A $99 Smartphone with a Fingerprint Sensor? BLU Studio Touch Review

A $99 Smartphone with a Fingerprint Sensor? BLU Studio Touch Review

Today we are going to take a look at yet another BLU phone and this time it's the new BLU Studio Touch.

The first thing that I noticed with the Studio Touch is the strikingly similar resemblence to the recent successful R1 HD. If you missed my video on the R1 HD, check it out here:

The size, shape, and feel in the hand is almost identical. Build quality is pretty good for a phone just over the $100 dollar mark and it definitely feels like something that should cost a bit more. Power and volume buttons are on the right hand side and that's the only thing that you will find around the all metal siding. This was a bit puzzling to me for a minute because the back of the phone definitely looks like it's all one piece but there was no SIM card tray.

I feel as if it should not have taken me this long to remove the back plate to locate the SIM card but unfortunately, it did. Once I did locate the opening, it was a bit rough to remove but eventually I was able to get the back plate off.

Headphone jack is on the top and your Micro USB port for charging can be found on the bottom of the device.

Another thing that surprised me about the BLU Studio Touch was the display. It's not a great display by any means, and that's partially due to the fact that it's not even full HD. For a 720p display to look this good and bright, I assumed it was AMOLED. I was wrong. The Studio Touch has a 5-inch IPS LCD Display that is actually not too shabby for only 720p. I was pleasantly surprised.

For software, BLU went with the stock Android look again, which is fantastic. I am a bit puzzled and am now wondering if BLU is going to just omit the skin that they have and simply go with the stock Android approach. Don't get me wrong, their past skins were nothing crazy but it still had a few different features and settings that I was not a fan of. The R1 HD and now the Studio Touch both have very plain versions of Android 6.0 Marshmallow and I am totally cool with that.

With that said, it does seem as though this phone struggles just a bit with multitasking and keeping things on the faster side. It appears as though the 1ghz quad core processor with 1gb of RAM is simply not going to cut heavy every day use. If you need a phone that can handle all of your apps running at once, gaming, and sending emails all day, this might not work for you. If you are a light browser, emailer, and texter, then this guy will be more than enough.

A really great bonus is the inclusion of a fingerprint sensor. It’s surprsingly accurate, but the speed is not great. Now that might not be a big deal but I have noticed that if you leave the phone untouched for a period of time and then use the fingerprint sensor, it will be really laggy and slow. With that said, success rate of unlocking has been nearly perfect. Another surprise is that the sensor is an actual physical button. So you can use it as a home button.

The back of the phone has an 8MP camera and the front facing camera comes in at 5MP. Just like the BLU R1 HD. I will be doing a separate review on both the R1 and Studio Touch cameras and will compare the two to some other phones that are currently available.

For now though, it seems that BLU went with a pretty basic camera app. Giving you the features that you need to snap a quick photo or video. First impressions are not bad so far. The camera has a pretty quick shutter and gets even better when you enable touch shutter. This basically snaps a photo by touching the screen. The app also has a few other features like smile shot, anti flicker, self timer, and zero shutter delay. Stay tuned for a more comprehensive review soon.

While this phone might not be for everyone, mainly power users and photographers, this phone is super affordable, has a tremendous build quality to it, runs a pure version of Android that's decently snappy and has great security with a surprisingly accurate fingerprint sensor. I am not sure there is much else you can ask for in a $100 smartphone.

The BLU Studio Touch will retail for around $110 and you can pick one up on Amazon right now. If you're interested, check it out here: BLU Studio Touch - 4G LTE Smartphone - GSM Unlocked - Gold