Zopo ZP998 hands on and first impressions

Zopo announced their 8-core Zopo ZP998 yesterday afternoon and we managed to get some hands on time with it. Here are our first hands on impressions of the phone!

Zopo ZP998 Specification

Before the launch of the ZP998 I had a rough idea what the new Zopo would have to offer in terms of specification. I guessed it would have the latest 8-core chipset, at least 2GB RAM, a 5.5-inch 1080 display and 5 mega-pixel camera, but I didn’t get all the details right!

zopo zp998 8-core hands on rear

The first big surprise for me was the announcement of the rear 14 mega-pixel rear camera. The Mediatek MT6592 chipset can actually accommodate a 16MP shooter, but still a 14MP sensor was a surprise but even more so is the use of an F2.0 aperture! In theory the larger aperture and high mega-pixel sensor should allow you take high quality photos even in very log light conditions! I tried the camera in the bright indoor light of the show so can’t comment on low-light performance yet, but I can tell you that the speed of the camera and the auto-focus are better than anything found on current Zopo phones!

zopo zp998 review

Other nice surprises are the inclusion of NFC which makes pairing to other phones and devices a breeze and 5Ghz WIFI for improved streaming performance over WIFI.

Zopo ZP998 design and feel

The Zopo ZP998 is an all plastic body, the rear getting a textured finish for better grip, essential for one-handed operation. We were unable to confirm if the ZP998 uses a steel chassis, but a quick bend test on the models at the launch did show improvement over the current ZP980/C2, but still not up to the study feel of other phones on the market.

 zopo zp998 review

Dimensions of the Zopo ZP998 are 151.4 x 76.1 x 9.1 if you compare this to the Zopo 980 with 5-inch display (143.3 x 70 x 8.5mm) the new phone isn’t all that much bigger which is impressive as it has bigger 5.5-inch display, larger battery and NFC.

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The Design of the ZP998 makes for a nice change. It is clear to see that Zopo have left behind the old Samsung inspired models in favour of their own style.

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Zopo ZP998 ROM

Another surprise was the updated Zopo ROM based on Android 4.2. The OS includes new Beautification options in the stock Camera App, new icons but most interestingly are the gesture commands which can be used from the lock screen.

zopo zp998 review

With the screen locked drawing a ‘e’ with your finger will bring up the Phone apps (C for Call), ‘e” launches the browser, ‘z’ wakes the device up plus it looks possible to add your own gestures in to the system too.

Zopo ZP998 in use

So with a 1.7Ghz 8-core Mediatek MT6592, updated GPU and 2GB RAM, just how does the flagship Zopo perform? Well with the apps we are ale to play around with at the launch the phone handled everything with ease.

zopo zp998 antutu

Apps opened quickly, the camera performance was spot on, 1080 video playback super smooth… We were unable to play any games but from the Antutu scores we guess the phone isn’t going to struggle at all!

Zopo ZP998 Hands on Video

Zopo ZP998 first impressions

zopo zp998 review

The ZP998 is a very special phone, Zopo have stepped things up a notch with this model and in all honesty the needed too. From the specifications alone and from our brief hands on we can say that Zopo have done a great job and it is by far the best Zopo phone to date!

We will hopefully receive a sample model soon so we can perform a full in-depth review.

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Next Xiaomi to launch their own 16 core CPU 19th December?


  1. Andreas
    November 22, 2013

    Seeing that $299 was a special promo price for the launching date, is there any clue on the pricing of the new Zopo model and the date when it will be in stock again?

  2. November 22, 2013

    Can’t wait the review. I had already ordered mine 😀

  3. john
    November 22, 2013

    is gps working out of the box?
    any glonass support?

  4. Ivo001
    November 22, 2013

    Do these lock screen gestures bypass security measures such as a pincode or pattern lock?

  5. Bob
    November 22, 2013

    5,5″ is too big for a phone. 5″ is maximum for me for comfortable use and transportation in a pocket…

    • tweetycontrabajo
      November 24, 2013

      for me, is minimum 😛

  6. Simon
    November 22, 2013

    Any indication when Zopo will update to KitKat 4.4 ?

