The Gionee A1 Plus is a phablet with a 20MP front camera and a big bad 4550mAh battery to power your narcissism.
Like a lot of new smartphones launched at the same show, it packs a dual camera set-up of 13MP and 5MP standard lens. But the focus is really on the self-loving 20MP front camera with its default Beauty mode that will do four things for you: whiten your skin, smooth it out, enlarge your eyes and slim your face down. Max out the settings and you will end up looking slightly extraterrestrial.
It's not the first with a high pixel count on the front camera, the Vivo V5 also packs 20MP in its front-facer. But it also does have what it calls a selfie flash - a constant light so you won't have to get your friend to hold his smartphone over you to cast a flattering light in the dim bar. It's supposed to cast a softer light but the showfloor was lit (n more ways than one) so we weren't exactly able to verify that.
Whether it’s a selfie you’re taking or a photo of the toy train before you, you can play around with depth of field. From our short time with it, it was obvious it’s not perfect. We found the lines of the train getting a little soft as we increased depth of field on the slider. On the front-facing camera, this softness added to the selfie's appeal, creating a softness that's reminiscent of the Beauty mode's effects. You can also tap on the icon on the top right hand corner of the image to compare the effect.
The beautifcation doesn't stop at photos. The A1 Plus comes with a Beautified Video mode that will keep you looking great over video calls. We hear it works on WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger for now, but expect more third-party apps to play nice.
It's not all superficial; the camera app also has a couple of nifty tricks up its sleeve.
Text recognition is a godsent for translating images into text and a translation feature also exists for some lingo assistance on your travels. We took a photo of the product spec list and it worked well enough that we could copy and send tech specs easily. Unfortunately, we didn’t get the chance to try the latter out because of connectivity issues.
But think about it, you won’t have to have separate third party apps to do this for you if it sits within your phone’s native camera app.
Aside from the camera features, the A1 Plus runs Android 7.0 and has a big fat 4550mAh battery to keep your selfie-snapping going. Under the hood is a MediaTek Helio P25 processor and 4GB RAM to keep your multitasking over social media apps buttery smooth.
Fancy it? The A1 Plus will be available for €449 (S$665), putting it pretty squarely in the mid-range segment. It also has a smaller smartphone sibling in the form of the 5.5in A1 with a 16MP front camera and a 13MP rear snapper. You can also expect a smaller 4010mAh battery. But if you can't go a day without Instagramming your mug, the A1 Plus is where it's at.