Let's say that you enjoy the premium build quality of higher-end flagships, but you like neither the larger size nor the bigger price tag. ZTE feels your pain and that's why the ZTE Axon 7 Mini is launching in Canada as of today. I just got my hands on one myself and I have to say it feels very premium for its not-so-premium price.
It's otherwise very similar with the same kind of svelte metal body, the same kind of front-facing stereo speakers and the same kind of fingerprint sensor on the back. The specs do take a noted hit, of course. Instead of a Snapdragon 820, you get a Snapdragon 617. Instead of 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage, and a 20MP main camera with optical image stabilization (OIS), you shift down to a 3GB of RAM, 32GB of storage, and a 16MP main camera with electronic image stabilization (EIS).
Based on my short time with the phone, color me impressed. It feels really high quality and those speakers are way louder (and better sounding) than what you'll find on most other handsets. I don't miss the missing pixels for now. I've been using the ZTE Axon Pro as my daily driver for months and despite the lesser specs, I may be tempted to switch to the Axon 7 Mini for its more compact size and fingerprint sensor. Stay tuned for the comprehensive review.
The ZTE Axon 7 Mini is available starting today from Virgin Mobile for $50 on a 2-year gold plan or $399 outright.