BLU isn't yet a household name in the realm of smartphones, but the company has been quietly releasing hardware for the last few years, letting the remarkably low pricing do the talking. Today they've pulled the cover off of three new models, all aimed at the new "phablet" craze, or at least the lower end of it. The new Studio GSM smartphones start at 5 inches and just $149, and all three feature Android 4.1, the Google Play Store, and dual SIM slots. Specs are low, but these phones look like ideal budget devices or travel companions.


The Studio 5.0 is the cheapest of the lot, at $149 unsubsidized. That 5-inch screen has a low resolution at 840x400, and under the hood is a 1Ghz dual-core MediaTek MT6577 processor and Power VR SGX531 GPU. RAM is a bit anemic at 512MB - barely enough to run Jelly Bean smoothly - with 4GB of internal storage and a MicroSD card slot. The rear camera is 5MP, with a VGA cam on the front.


The Studio 5.0 S moves things slightly up-market with a 960x540 IPS screen, Snapdragon S4 quad-core 1.2 GHz CPU, and Adreno 203 GPU. Storage remains 4GB but RAM is bumped up to a full gig, and the cameras get boosted to 8 megapixels for the rear and 2MP in front. Perhaps best of all, the 5.0  S slims down into an 8.9mm plastic body. The Studio 5.3 S has identical specifications, but extends the QHD screen to 5.3 inches and the body to 9.2mm. Prices for the 5.0 S and 5.3 S start at $209 and $229, respectively; you could expect to pay $400-500 for an equivalent off-contract phone from any major US carrier-manufacturer combo.

None of these phones are going to stand out among current flagships, and the low resolution screens don't hold a candle even to mid-range phones. But the prices for these devices are compelling  - low enough to tempt anyone who needs an unlocked phone for prepaid service or travel, especially if you don't need LTE. According to BLU's press release, all three will be available from Amazon and other retailers starting next week.

PR Newswire - BLU Products Expands Studio Series Lineup

MIAMI, May 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- BLU Products, one of the fastest growing mobile phone manufacturers in the world announced additions to their popular Studio Series Lineup of smartphone devices. The Studio label designates a large screen device with great battery life, including the foremost features and user experience available at each price point. The increased focus by BLU on large screen devices is due to the mounting demand by consumers for a spectacular viewing experience on their devices at entry level price points.

"We've gotten to a point where, for a large part of our customer base, nothing short of a 5.0-inch screen is acceptable – it's becoming the mainstream," said Samuel Ohev-Zion, CEO of BLU Products. "Still, these devices haven't been affordable. It's embarrassing to see the tiny, low resolution displays that traditional manufacturers are offering at entry level price points. It's been a major turn off for a consumers looking to upgrade to a smartphone, sometimes, for the first time. We believe the Studio Series will accelerate smartphone adoption in prepaid markets in the US and Latin America by offering the best possible value and user experience available in the market today."

The New Studio Series, all featuring Dual-SIM capability, and powered by Android Jelly Bean v4.1 are now under production with deliveries starting this week. The devices will be available unlocked at major online retailers such as Amazon.com, as well as several Pre-Paid Dealers and Agents in the US. Immediately following the US launch, the New Studio Series will be available throughout Latin America in over 30 countries, and several network operators.

Studio 5.0 S and Studio 5.3 S
New to the Studio Series, is the stunning "S" Line which provides industry leading display technology such as IPS (In Plane Switching) – allowing the user to enjoy the images on the screen from any viewing angle with the same color intensity and clarity, along with OGS (One Glass Solution) – eliminating the air gap between the touch lens and LCD, resulting in a thinner device, by bringing the display closer to the user for unmatched, visually stunning images on the screen, resulting in a high end user experience only found on flagship smartphone devices.

Also unique to the Studio "S" Line is the sleek design and unmatched premium build quality of the devices along with a slim profile at only 8.9mm for the Studio 5.0 S, and 9.2mm for the Studio 5.3S.

The Studio "S" Line is powered by a Qualcomm S4 Play Quad-Core 1.2 GHz CPU, with Adreno 203 GPU, combined with HSDPA 3G Connectivity, 8MP autofocus camera with LED flash plus 2MP frontal camera, 4GB Internal Memory upgradable to 32GB with external memory card slot, 1GB RAM, and either 5.0" qHD 540*960 display for the Studio 5.0S, or 5.3" qHD 540*960 display for the larger Studio 5.3 S.

