Most users are not so inclined to buy one rugged phone and the reasons are many. It is almost impossible to find, in fact, devices equipped with good hardware in this sector, which can approach the mid-high end of the market. There are also natural limits linked to dimensions, as the structure of such products is always quite impressive. From another point of view, however, they can be useful to many consumers who do not pay too much attention to the care of their smartphone and do not need such high performance.
In the meanders of this sector, a company emerges that, like others, has developed its own brand linked to rugged phones. The brand we are talking about is Homtel and the phone in question is theHomtel ZOJI Z33. The latter comes with a very modest set of technical specifications, with the exception of the battery and the particular resistance of the materials it is made of. To find out, therefore, whether it really lives up to the situation in everyday use, we enter into the merits of ours review.
Review HomTom ZOJI Z33
On the back of the sales package, which is quite voluminous, the main features of the device are shown. Inside we find:
- HomTom ZOJI Z33;
- plastic film to be applied on the screen;
- short instruction manual;
- pin for the SIM slot;
- USB / USB Type-C cable;
- USB / USB Type-C USB cable;
- 3.5mm / USB Type-C jack adapter;
- wall power supply from 5V / 2A.
Design & Quality
This rugged phone presents a quality really excellent construction. The lines are very similar to those offered by many other terminals of the same type, offering a shell made entirely of plastic. Along the side edges, moreover, we find two parts in metal well finished, which give greater strength to the entire structure.
Later on the company has introduced a particular plot, which simulates the design of intertwined fibers. Being a rough surface, then, facilitates the grip with one hand. The strong point of this device, however, is not ergonomics. On the general dimensions no official data have been provided but the weight it's about 235 grams. Therefore, it remains a difficult product to handle for the smaller and rather uncomfortable hands to keep in your pocket.
In any case, theHomtel ZOJI Z33 presents a certification IP68, which makes it resistant to water. Reason why all ports related to connectivity are hidden inside the body. At the bottom we find the entrance USB Type-C. To access it you will have to remove the surface flap, which opposes some resistance. Similarly, on the left frame, we have the compartment for the SIM slot, which can contain two nano SIMs at the same time. In case you want to expand the internal memory, you can adopt one nano SD and a micro SD.
The right frame hosts the ON / OFF and the volume balance, while on the back we are in the presence of a double photographic module, accompanied by a single flash LED. Further down is the biometric sensor, the company logo and the slot that includes the system speaker.
Frontally this rugged phone is protected by a glass Corning Gorilla Glass, of class not better specified. After some fall, and after being in contact with a bunch of keys, he did not report any scratches. However, the surface has no curvature along the ends. On the upper frame you can see the ear capsule, the front camera and a small one LED notification RGB. Hidden under the body we also find the proximity and brightness sensors.
A unit is present on the device IPS LCD da 5.85 diagonal inches, with a shape relationship in 19:9 and resolution in HD + (720 x 1512 pixels). It is also possible to appreciate a notch in the upper part, which has a rather accentuated width. All edges are rounded, although the quality offered in the corners denotes a very low attention to detail. In any case, the color rendering is good enough but two factors must be taken into account: i Bianchi they tend to blue already at very small inclinations of the smartphone and i neri they are really shallow.
As long as you are in a closed room there is no problem in displaying the contents on the screen. The moment you go outside, however, it becomes difficult to read the display under direct sunlight, also a complicit brightness sensor quite slow. All the impressions that remain on the glass do not improve the situation.
As a system of release main this smartphone relies on biometric sensor rear. The latter is positioned at a good point but its reaction speed is very disappointing. Thanks to the Android settings you can use this hardware to block some applications, so as to ensure the user greater security.
Despite on the official website Homtel the functionality related to Face Unlock, on the device is not present. I have looked in all the phone menus for a possible voice that could be related to the unlock with the face but does not exist.
Hardware & Performance
A board HomTom ZOJI Z33 we find a MediaTek quad-core chipset MT6739, with a maximum clock frequency equal to 1.5 GHz. According to our tests this unit was, however, slightly weakened, turning to a maximum of 1.3 GHz. A choice probably dictated by energy needs. In coordination with the processor, however, we have 3 GB di RAM LPDDR3 and an internal storage entrusted to 32 GB. By means of a micro SD card it is possible to upgrade the memory, up to 256 GB.
The performances offered during normal daily use are not very satisfactory. In general, the device is slow in performing the most common operations, such as opening apps. We must always wait a few moments too much. From another point of view, however, I have not registered any sudden stumbling or system crashes. The hardware available can not push more than that, so much so that even scrolling in the main screen has obvious lag. It must be emphasized that the only 3 GB of RAM are not sufficient to keep a good amount of information in memory, forcing the system to continuously reload the latest apps.
La GPU it is, finally, one IMG PowerVR GE8100. With less reliable titles, it manages to keep up with the times. On Real Racing 3 e PUBG it is not possible to play, as the terminal shows a very low frame-rate and insufficient fluidity. Just think that even on Brawl Stars, in the most excited moments, the performances drop drastically. The temperatureHowever, they never reach disturbing values, with the device only slightly warming in the back.
