The Zopo P5000 is a shining example what a low-cost phone coming from a Chinese brand can be.
Zopo is one of many Chinese phone brands cranking out devices that are suitable for the masses, and while Zoppo may not offer anything in the U.S. officially, or most regions outside China and Southeast Asia for that matter, its phones deliver comparable specs at an affordable price point that is perfect for emerging countries and the consumer demographic that doesn’t want to spend a whole lot on smartphones. The Zopo P5000 is a device which sort of fits into that category as it costs around $200 USD and is packed with some pretty good specs for the tier. That said this isn’t a device which you can use in the U.S. so it might not be the best solution for someone who is looking to get into a new phone that they can use in the U.S. on a daily basis for everything from web browsing to voice calls. Let’s take a closer look at the Zopo P5000 and see how it stacks up.
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Specs wise this feels like a mid-range phone and the devil is in the details, as they say. Looking at the specs on paper, the Zopo P5000 definitely is a mid-range device and it while it may act like one too, that isn’t a bad thing, as mid-range phones these days have gotten quite good. For starters, the P5000 is powered by a Helio P10 processor from MediaTek which is paired with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage space. That internal storage is also expandable via microSD card if you need more than 64GB and have a card to insert into the phone for this purpose.
Beyond the processor and memory the P5000 comes equipped with a decently-sized 5.99-inch IPS display with 1,440 x 720 resolution. It’s also sporting the 18:9 aspect ratio which gives it the look of the Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus, and in fact the navigation keys are even the same design, though we’ll get into that later with the software section. For cameras the P5000 is using a dual camera system on the back which is comprised of a main 13-megapixel camera sensor and a secondary 5-megapixel sensor, while the front-facing camera is a 16-megapixel sensor for selfies and video chat. Both cameras feature and f/2.0 aperture. There is a fingerprint sensor on the back, one single bottom-firing speaker, and a USB Type-C charging port for charging and data transfer, but like so many phones these days the P5000 lacks a 3.5mm audio port which means you can’t plug in traditional style headphones that use the 3.5mm plug, at least not without an adapter. Keeping the device powered up is a huge 5,000mAh battery so battery life should be no issue for most users, and the device comes running on Android 7.0 Nougat for the software version.
In The Box
While you may not have a 3.5mm audio port on the phone itself, Zopo packages a USB Type-C to 3.5mm adapter in the box with the phone so you can still use wired headphones if you want to. In addition to the adapter you also get the wall adapter, the USB Type-C charging cable, a screen protector, and a silicone case along with the phone and quick setup guide. It doesn’t come with headphones but it’s still more than you’ll get with most smartphones in the packaging these days.
Hardware & Design
The display and software keys may resemble the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 a little bit, but that is where the similarities end in terms of design. When it comes to the majority of the outside look of the P5000, things look nothing like Samsung’s flagships. The phone has an all metal design, which Zopo is keen to highlight while also boasting that the P5000 is the first phone with an all metal design and a display with a 18:9 aspect ratio on the market. If that’s something that catches your eye then you may want to consider the P5000 as the phone does look and feel premium. It has a solid build quality feel to it and the design is decent. It looks nice and feels nice so if aesthetics are important to you the P5000 delivers here.
In regards to the hardware, you’ll find both the power button and the volume up and down keys on the right-hand side of the phone frame, with the SIM card tray on the left-hand side as is customary with most phones at this point. On the bottom you’ll find one speaker, the charging and data transfer port, a couple of screws, and the mic, while on the top you’ll find only a blank slate. The front-facing camera sits towards the top left corner, while on the back the dual camera module and the fingerprint sensor are centered towards the top. All around the Zopo P5000 would never really grab someone’s attention as a device that isn’t premium, and that’s thanks to the use of metal for the body material, and the tight execution on putting it all together and making it feel the opposite of jenky.
The screen resolution may only be HD, but don’t let that fool you into thinking it doesn’t look good in person, even with the larger display size that is nearly 6-inches and the 18:9 aspect ratio. On the contrary, the display is actually quite nice at this size and with this resolution, showing off crisp and clear graphic quality of icons, with vivid color reproduction, and a brightness that is actually bright when you turn it up. From a looks standpoint the display quality is nothing to shake a stick at and that’s a great thing to see in a phone with a lower cost.
Usability wise, the display is decent here too, coming across no problems with recognition when touching the display with a single or multiple fingers. Things never felt or looked laggy either and their didn’t seem to be any issues with things like light bleed, dead pixels, or any weird discoloration, so the phone delivers a well-rounded display experience with a good digitizer and that’s something for Zopo to be proud of.
Right off the bat it’s clear that the performance on the P5000 is pretty good. It can multitask without issue, at least that’s how it felt during use. Keeping this in mind mileage may vary from user to user as everyone uses their phone differently in addition to using different apps which may be more demanding on the included RAM and processor. That said it didn’t seem to give us any issues in this area. When putting the phone through its paces in a mobile gaming environment however, things were just a little bit different. Though the performance was by no means terrible, it was clear that certain games would give the hardware a little more trouble. Graphically demanding games like Arena of Valor for example did not run as smoothly as it did on some other devices that we’ve tested which were similar to the P5000 in price point and hardware. It was still very much playable though. Graphics weren’t sharp and there was some lag here and there but overall gaming on this phone should be no trouble even for hardcore gamers.
Sound leaves a lot to be desired. The single speaker offering compounded by the fact that it’s placed on the top corner of the phone when holding it in landscape mode means it is easily covered up by your palms and this muffles the sound more than it helps it. This is an issue if you value the audio as being part of the experience for games or anything else, and it means you’ll likely want to either connect or plug in a pair of headphones. Sadly, that won’t be an option for everyone, so those users will simply have to deal with the sub par sound experience. All that aside when the speaker isn’t being covered up and the sound isn’t being muffled the audio quality is really not bad. If you can manage to keep your hand from covering the speaker at all, or at least most of the way, then you should have an enjoyable experience with the audio.
