Meizu M3 Note Review: An iPhone doppelgänger at best
Since the M3 Note only has a single button for all it’s navigation, to access recent apps, you have to swipe up from the bottom of the screen. While it’s a gesture you’ll need a couple of days to get used to, it’s the only feature on the Meizu M3 Note that you’d miss when switching to a different device.
"Hey, that looks like my phone," said an iPhone 6s owner on spotting the Meizu M3 Note.
She was quite certain it was an iPhone until she picked it up, because it's definitely thicker and feels less solid than the Apple flagship. However, in the department of looks, the Meizu M3 Note nails the iPhone look-alike contest. So, while the Meizu M3 Note takes inspiration from Apple's flagship in terms of looks, it remains a bit thick and heavy like the usual Android smartphones in terms of the feel. Which is quite acceptable for the price (₹9,999), considering it's a fifth of the premium iOS device.
The Meizu M3 Note has a single oval button under the screen just like the circular one on iPhones. It doubles up as a touch 'back button' and physical 'home button'. There's also an embedded fingerprint sensor that lets you unlock the phone without having to enter a pass- word.
While iOS makes the back button obsolete with software tweaks, Android still depends on it quite a bit. In fact, on the upcoming Android N update, the recent button can also be used to switch into a multi-window mode. Even 'Now on Tap' that scans the entire screen to give related Google Search results is accessed by long pressing the home button, which might be an hurdle for Meizu smartphones to get an update. Because the functions of the home and back keys depend heavily on the only oval button under the screen of a Meizu M3 Note. Tapping on it is registered as 'back' and pressing it takes you to the home screen.
Since the M3 Note only has a single button for all it's navigation, to access recent apps, you have to swipe up from the bottom of the screen. While it's a gesture you'll need a couple of days to get used to, it's the only feature on the Meizu M3 Note that you'd miss when switching to a different device. This way of accessing the recent apps starts to feel natural and makes sense too.
The Fyme OS on M3 Note, while clean, is also a bit laggy. All these software tweaks to make
it functional with a single button under the screen take its toll on the smartphone. Over long periods of use, the speed at which apps loads tends to get slower, and slower till you give up on the device's ability to be your daily driver. But the battery on this smartphone is no disappointment. The 4,1000 mAh backup on this phone keeps the phone going through the day and beyond.
While the camera takes forever to load, it does capture surprisingly good pictures for the price. This makes the Meizu M3 Note for just ₹9,999 a decent device overall. The Meizu M3 Note is the phone for you if you really want an iPhone 6 or 6s doppelgänger.
However, if you want a smartphone with a more reliable performance and more assurance to an Android N upgrade, get your hands on a Lenovo K4 Note, Redmi Note 3 or even the LeeCo 2.