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Christmas Gift Guide

The unlocked Nubia 5

A familiar look

Crisp 1080p screen

A thin profile

No room to expand

A mature 13-MP camera

Three shooting modes

Equipped with a quad-core processor, a 5-inch 1080p screen, and an impressive 13-megapixel camera, the Nubia 5 is one of ZTE's top-tier handsets. Available to US consumers via online and Amazon for $450, this unlocked device is a working testament to ZTE's determination to make a serious name for itself in the US.

Caption by / Photo by Josh Miller/CNET

Though the device is uncannily similar to HTC handsets of recent past (like the Droid DNA for example), its matte back and faux-metallic trimming lend a professional feel. Inside the device are a quad-core, 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 processor and a nonremovable 2,300mAh battery.

Caption by / Photo by Josh Miller/CNET

The Nubia 5's display, a 5-inch IPS touch screen, is one of the sharpest I've seen on any ZTE handset. It has a 1,920x1,080-pixel resolution and 443ppi, so HD videos and images appeared crisp, and colors were accurately portrayed. It could stand, however, to be a bit brighter.

Caption by / Photo by Josh Miller/CNET

The device weighs 4.51 ounces, and measures 5.43 inches tall and 2.7 inches wide. It has a slim 0.29-inch profile. If you're like me and have a small grip, you may find the phone hard to maneuver with just one hand. True, the handset isn't noticeably any bigger than some others on the market, like the Samsung Galaxy S4, but it may make for a tall fit inside certain pockets.

Caption by / Photo by Josh Miller/CNET

Because you can't disassemble the back, the battery is nonremovable. Though the phone comes with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of ROM, there is no expandable microSD card slot.

Caption by / Photo by Josh Miller/CNET

In addition to a 2-megapixel front-facing camera, the phone has a 13-megapixel camera that can shoot 1080p HD video and features a Konica Minolta sapphire lens.

Caption by / Photo by Josh Miller/CNET

For all your regular, informal shots you take on the daily, the camera has an auto mode. The more advanced pro mode includes a timer, a horizon leveler, and two guideline options. Lastly, fun mode lets you apply 10 Instagram-esque filters to your photos.

Caption by / Photo by Josh Miller/CNET
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