Register Guidelines E-Books Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Go Back   MobileRead Forums > E-Book Readers > Android Devices

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 03-26-2018, 05:51 PM   #1
Jmirko
Collector in recovery
Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Jmirko's Avatar
 
Posts: 374
Karma: 1555455
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Vienna, Austria
Device: see signature
Hisense A2 / A2 Pro with e-ink rear display

A couple of weeks ago my son's Hisense A2 arrived from Hong Kong. I had ordered it on Aliexpress for EUR 214 with free shipping.

This is not meant to be a full review, as I have not had the time to test everything. I set it up for him and tried a few things, and also asked him about his impressions (he used my Yotaphone 2 for a few months before getting the Hisense).

You can find the specs online, so I will not repeat them here, rather I will focus on the experience of actually using the phone. I will sometimes compare it to the Yotaphone 2, as that device is still available, is similarly priced (currently EUR 320 on Aliexpress) and is the only other e-ink phone I know which is available on English-language webshops (other than the Yota 3 and A2 Pro, which are newer, more powerful versions of those phones).

The Hisense A2 comes with a plastic bumper case, which you can easily snap on. This is a frame which wraps around the edges and protects the phone in case of a drop, but does not cover either screen. It is slightly raised on the AMOLED side, but not on the e-ink side - clearly the phone was meant to be placed on the table e-ink side up. The bumper case is not as nice as the Yotaphone 2's hard rubber frame - it is more slippery, and also creaks a bit when holding the phone firmly.

The front screen is a full-HD AMOLED, with excellent brightness, vivid colours, and the deep blacks that AMOLED is known for - one could not ask for a better front display in my opinion. It is very similar to the Yotaphone 2's screen, but slightly larger.

Another difference from the Yotaphone 2 is that the Hisense's e-ink screen is glossy. I think matte would have been a better choice, considering you would normally use the e-ink screen under strong light sources. However I don't consider the glossy screen a show-stopper, I think you just need to be more careful how you hold the phone so that it does not reflect the sun into your eyes. (Pro tip: if you plan on using the phone as a bicycle computer fixed on the handlebars, give it some slack so you can twist it into the right position).

The way you can set up widgets on the e-ink screen is very similar on the Yota 2 and the A2, although I think Yota's implementation is more intuitive to set up. In both cases, you need to first choose a grid, and then select widgets for each part of the grid. One notable issue with the widgets on the A2 is that some of them failed to update: specifically the weather widget and the calendar widget (which could not display agenda items).

That problem could be caused by missing permissions, but this brings me to another bug: I have not been able to access the "Manage applications" menu under Settings - when I click on this, nothing happens. I don't know the reason for this, and frankly, I have no idea how to solve it.

The only other issue I have noticed is that English localisation is not great: some of the menus are in poor English, and there are occasional Chinese popup messages, especially on deeper levels of the settings.

Mirroring the screen from the front to the back works perfectly, which was the same on the Yotaphone 2, but apparently not on the Yota 3.

The reading experience on the e-ink screen is very good, as far as I could tell from a quick test. Opening an epub in Moon+ Reader on the rear screen, everything works as expected. I modified the day theme (black letters on white background) and the night theme (white letters on pure black background), and decreased the font size to see how sharp the screen is. It is indeed very sharp, and scrolling is smooth - better than on the Yota 2, which tended to look a bit messy while scrolling. Contrast is good, and I did not observe any ghosting.

I also opened a scanned pdf - the contrast here was less sharp due to darker paper, but the end result was still very much enjoyable.

The e-ink screen does flash from time to time, and the frequency seems to depend on how intensively the screen is updating. When paging an epub in MoonReader+, the screen flashed only every 50 page turns. When scrolling the same document, it refreshed more, about every 5-10 pages. When watching a Youtube video, flashing occurred every 15 seconds. Flashes are quick and unintrusive. By the way, video on the e-ink screen is surprisingly enjoyable - it reminds me of the black and white TV we used to have when I was a kid.

I cannot comment firmly on battery life, because my son tends to turn off his phone when he is in school, but he usually charges it every other day. With normal use, I think you should be able to get through a long day on a charge.

Overall, I think the Hisense A2 is excellent value for money. It's a hundred euros cheaper than the Yotaphone 2 (currently on Aliexpress), has twice the RAM, a larger screen, and a newer OS (Android 6 vs 5). Its OS is slightly less refined, especially when it comes to English localisation and rear-screen widget implementation, but at this price I think those are forgiveable. Interestingly, the A2 is also significantly cheaper than its stronger brother, the A2 Pro, which comes with a faster processor and better camera - improvements which, to me at least, do not justify the higher price.

I hope this helps anyone looking for an e-ink phone or considering the Hisense A2 in particular.

