Moto G Turbo Edition vs 3rd Gen

Motorola has launched the Moto G Turbo Edition in India. The Turbo is a major boost from the Moto G 3rd Generation in terms of processor. The Moto G Turbo is powered by a 1.5GHz Octa-Core 64-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 processor with Adreno 405 GPU. Also it has the same 2470 mAh battery as Moto G3, but the Turbo comes with Turbo charging capability. The Turbo edition comes with the Moto Turbo charger which can give the mobile 6 hours of battery life in just 15 minutes, as claimed by Motorola. The rest of the features are all same at the Moto G3 and you can check it out in the spec table below.

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It is available exclusively in Flipkart and you can buy it here.

 

Panasonic Eluga Mark lauched for Rs 11990

Panasonic has launched Eluga Mark smartphone in India for Rs 11990. The Eluga Mark is promoted as a secure device with its fingerprint protected security features. The device can be configured to recognize and unlock with upto 8 finger prints. The secure environment in the mobile can protect personal account data and data in cloud. It runs on Android 5.1 and is powered by a 1.5 GHz Octa Core Qualcomm snapdragon 615 processor. It has 2 GB or RAM and 16 GB of internal storage. The device supports microSD cards of upto 32 GB. It has a 2500 mAh battery and can support dual SIM on 4G networks. The Eluga Mark has a 5.5 inch display and on the camera department, it has a 13MP rear camera with LED flash and 5 MP camera on the front.

Panasonic Eluga

Here are the specifications of Panasonic Eluga Mark

Dimensions 152 x 77 x 8.2 mm
SIM Dual SIM
Display 5.5″ IPS HD (1280×720) pixels
CPU 1.5 GHz Octa Core  Qualcomm snapdragon 615
Card slot microSD, up to 32 GB
Internal 16 GB, 2 GB RAM
Camera 13 MP with  LED flash
Secondary Camera 5 MP
Battery 2500 mAh battery

The device is priced at Rs 11990 and it adds to the Panasonic’s portfolio in the Eluga Series. It is a mid range device and at this price and similar specifications, there are many mobiles available. It is the most competitive segment in the mobile Industry. Xiaomi Mi4i, Obi Worldphone SF1 16GB, Coolpad Note 3, Motorola G3, Lenovo K3 Note are just a few mobiles that comes to my mind in this segment. All these mobiles have proved to be a champion seller for the manufactures. Now Eluga Mark has to make its mark in the segment with a killer feature or experience. So let’s wait and see if we get a review unit to test and until then, I’ll reserve my judgement.

Unboxing and First Impressions: Lenovo Vibe S1

I must say that Lenovo is on the roll this year. It all started with the success of the Lenovo A6000 and ever since Lenovo has launched dozens of mobile in India. The K3 Note was another success story for Lenovo. As much as the A series, the Vibe series has not been able to penetrate the market in volumes. Lenovo now aims to break that jinx with the new mobile: The Lenovo Vibe S1. Predominantly the Vibe series has been more about design and the S1 boasts design excellence all over. The S1 has a curved glass back with aluminium metal alloy rims. The curved glass seamlessly merges to the metal parts of the body and the design makes it look easy, but in reality, it has been a great technical challenge for Lenovo. The S1 is made for the selfie lovers. It has dual front facing cameras. There is an 8 MP camera and a 2 MP camera.  The 8 MP sensor is the one which shoots the picture, while the 2 MP sensor measures the depth of focus. With the resultant image, you can do a bunch of crazy tricks. You can blur the background for a great looking selfie or you can totally cut your selfie out and place it in another other image of your choice.

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On the front along with the dual camera, you would find the ear piece and sensors. The display is 5 inch IPS LCD panel capable of FULL HD resolution. The menu keys are not backlit. At the bottom you have the single speaker, but dual speaker grills flaunting the micro USB socket. At the top you have the 3.5 mm audio jack and a noise cancelling mic. The volume and power buttons are at the right. They are made of metal and have good tactile feedback. The SIM tray is on the left. It is a hybrid tray that takes in 2 nano SIM or 1 nano SIM and a microSD card.

 

As usual, Lenovo has packaged a screen guard and a transparent hard back case along with the box. It is only of nicest looking device I have seen this year. The design is sleek and looks premium and stylish. The front view of the mobile is boring and does not attract much attention, but the curved glass back gives it a nice style presence, and it is very slippery. The white color does not show fingerprint smudges, but the dark blue variant shows smudges all over.

