US gets the Gionee Elife S5.1 in the form of the Blu Vivo Air


Blu’s an up and coming vendor in the US market, noted for its budget offerings. Very often, the phones sold by Blu in the US are existing models cherry picked from China and given a new name. This is a win-win situation for Blu as well as the end-user; Blu doesn’t have to spend loads of money on R&D, and the benefit gets passed on to the buyer as well.

This time round, Blu chose to sell the Gionee Elife S5.1 under its name in the country. The device will be called Blu Vivo Air, and will sell for an extremely impressive US$199 starting later this month, via Amazon among other sellers. You might already be aware of the specifications, but lets take a recap anyway.

There’s a 4.8-inch 1280 x 720p AMOLED display, coated in Gorilla Glass 3, a 1.7GHz octa-core chipset (MediaTek MT6592) and 1GB of RAM to make for a mid-range setup. Of course, processing prowess isn’t the device’s USP anyway, nor is Blu advertising it to be that way. Other than the aforementioned internals, the device will have an 8 mega-pixel rear camera, a 5 mega-pixel front camera and a 2,100mAh battery.

It’ll only run Android v4.4 KitKat out of the box, but you can expect a Lollipop update later this year, although the company doesn’t promise anything of that sort.

In other news, Blu also launched 6 entry-level to mid-range phones along with the Life Air for the US market, all of which retail for around the US$200 mark save for the very entry-level Studio G.

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10 Comments

  1. balcobomber25
    January 8, 2015

    I am a usually huge fan of Blu/Gionee phones but I just can’t see paying $199 for this. Considering there are similarly spec phones for less. Just doing a quick search I see the following phones in that range:

    Doogee DG 550 – 5.5 inch screen, 159.99
    Kolina K100 – 5.5 inch sceen, 2GB RAM 169.99
    Iocean X7s – 5 inch, 139.99
    INEW V3+ – 5 inch, 2 GB RAM 169.99

    Or for the same price you can get the UMI Zero with 2GB of RAM and nearly as thin. There are also dozens of quad core phones with very similar specs for under $130.

    • emoijav33
      January 10, 2015

      True but all if not, at least one of them will not work in the North America freq.

      • balcobomber25
        January 11, 2015

        These were just examples of what else you can get for that price point. There are several that I didn’t list that do work on North American frequencies. And actually both the Doogee and iNew work on ATT. The Umi Zero will work on ATT and limited T-mobile coverage.

        I use a Doogee on ATT and get good 3G speeds (around 10mb).

    • Darrell Perdue
      March 11, 2015

      You are missing the number one selling point of this phone. IT IS THE THNNEST PHONE IN AMERICA!

      • balcobomber25
        March 11, 2015

        If you are willing to overpay for a few extra mm’s then Blu/Gionee’s marketing team has done their job. There are better phones from China for under $200 that have close to the same thickness such as the Inew L1.

  2. balcobomber25
    January 8, 2015

    I am a usually huge fan of Blu/Gionee phones but I just can’t see paying $199 for this. Considering there are similarly spec phones for less. Just doing a quick search I see the following phones in that range:

    Doogee DG 550 – 5.5 inch screen, 159.99
    Kolina K100 – 5.5 inch sceen, 2GB RAM 169.99
    Iocean X7s – 5 inch, 139.99
    INEW V3+ – 5 inch, 2 GB RAM 169.99

    Or for the same price you can get the UMI Zero with 2GB of RAM and nearly as thin. There are also dozens of quad core phones with very similar specs for under $130.

    • Guest
      January 11, 2015

      True but all if not, at least one of them will not work in the North America freq.

    • balcobomber25
      January 11, 2015

      These were just examples of what else you can get for that price point. There are several that I didn’t list that do work on North American frequencies. And actually both the Doogee and iNew work on ATT. The Umi Zero will work on ATT and limited T-mobile coverage.

      I use a Doogee on ATT and get good 3G speeds (around 10mb).

    • Darrell Perdue
      March 11, 2015

      You are missing the number one selling point of this phone. IT IS THE THNNEST PHONE IN AMERICA!

    • balcobomber25
      March 11, 2015

      If you are willing to overpay for a few extra mm’s then Blu/Gionee’s marketing team has done their job. There are better phones from China for under $200 that have close to the same thickness such as the Inew L1.