I will update this post in case anything new pops up. If you have any specific questions, feel free to ask - I will happily check it and share the results.

If you have a Hisense A2 or A2 Pro, I would be interested in your experience with the device!

Last edited by Jmirko; 03-30-2018 at 02:52 AM. Reason: Added info on screen flashing, as requested by a commenter
Jmirko is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2018, 06:51 PM   #2
DaleDe
Grand Sorcerer
DaleDe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DaleDe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DaleDe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DaleDe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DaleDe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DaleDe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DaleDe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DaleDe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DaleDe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DaleDe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DaleDe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
DaleDe's Avatar
 
Posts: 11,037
Karma: 12294898
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Grass Valley, CA
Device: EB 1150, EZ Reader, Literati, iPad 2 & Air 2, iPhone 7
Sounds nice. I have created a wiki page Hisense A2‎‎ for this unit.
DaleDe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2018, 08:06 PM   #3
Waiting4somethin
Groupie
Waiting4somethin is a jewel in the roughWaiting4somethin is a jewel in the roughWaiting4somethin is a jewel in the roughWaiting4somethin is a jewel in the roughWaiting4somethin is a jewel in the roughWaiting4somethin is a jewel in the roughWaiting4somethin is a jewel in the roughWaiting4somethin is a jewel in the roughWaiting4somethin is a jewel in the roughWaiting4somethin is a jewel in the roughWaiting4somethin is a jewel in the rough
 
Posts: 171
Karma: 7162
Join Date: Dec 2017
Device: Wexler Flex One, NookST, n96ml+
Thanks for your review Jmirko.

I should probably rename to a2 but I’d like to ask:
-have you noticed it refreshing/flashing the eink screen every so often?
-and how often is that?
-does it do it during videos?

Thanks.
Waiting4somethin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2018, 02:53 AM   #4
Jmirko
Collector in recovery
Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Jmirko's Avatar
 
Posts: 374
Karma: 1555455
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Vienna, Austria
Device: see signature
Quote:
Originally Posted by Waiting4somethin View Post
Thanks for your review Jmirko.

I should probably rename to a2 but I’d like to ask:
-have you noticed it refreshing/flashing the eink screen every so often?
-and how often is that?
-does it do it during videos?

Thanks.
Hi, I added this info to my original post (see paragraph 13).
Jmirko is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2018, 03:01 AM   #5
Jmirko
Collector in recovery
Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Jmirko's Avatar
 
Posts: 374
Karma: 1555455
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Vienna, Austria
Device: see signature
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaleDe View Post
Sounds nice. I have created a wiki page Hisense A2‎‎ for this unit.
Thanks, Dale!
I corrected some hw/sw details that seem to have been inaccurate in the press article quoted.
Jmirko is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2018, 02:28 PM   #6
bsnick
Zealot
bsnick began at the beginning.
 
Posts: 103
Karma: 42
Join Date: Aug 2015
Device: Onyx M96+, T68+, Max2, YP2, HiSense A2 Pro
I have the A2 Pro. One thing I'd love is to find a backup/alternate rom. As it is I have no way to flash a new rom if something happens that makes a factory reset impossible. Besides, I'd like to root it.

A2 Pro has 2 modes, the quick refresh (called A2, which is not named after the device as it pre-existed) and the normal mode. You can watch videos and animations on A2 mode but you have to go into an app and tell the system which apps you want using the A2 mode. A faster way to switch would be nicer.

I notice more flickering on this phone, but that might be because unless you specify otherwise all apps use the default mode which has slower refresh. YP2 seemed to have only one mode which was always smooth. On the YP2 I noticed that music playing on the epd would stutter, but it would play fine on the color side. On the A2 Pro it plays fine on both sides.

My YP2 was prone to draining 20-30% overnight. The A2 Pro has better standby but seems to drain a bit quicker during use.
bsnick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-25-2018, 09:46 AM   #7
Thielibear
Junior Member
Thielibear began at the beginning.
 
Posts: 1
Karma: 10
Join Date: Jun 2018
Device: Hisense A2
Hello. I've got a Hisense A2 and i got a Problem. I want to change the keyguard picture to one oft my own pics. But there is no button for that. Does anybody know a solution?
Thielibear is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2018, 04:30 PM   #8
tracey1
Zealot
tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 138
Karma: 4500000
Join Date: Feb 2017
Device: none
I have a couple of questions

Would you say Hisense A2 is generally superior to YP2 ?

Is google play store working ?

