Love big-screen phones? Check out the Le Max.
LeTV (wait, it’s LeEco now) might have gone through a name change just before launching their devices in India, but we don’t mind as they did get their Le Max ‘superphone’ along. With a 6.33in display, a Snapdragon 810, HD wireless display, 4GB RAM, 64GB storage and a 3400mAh battery, the Le Max seems to be - on paper at least - living up to its nickname…
It’s Le massive, all right
Yeah, don’t expect one-hand usage of any sort, unless you’re a Yeti with extra-large hands - this 6.33in device is really blurring the lines between phone and tablet! The narrow bezels and gently curved back make it seem smaller than what you’d expect, but even then, it’s absolutely massive, to the point that you’ll worry about dropping it each time you pick it up.
Inside, the Snapdragon 810 and 4GB RAM work their magic, driving the 2K screen with ease. Yet, there seems to be some sort of hesitation at times - especially when opening the settings menu. Nothing you won’t get used to rather soon, but still, strange, very strange...
There’s also a fingerprint scanner which doesn’t do much apart from unlocking the Le Max and taking photos. In fact, we weren’t too impressed with the fingerprint recognition - it seems a bit too finicky about finger placement, and again, there seemed to be a split-second of hesitation before it unlocked the device.
Overall, as far as the performance is concerned, the Le Max is very fast - Graphical performance is smooth, multitasking is easy-peasy, and while it does get warm, we never found it uncomfortable. Yup, it does hold its own against better-known rivals with ease.
The battery life is a bit of a mixed bag - 3400mAh might seem like a lot, but don’t forget the big, power-hungry 2K display it’s got to feed. You’ll need to tank up by the evening, and for some strange reason, the Le Max loses charge rather fast overnight if not plugged in.
A nice, bright screen and a clean UI
The Le Max’s 6.33in display is a revelation - there’s 2K resolution for you pixel counters, but what we found even more impressive was how crisp and vibrant it is. Colours pop out without ever seeming oversaturated, and best of all (something many device makers overlook, considering our strong, often searingly bright sun), the brightness levels are good enough to make outdoor usage a piece of cake despite the highly reflective screen.
LeEco’s EUI interface is based on Android Lollipop 5.0.2, although an upgrade to Marshmallow is on the cards. It’s a bright, colourful interface of the type that’s become very popular with many Chinese phone makers recently - with more than a few nods to the design of iOS. Even then, there’s no bloatware (hooray!) and while it’s quite removed from Google’s Material Design (why do they do this?), a few changes do make sense - like the quick setting toggles that pop up alongside the task switcher on the bottom half of the screen, with no need to extend your thumb all the way to the top of the phone.
Le camera loves le sun!
The Le Max’s 21MP camera is fantastic, at least in bright light - there’s minimal shutter lag, and hardly any processing time. While we noticed a tendency for the Le Max to blow out highlights, colours otherwise look true.
In low light, there seems to be plenty of noise and at the same time, aggressive noise reduction which doesn’t stay constant from photo to photo.
For the price, you might have expected better, but even then, it’s overall a great camera - perhaps not an equal match to other flagships, but still something which will keep you happy under most conditions.
The front camera is one of the better selfie shooters you’ll see, but the image processing needs to be dialed down a bit - you may want your selfies to hide any blemishes on your face, but not at the cost of coming out like a marble statue.
This massive phablet of a phone does wow with its performance, with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 and 4GB memory proving good companions for the sharp, vibrant 2K screen. The large display also seems perfect for watching movies when you’re travelling or too darn lazy to turn on the telly. But let’s face it, despite the ultra-narrow bezels and gently curved back, which do make it easier to hold than you’d expect, the Le Max seems to be itching to tumble out of your hands.
One thing which does stand out is the refreshing lack of bloatware, but all things said, if you really want a 2K phone, there’s the Yu Yutopia (₹24,999), and if it’s a large screen that you must have, the Qiku Q Terra (₹21,999) is a cheaper alternative (though it’s got a Full HD display, not 2K) to the Le Max (₹32,999). And with all that screen real estate, it’s a shame there’s no split screen or windowing mode, which would have upped the usability quotient a lot. In all, the Le Max is a powerful, speedy device, but despite novel add-ons like the HD wireless display and an IR transmitter, it brings nothing exceptional to the table except for its size.