Nubia M2 Play Review: Good overall Performance at budget price-point!

The specifications on Nubia M2 Play is better than most of its competitors while its performance is also ahead of several smartphones in the 10K price segment.

By Vijeta

    Nubia India has come up as a strong contender in the domestic smartphone market. Several devices from Nubia have already been introduced in India in 12-20k price segment. After acquiring a substantial stance in the sub-continent, the brand now has its eyes on the 10K and sub Rs. 10,000 price segment.

    The latest smartphone from ZTE is Nubia M2 Play. As the name suggests, the smartphone manufacturer is offering a device for Rs. 8,999 that allows users to enjoy gaming and entertainment out of the boring routine.


    Nubia M2 Play has features very similar to more expensive devices from the brand. The brand is probably trying to challenge and beat Xiaomi which has recently introduced the Redmi 4 and has created a hustle among consumers.

    Let's go ahead with the review and find out how well M2 Play competes with devices in the same price segment.

    Nubia M2 Play Review: Good overall Performance at budget price-point!



    Nubia M2 Play sports 3GB RAM coupled with a Qualcomm MSM8940 Snapdragon 435 octa-core Soc. The smartphone has Adreno 505 GPU that takes care of graphics rendering on the device. The battery this smartphone boasts is a 3,000mAh powerhouse.

    The camera of the smartphone is nothing extraordinary. The rear snapper has a 13MP sensor and f/2.2 aperture value. The rear camera is also accompanied by a single LED flash. The front camera is 5MP shooter with a fill flash support and f/2.4 aperture value. It records videos at 1080p at 30fps. The display on Nubia M2 Play is a 5.5-inch LCD screen.
    The internal storage on this device is 32GB with an additional option to expand the storage to 128GB via microSD card.

    The specifications of this smartphone are more than decent. There are smartphones with 4GB RAM and boastful cameras but the fact Nubia M2 has a powerful Soc turns the tables in its favor.

    Design: Indifferent yet elegant!


    The design of this smartphone is not very different from a lot of handsets in the 10K price segment out there. In fact, it boasts a body exactly similar to Nubia M2 Lite. As was the case with Nubia M2 Lite and Nubia M2, M2 Play also looks good as well. It boasts two colors which are Gold and Black. The front panel of the device hosts a home button with a fingerprint sensor and Nubia's "O" signature in red. The back button and drop down menu button rests on either side of the home button.

    The front camera along with earpiece and sensor rests on top of the front face. Volume rockers are on the left edge of the mobile phone where as the power button is on the right side opposite to the rockers.The rear panel houses the primary camera on top with LED flash right next to it. The bottom edge of the smartphone sports speaker grills with micro USB 2.0 port positioned in the center.

    Overall, Nubia M2 Play has an elegant design and it feels great in hands. The buttons have been placed aptly to provide ease in accessing them. The dark black shade complements the device well.


    Camera: Better than most of its competitors!


    The camera of this smartphone inherits few features from its elder siblings viz. Nubia N2. Check out the list of features Nubia smartphone cameras offer on

    So let's talk about the picture quality and camera of M2 Play. The device captures vibrant pictures however the HDR capability of the camera is not very impressive. Never the less the 13MP sensor tries to capture details without imparting too much of artificial structuring in pictures and a natural composition is retained.

    The front 5MP camera, on the other hand, captures well-lit selfies. It offers a "Beauty" mode which is available on devices even in the 5K segment. It does not have a front flash, although there is fill flash option which brightens up the display to emit light.

    The camera records videos in 1080p at 30fps. The camera interface offers a variety of filters while recording.


    Software: Well imparted features for a 10K budget smartphone!

    Nubia M2 runs Android Nougat 7.1.1 which is rather an improvement over much expensive Nubia N2 which runs Android Marshmallow 6.0. The look and feel of M2 Play are very similar to previous smartphones from Nubia. It has a lot of features for easy accessibility and usage.

    The GUI features on the device are motion gestures, edge gestures, dual instance, super screenshot, screen split up and custom bottom key. You can also check out the features in a detailed article here.


    Performance and hardware: Capable of running heavy applications and games!

    Nubia M2 Play has a 3GB RAM along with Qualcomm MSM8940 Snapdragon 435. The octa-core CPU operates at 1.4Hz. It runs light apps with impressive efficiency and also pulls through heavy apps and games.

    I played Asphalt 8 on the device and the device only lagged behind in opening and loading the game. I had to wait for quite some time for the game to load. However, the graphics rendering couldn't have been better. There were no frame drops in the game play and there was no lag whatsoever while the game was running.


    Display: LCD display with impressive color composition!

    The 5.5-inch LCD display on Nubia M2 Play is good for watching movies and playing games. The display offers ample amount of sharpness while the color balance is just alright. The good thing about the display is that it mitigates over saturation which is a very common problem in smartphones in 7-10K budget segment.

    In daylight conditions the device requires 100 percent brightness. The saturation is certainly washed off but details do not miss out.
    The display brings out the best graphics coloring of HD games.


    Fingerprint Sensor: Operates without any glitch

    The fingerprint sensor of the device is quick and accurate and one does not need repeated tries to unlock the device. It rests on home button so the challenge to use it while the device rests with its face up is mitigated.

    Battery and charging: 3,000 mAh lasting battery!

    Nubia M2 Play has a Micro USB 2.0 port and packs up a battery of 3, 000mAh. The battery lasts 12hours with extensive usage and close to 18 hours with normal usage which does not include gaming. It charges up in 2 hours which is a bit long for the battery it fits in. However Micro USB 2.0 is to blame here. A commendable optimization of battery gives the device a long life on a single full charge.

    Conclusion: Is Nubia trying to challenge Xiaomi?

    Nubia M2 Play offers its users a good HD display along with a handy user interface. This smartphone pack features similar to Nubia's more expensive devices. This device offers performance better than its competition in the price segment.

    Nubia M2 Play has almost everything that one can expect from a 10k device. However, if you are a smartphone camera enthusiast and have little to do with gaming, there certainly are better options for you such as Micromax's Canvas Infinity.

    People who are looking for overall performers can give this device a try. I am pretty sure they won't be disappointed.

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