5 things I Hate about BLU Pure XL

BLU PURE XL is a great DUAL SIM LTE phone, with Octa Core 2.0 GHz CPU, 6″ Super Amoled display and 64GB + 3GB Storage / Ram – especially at $349

However there are some things that I absolutely hate about it, and there is nothing I can do to change most of them. Watch this:

Here is my list of TOP 5 THINGS I HATE IN BLU PURE XL:

1) Physical Capacitive Touch Buttons. First, these buttons are not back lit, and are hard to see, especially in the dark. Second, the sensor area of each button is VERY small, so they are extremely hard to press, unless you finger is directly on top of the button. Third, with Tempered Glass Screen Protector on the screen, they become even harder to press.

2) Dedicated Camera button does not always work properly! Normally to activate camera from screen off, you need to press and hold Physical Camera button for 3 seconds. But often even after 5 seconds, nothing happens, which you can see in this video.

3) No update to Android 6.0 Marshmallow is expected from BLU. BLU products is notorious for not updating software on their phones or doing only MINOR updates. So far BLU Pure XL needs bug fixing update for its camera app and to fix Screen Cast / Mirroring with Chromecast 2015.

4) No ROOT access available (yet) and BLU is not helping developers. This limits users from using ROOT apps or custom roms, and blu is refusing to provide Kernel source and other files needed for BLU Pure XL Root Access.

5) Phone is TOO HUGE! Although I love the 6″ screen, it is very difficult to use with one hand.

BONUS – #6) No BAND 12 LTE (700 MHz) on T-Mobile, means poor reception in buildings, and in rural areas.

12 thoughts on “5 things I Hate about BLU Pure XL”

  1. ntsux ntsux

    Re. your product product review for “Blu Pure XL”

    I am writing to you specifically, as you seem to be quite knowledgably in DUAL SIM phones… that’s what this site is about, and it’s great.

    I have some technical questions about the dual SIM functionality that are not commonly asked or addressed:

    (1) Do both SIM slots support all of the following: 2G, 3G, and 4G/LTE? Do both SIM slots do so simultaneously?

    (2) Do both SIM slots support both GSM and HSPA+/WDCMA? Do both SIM slots do so simultaneously?

    (3a) Do both SIM slots support the following technologies and bands:

    Technology GSM / HSPA / LTE
    2G bands GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 – SIM 1 & SIM 2
    3G bands HSDPA 850 / 1700(AWS) / 1900 / 2100
    4G bands LTE band 2(1900), 4(1700/2100), 7(2600), 17(700)

    (3b) Do both SIM slots do so simultaneously?

    I have read the product literature at http://www.bluproducts.com/index.php/pure-xl, and all your reviews on this phone, but there is no specific reference to the fact that ALL of this functionality is available on BOTH SIM slots, at the same time.

    I ask this because, for the last BLU phone I bought (BLU Studio 6 LTE), the second SIM slot only supported GSM, and even then at only 2G. Both of my cell phone providers are HSPA+/WCDMA (but both at LTE) and neither of them is GSM. Also, neither of my providers is still using 2G. This makes this second SIM useless to me, and this was very expensive mistake for me to male.

    I do understand that I will have mobile data coming from only one of the SIMs at any one time, but I need to be able to choose which SIM slot is providing mobile data within the software of the phone. This phone seems to accommodate this.

    I also expect that both SIM cards will be simultaneously active to make and receive phone calls/SMS/MMS at any time. Again,This phone seems to accommodate this.

    BTW – I also recently tried the Sony Xperia. While both SIMs support GSM/WCDMA for all the 2g, 3g, 4g, and all my required bands – only ONE WCDMA provider SIM can be active at any one time! I actually have disable one of the SIMS, or neither will work!

    Sony support said that this is because their WCDMA/HSPA+ antenna can handle only provider at a time. But of course this is not documented anywhere!

    To be clear – It can handle two GSM providers, or it can handle one GSM and one HSPA+/WCDMA provider at the same time… but somehow, it can handle only ONE HSPA+/WCDMA provider at any one time.

    Seriously – WTF??!

    I am tired of wasting time calling the hardware vendor pre-sales dept. (and speaking to people who know nothing about their own product), and spending money on handsets only to see their limitations continuously cripple me and my wallet!

    What do you think? Is this the phone that can support all of the above?

    Many thanks in advance!