This HomTom ZOJI Z33 is currently updated to Android 8.1.0 Oreo, with security patches dating back to October 5 2018. We do not find big differences compared to the stock version of the green robot. In fact, the Chinese brand has not focused on any additional customization, implementing only some interesting function related to the working sphere. Inside ToolBox it is possible to see the compass, the compass, the magnifying glass, the ruler, the lamp, the level, and little else.
By sliding your finger to the right, from the main screen, you access the page Google relating to news. All cards can be customized, according to your needs, at the time of configuration. Holding down on the central button of the navigation bar in addition, thevoice assistant of the Californian house.
The lower frame below the screen is completely empty and the navigation bar occupies a certain amount of space in the display. For these reasons the company could have added some gestures of movement, such as those found on Xiaomi devices. However, there is no particular finesse from the software. The notch it is, in fact, managed in the worst possible way, because the notifications are not displayed in the available space. When a message arrives, then, the writings interpenetrate with the notch. A fate, this, which affects many other applications. When playing a video, also on Youtube, you notice that the screen slightly touches at the notch, creating a very annoying effect.
In short, the device has not been optimized at all.
The smartphone has a dual rear camera that consists of the presence of a main sensor Samsung da 16 mega-pixels and a secondary, exploited for depth of field, alone 2 mega-pixels. We have no specific information regarding the type of modules present on ZOJI Z33.
The quality expressed by the entire sector is not very satisfactory. The hours in which the yield can satisfy, however, even the less pretentious are the diurnal ones. With optimal lighting conditions, the photos are fair, with a good one color balance and a sufficient definition of the image. The contours of the subjects, as well as the buildings and surrounding structures, are not too mixed. In less bright environments, however, theHDR, which tends to manage slightly better whites and direct sunlight. Using the function Bokeh a layer mask will simply be applied and this factor questions the actual presence of a second smaller sensor. Photos taken in such a way do not acquire greater value and beauty, as they are clearly the result of software artifice.
When the sun goes down, all the true defects of the double photographic module come out, because the main sensor is struggling in automatic focusing. In fact, during the settling phase, the display starts to flash, continuously modifying the intensity of the light captured by the sensor. Before taking home a shot could take several tests. In the event that this defect does not arise, the quality would still be very low. Photographic noise at dark it is embarrassing, as is the definition of the image itself.
With regard to the aforementioned problem, it could be solved by applying automatic scene detection through the settings. With this trick, the percentage of error has drastically decreased.
We also have a single flash LED back that is almost the best part, because the system is able to exploit its light (not very powerful) in order to get a good color balance, with minimal distortion of reality.
We have a sensor on the front OmniVision da 13 mega-pixels. This module captures little light, returning photos without details and full of digital noise. In case you want to better balance the light sources, the function is present HDR, which also in this case brings important improvements, especially at night.
This HomTom ZOJI Z33 it also allows you to record video at a maximum resolution of 1080p, to 30 fps. In this case the stabilization is practically absent and the general quality does not differ from what was said previously.
Connectivity & Audio
Thanks to Dual 4G it is possible to use two SIM cards with connectivity LTE, offering a good connection in almost all situations. Also the Wi-Fi ac Dual Band enjoys excellent health, guaranteeing a truly satisfying coverage at home. Among others, we have the Bluetooth 4.0 and the GPS / A-GPS / GLONASS which suffers from a too high latency during navigation. Unfortunately, there is noNFC. There is, however, a serious problem with the notifications, as they often do not arrive on time and you need to enter the affected app to unlock them.
As for the audio sector, however, we must immediately report the presence of the FM radio. The quality expressed by speaker back is, however, mediocre. The bass is completely non-existent and at maximum volume the speaker tends to slightly distort the sounds. The situation improves dramatically by using a pair of good earphones.
During the telephone calls the headset capsule shows a good balance of frequencies, causing no annoyance even after prolonged sessions. Moreover, those on the other side of the receiver are not aware of problems related to audio quality.
L'HomTom ZOJI Z33 mount one battery da 4600 mAh. This may seem encouraging but the problems are around the corner. A full day under the data network ended before 16, accumulating around 1 30 hours and minutes di screen lit. on a total of 9 hours of use. With the network Wi-Fi exploited for the whole day I have reached, however, approximately 4 hours and minutes 30 di screen lit. on a total of just over 9 total hours.
Initially the battery was not calibrated at best, so after a few days of use I could see how things have improved slightly, while still reporting values that, as you can see, are not good.
La recharge complete employs more than 3 hours to complete an entire cycle. The power supply only offers an output a 5V / 2A.
HomTom ZOJI Z33 is a device that can not be counted in the ranking of the most reliable on the market. Although it shows some resistance to bumps and wateras I have been able to verify during these days of testing, I do not think it is ready yet to face its competitors. We must also consider the sales price of this smartphone. In the various online stores, including Amazon, the required amount is around 150 €, a value which, however, does not justify its poor quality.
The Chinese brand should have worked better on software optimization, because it seems that this part has been completely neglected. I think it is useless, then, to pursue the most famous brands from an aesthetic point of view, introducing a notch that, after all, is useless on this smartphone.