Retail pricing for the Studio "S" Line is starting at $209.00 for the Studio 5.0S, and $229.00 for the Studio 5.3S.

Studio 5.0
Joining its bigger brother the Studio 5.3 II, which launched in February at $199.00 Retail, the Studio 5.0 is bringing new affordability never seen before for a large screen smartphone device, starting at just $149.00 Retail.

The Studio 5.0 is powered by a MediaTek MT6577 Dual-Core 1 GHz Cortex A9 CPU, with Power VR SGX531 GPU, combined with HSDPA 3G Connectivity, 5MP autofocus camera with LED flash plus VGA frontal camera, 4GB Internal Memory upgradable to 32GB with external memory card slot, 512MB RAM, and 5.0" WVGA 480*800 display.

Jeremiah Rice
Jeremiah is a US-based blogger who bought a Nexus One the day it came out and never looked back. In his spare time he watches Star Trek, cooks eggs, and completely fails to write novels.
  • http://twitter.com/Lirodon Lirodon

    Are these companies afraid to use on-screen buttons

    • Dimitri Smith

      I'm glad they don't.
      Why you need them on-screen?
      You lose a lot of pixels that way. look at my big 5 inch screen, oh no wait... it's 4.5 with the buttons.

      • http://twitter.com/Lirodon Lirodon

        This is why apps can hide them when using full-screen video for instance

      • Neastws

        Capacitive buttons let you use the whole screen during normal use, but at 5" it can be a stretch to get to the buttons. Software buttons allow you to have less need to stretch while still utilizing the full screen for video, when you don't need to touch the screen. That's the trade off. As a Galaxy Nexus user, I also like the responsiveness - you get both visual and tactile feedback as to whether or not the touch was registered. The Galaxy S3's capacitive buttons are really easy to touch by accident, but that doesn't happen with software buttons.

        • Adrian

          fully agree with you on the accidental presses on the capacitive buttons. it annoys me on my xperia p....Its better on screen and having the option to toggle it on and off like in some huawei phones i've seen lately.

  • http://twitter.com/milerx Julio Reyes

    where we can buy this phones online?

    • Justin Winker

      Amazon is Blu's main retail outlet (unless they have brick-and-mortar locations, but I haven't found their products in stores in my area). They are based out of someplace in Florida, so they might also have local retailers that sell their products there.

    • Marsha Hill

      I bought a 5.0 blu phone 2 weeks ago at an independent TMobile store in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania. I am a grandmother, buyind an android for the first time. I like the big screen. It was easy to see. The store sold it to me for $400 plus a 2 year contract. Then I found the phone sells for $149. I took it back and they absolutely refused to make any changes. TMobile customer service were sympathetic, but couldn't help because it was an independent store. How would I know that? It looked just like a TMobile store. Anyway, TMobile helped me to get a Galaxy for just a little more. But I am still stuck with the contract--which TMobile doesn't even give any more. I have been had--not by Blu, but by the store.
      Anyone want to buy an almost new blu phone?

      • Sarah Fox-Weaver

        You should report this to your Consumer Protection Agency there. There is protection against this type of action. Every State has a Consumer Protection Agency. It is run by aan Attorney General in each State. Sorry for your loss but show this vendor that you want stand for unethical tactics.

      • Cage Killer

        Do you still have your blue I want it

  • Lekz

    The Studio 5.0 sounds great for my dad!

  • Jeff Hesser

    Why do these companies seldom cover the full spectrum of devices? Seems like they always start scaling towards the higher end but stop short of offering a device that could directly compete with the likes of a Nexus device. Do they just not feel it's worth trying to compete there without carrier support or is that supply chain just too maxed out by the big dogs?

    • http://twitter.com/misterE33 Mr E

      my initial guess is that they'd have to price their "no name" devices up there with the heavy hitters so it may not be worth it

    • ElfirBFG

      I'm pretty sure BLU has 2 or 3 devices that are high-end.

  • Jonathan Roman

    the whole qhd thing is a deal breaker. it looked horrible on the htc one s at 4.3 inches. itll be even worse at 5 or 5.3.

