It's been almost three years since we saw our first taste of the Meizu M8, which was at that point a fairly shameless rip of the iPhone, albeit mostly theoretical. In the ensuing years we've seen an ever-changing OS and two generations of hardware, but we might be finally coming upon something worth lusting after. The new M8 Firmware 1.0.0.1 beta has been demo'd on video, and seems to be taking some new cues from Android and Windows Mobile -- along with some original and sexy UI elements of Meizu's own devising -- that really set it apart from its iPhone-aping days of yore. We're particularly fond of the unlock screen, which has three icons at the bottom that can be swiped-up like an Android app drawer, but with quick access to phone and messages, similar to how Windows Mobile 6.5 can be unlocked into multiple modes. Apparently the OS is only 50% ready, and there's no telling how many changes we might see between now and when it's finished, but for now we're fairly impressed. Video is after the break.

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New Meizu M8 beta firmware looking desirable, bordering on original