Can you mirror the entire screen including apps just like you can on the Yp2
tracey1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2018, 11:59 AM   #9
Jmirko
Collector in recovery
Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Jmirko's Avatar
 
Posts: 374
Karma: 1555455
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Vienna, Austria
Device: see signature
The Hisense A2 has more RAM and newer Android, so it is definitely more future-proof. I also had a battery life problem on the YP2. On the other hand, the YP2's software is more refined.
Yes, the Play Store works on the A2.
Yes, you can mirror any app to the e-ink screen.

For me, the Hisense wins by a small margin. However, looking at current prices on Aliexpress, we should probably be comparing the YP2 to the A2 Pro, which tilts the comparison further in Hisense's favour.
Jmirko is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2018, 08:51 AM   #10
polocanada
Junior Member
polocanada began at the beginning.
 
Posts: 4
Karma: 10
Join Date: Aug 2014
Device: none
Can anybody confirm what frequencies does the A2 Pro have?

I am particularly interested in the WCDMA 850/1900 (B5/B2) bands because that would indicate I can use the phone in Canada. Also I am interested in the FDD 800 (B20) band because that's is quite being used in Europe. The 2500 (B41) band is popular in Western Canada.

Wondering if somebody can point me to reliable source. I can't speak Mandarin and don't have Chinese SIM card so can't even create account on Hinsense support forum.

Here are versions I found online:

2G
GSM 850/900/1800/1900MHz (B5/B8/B3/B2), CDMA2000 (800MHz)
3G
WCDMA 850/900/1900/2100MHz (B5/B8/B2/B1), TD-SCDMA 1900/2000MHz (B39/B34)
4G
FDD-LTE 1800/2100/2600MHz (B3/B1/B7)

2G
GSM 850/900/1800/1900 (B5/B9/B3/B2), CDMA BC0 (800)
3G
WCDMA 900/2100 (B8/B1), TD-SCDMA 1900/2000 B39/B34
4G
FDD-LTE 800/1800/2100/2600 (B20/B3/B1/B7), TDD-LTE 1900/2300/2500/2600 (B39/B40/B41/B38)


To add even more confusion this website says it also comes with 1700Mhz/2100Mhz AWS for the 3G Band (WCDMA / UMTS) and likely incorrect.

https://www.sotophone.com/mobile/hisense-a2-pro

Last edited by polocanada; 09-02-2018 at 10:26 PM.
polocanada is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2018, 09:38 AM   #11
polocanada
Junior Member
polocanada began at the beginning.
 
Posts: 4
Karma: 10
Join Date: Aug 2014
Device: none
OK, confirmed the 3G bands WCDMA 850/900/1900/2100MHz (B5/B8/B2/B1) are included (at least in the international version offered online).

https://www.cect-shop.com/en/hisense...ne.html?v=3776
polocanada is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2018, 08:32 PM   #12
tracey1
Zealot
tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.tracey1 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 138
Karma: 4500000
Join Date: Feb 2017
Device: none
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jmirko View Post
The Hisense A2 has more RAM and newer Android, so it is definitely more future-proof. I also had a battery life problem on the YP2. On the other hand, the YP2's software is more refined.
Yes, the Play Store works on the A2.
Yes, you can mirror any app to the e-ink screen.

For me, the Hisense wins by a small margin. However, looking at current prices on Aliexpress, we should probably be comparing the YP2 to the A2 Pro, which tilts the comparison further in Hisense's favour.
Thank you for responding.

Would you say the glossy E paper display of the Hisense is a disadvantage ? YP2 EPD is matte.

But I would assume you can attach an anti-glossy foil to the Hisense, the question is does it affect the touch screen's functionality.

Also, on YP2 (206 version) you could not install google play without flashing so that was a huge flaw so I'm glad to hear the Hisense is different in that regard.
tracey1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2018, 01:39 AM   #13
Jmirko
Collector in recovery
Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Jmirko ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Jmirko's Avatar
 
Posts: 374
Karma: 1555455
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Vienna, Austria
Device: see signature
Yes, I prefer the matte display of the YP2, but I don't think it's a decisive factor compared to the others I mentioned. You can see the Hisense screen perfectly if you don't hold it so that it reflects the sun directly.

Sent from my SM-G950F using Tapatalk
Jmirko is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
E-ink (e-pearl, mobius) vs. True Tone display (of Ipad Pro 9.7) xtech Which one should I buy? 2 07-07-2016 02:48 PM
E-ink display with Android. Falsedave Which one should I buy? 9 04-02-2014 05:24 PM
PRS-T1 E-ink display fades with use? dedgod Sony Reader 13 10-04-2013 05:55 PM
Classic Anyone have one of the signature rear covers? Quake1028 Barnes & Noble NOOK 8 09-16-2010 09:02 PM
Some publishers need a boot up the rear Flub News 6 01-18-2010 06:09 AM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 05:17 PM.


MobileRead.com is a privately owned, operated and funded community.