    • ElfirBFG

      qHD looks fine on a 4.3, it's ~256ppi for crying out loud.

      • Jonathan Roman

        yea it looks fine if its the best youve ever used. once you look at a gs3 or now a gs4 you cant go back.

  • Berend Jan van Bruggen

    looks like a samsung front and a HTC back taped together... To bad it does not have on screen buttons.

  • Dan

    Worst web site ever. Their site looks like something put together by a college design class. All glitz and little to now substance. Those phones don't even exist on their site.

    • hate dumb phucks

      your a dumb fuck... i sell them.....

      • toya

        Hi sir can u help my me with sending and receiving mms on my BLU 5.0?

  • GuilhermeMendes

    if they were 4.3" and 4.5" they would be perfect options. a lower resolution with such a good hardware means (theorically) a smooth experience as the need for poer is snaller than in high resolutions.

  • Nick Klenchik

    Considering buying one of these to put in my car for media and gps with a straighttalk or tmobile plan.

  • Reka

    Does the blue studio 5.0 support straight talk wireless?

    • Juanita Marie


      • Dee

        is the phone fully functional thru straight talk?

        • James

          only thing i havent been able to get working is MMS data and everything else works great i have BLU Studio 5.0 SII or somthing lol

          • James

            whoops let me clarify MMS only. Data(4g+) works and everything else

          • susan harris

            That is in your APN SETTINGS. Google your carriers settings.

      • kristi

        I cannot get my sim card for my straight talk phone to read at all.. But straight talk tells me its active

        • ME

          I'm having the same problem, help please.

  • robert

    I am excited to get mine, I just ordered a phone for my friend under my amazon account. I don't need all the extra things Galaxy note offers so to have a stock android is fine with me. But, one thing i will suggest if you do buy any Blu products then go connect it with Solavie, They are backboned by T-mobile no contract sim card. I used my galaxy note under them and great service from my understanding T-mobile signal works great with Blu products. But, go check them out I highly recommend them http://www.pay4lesswireless.com there plans is $49 Unlimited Talk Text Data 4G Nationwide no contract.. for gsm phones unlocked etc, so this is what I'm going to connect my friends phone with and mine when I get mine by the end of this month. I'm excited for half the price for android stock shoot can't get better than that.

    • Monsi Vais

      Did it work after all?

  • wilfredo rivera

    I received my Studio 5.0 and I love it. it works great. The only thing I have an issue with is the Ram. looking to try to Root and Swap memory.

  • meko

    The phone is OKAY! But i hate this is keyboard its kind of like a broke down cricket phone or a phone from walmart because its slow && the keyboards letters are to far apart and their boxed but i guess its because im so used to the galaxy high speed && great texting features ......if you guys really wanna challenge other companies you should get a better keyboard with emogi like the iPhone but the screen is great....oh and wen i try to highlight and copy txt from the internet the little highligher tabs wont highlight the right section it always just disappears. IF YOU HAD OR HAVE A GALAXY PHONE YOU WILL HATE THE BLU because its like your down grading to a phone with no update ....the phone it cheap but not worth giving up a galaxy or iPhone for i guess its like they tried to hurry and put it together

  • reeseman

    i need to get my screen fix where do i go

    • Kerri

      Having the same problem, did u manage getting it fixed? Someone reply!

  • designed in M made in C

    I can't believe !!! I called the customer service about 5.0 has some issues like Skype doesn't work .I have told an update is coming by the end of this month.but whatever. only a piece of crab made in PRC. Even their website looks a blog .nothing much to read or talk about the customers complains. Designed in M made in C.whatever

  • Erin

    can the Blu studio 5.0 s play 3D games on it

  • curious2no

    Has anyone found a protective case for the BLU 5.0 other than the thin gel case it comes with?

    • Upstream

      Any case found as yet

    • frankie


    • Budderfly

      Yes, eBay and Amazon have a nice selection of cases and screen protectors.. Hope this helps...

    • Dwayne Shields

      Nope been looking for the past month the only ones is the wallet ones or cover cases with styles



    • tiara

      No. I have been looking everywhere I have the blue 5.0 mega and all I found was the gel cases.