    1. Leo 2x SIM Post Author


      1) yes – both sims support 2/3/4G LTE

      You can have DATA only in 1 sim at the time. Second sim card is ALWAYS for calls / sms / mms.

      You can switch “data source” in settings.

      2) GSM = 2G. HSPA+/WCDMA = 3G. Do not confuse WCDMA with CDMA (no sim cards) standard used on Sprint / Verizon / US Cellular, etc.
      Basically the answer is the same as #1 – depending on your network and settings “primary” sim will connect to data in 2G or 3G or LTE, but NOT simultaneously. Secondary sim is (once again) only for phone calls and sms/mms

      3a) Yes
      3b) No – one at a time – see above

      SIDE NOTE – I do not know the state in which SECONDARY sim is – either it is in Voice over LTE (when available) or in 2G/GSM – it does not show any data icon next to bars for second sim ..

      In BLU Studio 6 LTE second sim IS in fact 2G only, and that sucks and until I got the POSH Titan PRO E550 I thought that ALL dual sim phones can do 3/4G data in SIM 1 only … but these newer phones can use High Speed data in BOTH sims

      WHO is your carrier that they DO NOT have 2G? I mean some carriers are transitioning into LTE only (Verizon for example) but they won’t shut off their legacy 2G networks until something like 2018-2019 …

      Anyway – I hope this helps …

  2. ntsux ntsux

    Thanks for the quick response.

    to ensure I understand you correctly:

    (1) It seems I was confused between WCDMA and HSPA+. They are not quite the same thing.

    My confusion stems from the fact, on my Android dual-SIM phones, I need to select a “WCDMA provider” for a particular SIM on my Android phone, even though both my providers are HSPA+.

    There simply is no option to select a “HSPA+” provider for a SIM on an Andtroid phone, so I just go with what works. It is clear as mud, but we can move on from this.

    (2) We can leave out the debate of “Is HSPA+ 4G or 3G?” because I don’t think we can get two different people to agree on the parameters! šŸ™‚ For our purposes, I am fine to call it “3G” so we can move on the to heart of the matter,

    (3) So, you are stating that, despite the fact that both SIMs support 2G/3G/4G, only ONE of the SIMs (what you refer to as the “primary” SIM can operate at 3G or4G at any one time.

    I also think you are stating that, the “Secondary SIM” can be active at the same time as the “Primary SIM”…. HOWEVER…. to accomplish this, the “secondary” SIM will be force-downgraded to 2G … which is a GSM-only service. (and only if GSM/2G service is available from the provider).

    We’re also basically stating that, If neither of your providers are GSM-based (and at 2G), you are out of luck with dual-SIM phones, in terms of getting both SIMs and both providers active simultaneously.

    This is the part I have a problem with, as in my case, both providers are HSPA+. HSPA+ is not GSM. Therefore, no 2G service is available for me.

    (4) Who are my providers? šŸ™‚ Up here in Canada, we have quite a few major HSPA+ providers. and one prominent GSM provider (it also has some small GSM off-shoots).

    Regardless. the principles of the cellular technologies provided in the US and Canada are identical.

    (5) So we know that 2G is going away, even in the US.. And this will be relatively soon. How does that impact the ways in which dual-SIM phones will operate?

    For that matter, I wonder why can we not have the “Secondary SIM” force-downgraded to 3G (instead of all the way to 2G), leaving the “Primary SIM” at 4G? Wouldn’t this solve the problem?

    Thanks again, and sorry to stray so far off the topic of your article, but I think this topic is going to be discussed more frequently in the near future… and not too many people understand how this pertains to the perceived limitations of current dual-SIM phones!

    1. Shawn

      Ahhhh…a fellow Canuck,

      Well, I just unboxed the Pure XL. I am with a CDMA provider and I have two of their SIM cards. I was very hopeful to be able to use both simultaneously.

      So here is the thing. Yes, both slots are capable of LTE/4G/3G/2G BUT only one slot can do this at a time! When you select one of the slots to be the data slot, it will automatically be designated LTE/4G/3G/2G. The other SIM though will be locked to 2G only.

      And for CDMA, that means that even though the phone recognizes the the second SIM card, it cannot connect to the CDMA Network as the 2G is GSM only.

      However, if you switch data to the other SIM card, now it will be 4G/LTE and the other SIM will be stuck, disabled, at 2G. So *technically* yes, the *slots* are both 4G/LTE. But this is extremely misleading because it appears they cannot both be 45/LTE *at the same time* which makes this feature almost useless.

