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BW Businessworld

Money-wise, Feature Heavy

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Lenovo P780
Rs 19,999
Ask some people what they want most in a phone and they’ll say – battery life. Can’t blame them, for those who are focused on communication and only want other smart functions to play second fiddle, are hard put to find a phone today that will satisfy them with enough battery life.  The Lenovo P780 is built for battery. It’s a business-like looking phone, with metal-plus-textured-plastic making for an appearance that is handsome, though not necessarily cool. It’s clearly a look that will appeal to working professionals rather than the hip youth, who want something snazzy. 
 
But it has a whopper of a battery — 4,000 mAh should be enough on any smartphone. There’s also an app that lets you choose your usage pattern, so you can stretch the battery life further. If you are not busy draining out the battery with videos and gaming, this should last a couple of days for sure. 
 
The battery is, of course, a weight unto itself, but the phone is overall not at all prohibitively heavy. I’ve seen others this size that are heavier. The P780 has a very nice 5-inch display, with a 780 x 1280 resolution, while some have moved on to full HD. Colours are beautiful, images and text clear and viewing angles are fine. The cameras are 8 MP and 0.3 MP and not particularly good. The device is powered by a 1.2 GHz quad-core Mediatek processor with 1 GB RAM and 4 GB storage.

It runs on Android 4.2.1 and works quite fast and smooth. It’s overall a standard Android phone with a few touches from Lenovo and no heavy overlay of annoying interfaces. It also offers a dual sim.
 
Lemon Aspire A4
Rs 17,999
It's companies like lemon Mobiles and more so Micromax, Karbonn and Lava that are giving the phone bigwigs a run for their money. Not only do they eat up the lower end of the market, they’re now showing that they can make smartphones with hefty specs too. 
 
Lemon has come up with an Aspire A1 and Aspire A4 (the one we look at today) in the 5-inch space. A1 even has a stylus. 
 
The Aspire A4 may be 5 inches but it doesn’t feel oversized or heavy. It has a nice back, fingerprint resistant and is nicely done, but the metallic-looking strip along the sides doesn’t quite have the“finish” that one associates with worthwhile products. The power button on this device is also a bit recessed and not easy to get to by pure feel. 
 
But the smartphone comes into its own when you turn on the screen. The default animated wallpaper is quite quirky — showing off the 1920 x 1080 full-HD screen in all its colourful glory. The image revolves when you move across screens and I was so childishly delighted with this I kept everything else off the home screens. 
 
The A4 doesn’t just stop at a great screen. This fairly fast phone runs Android 4.2 on a 1.2 GHz quad core processor with 1 GB of RAM. The cameras are 13 MP and 5 MP — but perform averagely. There are a lot of Lemon apps on the device. The battery is an 1850 mAh, which may be a tad too little for a device you’re going to like seeing the screen of.
 
Wammy Passion Z+
Rs 15,990
The 5-inch phone that goes by the unlikely name of Wammy Passion Z+ came to the market a while ago with an upgrade to the earlier Passion Z, and with a bunch of advantages. First, it’s got an obvious nice build. It’s a slab, say, reminiscent of some of the Sony devices, but has a look and feel to it. Slightly rounded corners and smooth sides make it easy to hold. That, and the fact that it isn’t too wide to sit in the palm of your hand. The back is smooth plastic and doesn’t need to pretend to be anything else as it doesn’t look cheap. It’s in black and white. The back panel opens to let you get at the 2500 mAh battery as it sits inside neat interiors. 
 
Power this device up from the button on the right, designed neatly into the body, and you’ll find a pretty nice screen, one of the early full HD IPS 1080 x 1920 ones. Viewing angles are not bad. Sound is a fraction low, but not disappointing. Surprisingly, it has a good 13 MP camera, not half as noisy as some seen on more expensive and well-known brands. It shows quite a bit of sharp detail, even inside. The front camera is a 2 MP.  Running it all — and Jelly Bean Android 4.2 — is a MediaTek 1.5 GHz MT6589T quad-core processor. There’s 1 GB of RAM and sadly about as much storage space because that’s what’s available of the 4 GB on board. You can add a memory card and expand the storage, but it’s the apps that need the space on a device. The phone performs smoothly and is fast enough and offers dual-sim — all offered for a fair price. A reminder that Micromax is by no means the only company that offers value-for-money phones.  

(This story was published in BW | Businessworld Issue Dated 16-12-2013)