    • dklucifer

      look up armor in amazon for studio only

  • Daniel

    What's the difference between the 5.3 II and the 5.3 S?

  • brenda

    My blu 5.0 studio phone will not connect to my Bluetooth in my car....can anyone help with this problem

  • kapito

    does studio 5.0 support Skype and yahoo messenger

  • james

    does it suporrt the 4glte sim cards that straight talk offers?

  • Rick

    It's great to see a company coming out with decent technology at a fair price to compete with the big players and their overpriced devices! Go Blu!

    Is there a marketing document or high level side by side table that lays out the differences between their various series (i.e. whats the difference between the dash and the studio and the Vivo and the Life series phones? Why would you buy one series over the other?, etc..).

  • brilopez

    Can you connect blu studio 5.0 to cricket

  • The Hater…Hater!!

    I just bought the 5.0 mega dual sim.. It is just like a galaxy.. Maybe better. Fast. And great price. Huge screen and great customizing. I give it 5 stars.. I have had a G1, G2, G3.. As good as them all

  • Priscilla Mitchell

    How do I get the wi-fi to work on the studio 5.0 ii? I got the t-mobile service that is suppose to be unlimited talk n text n 500mb data at 4g speed then it downgrades to 3g. But I only had the phone 2 days n I have wi-fi at home n havebeen home the entire time with the phone

    • Priscilla Mitchell

      Now all of my data is used up. I have the wifi on and setup on the phone but it isnt working. Please help. Considering straight talk for my phone. Will that work better?

  • hillary rivera

    does any one know if i can down load a swipe to my phone or how to do a swipe also i know how to do a screen shot !! hold the volume low button with the power button !!!!

    • Devo

      Google keyboard will gives you swype. By far the best version I've used and its not a trial version.

    • Jeffery Reaves

      Google Play store. I use touch xl

  • Henry J’s

    How do I get the data usage to work?:? ? It's on 3G but it does not connect to the internet'

    • lisa

      I am having the same issue. Can't find any answers and I travel a lot so I need to be connected.

      • Edweirdness

        Go to settings, more, mobile networks, access point names. If is shows phone & some sort of .mvno (i.e. att.mvno), select that. The subsequent drop down is where you will set up your service providers Access point information. You'll have to contact the carrier (i.e. Red pocket, T-Mobile, AT&T etc,,,,) or visit their website to get the information you'll need to set up the correct access point for Internet connection over the Wireless phone carrier plan that you have. The Wifi connection to local wireless routers just requires that you turn it on, select the closest or strongest signal, put in a password if required, and connect to the Internet.

  • shawn

    Can anybody tell me how your setting suppose to be so I can send out multimedia messages

  • dee

    How doI transfer my apps to the memory card on the Blu 5.0 studio ?

  • Budderfly

    I see that one of the questions were... Does this phone work with Straight talk. Answered yes. Straight talk has a activation kit and it has an AT&T SIM card and a T mobile I think. Which one should I use??

  • Nu2blu

    Does anyone have the unlock code for the studio 5.0 II

  • Nu2blu

    Does anyone have the unlock code for the studio 5.0 II

  • kevin gaspard

    Dose anyone know how to flash it . I formatted the main memory in download mode a



  • Leyia

    I can't figure out how to screen shot on my BLU 5.0. Can anyone help?

    • Robert Livingstone

      Volume down and power button at same time and hold tell you see the screen shot.

  • rosa lopez

    Why doesn't my blu studio 5.0 ii read my metro pcs sim card ?

  • me

    I like to swap do it have swapping

  • Shantel

    How u send pics out on this phone can someone please tell me

  • asylum431

    Do you have to get two cards or just one for T-Mobile

  • Brian Shurr

    What is the APN settings for straight talk and BLU Studio 5.0 E D530e. Also, I am having issues with APN's saving.

  • bobbi

    Plz help I can't get the play store to established to the internet..what can I do

  • k.nicole

    I can send pic messages but cannot revieve help please?k.nicole

  • hybee

    i cant connect wi fi with this phone. it keeps given me authentication problem

  • Rebecca Ann

    Where can I find blu 5.3 studio cases for d 590a

  • Rebecca Ann

    I've had this phone over 2 yrs now n still can't find cases

  • John Thompson

    Does anyone know where I can get a decent car for the Blu Studio 5.0e?

