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Gionee Marathon M4
Gionee Marathon M4

Review: Gionee Marathon M4

The Marathon M4 is a reliable performer, with a battery that lasts over two days on a single charge

Most smartphones last just a day on a single charge. No matter how affordable or expensive the phone, users always end up looking for better battery life. Manufacturers, in turn, have tried to pack in big batteries and apps that control battery use, but these don’t always yield the desired result.

Gionee’s Marathon M4 ( 15,499) packs in a mammoth 5,000 mAh battery. But is it really better than the big battery phones we have seen earlier?

Thick and bulky

It’s thick and bulky yet looks good. The matte finish and the curved back feel very comfortable in the hand.
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It’s thick and bulky yet looks good. The matte finish and the curved back feel very comfortable in the hand.

While there is nothing eye-catching about it except its size, it is not a bad device to look at. The only other big battery phone that we found even remotely appealing to look at is the much more expensive Motorola Moto Turbo ( 41,999), which comes with a 3,900 mAh battery.

The latest Android

The phone runs on Android 5.0 with Gionee’s custom UI Amigo 3.0, which offers plenty of themes and a game store.
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The phone runs on Android 5.0 with Gionee’s custom UI Amigo 3.0, which offers plenty of themes and a game store.

There are gesture controls such as a double tap to switch on the display, or moving the hand over the screen to change images in the gallery. There is an app called Chameleon that lets you take a picture of any surface and transforms it right away into lively wallpaper. It also has Amigo Paper, which carries hundreds of theme-based wallpapers, based on movies, people, cars and animals. The Game Zone has downloadable games which are rather basic, but free.

Natural and impressive display

While the rivals offer sharper display, no one can deny that M4’s display handles colours very well.
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While the rivals offer sharper display, no one can deny that M4’s display handles colours very well.

Surprisingly smooth and efficient

The Marathon M4 runs the new MediaTek MT6735 quad-core processor, clocking at 1.3 GHz, and is paired with 2 GB RAM. Interestingly, the performance didn’t give us any reason to grumble, handling everything that we threw at it quite smoothly. We did notice a slight delay while switching from one app to another, but that is more to do with the Amigo UI’s resource-intensive nature, something that can be solved by a simple software update if Gionee tries. The phone handled games like Real Racing 3 without any hiccups and back-panel heating.

An average camera

It can take good shots in daylight but you need really steady hands or the results will be blurry.
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It can take good shots in daylight but you need really steady hands or the results will be blurry.

Battery that lasts

Marathon M4’s main highlight is the big 5,000mAh battery that is fixed with the back panel.
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Marathon M4’s main highlight is the big 5,000mAh battery that is fixed with the back panel.

Verdict

As far as big battery phones are concerned, the Marathon M4 is a reliable performer. And it delivers on the battery. At this price, some users may opt for the Xiaomi Mi4 ( 14,999), which offers a sharper display and a better camera. But, remember, that battery won’t last as long.

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