The main soft button resembles a circle and always sends you home, a blue light shining underneath, while the remaining soft buttons — two of them — can be found on either side of that home button, providing back and menu button options, though the choice is yours in software as to which each button represents.

The battery in the ZTE Blade S6 is rated at 2400mAh and is not removable.



New phones tend to cost an arm and a leg, but not all manufacturers take the same approach. Some, in fact, deliberately aim for the entry-to-mid range part of the market, an area that’s really beginning to pick up steam due to just how much phones are costing these days, as many brands hit for the above $800 price tag.

Not everyone is willing to plonk down that sort of change, and so companies like ZTE are trying to get in there with models of their own that make a play for the mid-to-high end space, but for noticeable less of moolah.

ZTE’s bizarrely named Blade S6 is one such phone, and while the “S6” part of its name is a little confusing and sounds like a direct play for Samsung, not just because ZTE hasn’t had a Blade S1 through to an S5, the phone appears on paper as a way for people to tackle mid-range with a price that even bests that area.

Pick up the phone, however, and you’d be excused for thinking ZTE had spent time in the design labs with Jony Ive and the rest of the Apple ilk.

Apple's iPhone 6 on the left, ZTE's Blade S6 on the right. Skip the colour difference and it's clear what ZTE is being inspired by here.

Apple’s iPhone 6 on the left, ZTE’s Blade S6 on the right. Skip the colour difference and it’s clear what ZTE is being inspired by here.

Make no mistake, the ZTE Blade S6 looks like an iPhone, complete with a circular icon underneath the screen, a thin softened rectangular slit of a speaker above the display, and with a silver back and small circular camera on the far left on the rear.

That said, it’s a hell of a lot cheaper, with ZTE forgoing the premium metal materials and replacing them with plastic, like what would normally be an aluminium back on the iPhone 6 is a silver plastic back on the ZTE S6.

The glass is still there on the front, but there are no physical buttons, with soft buttons only — press ‘em and they vibrate, with haptic feedback underneath — and blue LEDs simply telling you that there are buttons.


The easiest button to identify is the one under a circle, and that’s your home button.

It’ll be pretty obvious when you pick up the phone, but what won’t be as obvious will be the left and right soft buttons, because without being switched on, they’re simply white, with no markings.

Once the phone is on, you’ll see two blue dots light up, with one acting as back and the other as the older Android “menu” button, though you can change which is which in the software for the phone.