  7. ChrisB
    November 22, 2013

    I have been following your writing for close to a year; thank you for the insight and updates. As Chinese mobile makers permeate international markets they will owe a lot to the work you do in ridding people such as me of misconceptions about their quality.
    I was about to order a Zopo ZP990 6″ to replace my aging Samsung S2 but on impulse I pre-ordered a ZP998…..thank you for the review Andi!

  8. Simon
    November 22, 2013

    If this phone turns out to be a success it could put Zopo at the top of the league of Chinese tech companies

  9. Chindi Atseh
    November 22, 2013

    Is the bending/flexing something to really worry about? I heard in the video that it was an engineering model, so maybe the production models will be better.
    Anyway, I’ll find out in 30-something days.

    • David van der Zande
      November 22, 2013

      Engineering model = production model in China 😉

  10. r0mari0__
    November 22, 2013

    it’s a bit a shame that zopo is not responding on emails. 5000 paid for the phone but when you had any question nobody answers. I hope the ”official” site is real and give us asap more info. What about the wristwatch what is included. No info at the moment about that. They should give the buyers more info!

    • Mr Tjin
      November 23, 2013

      Yeah same for me here i really find this to be anoying when you have paying custumors and you will not even take the time to answer their emails.Does anyone know if the first 5000 (me no 246) have to wait for the 30days ???

  11. Airyl
    November 22, 2013

    Andi, what ever happened to the Green Orange NX?

  12. Manolis Bogdos
    November 22, 2013

    at the beginning i liked Xiaomi Mi-3…now i like Zopo ZP998….i would like to know..if can anyone compare these two…Xiaomi Mi-3 vs Zopo ZP998..who would be the winner?

    • r0mari0__
      November 22, 2013

      Xiaomi will be the winner i think but for me xiaomi is not an option. I need a dual sim phone.

    • Airyl
      November 23, 2013

      Xiaomi is the all around better choice, but the Zopo does have extra advantages over the Xiaomi like it’s larger display, dual sim capabilities, expandable storage, removable battery and , in theory, a better camera. It’s what you need really. If you need expandable storage, or maybe you area businessman and have two sim cards, go for the Zopo. If not, then you can always opt for the Xiaomi.

  13. Victor
    November 22, 2013

    What about the 3G frequency 850 MHZ? I hope they add this band in future releases.

  14. Sof
    November 23, 2013

    Does it work as a phone?
    I suspect this ZOPO phone suffers the same fate as the ZP900H/ZP910, you can’t hear sound during phone calls, in fact, it’s the same with Jiayu phones.
    You think you can fix it? Not in your bloody life!
    It’s a common problems among many other annoying problems.
    Forget all other features, they are just computer function.
    The basic of being able to hear the other side during phone call is paramount – ZOPO has forgotten that, they are just selling a handheld computer, that’s ALL this is all about.

    • Airyl
      November 23, 2013

      I have a Zopo ZP990. Yes, it does work as a phone.

      • sof
        November 23, 2013

        It might just work for a week, up to two months. After that, you find that they stop working. after that, you have to take the battery off for a week to cool it down, sometimes it’s ok but sometimes it’s still doesn’t work. zopo, jiayu and the like don’t have the resources to perform proper long term testing. What is worst, is zopo refuses to refund or replace owners of defect phones. Knowing these problems, zopo is no longer listing the zp900h and zp910 in their website, these phones are still under warranty, I bought one 6 months ago in shenzhen.

    • Adrian
      November 24, 2013

      My zopo C2 works on par with major brands and i’m all the way in Jamaica….not sure what misfortune you must be having cause i have never had any such issues with my zopo phone….

    • Sotong
      November 25, 2013

      If it is hardware problem, send back for repairs. Or you can visit Zopo’s site. They have guides teaching you to improve sound features like ring volume, microphone volume, speaker volume, etc.

