Vernee made a lot of hype with its Apollo Lite smartphone. Spoiler alert: it is indeed a solid yet not perfect phone. Learn more in our full review.
Thanks to Tomtop for sending the Vernee Apollo Lite for a review.
Vernee Apollo Lite Review: VIDEO REVIEW
Vernee Apollo Lite Review: UNBOXING
The phone comes with some paperwork, a power plug and USB C cable.
Vernee Apollo Lite Review: SPECS
5.5″ 1080p (Full-HD)
Mediatek Helio X20, 64-bit, deca-core (up to 2.3GHz)
5MP Front/16MP Back
Bluetooth, 3G, 4G, GPS, WIFI, GSM,EDGE, GPRS, UMTS, HSPA, HSPA+, dual-SIM.
3.180 mAh (non-removable)
15.2 x 7.6 x 0.9cm / 5.07 x 3.0 x 0.35in
32GB (expandable via microSD card slot up to 256GB)
Vernee Apollo Lite Review: DESIGN and DISPLAY
Once I first took the phone out of the box, my initial impressions were that the phone had a tremendous build quality that I did not expect from Vernee, to be honest.
The device feels really solid and that is thanks to the all-metal design (except for the top and bottom parts for antennas).
The buttons feel nice too. Also, we have two SIM card trays, which take either 2 SIMs or 1 SIM and the microSD card.
The Apollo Lite has a 5.5” 1080p LCD display, which is sharp and crisp and it is bright enough for outdoor visibility. Also, it is covered with the Gorilla Glass 3.
Just above the display, we have a 5MP shooter and a notification LED. You have to know that the phone only has the on-screen navigation buttons but you can slightly customize them.
The metal back is nice and smooth the touch and here we have a 16MP camera with a dual LED flash. The fingerprint scanner may not be the fastest the market but it is accurate and it recognizes your fingerprint from the standby mode.
The bottom-placed loudspeaker has above average sound quality. Not bad but nothing impressive either.
Vernee Apollo Lite Review: HARDWARE and PERFORMANCE
When it comes to hardware, Vernee Apollo Lite has some really good specs. It comes with a deca-core Mediatek Helio X20 chip, 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage.
The 3D performance is pretty good. Games like Asphalt 8 run fine but you should expect a few skipped frames there and there if you play the game on the highest graphics. On medium graphics, the game just flies.
Also, the phone does not overheat.
Vernee Apollo Lite Review: BENCHMARKS
Vernee Apollo Lite Review: UI
Speaking of the UI performance, the phone is very fast and that is thanks to the almost stock looking Android 6.0.
Vernee did not add many extra features or anything but they follow the rule: you keep it simple, you keep it fast. That’s why you can be rest assured that the device will just fly on a daily basis.
Vernee Apollo Lite Review: CAMERA
The 16MP camera sounds impressive on paper and it can take pictures very fast.
The daylight images usually look good for the class but I would love to see more sharpness, less noise in some of the pictures. Also, the dynamic range adjustment is not always perfect.
The camera really disappoints in low-light. First of all, the focusing time is extremely slow. Even if you are patient enough to get that low-light shot, the quality will be quite horrible.
A 5MP front-firing camera can take some decent looking selfies.
The 1080p video quality is above average but it decreases quite significantly in dim environments. See a video review for a video sample.
Vernee Apollo Lite Review: CONNECTIVITY
As for connectivity, I didn’t have any issues with Wifi, GPS, call quality or signal reception.
Vernee Apollo Lite Review: BATTERY LIFE
The phone ships with a sealed-in 3180mAh battery, which performs great in real life. I can get 1.5 days of a mixed of the phone, which translates to around 5 hours of screen-on time.
The phone supports fast charge feature too but it is not the fastest I’ve seen. I could fully charge the phone in around 1 hour and 40 mins.
Vernee Apollo Lite Review: CONCLUSIONS
Vernee Apollo Lite is a nice phone that brings a lot of great features for a decent price of just over $200.
It all starts with an all-metal design and great build quality, nice display, fast and smooth user interface and great battery.
However, the camera is not always reliable and it struggles quite a bit in low-light. Also, you have to know that Helio X20 is good enough for most games but you may have a few skipped frames if you play them on the highest graphics.
Other than that, Vernee Apollo Lite is a solid sub-$200. Sure, it is not perfect but it delivers in quite a few ways.
If you don’t care about the low-light photography much, the Apollo Lite may be even called a solid affordable midrange smartphone.
A solid yet not perfect sub-$200 phone.