Acer Liquid Zest 4G Unboxing And First Impressions - Affordable 4G Marshmallow Phone

Previously, Acer Philippines just announced that two of their newest smartphones are now available here in our country. Namely, the Liquid Zest and Liquid Zest 4G, those devices are aimed towards the youth who wanted a phone with smooth Marshmallow experience with great affordability.
Too Zesty? Here's Acer's Liquid Zest 4G
Too Zesty? Here's Acer's Liquid Zest 4G

Disclaimer: This review unit was provided by Acer Philippines for an honest review


Then earlier, I got a chance to grab the 4G edition of that Zest that touts better processor used, bigger RAM and of course 4G LTE connectivity. On paper, it reminds me of the similarly priced Liquid Z530 with few ups and downs. What's special here is it has a higher end on-cell screen that reduces glares with better viewing experience, has the HD edition of DTS audio for a wider 3D-ish soundstage, Acer GameZone that let's you optimize or boost your gaming experience and good cameras.

Now the question is, are those traits and special features good enough to make this a bang per buck phone that the masses will love? Let's all find out. For starters let's take a look at its configuration first.

Acer Liquid Zest 4G Specs

Display: 5 Inch HD IPS On Cell 1280 x 720 resolution w/ Zero Air Gap at 294 ppi
CPU: 1.3 GHz 64 Bit MT6735 quad core processor
GPU: Mali T720
RAM: 2 GB
ROM: 16 GB expandable via micro SD card slot up to 64 GB
Back Camera: 8 MP f/2.0 w/ AF and LED flash
Selfie Camera: 5 MP 85 degrees wide angle lens
Battery: 2,000 mAh
OS: Android 6.0 Marshmallow w/ Acer Liquid UI
Connectivity: WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, 3G, HSPA+, LTE, Bluetooth 4.0 w/ LE, FM Radio, OTG, GPS, A GPS, dual SIM
Sensors: Light, accelerometer, proximity, hall
Others: Bluelight Shield, DTS HD Premium Sound, Acer GameZone, Colors: dark blue, white
Dimensions: 145.7 x 71.2 x 8.4 mm
Weight: 125 g
Price: 5,999 Pesos

Unboxing / Accessories

The bigger than usual box
The bigger than usual box

The Liquid Zest 4G comes in a box that's bigger than what we're used to. Anyway, that's just fine as long as everything we need is inside.
Inclusions found inside the package
Inclusions found inside the package

Fortunately, that's the case here. You'll find a 1A wall charger, flexible and long enough USB to micro USB charging / data cables and earbuds with mic. While it's not included with the prototype unit I have here, Acer indicated that the final package will include a FREE flip cover case for added protection.

What's missing in the package for me is a screen protector. It appears that it would be important as this doesn't have any sort of screen coating to prevent scratches on its specifications.

Build Quality / Design

View at the back showing the camera, speakers and Acer logo
View at the back showing the camera, speakers and Acer logo

Acer's entry level to entry midrange handsets is usually made out of thick polycarbonate material. That's why we we're really surprised when they decided to stay on that path with slight improvements. While plastic before looks thicker (Z410), the one they're using now feels more robust and more premium which is hard but not the brittle type of plastic. On it's frame, you'll see a silver stripe that's metallic like that's nice to see. In front there's a glass top which doesn't have glass protection on paper, but appears to be not that prone to scratches as wll as long as you don't force things out.
Upon opening showing dual SIM slots and a dedicated micro SD card slot
Upon opening showing the non removable battery, dual SIM slots and a dedicated micro SD card slot

By checking how do this fare in looks, it appears to have the design of the Liquid Jade Z. It still has that good slim bezels, semi rounded corners and soft arcing back design. It doesn't really stand out in terms of beauty, but I'm totally fine with that as this phone has one of the nicest ergonomics I've held.
Top view
Top view
Bottom view
Bottom view
Power button and volume rocker
Power button and volume rocker

It has proper button and ports placements, has excellent hold / grip and feels very comfortable in my hands due to its soft matte back paint and the lack of sharp edges on the corners. With the exception of the small plastic bump on the lower speaker part at the back, this is fantastic ergonomically.

Generally, while the phone looks a lot like its predecessors, the improvements we're evident once you get a hold of it. I would still prefer a metal clad device, but this is not a bad one either.

Camera Samples

Rear camera sample
Rear camera sample
Selfie sample
Selfie sample

It also appears that Acer used a decent type of cameras at the back at 8 MP even if it's a tad saturated on first look. In front, the selfie shooter is really wide angled that can let more people fit in a groufie. 

Specs and features analysis

Antutu score
Antutu score

On paper, this handset doesn't really shine on specs as it's just more on the average side. Fortunately, Acer pre-loaded this with the newer and more optimized Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS with a smooth looking Acer UI making it appear to give a more optimized experience that similarly spec'ed handsets. That's also one of the main selling points as almost every phone that's locally available isn't on Marshmallow OS yet.

On our first use of it, we find the Antutu score higher than the regular MT6735 chips that makes us think that Acer was successful in that sense. We also liked that they placed at least 2 GB RAM here for better multitasking.

Anyway, this phone also has good screen and loud speakers to let you enjoy your multimedia better. Aside from that it's also pre-loaded with the cool looking Acer GameZone that should optimize you games.

As of the moment

The experience seems fine and this phone has decent value for money in terms of specs and features. Will give it a run in the next few days and report to you guys immediately what I'll find out. So far, like I said earlier, this is a decent handset.

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