Today we’re taking a look at the latest budget 4G Android smartphone, the ZTE Fit 4G Smart available on Optus Prepaid for $99.
The budget 4G smartphone market is starting to heat up, with Vodafone offering the Huawei Ascend Y550 for $99, the new ZTE Fit 4G Smart from Optus and Telstra offering the Telstra Evolution T80 at $129, manufactured for them by ZTE.
Let’s take a look at this brand new 4G prepaid smartphone and see what you get in return for your $99.
What’s In The Box?
In addition to the handset and removable battery, you also get a stereo headset with microphone, USB to Micro USB charge/sync cable and a wall charger plus a quick start guide and warranty information. Being a prepaid starter kit, you also get a new SIM card for the Optus network.
I was interested in checking out this handset because it looked like it would be a strong competitor to the Huawei Ascend Y550 – a budget 4G smartphone with a $99 price point on prepaid.
They’re both very similar in specs – both come with 64 bit quad core processors (1.2 GHz for the Huawei and 1.3 GHz for the ZTE), both have 4.5″ screens at 480 x 854 resolution, both running Android 4.4.4, both with 1 GB of RAM. The ZTE features 8 GB of internal storage compared to the 4 GB of the Y550, making it slightly more able to be used out of the box before needing the user to buy a Micro SD card for additional storage space. And both feature 4G LTE connectivity, which is a big selling point for a sub $100 phone.
The ZTE Fit 4G has slightly more rounded corners than the Y550 and has a different style of context sensitive soft buttons at the bottom of the device, including a circular “Home” button and a small dot for each of the context sensitive buttons.
My two gripes with the design of the phone are the choice to use a shiny black painted rear cover, which makes it a fingerprint magnet – even by the end of preparing this review, the phone’s rear cover was littered with fingerprints, and the strange choice to place the sleep/wake button above the volume controls and all on the same side of the phone.
Similar to what they have done with the ZTE Hop Smart, ZTE have opted not to change too much over stock Android for the firmware on the Fit 4G. There’s a custom skin in the dialler app, and a couple of custom icons on the home screen for common apps and the app drawer, but otherwise it’s pretty stock.
It has the same unusual “hold to unlock” method on the phone’s lock screen as other ZTE models, but other than that, there’s not really much unique to report.
Here’s the bit that you’ve been waiting for – how does it perform compared to the Huawei Ascend Y550?
In everyday tasks, it actually feels a bit quicker than the Huawei, and this is where things start to get interesting.
The Huawei is equipped with a Snapdragon 410 processor and an Adreno 306 GPU, and the ZTE features a MediaTek MT6752 processor with a Mali-T760 GPU.
In the AnTuTu benchmark, the Huawei scored a 15495 and the ZTE blitzed it with a 30991, beating the HTC One and sitting just behind the LG G3. MediaTek are known for having good scores in AnTuTu benchmarks, so it might be a case of the functionality of the chipset being optimised for that one benchmarking method.
Scrolling through Google Maps in Satellite view was silky smooth and performance wise, it certainly felt like this phone would be up to the challenges thrown at it in day-to-day use.
At just $99, the ZTE Fit 4G Smart is an impressive phone and definitely a worthy contender for the best budget 4G smartphone.
It’s available now on Optus Prepaid.