Doogee BL5000 smartphone hands-on: A low-cost workhorse with curves

doogee-bl5000-back-and-front-eileen-brown-zdnet.png
  • Editors' rating
    7.2 Very good

Pros

  • Curved edges
  • Long battery life
  • Gesture motion features

Cons

  • Poor English text in UI launcher
  • Few extra features

I was looking forward to testing the Doogee BL5000. I looked at the BL7000 earlier this month, and I wanted to compare and contrast its features.

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The phone is curved on the front and the back of the device. It feels very smooth and sleek compared with the rugged Doogee S60 I reviewed recently.

Inside the box there is the phone, a clear plastic phone case, a USB charger and a micro USB cable. There is also a hard screen film in the box.

The phone comes in three colours: Blue, black and gold. The back of the phone looks similar to the Elephone S8, although not quite as pretty. At under $190, it is an affordable phone for consumers.

Like the BL7000, the phone has a good-sized 5,050mAh battery. Doogee says that this will give 10 hours of game playing, or 15 hours watching films. The battery also supports quick charging technology.

Inside the phone there is an octa-core-A54 MT6750 CPU chip running at 1.5GHz, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB storage.

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The back of the BL5000 has dual 13-megapixel f2.2 cameras, which give a bokeh effect to the background. It has 2x lossless zoom and 8x digital zoom. The front-facing camera is 8.0-megapixel f2.2 sensor. Video recording is 720p at 30fps.

You can use two SIMS in the device or use a micro SIM in the SIM2 slot.

The dimensions of the phone are 155.2 x 75.8 x 10.3mm and it weighs 210g. It has a 5.5-inch FHD screen with a brightness of 650nit, which is bright enough to read in full sunshine. its 1920 x 1080 resolution screen has 404ppi. The device is responsive and fairly fast

I did have some niggles with this device, which annoyed me after the superb experience with the last two Doogee phones I have tried. The BL5000 does not have smart lock, which is available on the BL7000.

It does not have the Smart Box feature either -- although Doogee's website indicates that it is included on the BL5000. If it is on the phone, it is very well hidden, and I checked all of the system settings.

I was not too impressed with the UI launcher that Doogee has used for this phone. The English in some parts of the UI is not good for a released phone, and the text should be validated by a native English speaker. Some of the UI text just does not make sense.

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Other settings are buried one or two levels down in the UI and are not intuitive at all. However, the smart assistance features include gesture motion, gesture unlock, fast video capture, split screen, and one-handed mode.

There is also a setting called Smart Somatosensory that enables you to move between images, songs, capture photos, and unlock the screen with a gesture.

Overall, I got the feeling that this phone was not quite finished, and there was work to do on the UI and features before it was complete.

However, this is a nice affordable phone that would be good for both consumers and business users who want an easy to use, low-cost phone, with a long battery life.

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