Specifications of the Lenovo Vibe S1

Specifications
Lenovo Vibe S1
Dimensions 143.3 x 70.8 x 7.8 mm
Weight 132 grams
SIM Dual SIM (Nano-SIM)
Display Size 5.0 inches with 1080 x 1920 pixels (~441 ppi )
Protection Corning Gorilla Glass 3
OS Android OS, v5.0 (Lollipop)
Chipset Mediatek MT6752
CPU Octa-core 1.7 GHz
Memory Card microSD, up to 128 GB
Internal Memory 32 GB
RAM 3 GB
Primary Camera 13 MP, dual-LED (dual tone) flash
Secondary Camera 8 MP & 2 MP
Battery  Li-Po 2500 mAh battery
Price  Rs 15999

I have been using the mobile for a few days now and yet to arrive at a conclusion on this device. The UI is Lenovo Vibe UI running on top of Android Lollipop. The UI has no lags and is very smooth. This is the same UI which we have seen in the other Lenovo devices. The display is also very responsive. The camera UI looks the same as other lenovo device, but it has certain features specific to the Vibe S1. The front camera UI has a switch to toggle between single and dual cam. The primary camera’s UI looks familiar but has only panoroma mode along with the auto mode. The manual mode is not present, like we saw in the Vibe Shot.

Benchmark score
Antutu 45650
Basemark X 13887
Velomo Multicore 1417
Velomo Metal 1071
Basemark OS 967
Quadrant 15298
Geekbench Single  811
Geekbench Multicore  4135

Check my detailed review at GadgetDetail.com. At Rs 15999 is it pitted directly against OnePlus X. In my opinion the Vibe S1 has got good design and decent specifications. Do let me know if you have any queries on the Vibe S1 and I will address it in the detailed review. It will be available from Amazon India, exclusively.

Xiaomi Mi 4i 16GB now available for Rs. 11999 in India

Xiaomi launched the Mi4i smartphone in India back in April for Rs. 12,999. Today, the company, announced first permanent price cut for the this smartphone. The phone, which launched at a price of Rs 12,999, will be now available for Rs 11,999. The Mi4i will be available from Mi.com/in at this new price starting from 00:00hrs on 18th November 2015, as well as across all Mi India partners including Flipkart, Amazon, Snapdeal, The Mobile Store and Airtel.

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To remind you, it has a 5 inch Full HD display. It is powered by an Octa Core Snadpragon 615 processor and runs on MIUI v6 on top of Android 5.0 . It has a 13 megapixel rear camera and a 5 megapixel front facing camera.

Xiaomi Mi4i Specs

  • Display : 5 inch Full HD
  • Processor : Octa Core Qualcomm Snapdragon 615
  • Storage : 2GB RAM with 16GB internal memory
  • OS : Android 5.0
  • Rear Camera : 13MP
  • Front Camera : 5MP
  • Battery : 3120mAh

If you need to check if the Mi4i is the right mobile for you, you can check our review here and also you can check the detailed review on the camera here. It has got an excellent camera like most other Xiaomi devices. Buyers who are looking to buy a sub 10k mobile may not extend and get the Mi4i, but if you are specifically looking to buy the Mi4i, you will be more than happy on this price cut. There is no price cut on the 32 GB variant as of now. Xiaomi has done price cuts in the past with Mi4 and Redmi Note, but more than the price cuts we would be happy if Xiaomi bring in the rest of the cavalry into India.

Xiaomi has also recently introduced “Mi Protect” insurance plans for its devices in India. The Mi Protect service will be available for those Xiaomi phones and tablets only which are purchased from Mi.com/in. The Mi Protect plans will be covering accidental and liquid damage caused to the device. The Mi Protect plan will come with other features like 24×7 call centre support for the subscribers to report damages, free pick-up and drop-off services, 1GB of  cloud storage feature, SIM misuse insurance cover of up to Rs 3,000, one call to block SIM from anywhere in the
world. The buyers will also be getting the second servicing for free within one year of activation.

The insurance plans are starting from Rs. 275 for Redmi 2 and  Redmi 2 Prime , while its Rs. 499 for devices like Xiaomi Mi 4i , Mi Pad and the Mi 4 16GB . The Full pricing plans and terms and conditions can be checked from company’s official website. So with an additional Rs 499, the Mi4i deal just got sweeter!

Swipe Elite Review

Swipe Elite is an entry level mobile from Indian based startup called Swipe Technologies. Swipe has a huge market share in the tablets market in India. The Swipe Elite mobile is not about hardware, but its all about the user experience. Its been a while since I have been handling the Swipe Elite and here are my thoughts.

