Nowhere near as successful as domestic rivals Huawei, OPPO, Vivo, Xiaomi or even Meizu in selling relatively affordable Android-based smartphones, China’s Meitu managed to raise over $600 million in a December IPO mainly on selfie-centric software strengths.

Undeterred by recent data privacy controversy, the company continues to target mobile device users obsessed with themselves, unveiling and commercially releasing possibly the world’s best ever selfie smartphone.

Available online for Meitu’s hardcore Chinese fanbase at the equivalent of $480 (RMB 3,299), and only headed to Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan next, the T8 features a stellar 12MP front-facing camera that many Western-popular high-enders would be lucky to integrate at their back.

With dual pixel technology in tow (you know, the kind Galaxy S7’s “main” snapper offers), optical image stabilization, autofocus and noise-reducing ISP, the selfie shooter on the Meitu T8 sure sounds special. But it’s actually a super-advanced AI-powered beautification engine that the OEM bills as the key selling point here, aiming to intuitively and naturally retouch your self-portraits like no other.

The rear-facing cam isn’t half bad either, with a 21MP sensor and its own set of proprietary enhancements, while the Meitu T8 of course runs a homebrewed MEIOS3.5 platform loosely based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow.

The unique (read quirky) hexagonal form factor should also help the 5.2-incher stand out, with the rest of the specs looking decent but far from superlative on paper: Full HD screen resolution, deca-core Helio X processor, 4GB RAM, 128GB internal storage, 3580mAh fast-charging battery.

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