      I have swapped in a GSM SIM card for the second slot and once I do that, yes, now it works with both SIM cards simultaneously, but the GSM is at 2G only, for voice and text messaging only.

      However, the story doesn’t end there. Here is the most interesting part:

      I contacted BLU technical support and they swore up and down that *yes* the BLU Pure XL can support simultaneous 4G/LTE! They said that what was happening to me was the result of a known firmware issue and that I should return the phone as defective and get a new one. I asked several times if there were sure about this. I even spoke with a supervisor who personally assured me this was true.

      I admit that my past experience with Blu technical support has been extremely dubious. I honestly think they are mistaken because I have found that every other dual SIM phone I can find only does GSM 2G on the other SIM :(.

      Nevertheless, I am returning the phone and getting a replacement, and I will let you know if there is any change with the new one.

      1. ntsux

        Just add, I had the exact same experience with Blu “Tech Support”. I even sent them an email with very specific questions, and asked for absolute answers. I received a response that basically told me “Yes, we have verified that these are dual-SIM phones!”.

        Thanks guys.

        As for what we poor saps with multiple HSPA+ providers (that is no GSM/2G providers), all my research has shown me that there is no such phone that can provide simultaneous service (e.g. date on one, voice on the other, and vice-versa) for multiple HSPA+ providers. And in scheme of things, we’re the minority, so too bad for us!

        Let me know if you find something. I’d love to be proven wrong!

        Admin – sorry to hijack the thread! Really appreciate you letting us vent/share our experiences here, though – thanks!

  3. Falcon

    The Sony Xperia X Performance dual supports 3G on both SIM’s ate the same time. Only one can have data activated at a time however.

    1. nt sux

      Contacted the vendor, and they won’t confirm this, and truthfully, they barely understand what the hell I am talking about (as is the case with most vendors)…. and yes, we understand the part about data being served by one SIM at any one time – this is reasonable.

      Have you actually DONE this? Would you be willing to post your experience (here or YouTube)? It would be greatly appreciated!

  4. Jay

    Hi Leo
    Right now as of April 16, 2017 which phone in your opinion is the best dual SIM phone that has USA LTE capability?

    My wishlist is
    1. Dual SIM
    2. USA LTE
    3. Fingerprint reader (on the front). I use a magnetic phone holder on my dashboard so that I can access my phone while driving if I have to. I need to be able to use a front fingerprint
    4. Notification LED. I need to use this phone for my job so I need to be able to see email notifications. FOr some reason many of the new phones do not have the notification LED any more

  5. Larry

    As of April 2017, my research tells me that perhaps the best US LTE Capable Dual-SIM phone is the Samsung Galaxy S7 G930FD. These are actual Samsung Galaxy phones, but made for international use (as well as US) and have ALL the US and Canadian LTE bands (Including Band 12 for us T-Mobile users).

    But the 2nd SIM takes the place of the SD Card, apparently, according to their literature, and only one SIM can have data on at a time . But both SIMs are actiive simulataneously (Dual Standby).

    If you don’t mind sacrificing having an SD card, this might be the phone. Because is’ts a Samsung current model, accessories for the US S7 will still work, and Otterbox has cases for these. They also can charge wirelessly, and be submerged in 5 feet of water for up to 30 minutes, says Samsung. They’re availble on Ebay and Amazon brand new for $400-550.

    1. Leo 2x SIM Post Author

      Larry, I agree – Galaxy S7 DUOS is one of the best if not the best dual sim phones, and from what I remember of S6 DUOS, they support all US LTE & most 3G bands, including Band 12 on T-Mobile …. but you should always verify this

  6. Larry

    Just be careful…

    Many “Dual SIM” phones for sale on Ebay and Amazon do not support ANY currently used LTE bands in the US. (Such as the Galaxy J7 or J7 Prime, the Galaxy A8 and its cousins.)

    1. Jay

      Thank you Leo and Larry
      How about the OnePlus 5? It has all the specs I am looking for – Dual SIM, USA LTE, Front Fingerprint reader and notification LED
      It is really hard to find one, though, as they are always out of stock
      I think the OnePlus 5 is at least a year newer than the Samsung Galaxy S7 G930FD at around the same price range and has more storage (no SD card but you can get 64G or 128G). Plus when you find it, you can buy it new with warranty whereas the Samsung Galaxy S7 G930FD is only on Amazon or ebay with no warranty or service..

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