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Apollo Lite & TOMTOP - My review

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timiop2011 Post time 2016-08-27 21:25:18 | Show all posts |Read mode
First a bit about the Chinese seller I used; TOMTOP. I've found their service awful, and will never be buying from them again. I ordered a Vernne Apollo Lite to be shipped from TOMTOP (apparantly from their Germany Warehouse) to the UK on the 29th July and paid around £13 ($17USD) extra for DHL Priority Shipping. The phone was not supposed to be for me, but for my friend's birthday. I needed it for their party on 15th August. The expediated DHL shipping I paid for said "3-7 Days" in TOMTOP's checkout, which I thought was a wise move as the free?/(cheaper?) shipping option said up to 40 days. However, the phone took until 23rd August to arrive (over 3 weeks), by which time the date for which I needed the gift had passed. I emailed tomtop on August 14th to explain that I was very disappointed the phone had not arrived quickly considering the hefty extra shipping fee as well as the suggested "3 - 7 days by DHL". They ignored the premise of my complaint (regarding slow DHL delivery) completly in their reply, saying: as I had ordered by DHL which is a "special method", all taxes would be covered by them, meaning their is no difference in the cost of standard shipping or DHL shipping. I also purchased an $8 tempered glass Screen Protector from Tomtop (ironically via a free or cheap shipping method around a week after the phone, yet it arrived way sooner!). It arrived smashed, and I emailed them to ask for either a refund or replacement. They have asked me to send them photos of the smashed screen protector, which I will do, but still I think it's unprofessional to ask customers to provide photographic proof of damage. What if I didn't have access to a camera for example, would that mean no refund or replacement? One final thing about Tomtop - The first thing I noticed when I opened the package was a TOMTOP "QC Pass" sticker on the back of the Phone Box, however the back and front parts of the box were upside down relative to one another (as they both have writing on this is easy to tell, and I spotted it immediatly). Not a huge problem but perhaps indictive of a lack of depth to Tomtop's QC procedure (Not to be confused with Vernee's own QC, which is outstanding for a chinese company if their Youtube QC Videos are truthful). And perhaps this indicator was right as sure enough when I opened the box, it only took me around around 60 seconds to identify two seperate problems with the phone. Both problems are with the volume rocker. Firstly I noticed a very tiny bit of the dark grey coating missing from the edge of the volume rocker. Then when I went to press the volume rocker a much bigger problem became apparant. Both buttons on the volume rocker are partially jammed inside the phone, and do not click anywhere near as much as the power button directly below. In this state the volume rocker is very annoying to use. It does work, but it does not "click" at all as the buttons are already partially depressed, and increase volume presses are often registered as decrease volume presses, and vice versa. I would have thought this issue would have been routinely spotted in either Vernee or Tomtop's QC process! As I've said, the phone was never originally intended for me but as gift, but I'll have to keep it now as a spare - although brand new it's not really in a saleable condition given its volume rocker problems. Other problems I identified were, TOMTOP provided no IMEI or Serial Number on their emailed receipt, meaning any theft or damange insurance policy taken out in Europe or the US for the phone would likely be rejected during the claims process - this is something I wanted to do as part of the birthday gift for the intended recipient. They also did not send a regional plug, so I have to use a US travel adapter, and I was surpised their was no earphones or headset included with the phone contents too. One other thing to note is the fingerprint reader is not great, unless you're able to get your finger in exactly the same place and orientation each time. For me it works maybe 60% first time, which I consider pretty bad really. The camera is good, though not amazing. I found the autofocus doesn't really work very well during video recording, and the camera is very sensitive to whether a dark or light part of the screen is touched to autofocus before taking photos. The phone is fast, although I'm not a serious gamer. Browsing in chrome is great. The display is also quite beautiful and very bright. GPS and 4G work pretty well, and the phone charges very quickly (it does get hot during charging). I took the phone to work to test, and with medium usage (browsing and texting throughout the day and 1.5 hours of music during my commutes) it comfortably lasted me a day, but you probably won't get 2 days out of it unless you are a light user. Another thing to remember is if you are planning to expand storage using the SD card slot, you will need to reformat any NTFS microSD cards to FAT32. This is not specific to the Vernee handsets, but just something to know if your previous handset didnot have expandable storage.
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seanmiller Post time 2017-09-22 18:36:46 | Show all posts
I would look at the bba calculations to to make sure.
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