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Maze Alpha hands-on: A bezel-less workhorse with a 6-inch screen

maze-alpha-6gb-eileen-brown-zdnet.png
  • Editors' rating
    7.5 Very good

Pros

  • Large 4,000mAh battery
  • Large 6-inch screen

Cons

  • No OEM OS extra features

The Maze Alpha Android phone reminds me strongly of the Doogee Mix I reviewed earlier this year. It has a similar look and feel out of the box, and both have bezel-less screens and run Android. But there are some subtle differences in the Maze Alpha that are not immediately apparent.

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The phone has a CNC-machined slim metal frame with an 83 percent screen-to-body ratio. It has a 1920 x 1080 full HD resolution bezel-less screen, 16:9 aspect ratio, 376 PPI, and Corning Gorilla Glass 4.

It is larger than the Doogee Mix at 159.8 x 82.5 x 8.1mm, and it's heavier at 225g due to the higher capacity 4,000mAh battery.

Inside the phone the CPU is a MediaTek Helio P25 (MT6757) with eight cores. Four ARM Cortex-A53 run at 2.5GHz and four at 1.4GHz.

Graphics are powered by a ARM Mali-T880 MP2 900MHz processor, which Maze says gives 25 percent better performance to previous-generation chips.

Unlike Meizu and Doogee, the Alpha runs stock Android 7.0 as the OS with no manufacturer-specific additions or tweaks. Model options are 4GB or 6GB memory with 64GB storage.

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There are dual Samsung S5K3L8 sensors for the rear cameras, which are 13 megapixel and 5 megapixel, and there is a 5-megapixel camera at the front. And, like the Doogee Mix, when taking a selfie, you need to turn the phone upside down to get the best image, as the camera is at the bottom of the screen.

The phone supports two nano SIMs -- one slot can be used for an expansion SD card up to 256GB. It has an audio jack and a USB C port.

For under $200, the Maze Alpha is a nice-looking, large-screen phone that can be used for work and home, and, with a large battery, it will last you through the whole day.

The UI is nothing special -- and I could find no fancy features from the manufacturer worth a mention. It is so similar to the Doogee suite of phones, but with fewer features. The Alpha is very much like a Doogee clone. Even the somatosensory feature appears as standard on the Doogee BL5000.

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Yes, it has fingerprint recognition and a quick touch feature that provides shortcuts to return, play or pause music, and play or pause video.

A long-touch on the button returns the screen to the home screen, enables multi-tasks, invokes the camera, or answers calls. It also has soft navigation icons that can be hidden from the screen real estate.

I struggled to find any further differentiating features worth calling out. However, the Maze Alpha is a no-nonsense, solid, and affordable phone with a fabulous sized screen and a good quality camera. And, for less than $200, you can't really go wrong with it.

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Specifications

Cellular
Type Smartphone
Operating System Android 7.0 Nougat
Processor
Clock Speed 2.5 GHz
Manufacturer MediaTek
Processor Core Qty Octa-core
Display
Diagonal Size 6.0 in