I’ve got two of the latest and greatest BLU smartphones in front of me. I’ve got the BLU Life 8 XL and the BLU Life One. In this video, I’m going to go ahead and unbox the BLU Life 8 XL and give you guys my first impressions and my first look at the device. Let’s go ahead and take a look at the BLU Life 8 XL here on PhoneDog.com.
This is the BLU Life 8 XL smartphone that costs just $130 off-contract. But for one week only, between June 22nd and June 30th, you can buy this smartphone for $50 off, bringing the price down to just $80. So mark your calendars if you are interested.
The BLU Life 8 XL does feature a 5.5-inch HD IPS display, a 1.4GHz octa-core processor with 1GB of RAM, an 8MP rear- and 2MP front-facing camera, 4G HSPA+, a microSD card slot for expandable storage, and it will be upgradeable to Android 5.0 Lollipop. However, it is running Android KitKat out of the box.
To get inside this box, all we have to do is slide off the top, where we will find the Life 8 XL sitting right on top, which I’m going to put off to the side for a moment because you will see that directly underneath of it, we have a large 2920mAh battery that we’ll need to install later; meaning that the back cover is actually removable.
Further in the box, we have a protective silicone case that we use to obviously protect your device in case you drop it. There’s a micro USB charging cable used to charge the XL, there’s an accompanied US wall wart, some earphones which are kind of cheap and also kind of resemble the old Apple earphones. But if you don’t have the earphones at home, BLU has you covered.
There’s also some paperwork that will help you insert and install the SIM card as well as a Quick Guide for the entire device so you can set it up and get started using your device without any problems. The very last item on the box is a screen protector and that is about it for the contents of this box.
Now we can take the Life 8 XL out of the plastic bag and peel off the protective plastic which displays several specs and features that I already went over earlier. But this device is pretty big, hence the XL name. The back cover definitely feels cheaper than the BLU Life One. It’s more of a matted plastic that’s fairly slick in the hands. So I would definitely recommend topping on the silicone case.
But taking a look around the device, we’ll find nothing on the left hand side besides a thin portion of metal that wraps around the entire frame. There’s a Power/Sleep On/Off button and volume rocker on the right hand side, a 3.5mm headphone jack up top with a micro USB charging port below.
The front is home to a 2MP front-facing camera sensor, a 5.5-inch HD IPS display below that, and that’s about it since there are software navigation buttons. There are no physical or capacitive touch navigation buttons on this device. And I will note that there does appear to be a screen protector pre-installed on this device.
On the back, we have an 8MP rear-facing camera sensor with dual LED flash, a BLU logo and speaker grille on the bottom. And the back is removable so you can pop in the 2920mAh battery and we’ll find slots for the microSD card and dual SIM cards.
So the BLU Life 8 XL is pretty similar to the BLU Life One, especially in terms of the display. The display is pretty dull, the viewing angles are okay. It does get pretty bright but the colors, once again, appear very dull and under-saturated. Nothing really jumps out at you or will wow you with this display.
The software is Android 4.4.2 KitKat and it runs a more peer version than the Life One. For example, there’s an app drawer and there are no rectangular icons besides the obvious stock Android icons. The notification panel is also unchanged. You have access to the Quick Settings. And the settings is actually completely stock. So if you like stock Android, I think overall, you’ll really like this device. And of course, you could always install the Google Now Launcher to get more of a true stock Android experience.
But in terms of performance, the Life 8 XL is equipped with an octa-core processor but it’s not terribly fast. Multi-tasking will benefit the most but for the short time I’ve used this device, I did notice some stuttering and some hiccups here and there especially when I was downloading an application in the background. But for the price of $80-$130 off-contract, depending on if you take advantage of the sale, it’s hard to beat and it makes sense that this device has some noticeable performance issues, especially since I’m kind of used to flagship smartphones from Samsung and LG that cost six times as much.
But this is the BLU Life 8 XL, a budget smartphone that’s hard to beat for the very affordable price. Let me know what your thoughts are on this device down below in a comment.