Jiake P6 Review: is this cheap quad-core Android smartphone worth buying?


Jiake is a relatively new name on the scene, but has been making a lot of noise thanks to the Jiake V8 which was among the first MT6592 phones. On the other hand, the P6 comes with MediaTek’s latest quad-core solution – the MT6582. We’ve seen this processor power a range of devices like the Zopo ZP700, ZP820, etc. The processor operates at 1.3GHz throughout its 4 cores, in conjunction with a Mali 400 GPU. AnTuTu Benchmarks suggest it is on par with processors like the Snapdragon S3 Pro, with scores hovering around the 17,000 point mark.

I used the phone for over 10 days as my primary phone, and here are my findings. Thanks to PandaWill.com for sending the device for review.

Jiake P6 specifications

  • 5 inch 1280 x 720p IPS screen (Gorilla Glass, according to most sellers)
  • 1.3GHz MT6582 quad-core processor
  • 1GB RAM
  • 8GB ROM
  • Android v4.2 Jelly Bean
  • 13MP rear, 8MP front-facing camera
  • 2200mAh battery
  • Dual SIM (Slots: 1x Regular, 1x Micro SIM)

In the box

box (2)

Package contents include – the phone itself, two batteries, headphones (lets not talk about these), USB cable, charger, some documentation and a soft case which is a good addition. The fact that phones like these come with an extra battery suggest that getting hold of one after a few months will be a tough job. The box itself is well-built and there were no signs of damage after its journey from China to India.

Hardware

The Jiake P6 will ring a bell in minds of those who have seen a Huawei Ascend P6 before. Design is pretty much lifted from the P6, with minor changes here and there. Build quality, however, is pretty impressive for a device with a cloned design. There’s quite a lot of metal used, which gives it quite a sturdy feel without adding a lot of weight.

hardware (2)

There’s an aluminium strip that goes along the sides (left, right and top), which feels solid. However, the back edges of the phone are a little sharp, making it uneasy to hold the device in one hand for long durations. The chin of the phone is curved (just like the Ascend P6), and needs to be removed to take the back panel off. Removing and reinstalling the back panel is a pain, and will take you a few tries before you can do it all in one go. The back panel is all metal, and has VERY sharp edges (I managed to hurt myself once). This was done perhaps to save on a millimeter of thickness. Nonetheless, you need to be very careful when handling the back panel.

Three capacitive buttons sit right below the screen, which unfortunately aren’t backlit. Other than that, there is the power/wake button on the right, and volume buttons on the left. Each button press is definitive and there’s a good amount of feedback.

Screen

screen

The screen is surprisingly good. I did not expect this level of quality from the screen. Colours are largely very neutral, with a touch of cold. Whites are as white as I’ve seen on a phone, with blacks suffering a bit. There is a little backlight bleeding on the bottom right edge of the phone. However, the screen is my favourite thing about the phone. Viewing angles are very good as well, which is something we’ve seen on most IPS phones in the past.

Here’s an LCD test in a dark room. Notice the bleeding on the top right. Minimal but existent.

I used the phone once or twice outdoors as well, and the screen performed really well. Text, colours all were very visible. Since the UI is much lighter (and brighter) than stock Android which is quite dark, it makes it better to use in the outdoors.

Memory/Storage

The device features a standard 1GB RAM and 8GB ROM. At startup, you have around 665MB of free RAM, which is not bad since there are a load of apps (user installed) which run at startup. The phone performs well with around 4-5 apps in foreground, but tends to slow down a bit when you multitasking between heavy apps like Chrome, etc.

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mem - storage

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Out of the 8GB ROM, 1GB is reserved for apps, 5.5GB for user files, and the rest for the Android OS. It is heartening to see manufacturers move to an 8GB ROM standard after an extended stint with paltry 4GB.

Connectivity

Right out of the box, there was no signal when I inserted my Airtel SIM. Turns out the IMEI was blacklisted for some reason. After using the ‘Engineer mode’ application, I was able to change the IMEI to a non-blacklisted one. Another problem is missing support for 2100MHz WCDMA – there’s only 800MHz, 850MHz and 2000MHz.

connectivity (2)

WiFi, Bluetooth, all work just fine. GPS is much better than my previous MediaTek phone (UMi X1). However, I don’t really use GPS, and only conducted a test using the GPS Test app. The phone was able to view 20-22 satellites within 3-5 seconds with first fix taking about 1-2 minutes.

