Once again, I would like to thank Leagoo for sending us this Leagoo S9, which I will evaluate, considering its low price. I will have it for a week and see how it behaves in each circumstance to tell you its strengths and weaknesses.
First of all, I want to comment that there is only one hardware configuration with 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, and it is available in three colors: Blue, Black, and Gold.
On the back is a sticker where the most relevant specifications of the smartphone appear, including the frequency bands for 4G, the European Conformity stamps, the IMEI numbers corresponding to the SIMs, and the address of the manufacturer’s headquarters.
As you lift the lid is the Leagoo S9, there are three smaller boxes where the accessories are. In one, there is the European charger from 2A to 5V; in another, the USB type C cable, and in the last one, I also find the pin to access the SIM card holder; there is a transparent TPU cover, apparently of good quality and a multilanguage quick start guide (English, Spanish, Italian, German, etc.).
Design and Screen
A smartphone that was presented at the MWC in Barcelona in 2018 and that I assure you would be the first cheap smartphone with Notch. Keep the current line of the most modern and demanded terminals, with a wide Notch in the purest iPhone X or Xiaomi Mi8 style.
This Leagoo S9 is made of metal and has a unibody body, so you won’t be able to remove the battery. It has measured dimensions of 72 mm long x 146 mm high x 8.5 mm thick with a weight of 183 grams. I have looked at online stores, and many have this data wrong. It is not a thin smartphone and shows when you hold it. Despite having curves to make it more ergonomic at hand, it has not been as comfortable as I would have liked, mainly because of its thickness and weight.
The functional surface of the smartphone is 81%. It has a 5.85-inch IPS LCD screen with an HD+ resolution of 1512×720 pixels. The density of pixels per inch is 286, and it has a brightness of 450 nits. I think that for its price, it is okay, although it is difficult to see the screen in full sun. I would have liked to have a little more shine. Another thing that I would like to add, and a clear difference concerning the high-end ones, is that despite being a smartphone with almost only a screen, it has quite a few frames.
The front part is practically all screen, it has no physical button, and only the Notch is visible. In it, we find the centered call speaker heard well, a brightness sensor, and the selfie camera.
The lock button and two other buttons to raise and lower the volume are on the right side. On the left is the tray for dual nano SIMs or nano SIM and microSD.
In the lower central part, it has the USB type C. On the right is the speaker, which I will talk about a little more in the next section, and on the left, it has the microphone. On the upper side, there is the 3.5mm Jack audio input.
On the back of the device, in the upper left corner, there is the dual primary camera placed vertically with a dual LED flash between them, very much in the style of the iPhone X. In the center is the fingerprint reader. It is good and unlocks at first, but in the same way, I have commented on facial recognition; this fingerprint reader is slower than the manufacturer indicates.
It is one of the most interesting points of this smartphone since it has Android 8.1 Oreo with a very light customization layer very similar to “Android One” called “LEAGOO OS4.0”. This layer is multilanguage and has almost all the languages available in Android. It also has the “Google Play” application store installed, so we will only have to enter an email to start downloading applications. In addition, and as expected, it includes Google applications such as Gmail, Maps, YouTube, Drive, Photos, Play Music, etc. I’ll leave you a couple of screenshots with the rest of the applications, although I’ll tell you that they didn’t seem like many to me.
I found it to be a very light and fast customization layer. However, I don’t know if it is because of the specifications of the smartphone or if it is wrong optimized and makes excessive use of the battery.
As for the facial recognition of this Leagoo S9, I was surprised. Even though the manufacturer specifies on its website that it unlocks in 0.1 seconds and saves face in an “ISP chip” for faster unlocking speed, it seemed slow. However, I have tried to confuse facial recognition with photographs, as I have done on other occasions, and have not been able to unlock the terminal. In low light conditions, it has opened very well. I will leave you a video so you can judge it and take your conclusions.
At first, I was surprised that some applications did not open on full screen. After looking in the screen settings, I saw a section where you could specify each application if you wanted to see it in full size.
I have passed the Malwarebytes antivirus, which has not detected any threat. I think the software can be one of its main advantages. As I said, it is fast and very intuitive.