Mlais M4 review MT6732 2GB 16GB
Mlais is one of the older China brands, well loved in China, and usually putting out good budget phones. Recently I reviewed the sub-$100 MT6592 M9 which I thought was an excellent buy for the price, and the M52, which is a powerful bargain-priced phone. Now up is the M4, nicknamed ominously — Ironbone.
Mlais M4 review build / style
In a good decision, Mlais doesn’t use any corny slogans. Just the brand name.
While the Mlais M4 has similar specs as the Mlais M52, the style is completely different. This time around they’ve taken on a much more Samsungish look, complete with the pressable center button.
The back piece snaps on firmly and there are zero creeks or loose spots. It’s got a softish leather texture that’s excellent with not picking up fingerprints.
In the past I haven’t been such a fan of this style back piece, but it’s certainly better than shiny plastic, and after seeing very similar texture on almost the entire body of the $7,450 Leica M Monochrom, I have a newfound fondness for the leather type back piece.
The volume rocker has an interesting look to it, and the sides dip in at the top and bottom adding further flavor.
The buttons give a solid tactile click when pressed. As with the Ulefone Be Touch, the glass curves into the sides at the edges. Overall, the phone feels well built.
In a good decision, Mlais doesn’t use any corny slogans. Just the brand name. The sides are of CNC machined metal and look strong and stylish.
Mlais M4 review SoC/ROM/RAM
Specs of the M4 are 2GB RAM, 16GB ROM, MT6732 SoC. This is far beyond adequate for the typical user and should be easily enough for power users and gamers as well. The M4 scores 34k on Antutu with a very healthy score of 9,000+ on 3D.
Mlais M4 review external speaker/mic/ear piece
The external speaker on the M4 is good. Easily loud enough for hands free and videos. Putting my ear next to a fan while listening to a YouTube movie was no problem.
The mic and ear piece are both good. I could be hear and be heard without issue next to a busy highway.
Mlais M4 review display
The display on the M4 is 5.5″@720p, giving us a ppi of 267. It’s a good display, with strong, pure whites and color pop. The minimum brightness registers at a quite dim 16 lux and maximum brightness tops out at 275.
There is some minor color and contrast changes from extreme angles, but not dramatically so, and even from the most extreme angles the display remains crisp and viewable.
Brightness is beyond adequate for daylight use. There’s no evidence of where the LED’s are situated and there’s zero light bleed at the corners.
Mlais M4 review camera
While the M4 camera isn’t going to win any awards, when comparing social sharing size images to more expensive phones the images hold up quite well.
Mlais M4 review OS
A couple of minor bugs surfaced. One is the same bug as with the Ulefone Be Touch, that is even though the option to change background colors for the SIM icons exist, the color doesn’t change. All of the icons are white. Additionally, slow scrolling is slightly jittery. It appears the content is scrolling 2-3 pixels at a time. Both of these issues should be easily fixable and I’ll be contacting Mlais regarding them.
Interestingly, Mlais hasn’t switched to relegating the full storage as one partition. Still, they have smartly given a very large 5GB space to internal, and if that’s not enough, the storage location can be changed to the remaining 8GB.
Lollipop on the Mlais M4 is very stable. I experienced no force closes. Apps from Play Store are downloading, installing and updating without issue. All apps that I’ve tested have run flawlessly. Speaking of fixing bugs, the Mlais M4 received an OTA update, which downloaded and installed without any problems.
the app was still sitting in memory and instantly came up
The OS is smooth and apps are properly staying in memory. Even when opening an app I’d opened 10 apps back and several hours previously, the app was still sitting in memory and instantly came up at the place where I’d last left it. The OS is deep sleeping without issue.
The lux sensor is detecting multiple levels of brightness and adjusting display brightness appropriately.
Mlais M4 review GPS/WiFi/Bluetooth/compass/OTG
GPS on the M4 is very good, catching a cold lock within several seconds indoors. Outdoors several satellites reached an SNR in the high 30’s.
WiFi is good, maintaining a strong connection 117ft/35m on a $20 standard home router. This should be more than enough for nearly all home and business setups.
worldwide 3G support
Bluetooth is not problem, connecting to my PC, other phones and my smart watch without issue.
The compass works without issue.
OTG is working without any problems, connecting to USB keyboard / mouse / thumb drive / game pad.
Mlais M4 review frequency support
The M4 has worldwide 3G support with WCDMA 850/900/1900/2100 and LTE 4G 1/3/7/20. As always, check your carriers frequencies prior to purchasing a mobile.
Mlais M4 review closing
Mlais has a history of releasing very respectable budget phones and the M4 is no exception. Strong GPS, good WiFi, all components working properly, with a very good display and solid physical build with some unique styling thrown in, makes the M4 a mobile I can recommend, especially at $150.