Performance, ROM

Performance out of the box was surprisingly good. UI transitions, loading apps, menus is quite fast and snappy. The phone came with a TouchWiz themed launcher, as mentioned previously, on which I wasted no time and got going with Nova. The overall UI is again Samsung inspired with a few inconsistencies. Unfortunately this isn’t as easy to replace. However, looks aside, the ROM is very smooth and pretty stable as well. There was no random reboot or hang during usage.

perfo - ROM (3)

I tried playing a few games on the device as well. It handled SquadStrike: FPS and Angry Birds very well, but failed to even launch Trial Extreme 3 for some reason. Daily apps like Chrome and WeChat (which is surprisingly sluggish on the Find 5) ran very smooth.

Here are results of benchmark tests conducted.

  • AnTuTu and AnTuTu X: 16830 points
  • Vellamo HTML5: 1896
  • Vellamo Metal: 477
  • Quadrant Standard: 5975

Rooting the device was tough. Nothing seemed to work, finally found a tool at sjroot.com (Root Genius) which seemed to do the trick. However, you will have to live with their own superuser management app (Kinguser).

Camera

According to the specs sheet, the device has a 13 mega-pixel rear and an 8 mega-pixel front camera. I found the rear camera wasn’t as bad as I’d expected; but not great either. I’d assume it is an 8 mega-pixel unit with software interpolation to 13 mega-pixels. LED flash isn’t very useful. It isn’t very strong, and often out of sync. I also tried a few shots through a LieQi add-on lens, and results were quite good. The camera has a good focus range, but at times it might need more than just one touch to focus.

The front camera is quite good for general usage. Might not be the ultimate ‘selfie’ camera, but video chats are just fine through the 8 mega-pixel front. However, it suffers quite a bit during low-light situations.

Battery

The phone comes with 2x 2200mAh batteries. On most days, I had to charge the phone twice to get through one day. The device usually returns around 2.5 hours to 3 hours of screen on time on a single charge, which isn’t impressive at all. As mentioned previously, the rear cover is tough to remove and reinstall, but it does give a great feeling when done correctly (not the sense of achievement, but the sturdy feel). You will perhaps have to get used to this habit because batteries might need a swap every now and then, especially if you are a heavy user.

Conclusion

Jiake P6 Review: Cons outweigh pros

Pros

  • Bright, clear screen
  • Good build
  • Snappy performance
  • Thin body

Cons

  • Capacitive buttons not backlit
  • Poor battery backup
  • No 2100MHz WCDMA
  • Thick bezels, large overall size

In a nutshell, the device is a very good performer with the quad-core MT6582 delivering and delivering well. Benchmark results indicate performance is in the Qualcomm S4 Pro territory, which is indeed impressive for a sub-$200 phone. However, factors like missing support for 2100MHz WCDMA and poor battery life (and possibly non-existent firmware updates in the future) take a lot out of the value proposition of the device.

The Jiake P6 can be bought for anywhere between $170-190 shipping included, which seems okay if your carrier has 850MHz WCDMA. If not, you should perhaps look at other options.

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38 Comments

  1. zaikatanox
    January 5, 2014

    Is it really that surprising that this phone performs as well as it does? After all, it’s got even better specs (I understand 6582 is faster than MTK 6589T) than the Hongmi, which we know to be very snappy 🙂

    • how_1
      January 5, 2014

      Tbh, I have a Haipai P6s (similar if not same as the Jiake P6) and I don’t find it worthy of buying. I agree with most of the points Yash Garg mentioned. Except, I did not find the UI to be snappy enough, and the screen lags also at certain times. As mentioned in the article, the 3 points I did not like about the phone:
      1. Terrible battery life. I need to charge 2x a day, just for minimal use. And I mean, minimal as in just some casual Wi-Fi, texts, calls. I thought GizChina covered the point that MTK6582 had better power management.
      2. Rear camera isn’t that great. Seems to need better focus, and the speed of the camera app is average. Capture of detail is also average.
      3. Lagging in overall use during some points (mid-to-heavy usage). Which doesn’t quite explain such a high AnTuTu score, which is so close to a Samsung Galaxy S3.

      I really wonder if MTK6582 is faster than MTK6589T. Because, if that is true, why didn’t Hongmi adopt the use of MTK6582 (I’d understand if it was due to the time of production)?

      • January 5, 2014

        The MT6582 wasn’t available when the Hongmi launched. I guess this is the only reason them went for the MT6589T.

