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    OPPO A71 review: Let speed take the reins

    Known for their mid-range, selfie-centric offerings, OPPO is not about to forget the entry-level market. With a tagline “Speedy Operation” OPPO aims to bring better performance to the entry-level field with the OPPO A71. Packed with an octa-core SoC, 3GB of RAM, Android 7.1.1, and the latest Color OS 3.1, let’s find out if the OPPO A71 has what it takes to carry its tagline.

    OPPO A71

    Chipset MT6750 octa-core, 1.5GHz
    Display 5.2-inch 720p, IPS, Scratch Resistant Glass, comes with pre-applied screen protector
    RAM 3GB
    OS Android 7.1.1 with ColorOS 3.1 on top
    Rear Camera 13MP 1/3.06 sensor size with LED flash
    Front Camera 5MP
    Storage 16GB, expandable via microSD slot
    Connectivity Triple SIM slot, Bluetooth 4.0, WiFi
    Battery 3000mAh
    Others Charger, Earphones, Transparent Case,
    Colors Gold, Black
    Price PhP 8,990

     

    Design and Features

    Despite the OPPO A71’s entry-level nature, it feels like a premium device due to its matte black color and slim profile. At the front is a 5.2-inch IPS 720p screen with scratch resistant glass. It also comes with a pre-applied scree protector. Kudos to OPPO for that move.

    The display is bright enough to use under a bit of sunlight. While there is a bit of color shift on off-angles, you’ll be hard pressed to notice it unless you scrutinize the display closely.

    The top of the A71 comes with the 3.5mm jack and the 5MP front camera. Unfortunately, there’s no LED flash at the front, which is unfortunate since the much lower priced Moto C Plus had one. To mitigate this, the OPPO A71’s screen flashes white when taking selfies in low-light conditions.

    The navigation keys at the bottom of the A71 aren’t backlit so you might have issues fiddling around the keys in the dark. We won’t fault OPPO for this since it is an entry-level device and there are some concessions that need to be made in order to keep the price low.

    The A71 comes with bottom-firing speakers while sandwiched between them is the microUSB connector.

    The volume rocker is located at the left-hand side of the A71 while on the other side is the power button. The buttons are tactile and gives a solid feel when actuating them.

    We can find the SIM tray just above the power button. It can hold two nano-SIM cards and up to 256GB microSD card, which is a good thing for those who want to use two SIM cards and upgrade their storage at the same time.

    The rear of the OPPO A71 is made from plastic. Despite that, it feels like a premium device due to its sleek black design and thin profile.

    Much like other OPPO smartphones, the A71’s camera is situated at the top left-hand side of the rear. Beside the 13MP camera is the LED flash for low-light photography.

    The overall build of the OPPO A71 is pretty impressive for a smartphone priced at PhP 8,990. It might be made from plastic, but its sleek design and thin profile makes it feel like a more expensive smartphone.

    User Interface

    The OPPO A71 comes installed with Google’s Android 7.1.1 with their trademark ColorOS 3.1 on top. Much like the Vivo’s FunTouch OS, the ColorOS was designed after Apple’s iOS. From the icons, the feel, and the overall design, all aspects of the ColorOS screams iOS. You’ll need to swipe up from the bottom to access the command center while the notifications center can be seen by pulling your finger down from the top. Much like iOS, the ColorOS doesn’t have a traditional app drawer. All apps are automatically placed on the home screen.

    Entertainment

    As with most 720p screens, the resolution will only affect you when viewing videos and photos up close. At a decent distance, however, the pixel density won’t become much of an issue. The OPPO A71’s display tend to prefer the warmer side of the spectrum with videos and photos coming out with a much warmer color compared to a calibrated display.

    The bottom firing speakers of the A71 are a bit of a mixed bag. The highs are decent, however, the overall presentation of audio lacks depth. Everything sounds shallow. Mids and bass are a bit light and does get a bit tinny if you max out the speakers.

    Camera

    The OPPO A71 is equipped with a 13MP f/2.2 camera at the rear while selfies are handled by a 5MP f/2.4 camera at the front. Options such as expert mode, panorama, beauty, and time lapse are present as with most of OPPO’s smartphones.

    The rear camera is surprisingly good for a sub-10K smartphone. Details are refined, especially in good lighting and colors are natural and bright. The A71, however, has problems in low-light condition, noise is especially noticeable in dimly lit environments.

    The 5MP front-facing camera is a bit slow even in decently-lit conditions. You may need to steady your hand a bit if you want to take a decent selfie with the A71.

    Performance

    Inside the OPPO A71’s sleek body is a MediaTek MT6750 clocked at 1.5GHz complemented with 3GB of RAM. We rarely experienced any performance slow down or lags when using the A71. OS animations and gaming were smooth.

    Connectivity

    The OPPO A71 comes with 4G LTE, WiFi with a 2.4GHz band, Bluetooth 4.0, and GPS connections. Pretty standard stuff for a smartphone. Call quality was good. We can hear the other person on the other line clearly whenever we were answering calls with the handset.

    Battery Life

    The A71’s juice is supplied by non-removable 3,000mAh battery. Based on our PCMark’s Work 2.0 benchmark, the smartphone will last around 10 hours and 22 minutes under sufficient load. On our experience, we were able to squeeze around a day of usage with light to medium use throughout the day.

    Conclusion

    Despite its price of PhP 8,990, the OPPO A71 handles and performs like a more expensive smartphone. The rear camera’s quality is good, performance is quick, and the overall build feels like a dream on your hand.

    It’s not without its faults, the selfie camera was a bit slow and the storage is on the low side with a 16GB internal storage. Its good points, however, overshadow its faults. With these in mind, we decided to give the OPPO A71 with our Premium Smartphone award with its overall good performance for an entry-level device.