Over the years, smartphone manufactures have become increasingly deft at replicating flagship spec-sheets and highlighted features, but they often end up compromising on aspects which don’t draw immediate consumer attention. Here we point out some common mistakes that are often repeated and hamper consumer experience. The ones you should be wary of when you buy your next phone.
Blue display tint
Though display resolutions and PPI counts are bursting off the roof, the display quality for budget Android phones remains highly neglected. Since first timers can’t put a finger on what’s wrong, and because display colors, temperatures and contrast still qualify as ‘merely a matter of getting used to’, manufacturers aren’t very inclined to work on properly calibrated displays.
A particular problem, which you cannot ignore once you notice it, is Blue tinted whites. This excess of Blue not only looks cheap but also is very harsh on your eyes (particularly for night time reading). If you are used to the bluish tints, normal whites will initially feel yellow, but worry not, that is the way it’s supposed to be. And it’s not an unreasonable demand from low-cost phones. Moto E last year was evidence enough.
Rear facing speakers
Absolutely the worst place to put speakers on a phone is on the rear side. The sound does get muffled, irrespective of that tine lip or curved edge adjacent to it. Luckily, there are more than a handful of options with speaker grills on the bottom or at the front even for under 10,000 INR.
Somehow Stock Android never loses its charm. Maybe because the latest flavour is always elusive, expected, unavailable or about to be the second latest one. But anyways. Unaltered stock Android is always a fair deal as far as UI design goes. (Preloaded apps could be a bonus, since internet speeds and accessibility can be a huge pain at times)
What is totally unpalatable is a half-hearted effort where OEMs change default Icons; or the default launcher; and add a few Widgets/advertisements on the home screen. Except for a couple of exceptions, domestic manufacturers never invested in custom UI’s and thus affordable smartphones from such brands are where we often come across such blasphemy. A word of advice: It’s better to opt for the stock aesthetics instead, even at the expense of bootless ‘uniqueness’.
List of sensors used doesn’t always glitter on a spec-sheet and often this is where your budget phone betrays you. Lack of basic sensors like Magnetometer and Gyroscope can hamper your smartphone experience. Most handsets in this budget are missing a basic Gyroscope and that manifests as poor game play, or as missing support for basic VR gear like Google Cardboard.
Poor call quality
The most basic functionality of a handset which everyone needs is calling. Unfortunately, most complaints we hear for budget phones is regarding poor call quality and call drops. Now, this could very well be an issue with your telecom service provider, but as far as our experience goes, more often than not Smartphones too share the blame. Improper antenna bands and low speaker volume can be an absolute deal breaker, but you can’t judge that from a spec-sheet.
All glitches mentioned above are ones which can be easily avoided. Budget Smartphone camera’s are also largely imperfect, but that is an understandable constraint at budget price. If you have any questions or more to add to the story, hit the comment section below.