Though the P5000 doesn’t have top-tier specs, its performance was ok for a mid-range to entry-level phone and that seems to be reflected for the most part in the benchmark tests. To see how it looked on paper we ran the phone through AnTuTu, Geekbench 4, and 3DMark for the graphics. If you’re interested in seeing the results of those benchmarks you can view them in the gallery of screenshots just below.
Phone Calls & Network
Since this is a non-U.S. device the phone won’t work with U.S. networks, but when used with voice over Wi-Fi through apps like Facebook Messenger the clarity is said to have been fine when it comes to the audio and mic. You can view the supported network frequencies below.
2G: Bands 2, 3, 5, 8
3G: Bands 1, 2, 5, 8
4G FDD-LTE: Bands 1, 3, 7, 8, 20
With a large 5,000mAh battery inside the P5000 is more than capable of staying powered on for an entire day on just a single charge, but we often found that it would last quite a bit longer than that, lasting about two days without having to charge it, and even then it still had some battery power left, just not enough to take it through another full day. On average we were able to get about 9 hours of screen on time with the Zopo P5000 which is pretty good and a lot longer than many other phones out there, so those looking for great battery life wouldn’t be disappointed here.
Companies have gotten rather good at integrating decent quality fingerprint sensors into their devices, and Zopo is no exception as the sensor works quickly and accurately about 99-percent of the time. Once in a while I would run into an issue where the phone wouldn’t recognize my fingerprint very easily and it would take me a few tries to get the display unlocked, but this happened very rarely. For the most part the fingerprint sensor works great, though it is definitely a little bit smaller than I would have liked, and this makes it harder to tap in the right spot, which, could very well be the problem with it recognizing my fingerprint. In the end it works as intended though.
Though parts of the software may not look like stock Android, such as the navigation keys which resemble those on Samsung’s Galaxy S8 line, most of the rest of the software looks just like stock Android from AOSP builds that run on Android Nougat, save for one or two features. The first thing that is noticeable about the software design is that the icons for the apps are not really representative of what the icons look like in Android Nougat, at least not for all of them, and you’ll find the odd app here and there that isn’t generally loaded into most Android phones these days, like the stock AOSP browser, an FM radio app, and a sound recorder.
Other than the icons, the software navigation keys are not only a copy of Samsung’s Galaxy S8 keys, but you can also hide the keys from view if you prefer a more clean state for the nav bar. When hidden, the buttons can still be interacted with but instead of tapping where they used to be, you swipe up from their previous location towards the center of the display and this will act as a way to interact with their functions. You can also re-order the keys to be where you want them, so if you prefer the home button on the right instead of in the center, you can organize them as you see fit. If at any point you want to bring them back, all you have to do is swipe up from the bottom edge with two fingers simultaneously and the nav bar will reappear. Other than this one feature there isn’t much else that is unique to the software on this phone, though it does offer a feature called LiveDisplay that you might not be able to find on other devices, and in this part of the display settings you will find the BluLight Defender toggle, which filters out the blue light, as well as a few other display options like automatic display mode settings with timers for when the phone will enable and disable them. Features aside, the software worked well for the most part and didn’t really give any trouble except for one area. In the initial stages of using the device, the phone would automatically crash the Play Store app any time it was opened for more than a couple of seconds, and this persisted through two factory resets before the issue went away.
The P5000 doesn’t seem to offer a pro mode for the camera which is perfectly fine, though it does mean you will have less control over how some of the images look before shooting them and it leaves you without the ability to turn them into better looking photos. Beyond that the camera software is a decent experience. The UI design of the camera app is great, as it looks nice where many smartphones similar to this one would be using a stock AOSP camera design that looks extremely basic. Not the P5000. It doesn’t look as good as the Google camera or the camera app on Sony or Samsung’s phones, but it certainly looks better than AOSP and it has a few feature, such as Bokeh, Beauty, Panorama, and Video modes, though it is worth noting that the execution on Bokeh is not the best here, which you’ll be able to see in a couple of the images in the gallery below of the keyboard and the coffee bottle.
Having bokeh mode is nice, but the issue with it here is that it tries to cut off parts of the subject that are supposed to be in focus, limiting you to what you can actually use this for if you want the whole subject to be in focus while everything else is blurred out. In the picture of the coffee bottle, the bokeh mode blurs out the top portion of the bottle because my finger tapped on the section of the bottle towards the bottom, and it wasn’t able to stretch the blur function to outside the bottle area. For some this won’t matter, but if you’re attempting to use this take a picture of a person, you’ll need to be prepared for the bokeh mode to blur some of them out. Overall the camera was a good experience though and the images actually turn out ok in normal photo mode when you have decent lighting.
Fingerprint sensor is accurate and pretty quick
Nice, premium-feeling design
Big screen with good resolution and sharpness of image
Color reproduction was ok
3.5mm adapter in the box
Bokeh mode doesn’t work very well, almost defeats the purpose of having it
No built-in 3.5mm port
Doesn’t work in the U.S.
Fingerprint sensor is a bit small, making it hard to touch in the right spot
Zopo is a company who is not likely to be a well-known brand outside of China and Southeast Asia, and perhaps parts of Europe, but that shouldn’t stop people from considering the devices that come from the manufacturer. The Zopo P5000 is a shining example what a low-cost phone coming from a Chinese brand can be.
If you live in the U.S. and need a phone to use daily, then this is not the phone for you, for obvious reasons. If however you want a low-cost device for travel, or just for use when on Wi-Fi networks, this is a pretty good device with plenty of features on offer.