Kogan Agora 8 Plus 4G LTE (32GB)


Specs

  • 13MP rear camera and 8MP front camera
  • 5.5” FHD IPS display
  • fingerprint scanner
  • Android 7.0
  • 4G/3G Dual SIM 700 / 850 / 1800 / 2100 / 2600
  • Octa-core processor
  • 4GB RAM
  • NFC, Android Pay
  • USB 2.0, Type-C
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n (2.4Ghz and 5Ghz)

Missing

  • no Gorilla so get screen protector
  • no BSI for low light photography
  • no Fast Charger
  • not waterproof
  • pretty sure that the Android 7.0 OS is not up-gradable to current cutting edge 8.0
  • no Wifi AC or USB 3, probably to do with a deprecated SOC
  • forget about VR
  • 4K video recording would be nice to have, with slow-mo and time-lapse

My first impressions are:

  1. This is a power hungry beast, and it rips up whatever charge you have when the screen is on.
  2. Heavy and thick, especially with the transparent soft case, but should stay confidently in the pants pocket when riding.
  3. Finger print sensor works as expected
  4. Android Pay works as expected
  5. Maps Timeline probably works as expected with good sampling and location accuracy logging
  6. Google Camera is not compatible, so no 360 capture

Conclusion

You get what you paid for and a bit more. The point of getting this phone rather than a Galaxy 8 was to get some cost resilience against what is only a matter of time. After a series of accidents in the last few years that effectively destroyed a few phones (LG Nexus 4, that had a shattered screen after it flew out of my pocket while riding; Mi 5 that had a 1 foot fall resulting in the glass back cover cracking and getting replaced by a more resilient plastic bamboo back; same Mi 5 failing completely after water damage), I had decided that I could not justly afford to put a thousand dollar phone at risk. The thing about a value phone is that you get 90 percent of everything that you need every day for a bargain price. Said that, I'm not entirely sure if I had made the best choice, because the Missing features are lamented.


Update: 26 Feb 2018

Experiencing wifi connectivity issues at home, where it cannot access the internet after reconnecting. My workaround is: turn aeroplane mode on and off, or rebooting the phone, then it works. It seems to be a common issue with other makes and models. It also presents WiFi Calling Error code ER081 on the notifications panel.

Conclusion revision
If I had a chance to redo this purchasing decision then I would not get the Agora. Rather would have opted into a Galaxy S8, which at that time was 11 months since release and presented better value for my usage.

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