, but the experience remains pretty much the same. As usual, the phone comes pre-installed with several Cherry Mobile apps, which could be removed if one so chose.
Considering its price, the Flare S6 Selfie serves a tough contender in the budget smartphone camera market. It touts 16 MP Samsung S5K3P3 sensors both for the front and rear cameras. Depending on the lighting conditions, adjusting the exposure and focus initially takes a few seconds. Other than that, it takes pretty impressive photos while preserving highlights and shadows. Even with BSI, however, both cameras look a bit fuzzy and washed out in low indoor lighting.
Cherry Mobile could implement support for Pro mode and RAW shooting in future software updates for an even better experience, though.
With features like HDR, Panorama, Beauty, Mono, and Night, modes, the S6 Selfie is a great point-and-shoot camera. It also comes with Bokeh, which could be a little tricky to master because of how it works. The camera prompts the user to gesture the phone upwards after taking a first photo. It then takes more of the background in the second photo it takes. While a little gimmicky, the bokeh filter makes for nifty shots when done correctly.
Cherry Mobile Flare S6 Selfie Sample Photos:
Performance and Benchmarks
With 3 GB of RAM and a MediaTek MT6750T Quad-Core CPU, the Flare S6 Selfie performs on the average. It performs fine with real-world use and multitasking, and lags come few and far between. Switching between Facebook, web search, or Twitter thus becomes a breeze.
Like the S6 Plus, the S6 Selfie can run performance-intensive games like Dead Trigger 2 well, even with graphics turned at the highest. It does get a little warm within just a few minutes of playing though. It’s just as well, since Cherry Mobile doesn’t exactly tout this as a gaming device. Still, it runs casual games like Temple run smoothly, with frame drops only appearing a few times.
With actual use, battery life on the S6 Selfie can be a bit… underwhelming. For those who heavily use data to browse the web or use social media, the S6 Selfie might not be the perfect choice. At 2,600 mAh the battery just seems a bit insufficient for the phone. On the plus side, the USB type-C compatible device charges up fairly quickly. Full charge takes around two hours.
For half the Flare S6 Plus’s price, the Flare S6 Selfie proves to be an ample choice for those on a budget. Also, along with the Php 4,999 marked down price, its Samsung cameras and the Cherry OS outweigh its lackluster battery life. It’s a good thing then, that the phone charges up in just a few hours.
The average consumer would take delight in using the S6 Selfie, since it takes the job and does it well. It may not be a good gaming device, but as a daily driver, its iteration of the Cherry OS proves its value as a local smartphone brand.