Design

The Mobile is a 5 inch device. It has a matte finish at the back and smooth rounded corners. It is very comfortable to hold. It is made of plastic and it does not spell premium when it comes to build quality. It does not feel cheap either. The back panel is removable and though it is flimsy, when it is fitted back in the mobile, it fits snugly. The right side has volume and power button made of plastic. The top has the 3.5mm audio socket and a microUSB socket. The mic is at the bottom. The 13 MP camera is at the back assisted by a single LED flash. The 5 inch display takes over most of the front apart from the 8MP sefie camera, sensors, earpiece and non-backlit android keys. Overall, the build quality is decent and the design is very minimal. Nothing fancy here, so lets move on.

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Box Contents – Mobile, Battery, USB cable, 1000 ma charger, in ear headphone, manual and warranty card.

Hardware and Performance

The Swipe Elite is powered by a quad core MediaTek processor clocked at 1.3 Ghz. It has 2 GB of RAM and a Mali processor for GPU. It has an internal storage of 16 GB and expandable by upto 32 GB with microSD card.  It supports USB OTG. It has a 13 MP camera at the back and a 8 MP camera on the front. While the specifications do not sound exciting, this device does surprise you with its performance. The smooth performance of this device is attributed to its customized Android UI. It was able to run the graphic intensive games smoothly with very minimal lag or frame drop. It does not get heated up beyond 42 degree after 30 minutes of continuous gaming. While the graphics and the performance is not the best we have seen, it definitely has a surprising potential at the price band of around Rs 6000.

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Display

The Swipe Elite has a 720p HD display. The screen if 5 inch diagonally. It is not the best display out there in this price range. The text is not crisp. When you play full HD content, you would find it pleasing, but with 720p or lower resolution video, the quality suffers as there is dithering around the edges. Also direct sun light readability is pretty bad. The screen is responsive and smooth. It comes with a sub-standard screen protector already applied on it. I suggest getting a better protection for the display. I haven’t removed the screen protector on my mobile and that maybe the reason for loss of quality.

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Camera

The Swipe Elite has a 13 MP sensor at the back and its assisted by a single LED flash. The camera is also capable of recording video at 1080p resolution with 30 fps. The front facing camera is an 8 MP sensor. The image quality from the rear facing camera is decent. The color reproduction is natural. The focusing is slow and randomly accurate. The images have a bit of grainy noise when the light levels drop a bit. But on daylight, its clean though not crystal clear. The front facing camera is surprisingly good for selfies. The camera application is straight forward and is easy to use. Check out these sample shots.

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Selfie camera
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Shot in a completely dark room with flash on
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Focusing in inaccurate
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very sharp details on daylight shots
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colors are natural
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HDR mode is subtle and pleasantly natural
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Focusing is erroneous
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Good depth of field
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Depth of field is good. Details and color levels at daylight is good.

Freedom OS

Swipe Elite is the first mobile from Swipe Technologies to run on Freedom OS. Freedom OS 1.1. has a bunch of features and a few of those features are innovative. The Swipe Elite runs on Android 5.0.2 with Freedom OS skinned on top. Freedom OS has loads of customization features built into it. After MIUI, this is the ROM which I am experiencing, that gives so much importance to customization. The customization on Freedom OS, is not just skin deep, it penetrates to features. Much of the customization is on the dialer, contacts application. The dialer can be  customized with different colors and themes based on user preferences. The tabs on the dialer app can be rearranged or removed. User can now switch between list view or card view for contacts. The dialer pad can be optimized for one handed operation. Freedom OS also offers a huge list of gesture based controls. It also offers offline password recovery to help you recover a forgotten password on the mobile, even if the mobile is not connected to the Internet.

Location based search hints
Location based search hints

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more customization
more customization

Screenshot_2015-10-12-11-38-02 Screenshot_2015-01-02-07-17-52

To me the Swipe Elite is a beginning of a larger vision. The UI is very ambitious and highly functional. I feel that it has so many options that the user will have fun just by fiddling with the settings. Also the overall experience is still pure Android. The features that have been added by Freedom OS, sits on top and functions parallel to  native android applications, without hampering the experience in anyway. If you are a person, who don’t like to customize, you still have your traditional pure Android in the mobile. Mr Shripal Gandhi, Founder of Swipe Technologies, mentioned that Swipe has no immediate plans of making the Freedom OS available for other mobiles, but if that is what the market likes, they are still open to the idea.

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Battery

The mobile is powered by a 2500 mAh battery and it comes with a regular 1000 mA charger. The battery gets charged from 10 to 100% in less than 1.5 hours. On 3G network and normal usage, the mobile lasts for little over 24-25 hours.

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Verdict

The Swipe Elite is different from the average entry level mobiles you get. It emphasizes a lot on the UI and the user experience. It also has a decent set of specifications. It is a good mobile and I have been using it as my standby for the past few weeks. The UI is stable and the battery is reliable. Swipe Elite retails at Rs 5999 and is available exclusively on Flipkart.