The Vodafone Smart Platinum 7 has commendable specs and a high-quality screen, and provides a lot for the low price.
Gorgeous pin-sharp display, strong design and build, meaty speakers, under £300
Poor fingerprint scanner, camera could be better, Vodafone apps
Display: 5.5in QHD 2,560x1,440 pixels at 534ppi
Processor: Snapdragon 652 octa-core chipset
Operating system: Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow
Cameras: Rear 16MP, f/2.0, phase detection autofocus, LED flash
Front 8MP, LED flash
The Smart Platinum 7 deviates from Vodafone's usual blueprint in that, instead of chasing the bargain bin, it targets phones in the mid-range. They thought they were safe, but Vodafone's latest effort could prove otherwise.
Like the Smart Ultra 6 before it, the Smart Platinum 7 combines an attractive design with an affordable price, but the new handset takes the specs up a notch, in some cases belying its budget, which makes it an intriguing prospect.
We haven't had a device so befitting of its name in a long time, and the Smart Platinum 7 is sleek and stylish with its exquisitely crafted metal and glass chassis.
The carbon-fibre effect on the back ought to come across as ill-conceived, but we think it works and saves it from mediocrity (not just another black slab). We even like the antenna lines that merge into the metallic black edges. There's some nice added texture on the buttons, which helps to set it apart from other recent handsets.
The Smart Platinum 7 weighs 155g and measures 154x76x6.9mm, which makes it longer and wider than the OnePlus 3 but a shade thinner.
A tour of the chassis reveals volume and power buttons on the right and a headphone jack on top, while on the left there's a camera shortcut button and a SIM tray that has enough space for nano and microSD cards.
A double-header of very capable front-facing speakers are located at the top and bottom, hidden behind mesh grilles. In our tests we found sound quality pleasingly crisp and expansive, especially when gaming or watching video. A USB 2.0 port also lives on the bottom.