ZTE Grand X Max+ Hands-on

The premium device made for the prepaid customer

At its CES 2015 press conference we saw ZTE announce the Grand X Max+, and though it wasn't on hand during the announce we've tracked one down to check it out for ourselves.

ZTE promised that the Grand X Max+ would be the prepaid premium phone that would rival flagship phones on post paid carriers. While I wouldn't say that the phone is at the same level I would say that it is one of the better prepaid devices I have ever tried out. The device it's feels well built but is lacking a heft that makes for an enjoyable experience in the hand. The front and rear sides of the Max+ are made of glass while the side are made of plastic. Besides the obvious fear of dropping the phone and cracking the rear glass the build feels like what you would expect from a mid-tier smartphone. The power button and volume rocker are pretty flush with sides so they are difficult to find but have a good throw.

The ZTE Grand X Max+ has 2GB RAM, 16GB of built-in storage with the ability for expansion with a microSD card slot, an unnamed quad-core processor, and a 6 inch 720p HD display. While quickly running through the the device I noticed that it actually ran quite smoothly. The ZTE skin on top of Android 4.4.4 KitKat was not too intrusive but it was obvious that it did intrude slightly on the pure feeling of stock Android.

Toting a 13MP rear-facing camera and a 5MP front facing wide angle camera, ZTE believes that the average consumer will enjoy the photos that were captured. From the couple quick shots I took with it the phone I can say that the camera is decent but not even close to the quality of most flagships. The photos had a distinct level of grain and did not capture the color of my surroundings as crisp as I would have liked.

Overall I enjoyed the phone for what it is worth. The ZTE Grand X Max+ will be on sale through Cricket for $199.99 contract free starting on January 9th. This isn't the extreme premium phone that ZTE believes it to be but it is definitely one of the best prepaid devices I have ever gotten my hands on.