Smartphone aficionados have been crying out for the Tecno Boom J8 since, well, the days of the Boom J7. The second-gen version looks more expensive than the J7, thanks to its impressive build quality, and its powerful internals.
The Boom J8 offers a slick build and a spec-list that matches most of the far pricier high-end devices.
I had the pleasure of using the phone for a week and here’s a full review. Enjoy!
At first glance, the J8 doesn’t look anything special coming from a manufacturer that’s ‘small’ in the smartphone manufacturing business.
The Boom J8 sports a sturdy metal frame around its circumference, giving the handset a premium look and feel. It’s a similar design choice to the Samsung Galaxy Alpha and Note 4, with the rear retaining a removable plastic back plate.
I never feared that I’d drop it, thanks in part to the textured grey affair with the roughness of sandpaper and the sturdy metal frame. Although it’s a big, the Boom J8 doesn’t feel unwieldy or tough to hold. There’s also a notification light bar at the bottom bezel which is really cool.
HiOS: Fluid and Faster UI
The Boom J8 is the first smartphone to run HiOS (sounds like iOS, yes?). HiOS is Tecno’s new custom user interface custom based on Android 5.1 Lollipop. HiOS is light and fluid, looks good and adds extra functionality to the device.
The icons on the HiOS are sleek, intuitive and offer more interaction. The new OS also comes with a couple of themes which you can use to customize your J8’s look and feel.
Though there isn’t anything revolutionary about it, it gives the Boom J8 a distinct look.
The Boom J8 has an amazing audio performance (it literally booms). Packing Dual Boom Speakers at the bottom of the device, The J8 offers an amazing surround sound technology to the smartphone.
The Boom Player has a trick up it’s sleeve, it lets you find music by African artistes and equally play them with lyrics. It also notifies you of new music when they are available. pretty cool huh!
The Boom Maxx app is another complementary that comes with the Boom Player in the J8. The app is a standalone that lets you choose various preset audio quality settings. There’s an option to create your own preset too.
The smartphone also comes with a freebie that cannot go unnoticed; the Boom Headphones. Being a freebie, the Boom Headphones does not not match the audio quality compared to other commercial headphones. It also feels a bit uncomfortable on the ear.
The back camera noticeably upgraded from 8.0MP in the Boom J7 to 13MP, quite a jump if you ask me. My best feature on the camera was the fast tracking PDAF that lets you focus on moving objects in the blink of an eye without any no motion blurs!
The Front camera comes with 5.0MP, with front LED flash which produces stunning selfies even in low light.
The Boom J8 is powered by a 64-bit Quad-core 1.3 GHz Cortex-A53 Mediatek MT6753 Processor on a Mali-T720 GPU and equipped with a 2 GB of RAM which should provides for decent multitasking.
I took it for a spin with Asphalt 7 Car Racing game and it ran smoothly till it started to heat up a bit after a couple of minutes.
The J8 features a huge 3000mAh non-removable battery which keeps the device as slim as possible. Hours of usage ultimately comes down to how you use the device.
It also supports Fast-Charge and according to specs, 15 minutes charge would ensure you 8 long hours of phone calls.
Tecno Boom has again managed to conquer the tricky second album with a smartphone which builds on its predecessor in a number of ways without losing its core appeal.