Elephone P2000 Review – Fingerprint security, and high specs


If you have been active in the wonderful and exciting world of Chinese phones for a while, you will know that there are manufacturers who surprise on a regular basis. Elephone definitely is one of those very active manufacturers, and recently has been making waves with Kitkat launches and new feature packed phones like the Elephone P2000 we have here.

Elephone have been one of the fast movers in the world of mid-range Chinese phones, with new models launched every few months. Easily the most interesting of the currently available models is the Elephone P2000. The P2000 promises to be a lot of phone for the money with features such as NFC, Octa-core processor, 5.5-inch display and a rear mounted fingerprint scanner.

We’ve put this sweetie under a thorough tests during the past few days. Let’s see if the Elephone P2000 really offers what it promises at first glance.

Elephone P2000 Review – Packaging & Design

The Elephone P2000 is delivered in a rather extravagant black cardboard box with the Elephone logo on top, a P2000 sticker on one side and the imprint “Keep expecting and be surprised!” on the bottom. Is the slogan for marketing only or is this the first hint at what to expect.

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Opening up the package actually does not reveal as many accessories as one would hope to see. The phone is placed on top, below is a flap covering two compartments which contain;  a second screen protector (one is already applied to the phone), an English user manual, a wall charger and a white micro USB cable. Headphones, a bumper or even a case are not included. But most of you will be able to live without those accessories, won’t you?

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No for the Elephone P2000. At the first look you might think you are holding a Nokia Lumia phone in your hands. The design language just appears to be very similar, at least when having a look from the front The Elephone P2000’s dimensions are 154 x 79 x 9.2mm at a weight of 134g. Definitely not the thinnest phone, but an acceptable weight makes up for that.

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On the front we see a yellow frame (the phone is available in white and black as well) wrapped around the black screen / digitizer. This also houses the receiver, an RGB notification LED, some sensors and the front camera on top. Along the bottom three red touch buttons are placed. These are not back illuminated, still you can see them well in daylight, and muscle memory will help at night.

When looking at the side you will notice a silver volume rocker made from plastic on the left, a black plastic plate decorated with a pattern on both the upper and the lower side and an on / off switch on the right side. The lower end houses the microphone, the upper a 3.5mm headphone jack as well as an OTG enabled micro USB port.

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The rear might remind you a little of the Vivo Xplay 3S, at least when looking at the area the camera is situated. We have the same arrangement of components here: The rear camera, the LED flash and the fingerprint sensor. Below a large silver Elephone logo is placed. On the very bottom of the rear a wide media speaker opening can be found. While the size does suggest stereo speakers, the Elephone P2000 unfortunately does only provide one mono speaker.

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When removing the back cover you will look at some “internals”. You can see the NFC antenna pins (the actual antenna is glued into the back cover), the battery and two slots for one micro SIM card and one micro SD card. Yep, it does support dual SIM, there is another normal sized SIM card slot hidden below the upper slots.

Regarding build quality we have to say that Elephone has done quite a good job here. Though some edges are standing out a bit, there is nothing that is “screaming” cheap and no parts that are loose. It feels rather good in the hand, but can of course not even come close to high-end phones of higher price ranges.

Elephone P2000 review – Screen Quality

5.5-inches plus IPS plus OGS at this price? This is exactly what the Elephone P2000 offers. But of course, there is a little downside: To keep the price low, the panel is a 720p unit rather than a full HD 1920 x 1080. But surprisingly the comparably low resolution does not really sacrifice quality. Pixels can only be spotted when coming close to the phone (8 – 10cm). Under normal usage you really won’t notice them, except you try to read some very small text.

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The image quality is also not bad at all. Colors are displayed nice and vividly, pictures are displayed sharply and are detail-rich. Contrast is pretty good and even the brightness is good enough for outdoor use.

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Viewing angles are also pretty good and you will only notice a reduced screen brightness when looking at the screen from extreme angles.

The only thing which is a bit annoying appears to be the digitizer which is not working very well even without the protective film on it. You always need to apply a decent amount of pressure, else it will start to go nuts. It also appears to be not as precise as we would like, we often had a hard time hitting small links while browsing websites. Another downside is, that sometimes the digitizer has issues while playing games with multi-touch controls. It sometimes just starts to move the character around uncontrollably. This however is not always the case, so you might be able to live with this issue. This could be something that Elephone will fix with hardware updates.