      You can tinker with the settings using the Engineering mode.

      My ZP980 had low mic volume & the other party on the phone always complain they can’t hear me clearly even after I’d adjusted my sound to max. After using the engineering mode & adjusted the volume, it is now loud & perfect.

  15. November 23, 2013

    Love it…but I think a No.1 N3 it’s better..more stable.

    @Sof yup man, you’re right..but hopefully the guys at ZOPO are fixing all this issues related with phone calls…you can always enter ‘Engineer mode’ and change the values as per the microphone/speaker and stuff.

    • Sof
      November 23, 2013

      I have tried all that tricks, none of them work. The problem got nothing to do with those values in engineer mode. Microphone and speaker work ok in recording and playback, but during phone calls, it doesn’t work.

  16. Returner
    November 23, 2013

    how about antutu gpu score?

  17. tood
    November 24, 2013

    Andy Maybe you help us, why ZOPO not answer the questions of the first buyers -5000
    Many people ask ZOPO forum but no answers
    We’re afraid this might Fraud

  18. Returner
    November 25, 2013

    please testing the bluetooth/gps/otg/nfc/touchscreen sensitivity function also

  19. Paul Breiveld
    November 25, 2013

    I have a ZOPO ZP980. But I would not buy a Zopo (or any other import chinese Phone) anymore. Why? Well, mine already fell on the floor and the glass broke. Maybe if I would live in China it could be repaired, but I asked already many repairshops in my area and no one can repair it.

    • Oli
      November 25, 2013

      You can order a replacement screen online. There are some good videos on youtube with detailed instructions how to replace it. It is not a super simple procedure but it is not rocket science as well 🙂 The problem is that the replacement screen is quite expensive -around $100 as far as I remember.

      • Manny
        March 3, 2015

        im trying to find videos online, but dont see any for the zp998. Where did you see them?

    • Sotong
      November 25, 2013

      When you buy products from China that were solely meant for their own market, there is always a certain amount of risks that you take. You should expect to NOT easily find parts or service repairs in the country you are living. It’s common sense. Unless these phone companies are as big as Apple or Samsung (or any international well known brands) where their presence are everywhere & after sales support are easily available. Therefore I find it strange that you are complaining. Why did you not think of this issue (which obviously is of utmost importance to you) before even considering making the purchase? Have you not contacted Zopo or your reseller for repairs or warranty assistance? So because you can’t repair the phone in your area, are you implying their products are bad?

  20. Geovane Barbosa
    November 25, 2013

    Just want to know if the GPS works well without fixes.
    I want a Chinese phone that has a GPS running so out of the box.
    I have an old phone Zte X850 that GPS works much better than in my Jiayu G3.

    What leads me to believe that the SoC from Mediatek has a bad GPS.

  21. Pomp
    November 25, 2013

    lol – a total POMP-rip off

  22. Raymond
    December 1, 2013

    That’s the problem with these Chinese phones – no quality assurance done on the products, which is how they save money.

    What matters in a good phone is an all round performance – comprehensive connectivity stack, GPS, processing power, RAM et al, not just processing and memory numbers. I do believe they’re getting there with Mediatek’s upcoming LTE chipset, but only time will tell if it’s going to better, or if its just going to be for namesake. However, history speaks about Mediatek’s sick GPS and their unwillingness to disclose source code.

    That’s where the Google Nexus 5 scores, not without its own woes though. Google wants to manipulate things too. Having said that I’d recommend the device to anyone seeking a great bargain, minus

    1. an SD card slot
    2. infrared port
    3. FM radio.

    If only Google put in those things! It would have made a great seller, not that it’s already not. However, Google will certainly not support SD cards because they want to force cloud storage use on you.

    That’s where Mediatek phones step into the gap – cheap and also no reliability.

    May the best phone win!

  23. phung
    December 1, 2013

    I think this the best phone in the world , more than a half price cheaper than iphone ,screen is bigger than iphone ,it’s good for people who like to play game on phone and reading news when you are trevaling