In early June, Chinese smartphone maker Gionee dropped substantial hints about the Marathon M5 and the Elife E8, and now both phones are official. The E8 has an amazing camera that uses technology similar to Nokia’s Pureview, where incredibly high-resolution images can be achieved using a smartphone. How high? Gionee says you can go up to an incredible 120-megapixels.
Updated on 10-08-2015 by Andy Boxall: Added news of the Gionee Elife E8’s official launch in India, along with new pictures
Price and launch date
The Elife E8 was given an approximate $645 price tag when it was announced and launched back in July, when it was only sold in China. At the beginning of October, Gionee announced the Elife E8 in India, along with a partnership with online retailer Snapdeal, where the phone will be sold for around $545. The phone’s spec hasn’t changed.
Gionee has been selling phones in India for a while, but this is the first time it has struck a deal with an online retailer. It’s not the first manufacturer to take this avenue, and Motorola exclusively sold its phones through Snapdeal rival Flipkart for a while. Huawei also offers its Honor 7 through Flipkart’s site, while Xiaomi runs its own online store.
A super high-resolution camera with a zippy app launch
The highlight of the Elife E8 is its stunning 23.7-megapixel camera, which offers several special features to make shutter bugs happy. The camera launches in a mere 0.8 seconds, so you never miss a photo opportunity, plus the laser autofocus grabs its target in between 0.08 and 0.2 seconds. It’s also got 2nd generation optical image stabilization, a wide range of different camera modes, and the ability to record 4K video.
The six-element lens is covered with sapphire glass for added protection and offers lossless zoom. Next to the camera sits a True Tone LED flash. Thanks to special software, the Elife E8 can take pictures at up to 120-megapixel resolutions, which is pretty incredible for a smartphone. Above the screen is an 8-megapixel selfie camera.
High-end specs to match the amazing camera
Gionee packed the Elife E8 with all the high-end specs to match the camera. The phablet sports a 6-inch, Quad HD AMOLED screen, with a 490-ppi pixel density. A quad-core MediaTek Helio X10 processor keeps things moving along with the help of 3GB of RAM. The Elife E8 comes with 64GB of storage built in, which is expandable via a MicroSD slot, so you definitely shouldn’t run out of space on the device.
There’s a fingerprint sensor on the rear panel, below the camera lens, the 3500mAh battery inside the device has quick charge technology, and Android 5.1 Lollipop is installed, along with Gionee’s latest Amigo 3.1 user interface. The E8 has a dual-SIM setup and will connect to 4G networks.
Next page: All the rumors ahead of the launch
All the rumors about the E8 and M4 published ahead of the launch:
Before it was officially announced, Gionee posted an image on its Facebook page giving away the E8 name and the 120-megapixel stat, plus another statement that the camera will have a very fast focus speed. Focus and shutter speed has always been a pain point on Gionee phones, up until the Elife S7 announced at MWC. It sounds like Gionee may have tweaked the speed even more for the camera-centric E8.
A series of specs related to the E8 showed up in a leak originating from the Chinese TENAA regulatory board earlier this month, which states the E8 will have a 23-megapixel camera onboard, but some special tech will return at least 100-megapixel images. How it will achieve this remains to be seen, but there’s a chance it could use the same tricks employed by Nokia on the early Pureview camera smartphones, such as the 808 Pureview.
Additional specs leaked indicate the phone will be technically impressive elsewhere, with a 2,560 x 1,440 pixel, 6-inch screen, 3GB of RAM, an octa-core MediaTek processor, and an 8-megapixel front camera. A fingerprint sensor may be fitted to the rear, and GSMArena recently reported the company may introduce its own mobile payments system to go with it.
The E8 will probably be revealed alongside the Marathon M5 (and perhaps, a slightly lesser-specced Marathon M4) on June 10. While Gionee sells its phones in China, India, and several other countries, they often make it to the U.S. under the Blu Products brand name. So if you like the sound of 120-megapixel pictures taken with a phone, stay tuned, and we’ll keep you updated on the release right here.
Updated on 06-10-2015 by Malarie Gokey: Added news of the Gionee Elife E8’s official launch.
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