      • Marius Cirsta
        January 6, 2014

        Looking at the hardware itself I do find it a bit odd to say the least:

        GPU:
        MTK6589T – PowerVR SGX 544

        MTK6582 – mali 400 mp2

        CPU:
        MTK6589T – A7 @ 1.5 GHz
        MTK6582 – A7 @ 1.3 GHz

        So unless you believe in miracles there’s no way the MTK6582 is better or even equal to the MTK6589T. It does look cheaper though.
        The MTK6588 should match or even surpass the MTK6589T but I haven’t really seen any phones with it yet.

  2. tester
    January 6, 2014

    Imt-2000 is 2100 band.

    • January 6, 2014

      Is it? But it fails to register on my carrier’s WCDMA network. I’ll give it another go with a different SIM. 🙂

      Update: 2100MHz still not working. Used a Reliance SIM, same result. I assume there’s no 2100MHz WCDMA support.

      • abhishek
        January 6, 2014

        @yash3339:disqus how did you get your hands on the product?
        i have been trying to get to know an established safe way of getting phone to india couldnt establish anything any help??

        • January 6, 2014

          PandaWill sent the phone, shipped via DHL. There are many stores you can buy from, and shipping can be via DHL, FedEx, etc.

          • chandu
            January 6, 2014

            dear yash garg. did dhl charge any custom duty, how much did you pay .

            • January 6, 2014

              A duty of 1540/- INR had to be paid.

  3. zaikatanox
    January 6, 2014

    Is it really that surprising that this phone performs as well as it does? After all, it’s got even better specs (I understand 6582 is faster than MTK 6589T) than the Hongmi, which we know to be very snappy 🙂

    • Guest
      January 6, 2014

      Tbh, I have a Haipai P6s (similar if not same as the Jiake P6) and I don’t find it worthy of buying. I agree with most of the points Yash Garg mentioned. Except, I did not find the UI to be snappy enough, and the screen lags also at certain times. As mentioned in the article, the 3 points I did not like about the phone:
      1. Terrible battery life. I need to charge 2x a day, just for minimal use. And I mean, minimal as in just some casual Wi-Fi, texts, calls. I thought GizChina covered the point that MTK6582 had better power management.
      2. Rear camera isn’t that great. Seems to need better focus, and the speed of the camera app is average. Capture of detail is also average.
      3. Lagging in overall use during some points (mid-to-heavy usage). Which doesn’t quite explain such a high AnTuTu score, which is so close to a Samsung Galaxy S3.

      I really wonder if MTK6582 is faster than MTK6589T. Because, if that is true, why didn’t Hongmi adopt the use of MTK6582 (I’d understand if it was due to the time of production)?

    • Andi Sykes
      January 6, 2014

      The MT6582 wasn’t available when the Hongmi launched. I guess this is the only reason them went for the MT6589T.

    • Marius Cirsta
      January 6, 2014

      Looking at the hardware itself I do find it a bit odd to say the least:

      GPU:
      MTK6589T – PowerVR SGX 544

      MTK6582 – mali 400 mp2

      CPU:
      MTK6589T – A7 @ 1.5 GHz
      MTK6582 – A7 @ 1.3 GHz

      So unless you believe in miracles there’s no way the MTK6582 is better or even equal to the MTK6589T. It does look cheaper though.
      The MTK6588 should match or even surpass the MTK6589T but I haven’t really seen any phones with it yet.

  4. Guest
    January 6, 2014

    Imt-2000 is 2100 band.

    • Yash Garg
      January 6, 2014

      Is it? But it fails to register on my carrier’s WCDMA network. I’ll give it another go with a different SIM. 🙂

      Update: 2100MHz still not working. Used a Reliance SIM, same result. I assume there’s no 2100MHz WCDMA support.

    • Guest
      January 6, 2014

      @yash3339:disqus how did you get your hands on the product?
      i have been trying to get to know an established safe way of getting phone to india couldnt establish anything any help??

    • Yash Garg
      January 6, 2014

      PandaWill sent the phone, shipped via DHL. There are many stores you can buy from, and shipping can be via DHL, FedEx, etc.

    • chandu
      January 6, 2014

      dear yash garg. did dhl charge any custom duty, how much did you pay .

    • Yash Garg
      January 6, 2014

      A duty of 1540/- INR had to be paid.

