Mid-cycle refreshes are apparently all the rage this year. Just as OnePlus bumps up to the OnePlus 3T, rival ZTE is today rolling out a new limited edition Axon 7 with upgraded specs. The new model will sell for $499.98 through the company's online store, and boasts 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage (compared to the original's 4GB/64GB), along with a pressure-sensitive Force Touch display.
This wouldn't be the first time we've seen Force Touch in an Android phone. A limited edition Huawei Mate S featured the tech in 2015, as did the P9 Plus earlier this year. Today's Axon presser says Force Touch will allow for a "more intuitive user experience," but it's light on details of exactly how it'll make that happen. (Huawei's implementation featured iOS-style app shortcuts and the ability to zoom in on photos, among more dubious offerings.)
Besides these three spec changes (and a higher price), you're getting the exact same phone Daniel Bader reviewed for AC back in August:
The Axon 7 is one of the best phone surprises I've had so far in 2016. Like the OnePlus 3, it provides tremendous value for its $400 asking price, and despite a few software quirks is without major compromise.
Not only is it wonderfully compact for a 5.5-inch phone, but it is well-made and nicely designed, replete with an excellent camera setup and superlative sound. If you can overcome the need to have the latest software (or expeditious software updates, for that matter), the ZTE Axon 7 is one of the best unlocked smartphones you can buy today.
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