Cherry Mobile Flare Mate Unboxing And First Impressions! Bigger And Better?

The Flare series by Cherry Mobile is probably most successful local smartphone line of all time. They just keep on evolving and continues to break the barriers in terms of specs and pricing year after yet. However, nearly all of their offerings are in the sub 5.5 inch screen size.
Cherry Mobile Flare Mate unboxing and first impression
Cherry Mobile Flare Mate unboxing and first impressions

Related: The Camera Performance Of Cherry Mobile Flare Mate In Actual Usage

Enter Cherry Mobile Flare Mate, their first 6 inch legit phablet of the decorated Flare series. First leaked last October of 2015, the Flare Mate was finally released few weeks ago. Is it worth all the hype, price and wait? Let's all find out.

Cherry Mobile Flare Mate Specs 

Display: 6 Inch FHD IPS 1920 x 1080 resolution w/ 2.5D curved glass at 367 ppi
CPU: 1.3 GHz 64 Bit MT6735 octa core processor
GPU: Mali T720
ROM:16 GB ROM expandable via micro SD card slot up to 32 GB
Back Camera: 16 MP f/2.0 Ominivision Pure Cell Sensor w/ 1/3.06 inch size, PDAF, EIS, BSI and LED flash
Selfie Camera: 5 MP f/2.2 BSI w/ wide angle lens and LED flash
Battery: 4,000 mAh
OS: Android 5.1 Lollipop
Connectivity: WiFi, 3G, LTE, Bluetooth, OTG, GPS, A GPS, Dual SIM
Others: Fingerprint sensor
Dimensions: 158 x 81 x 8.3 mm
Price: 8,999 Pesos

Unboxing / Accessories

The box
The box

As expected, the Flare Mate comes in a bigger box against its smaller siblings. It still bears the usual important info you need like a large photo of the phone to show how it looks like an the basic specs at the back.
The inclusions
Note: There's also a SIM ejector tool that I lost

Upon opening the box, you'll be immediately surprised on how good the Flare Mate looks. (We'll talk more about it later) You'll also find a good MediaTek's 2A quick charging USB charger, micro USB data / charging cables and in ear monitors on flat cables with mic.

That package were pretty standard, though we would appreciate it better if Cherry managed to include even just a soft silicon case.

Build Quality / Design

Back part of the phone
Camera, flash, mic, fingerprint sensor and speakers are located at the back

Based on my experience, this most solid looking Cherry Mobile phone that we were able to hold ye aside from the Flare S4 Plus. It features a solidly forged full metal frame with the same feel from the high end phones, metal buttons, metallic looking plastic back and 2.5D curved glass front panel with some sort of lamination.
Closer view at the back
There's slight protrution in the camera and fingerprint sensor part
So be careful not place it on rough surfaces to avoid scratches

To my surprise, even without using a case for the past few days. I haven't noticed any hairline scratches on both the plastic back and the glass front. Another thing that I liked it isn't that heavy, but has enough heft that gives you more confidence in its build.

The plastic back cover of my device appears to have some air inside that could be felt when you press it on purpose. Fortunately, that's just nitpicking on my part and it's not really a deal breaker.
On top there's a 3.5 mm jack and IR blaster
On top there's a 3.5 mm jack and IR blaster
Below a there's another microphone
Below a there's another microphone
On the left you'll find the removable hybrid SIM / micro SD card tray
On the left you'll find the removable hybrid SIM / micro SD card tray
Power button and volume rocker on the right
Power button and volume rocker on the right

In terms of design, Cherry Mobile clearly borrowed from Huawei's playbook, the Mate 7 in particular. The results are good for us as we were able to experience its great sleekness and craftsmanship on a sub 10K device. Aside from that Cherry Mobile also improved on that device a little by adding a 2.5D curved arc screen that adds more elegance.

Cherry was also able to maximize the body of this one as the black bezels even looks slimmer even when compared against my Huawei G8. Even on a 6 inch screen, it feels like a 5.7 note phone or at best an older 5.5 inch phone. As a result, even if it's hard to wield with one hand, it's still not that big compared to other phablets.

Lastly, ports and button placements were ergonomically placed all over the device that makes things easier. In particular, we're always like the "at the back" fingerprint scanner placement.

Camera Teaser

Rear camera sample
Rear camera sample
Selfie camera test
Selfie camera test

Specs and features analysis

Given the above mentioned specs, this phone appears to be a decent midranger even this 2016. The 6 inch screen comes with full HD resolution to give you sharp and vibrant images, and there's also no noticable gap between in its panel to made us assume at it's using an OGS tech at least.

The 1.3 GHz 64 Bit MT6735 octa core processor paired with Mali T720 GPU graphics should be great enough as it handle most of the modern task and even some heavy games.

However, even 2 GB of RAM is enough for most of us, some may criticize Cherry for not putting 3 GB RAM here compared with their other midrange phones. Amidst, that criticism, we hardly felt it's impact yet in the casual things that we do with the handset. Maybe Cherry improved on their software optimization as we hardly felt lag even when switching and opening multiple apps.

The inclusion of a big 4,000 mAh battery that should be good for a full day of use even on heavy usage. As a matter of fact, I used this phone as my main camera for two days and I still have some juice left after.

For me one of the main highlight of the Flare Mate is its camera. It has a large 16 MP f/2.0 Omnivision camera Pure Cell sensor with a larger than usual 1/3.06 inch size. It also has PDAF (phase detection auto focus), EIS (for stabilization) and LED flash.

In front you'll enjoy a 5 MP wide angled selfie camera with f/2.2 aperture, BSI and an good type of LED flash.

Lastly, there's a dual microphone setup that makes your recordings better.

As of the moment

There's a big chance that the Flare is the finest Cherry Mobile today. Initially, we're very impressed on what this device showcased in terms aesthetics, performance, features and cameras. There are minor Briticism

We'll still test this further, so watch out for our full review!