Elephone P2000 Review – Fingerprint Reader

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The feature which sets the Elephone P2000 apart from most other Chinese phones is the fingerprint reader. This one can be configured in the settings, which works exactly like the sensor on the Samsung Galaxy S5. Swiping a few times over the sensor until the fingerprint is recognized, save it and then set it as the unlock-method. You also have to set up a password for the case of being unable to unlock the phone using your fingerprint. There is even an option to lock individual applications with the fingerprint reader incase you have sensitive data to keep hidden.

Once this is set up the lock screen will prompt you to swipe the finger over the sensor. Once you do and the phone rocognizes it, it will show a green dot and redirects you to the home screen. If you are trying this for three times with no luck, it will prompt you to enter your alternative password.

We have to say that this feature works very well, but only if you have dry and clean fingers. As soon as you have sweaty hands or some dirt on your fingers, the sensor will stop working properly. In this case it helps to dry your fingers or to apply more pressure to the sensor plus moving your finger slowly over helps too.

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Elephone P2000 Review – Performance

The Elephone P2000 does quite a good job when it comes to performance. Though the benchmark results are a bit lower than expected, the overall system performance is very smooth and snappy. Android 4.4 KitKat works well on the MT6592 octa-core processor. Browsing larger sites is not an issue – the 2GB of RAM is more than enough for pretty much all sites or even a lot of tabs.

Gaming is also a joy. Some games like Asphalt 8 do experience a little lag but are overall still playable. You also won’t run into storage issues, as 16GB of internal memory provide plenty of space for all your games, apps, data, images and music, and In case you really should run out of memory you can always place a micro SD card inside the P2000.

Elephone P2000 Review – Reception Quality

The Elephone P2000 amazed us by providing a very strong signal for all supported networks. Wi-Fi, 2G, 3G, Bluetooth – everything works just perfectly fine and with a signal strength that could not be much better. It seems like Elephone did a great job when it comes to antenna design and placement. Call quality is very good with clear audio during phone calls and fast data  over mobile internet. Asking about NFC? This also works very well and immediately without fumbling around. It was tested using the Oppo N1 and the Android Beam feature with no issues.

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GPS appears to work quite good as well. The test was performed under an extremely cloudy sky, as the weather wasn’t that good here during the past few days. Still the phone reached a fix for 6 satellites and an accuracy of 4 meters within just 20 seconds. This fix time is insane for a first fix on a Chinese phone without any software modifications! With better weather we’ve got an accuracy of up to 2 meters. Inside the house the signal unfortunately broke off immediately. This was probably caused by the cloudy sky and is not the phone’s fault.

Elephone P2000 Review – Camera

The camera of the Elephone P2000 captures pictures with native 8 mega pixels (13mp interpolated) and an aperture of f/2.0. But don’t expect too much, as it is just another generic camera inside a Chinese phone. Lets first talk about the pros! Those would be very good color reproduction, high contrast, fast focus and a low noise production. But unfortunately the pictures do not show enough depth of field and thus details. In addition, our review device always showed blurred edges in every taken picture. All in all this is not sufficient to replace your digital camera.

The front camera however did surprise. It takes decent pictures with pretty much no noise and a good depth of field. Auto focus is missing here. But yes, it is good enough for a few quick selfies or video calls.

Elephone P2000 Review – Battery

When it comes to battery life the Elephone P2000 claims to be a good performer with a 2,650mAh battery. But be careful as this does not appear to be true. The battery inside this phone in our opinion has between 2,000 to 2,100mAh. Why? The reason simply is that the battery is too thin and light to have such a high capacity. The Kingzone K1 Turbo claims to have a 2,500mAh battery, and this one actually is thicker and a lot heavier.

As you can guess, such a low capacity results in a pretty bad battery life. During our test it never lasted a full day and the screen on time never went above 2 hours. Only if  you are not doing that much with your phone you can reach over a day with this one. So in case you really want to get the Elephone P2000 and use it quite a lot, you should get yourself a second battery for it. Charging the cell takes 1:15 to 1:30 hours.

Elephone P2000 Review – Video hands on review

Elephone P2000 Review – Conclusion

Elephone have tried really hard to create an attractive, and competitive phone with the Elephone P2000. And yes, they managed to do exactly that even though it can not quite satisfy in every category. The most important flaws are probably the battery life and the digitizer which is not always working as it should, hopefully they can be improved with OTA updates. But if you can live with these issues and of course if you want to have a fingerprint reader but can’t afford a Vivo Xplay 3S, this one probably is the best alternative for you.

Thanks to Coolicool for providing us with this phone.

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