OPPO A57: What works and what doesn’t

The OPPO A57 might be giving you a bit of déjà vu. But this is an entirely new phone. It bears the exact name of an OPPO device released many years ago and has a 5G version, too. But the one I’ve tested joins a line of budget smartphones with a more premium-looking design. Is that all it has to offer? I discuss the pros and cons of the OPPO A57 here, so read on to find out.

A bit of the old and new

I’ve recently come off testing the realme C35, another smartphone with looks surpassing its price point. And that’s something I see with the OPPO A57. The company brings its Glow Design from its more expensive handsets to this device.

We were lent the Glowing Green option, which is definitely more eye-catching than the Glowing Black. It has a boxy look that I love and a back that looks like it sparkles when hit by light. It’s a design you want to show off.

The OPPO A57's display shown  on a desk with a keyboard and notebook and pens

What does remind you a bit that it’s a budget device is that waterdrop notch it still sports. Even if the screen is on the larger side, that eats up more space than a punch hole.

Take your time with the OPPO A57

The OPPO A57 gets a better battery capacity compared to its predecessor. And that means you can take some time between recharges, which will be handy for those who don’t like charging their devices too often.

The 5,000mAh capacity can take me up to two days easily, especially if I just use it mainly for some social media, online shopping, and content consumption. This handset is built chiefly for these uses, so you’re getting a good deal in this respect.

Holding the OPPO A57 in Glowing Green

It still gets a respectable 33W SuperVOOC wired charging support, which is a good feature at its price range. But that also means the larger capacity battery takes a bit more time. You’ll be slightly disappointed if you want the recharging time to take around an hour. OPPO rated it around 72 minutes to fully charge, but in my testing, it’ll typically take me about 80 to 90 minutes. It’s a decent charging speed at its price point, but it’s not for those who want the ridiculously fast charging option.

Ready for your series/movie marathons

If you’re a serial binge watcher and do a lot of that on your phone, the OPPO A57 can handle your needs. It has a 6.56-inch display with a 60Hz refresh rate, HD+ resolution, and a DCI-P3 color gamut. It’s a pretty bright display, so it’ll be easy to use outdoors.

It let me put on my favorite Korean variety shows in the background while I worked. It played these in Full HD on the Viu app without any issue.

If you need access to wired headphones, the OPPO A57 has an audio jack at the bottom. But if you forget it, you get a pair of Ultra Linear Stereo Speakers on this handset. So, watching while holding the phone can still get you decent audio. This phone even gets an extra trick it calls the “Ultra Volume Mode.” All you have to do is max out the volume until you see that the feature is enabled. It promises 85dB output that’s boosted by 0.44 times in this mode. There’s a noticeable volume increase and relatively decent sound quality. It won’t outmatch more expensive phones, but it’s undoubtedly helpful in a pinch.

If getting extra storage for your favorite content is vital to you, I’m happy to say you get a dedicated slot for storage expansion. It’ll support SD cards with up to 1TB capacity.

But what about the OPPO A57’s performance?

Using an older MediaTek Helio G35 processor, you must manage your expectations a bit. It tends to lag a bit, especially if you attempt to game with it. I come from using faster devices, so I see the contrast more. But if you are coming from a more affordable device and aren’t too demanding on your smartphone, the lag might not seem too much to you.

The OPPO A57 pairs this chipset with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of expandable storage. It’s a combo built for budget phones. Even with OPPO bringing its extended RAM support to this Dual SIM phone, it hasn’t made much difference. You might be dismayed by its performance if you aren’t a casual smartphone user.

Temper your expectations when it comes to the cameras, too. You get a basic 13-megapixel rear camera with a 2-megapixel depth sensor and an 8-megapixel front camera. It can get you decent photos outdoors on a bright day, as with most phones.

It’s a smartphone for quick snaps. You shouldn’t expect it to be quite as sharp as more expensive smartphones. Colors seem a bit muted, and it’s prone to being blurry if you’re in low light. Keep a steady hand or play around with the Night or Pro modes for better results.

While it can get the job done, it’s not a camera for smartphone photography lovers—unless you’re the type who can embrace the photo quality and turn it into an aesthetic of sorts.

Check out the Instagram Reels version here!

Final thoughts

If you come in looking for a stylish budget smartphone but don’t have too many demands about performance, the OPPO A57 can serve you well. It’s a phone built for users who spend most of their time consuming different kinds of content on their phones. If you’re sticking to a strict budget and only require that, you can get some use out of the OPPO A57, especially with its good battery life.

Not everyone needs powerful smartphones. And if you’re one of those and don’t want something that looks basic, this is a good bet. If you try to demand more from it, you might want to pick up something else. It’s one of those devices you really need to temper your expectations.

The OPPO A57 retails for PHP 8,999 (around USD 160).

Buy the OPPO A57 from Lazada HERE. *

Buy the OPPO A57 from Shopee HERE.


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