  • marteb3

    I'm having some trouble getting the SD card to work? Any advice?

  • Lisatnash

    I recently bought a Blu studio 5.0e & can't seem to find a suitable case specific for it. What other cases can be used to substitute for it?

  • Hayley

    Do these phones work on cricket service?

    • Monsi Vais

      I would also like to know I have a studio 5.5

  • Dami

    My phone keep going into a mode like there is no network available & in order for me to make a call it keeps prompting me to untick Airplane mode although the phone is not currently set for Airplane mode. But when I adapt Airplane mode & remove it then the phone network indicator comes back on. But as soon as I make a call it go back to a state where there is no network.

  • kat

    I have the new blu 5.5 dotes anyone know how todo screenshot with it?

    • Jeffery Reaves

      Hold the right button and bottom left button at the same time

    • sonicmoon

      press the power button and volume down button simultaneously

      • Mz.NaeNae

        Thanks Cuz I Have The Blu 5.0 Meqa And I Been Wonderinq How To Screenshot For The Past 3-4 Days And Now I Tried It And Its Works ....

  • kat

    I have the new blu 5.5 does anyone know how to screenshot with it?

  • Tonya

    Has anyone else had their blue hang up on people?

  • jenn

    Why when I call customer service I'm put on hold and no one ever answers????

  • destiny fitzgerald

    I just got a blu yesterday and now today it wont even turn on... i put it on the charge it doesnt even take it... how do i go about fixing this problem or getting a refund im not happy wit this product ...

  • bishwas

    is this is available in nepal also???

  • confused

    I have the Blue Studio 5.5 S and I can't get my Bluetooth to work, it did before, does anyone know what imvdoing wrong?

    • Torb

      Just got off phone w BLU tech support. BLU 5.5 has a Bluetooth glitch. Engineers are working on it but no work-arounds at this time. I'm bummed & will be returning my new phone.

  • Mz.NaeNae

    Can The Blu Meqa 5.0 Send Rinqtones Or Whatever...... And Why I Dnt Have A Music Player Where Im Able To Send Rinqtones Like My Galaxy 3 Can Anybody Help Me!!!

  • Aquarius

    I have the 5.0 and the bottom of the phone where the back button and home screen is blanking can any body tell me what wrong?

  • Aquarius

    What is the best app to get the speaker on this blue phone 5.0 to sound loud???

  • CJ


  • CJ

    I have a blu studio 5.5

  • Tracey Piolet

    I dropped my phone in the house. Now if i calI someone i can hear them but they cant hear me unless i have my head phones in. Please help

  • Ashlee

    does ANYONE know how to turn off the light on the BACK of the 5.0 phone? It turned its self on and I cant figure out how to turn it off. It killed my battery after 20 minutes? Please anyone?

    • Corey Flanigan

      go to apps. "Flashlight" , then turn it off.

  • Raihaana

    My husband bought a BLU 5.0 II today and everything works great on wifi like skype and whatsapp but when he turns on the mobile data and turns off the wifi nothing works no messages go thru on whatsapp and he can't make any skype calls. I would really appreciate any help anyone can give us. Thanks

    • Monsi Vais

      What service are u with? Some ppl have been saying their Fone doesn't work and their cricket or straight talk network.

  • tasha

    I can't get my pictures if I take out my SD card my pictures disappear

  • Will

    Does the BLU Studio 5.0 support t-moble family mobile from Walmart? It was working at first then I took the sim card out and put it back in and it wouldn't work. The phone says it has not sim card. It's not reading it now, why?

  • mae

    my phone will not let me set a net work or go in play store i am straight talk wireless

  • Naky

    Can someone tell me how to connect my blu studio 5.0 to my wifi as it keeps saying authentication problem when i enter the password and try to connect.

  • Emerald

    Simply put... The best phone out there for the price! Flawless! Very happy!

  • juani

    I can't open pictures received via e-mail, nor can I sen pictures. Please advise what to do. Thanks'

  • sharon

    I added a new 32gb memory card in my 5.3s and its not working . It lost all my apps I had on the phone, but when try to redownload, its saying insufficient space..what do I do

  • sara

    Where can I get the glass part of the screen fixed? And around how much mite it possibly run?