You’ll be amazed at the smartphone $130 will buy you in China

xiaomi meizu available in us m2 note

Chinese smartphone manufacturer Meizu has announced the second in its new Note series of devices — the M2 Note — and on paper at least, it’s proof you don’t need to spend a fortune to get a high specification smartphone anymore. Here’s what you need to know about this intriguing phone.

There are two versions of the M2 Note, one with 16GB of internal memory, and the other with 32GB. The former will cost the equivalent of $130 in China, and the latter will be $160. Not that long ago, $130 would have barely got you a smartphone at all, but it’s a very different story today.

The M2 Note has a 5.5-inch, 1080p screen, and it’s one of Sharp’s power-sipping, high-contrast IGZO panels, which is fitted to an 8.7mm thick, colorful polycarbonate body that weighs 149 grams. The processor is a MediaTek MT6752 octa-core chips, which includes global 4G LTE support, and also gets 2GB of RAM to ensure overall performance is good.

There are two cameras on the M2 Note. A Samsung-sourced 13-megapixel camera is on the rear, complete with a dual-tone flash, and a 5-megapixel selfie camera is above the screen. A generous 3100mAh battery made by Sony should return a long standby time, and the double SIM card slot can be used for either a second SIM or a MicroSD card to boost the internal memory capacity.

Meizu has opted to fit a physical home button below the M2 Note’s screen, which has a dual function. A press will return you to the main home screen, while a tap just takes you back a step. Long-time Android users may find this takes a while to get used to, but it sounds like a handy feature. Finally, Android Lollipop is the OS, but with Meizu’s Flyme 4.5 user interface over the top.

It’s hard to argue against a phone that costs so little but offers so much. Meizu isn’t best known outside of China, and sadly the M2 Note isn’t likely to change that, due to it only being announced there for the moment. However, if you’re keen, expect the M2 Note to show up through various phone importers in the near future.