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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Review: Android One Smart Phones - Micromax Canvas A1 - Big Deal in small Price


The Android One devices is finally here that too exclusively for India. In this particular segment we shall share the review of Micromax Canvas A1, one of the three smartphones launched by Indian manufacturers on the new Google platform. Here is what we thought of the new phone.
The Android One Phones
Getting to know about Android One – Canvas A1
We must say big things comes in small packages but at small prices too? Yes, indeed. Google™ in smart move and in line to one of its key experimentation to reach out to masses in Indian subcontinent had build a smartphone that will fit everybody’s pocked by looping in 3 major Indian cellphone makers viz. Micromax, Karbonn & Spice.

Looking at the quick specs: The phone features a 4.5-inch (854x480p, 218ppi) capacitive touch screen powered by Mediatek 1.3 GHz quad core processor. The cellphone is boosted by1GB RAM and in term of geometry its about 134mm height, 68mm width, 9.3mm depth and 140g weight. It is also a video delight by bearing a 2MP front and 5MP rear camera. The storage isn’t bad at all i.e. 4GB internal memory with 32GB expandable slot. You can connect with Wifi 802.11 b/g/n, 3G and all is being energized by powerful 1700 mAh  battery. All this comes at an incredible price of Rs 6,499. #WowFactor

Build & Quality
Design:  A1 looks quite similar to other Micromax android phones in the same price bracket. The big difference one would notice is around around the camera, a brushed metal right that looks quite intriguing. An Android One logo towards the lower end of the rear flap adds an additional charm though the phone is slim in a sturdy sort of way and but is on the heavier side.
It is thinner than the new Moto G for sure.
The Impressive Specs - Hardware and Power of Android One
Display:  The 854x480p IPS display is not impressive especially at this price though the colours are vibrant and the icons are quite sharp. Reading is not at all an issue. The screen has good viewing angles and quite user friendly in sunlight too. But we believe overall quality should have been better.

Performance: We are pleased to inform that the hardware and software gels perfectly well on this device. Flipping through the home screen, the open new apps or switch from one to another which is remarkable.

Software & OS: The OS is the purest form of Android Kitkat out of the box and since it is backed by Android One project all these devices will receive OTA updates like on Nexus which will give them edge over other phones on using Beta versions of new Android upgrades. Google Maps loads really fast and voice recognition also worked really well. One big difference in comparison to other Android phones is the Google Camera which replaces the native clicker. But you can start using it only when you have an SD card inserted. All photos are also backed up to Google Photos by default. All the apps on other hands can be downloaded from Google App-store. Google had tied up with Airtel in India for free Apps Downloads on limited plans.

OTA Updates to keep your Android One devices upto date
Storage: The phone comes with inbuilt 4GB internal memory. The brand new out-of-the-box phone had 2GB available for use. It would be a good idea to invest on a 8GB card to start with which is expandable upto 32 GB as well.

Camera: The native Google Camera app is something that sets this phone apart. The camera results are nice, but it could have been better. Interestingly there is no gallery app and just Google photos can make it a more confusing. The photo folder in device is missing and you will need SD card for the camera to even start working and clicking picture for you.

Connectivity: 3G & Wifi enabled phone worked perfected well even where signal strength were low. We were pleased with the same.

General Observation & Verdict
The Micromax Canvas A1 and the entire Android One experience it offers is very enriching. At this price range it is a steal deal if you are not concerned about display and PPI index. For novice users, students & not so tech-savy people it can be a game changer for sure.

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