Huawei's $299 Ascend Mate2 4G Is a Win for the Budget Conscious

Huawei's $299 Ascend Mate2 4G Is a Win for the Budget Conscious
Huawei Ascend Mate2 4G
Serious Battery Life
Advice for Getting Through the Weekend
Specifications
Cameras
Say Cheese
'Lightning Fast'
Easily Customizable
The Bottom Line
1 of 10

Huawei's $299 Ascend Mate2 4G Is a Win for the Budget Conscious

By Michelle Maisto

2 of 10

Huawei Ascend Mate2 4G

The Ascend Mate 4G doesn't inspire great passion, but neither does it disappoint. It's exactly what it sets out to be: an affordable, midrange phone with a very large display, a great battery life and an affordable price. It's available unlocked and without a contract for $299.

3 of 10

Serious Battery Life

Well, maybe it is possible to feel passionate about the Ascend Mate2 4G's battery, which lasts nearly three days. Huawei says it's possible to stream three movies in a row or surf the Web for 12 hours.

4 of 10

Advice for Getting Through the Weekend

In the settings menu, Huawei offers guidance for extending the life of the 3,900mAh battery. With a special two-way connector (sold separately), it's also possible to use the smartphone to power other devices that aren't so great about getting through even a single workday.

5 of 10

Specifications

The Ascend Mate2 4G measures 6.3 by 3.3 by 0.4 inches and weighs 0.45 pounds. When it's in the Trident case—a rubber-edged number that offers serious drop protection—it begins to weigh on the hand toward the end of a TED Talk, never mind three movies.

6 of 10

Cameras

There's a 5-megapixel camera on the front, which can take "groufies," Huawei's unfortunate name for group "selfies," and a 13-megapixel camera on the back, which includes features such as Panoramic mode. The plastic material used on the back cover is cool and comfortable.

7 of 10

Say Cheese

The rear camera isn't very quick. Many of the photos I took while playing with my toddler came out blurry, and when taking photos during a presentation in a dark theater, I missed many shots waiting for the phone to focus. However, in "one, two, three, cheese" moments, or when nothing is moving, it can take very nice photos.

8 of 10

'Lightning Fast'

Huawei says the Ascend Mate2 4G can move at "lightning fast Cat 4 LTE speeds." Using my home WiFi and an AT&T SIM card, though (when purchased from Huawei, the SIM will be from another network), it was speedy enough. YouTube clips and Netflix films pull up quickly and play without a hitch.

9 of 10

Easily Customizable

Overall, the Ascend Mate2 4G is a straightforward, easy-to-use device that's simple to customize. For example, songs or playlists can be pinned to the Home screen. Sound quality is fine—loud enough and clean enough and exactly what most users will expect.

10 of 10

The Bottom Line

It's a big phone, so it's not for everyone. But for consumers who enjoy a large display, who don't want a contract and who would rather not spend years making monthly payments to pay off a phone, the Ascend Mate2 4G is a good choice. It's hard to think of any U.S.-available phone that offers so much display for the money.

Top White Papers and Webcasts