I finally got my hands on the Tecno Phantom 6 and have been using it for some weeks now. Here is my experience and thoughts.

Appearance:

The phone is a beauty and quite removed from the grey sandstone finish of the Tecno Camon C9 which I’ve been using since launch. The only reason I forgive that Camon C9 surface is the phone’s good cameras. Anyway, this is not about the Camon C9.  The Tecno Phantom 6 is very slim with a smooth finish of a mix of glass, metal and plastic and you immediately feel that a lot of thought was put into the appearance. So much so that I did not mind that it came in the now monotonous gold colour. The slimness and classy look reminded me of Tecno Boom J8 and I loved it!

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The phone comes in a noticeably huge box, inside of which there are another two boxes and a tray. It’s the kind of box that you can re-purpose as a jewelry or coin box and I got the feeling that it is made from recycled material. This would be quite the saving grace especially for environment conscious people. People who love DIY crafts will also find this box very useful.

The power and volume buttons are on the right while all the navigation buttons are on-screen. The back is all smooth save for the dual cameras that jut out ever so slightly.

User interface:

With a screen resolution of 1920X1080, the display is bright and sharp. I immediately fell in love with the default chocolate theme it came with. Straight from the factory, the whole setup, wallpapers, and app icons are in the range of chocolate to gold colour scheme though some apps are in their original colours. I’ve always had my themes bright and colourful and this demure one stuck me as cool and quite different. I love it!

Storage:

Phantom 6 has 3GB RAM and 32GB internal storage. These are certainly enough for any multitasker and for anyone who needs to store large files on their phone. Realistically that is.

Camera

As mentioned earlier, the Phantom 6 has a dual camera. The main camera is 13MP and the secondary one is 5Mp. Here in brief is how the dual camera works. The primary camera is for normal every day photos. The secondary camera is for refocusing. So that you can refocus on a specific part of a photo, be it the fore or background and give it more clarity and emphasis. You could say it is therefore more for capturing depth. The secondary camera will only be functional if you switch on the refocus mode on the phone camera settings. This is quite a step towards Tecno cameras being able to take professional photos and kudos for that but with this one they’re not yet there. For one, it does not work well at all unless the lighting is really good.

The front camera is 8MP with flash and for me who has been using the 13MP front camera on the Camon C9, moving from 13MP to 8MP is a step down. No big deal about that except I did not expect anything in the phantom range to be a step down from anything Tecno mobile. Chalk that down to high expectations after using Phantom 5 when it came out.

The cameras in Phantom 6 are manufactured for Tecno by imaging experts Sony.

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Gifts:

The Tecno Phantom 6 comes with a number of custom made gifts, one of them being a tempered glass screen protector. It also comes with a free flip cover which has some functions of its own, namely slots for a big sim, a micro SIM and one for the tiny pin for pushing out the SIM tray. I’m generally careful and do not particularly have a problem with dropping or damaging phones but for those who do, that is certainly more than enough protection. Not even the most fidgety of users will damage this phone if they use the two safety features provided. As it is, the screen is corning gorilla glass which already offers a level of protection from scratches and cracks.

USB Type C & Rapid Charge

The phone comes with a USB Type-C function, which means that for one, whichever way you insert the cable, it will go in. If you’ve ever fumbled to figure out which way your charger goes in in the middle of the night you’ll appreciate this feature. It also comes with rapid charging. For just half an hour of charging, you get upto 80% charge. Just as well because the disappointing 2700mAh battery on a phone with such upgraded features cannot take heavy users any far into the day. Another feature that they have that would be very good especially for frequent travelers is an extra adapter so that it will do well in any country whether a socket is two or three holes you’re covered.

The phone comes with a tiny adapter which you can use to make it compatible with other chargers, otherwise if you have the original cable you do not need this. Woe unto you if you lose the original cable and the adapter.

The phone is dual SIM.

The not so good:

Some features in the Phantom 6 are a downgrade from some in Phantom 5. The Phantom 5 was quite the masterpiece and for example, it has a 3000mAh battery and the Phantom 6 has 2700mAh. Phantom 5 has a fingerprint scanner for security which Phantom 6 does not. It does have the eye scanner alright but for me in terms of use I don’t feel like this is an improvement. I feel its this much easier to unlock your phone by discreetly placing your finger at the back than it is to stare at the camera. The eye scanner is quite selective on lighting anyway and a lot of times it just won’t work. Fingerprint works throughout.

Speaking strictly in terms of naming, why would any feature in a phone in a particular series be a downgrade of another in the same series at all? There is Phantom 6 Plus which is now the real upgrade and which would deal with the disappointment, but what therefore is the role of Phantom 6 in the phantom series progression graph?

Here are some photos I took with the Phantom 6.

Betway Dinner

Don’t you just love beautifully presented food? At a work dinner at Villa Rosa Kempinski. Night photo.

 

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This colourful elephant is made with recycled flip flops that we strew around our oceans. The good people at Ocean Sole collect these and hand make beautiful stuff like this in a bid to save our oceans from pollution. Conservation at its most beautiful. Daylight outdoors photo.

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My mechanic is better than your mechanic :-D. Photo taken outdoors in broad daylight.

 

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I told you the phone comes with a whole lot of packaging! Daylight photo indoors.

 

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Night photo at Villa Rosa Kempinski.

Conclusion:

For Kshs.27,000/- the Phantom 6 is certainly a worthy purchase. My only beef is my confusion with the whole upgrade/downgrade thing which I mentioned earlier and that is because I used the masterpiece that was Phantom 5 and expected Phantom 6 to be a 100% upgrade.

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