  5. Frankedinven
    January 6, 2014

    I agree that IMT-2000 is WCDMA2100, it is stated like that on other MTK phones. Also it would be the first MTK phone not to support WCDMA2100.
    Some phones does not register on some WCDMA networks due to “invalid” IMEI no’s try changing the imei from an old unused phone in the MTK engineering mode (search how to on google).
    Finally the listing of available bands are not nescessarily correct. It might show the modem capability but not wether the phone can actually use these frequencies. This is the case on eg. ZOPO C2/ZP980 (at least second generation) and UMI X1S that both shows 900MHz capability but does not work on these frequencies.

    • January 6, 2014

      Like I mentioned in the review, the IMEI had to be changed to get the phone registered on a network. GSM worked just fine (1800MHz) but there was no 2100MHz 3G connectivity. If there was an IMEI issue, there’d have been no GSM as well.

  6. Nikhil
    January 6, 2014

    Hey Andi and Yash!!Wishing u new year.I am a gizchina follower from last 2 years..superb site!!!!! I just want to consult that which is the best smartphone under 320-330dollar.I want a phone with snapdragon processors.The phone should have the best camera.and it should be under 5 inch display.I will be visiting china in a month or 2.Plz recommned some good phones that can be bought directly from china or through net. thanks in advance.

    • January 8, 2014

      Happy new year! You can get the Xiaomi Mi2S which has a 4.3 inch screen and a Snapdragon 600 processor. The ZTE Nubia Z5 mini is a great option too.

  7. Guest
    January 6, 2014

    I agree that IMT-2000 is WCDMA2100, it is stated like that on other MTK phones. Also it would be the first MTK phone not to support WCDMA2100.
    Some phones does not register on some WCDMA networks due to “invalid” IMEI no’s try changing the imei from an old unused phone in the MTK engineering mode (search how to on google).
    Finally the listing of available bands are not nescessarily correct. It might show the modem capability but not wether the phone can actually use these frequencies. This is the case on eg. ZOPO C2/ZP980 (at least second generation) and UMI X1S that both shows 900MHz capability but does not work on these frequencies.

    • Yash Garg
      January 6, 2014

      Like I mentioned in the review, the IMEI had to be changed to get the phone registered on a network. GSM worked just fine (1800MHz) but there was no 2100MHz 3G connectivity. If there was an IMEI issue, there’d have been no GSM as well.

  8. Guest
    January 6, 2014

    Hey Andi and Yash!!Wishing u new year.I am a gizchina follower from last 2 years..superb site!!!!! I just want to consult that which is the best smartphone under 320-330dollar.I want a phone with snapdragon processors.The phone should have the best camera.and it should be under 5 inch display.I will be visiting china in a month or 2.Plz recommned some good phones that can be bought directly from china or through net. thanks in advance.

    • Yash Garg
      January 8, 2014

      Happy new year! You can get the Xiaomi Mi2S which has a 4.3 inch screen and a Snapdragon 600 processor. The ZTE Nubia Z5 mini is a great option too.

  9. louis zhang
    January 8, 2014

    ultrathin mobile ever i have seen!!!!!!

  10. louis zhang
    January 8, 2014

    ultrathin mobile ever i have seen!!!!!!

  11. January 17, 2014

    Thanks for the review, nice details. It does look a bit bulky.

  12. arinium
    January 17, 2014

    Thanks for the review, nice details. It does look a bit bulky.

  13. JK
    August 18, 2014

    I bought this phone recently and came with a loads if virus ,so if you are worried about your privacy .DONT BUY THIS

    • Marcus Wolschon
      October 22, 2014

      same here. Infected with GSearch

  14. Guest
    August 18, 2014

    I bought this phone recently and came with a loads if virus ,so if you are worried about your privacy .DONT BUY THIS

    • Marcus Wolschon
      October 22, 2014

      same here. Infected with GSearch

  15. Augustine Oryema
    March 12, 2017

    With all this Jiake phone, it a good phone but the Chinese spoiled it, the install 2 pinky camera apps which got nothing to do with the actual camera on the phone, it is for advertisement purposes and Malware took advantage and spoiled the phone, it cutoff the network in the middle of phone call just to display advertisement, it make the phone too noisy and many problems, I bought 2, M8 and A8, and can not use it any more,I don’t know why they do it to such a good phone.

  16. Augustine Oryema
    March 12, 2017

    With all this Jaike phone, it’s a good phone but the Chinese spoiled it, the install 2 pinky camera apps which got nothing to do with the actual camera on the phone, it is for advertisement purposes and Malware took advantage and spoiled the phone, it cutoff the network in the middle of phone call just to display advertisement, it make the phone too noisy and many problems, I bought 2, M8 and A8, and can not use it any more,I don’t know why they do it to such a good phone.