The Smartphone busines may have been booming off late, but the devices with their respective technologies have gone a long way from being just feature phones of the past to smartphones of the present day.
We are currently in an age where the smartphones are coming in all shapes and sorts from a host of manufacturers from different parts of the planet. While there's a major American presence with the likes of Motorola and Apple, South Korea-based makers Samsung and LG have also become quite the household names.
And now with more and more smartphones even coming out of the country with the likes of Karbonn and Micromax, it seems like Chinese makers are also getting into the act with their own smartphone offerings that look to make the most out the Indian market that's filled with a lot of potential.
Keeping the current discussion limited to the Chinese manufacturers, it needs to be said that a sort of evolution has happened in terms of phones coming out of China. While in the past the phones coming out of China have been classified under the 'Use and Throw' tag, the feelings have now changed with more premium names entering the market. And Gionee is slowly becoming one of those names.
With the entry of brands like Oppo and Gionee in India, alongside the presence of Xiaomi, premium Chinese phone-makers and their devices might just be able to change public perception toward anything that's primarily tagged "made in China."
Gionee's new Elife S5.5 handset comes with a lot of potential. Not only does the device offers the slimmest form factor in the world, but its also a fancy device that could take the market by storm before the end of the year.
But while we say that it's actually a good device, why should you take our word for it, without any real proof of that? Well, we are currently sitting with a review unit, and had spent quite some time with it. And here's what we gathered from the device.
Gionee Elife S5.5 Review: Form Factor
Honestly, the device looks brilliant with its slim form factor. And the slimness effortlessly allows you to slip the device onto your skin hugging low waist without any real issue. Standing at just 5.6mm thickness, this phone is the slimmest one we've ever seen or played around with. And add a slim 135g weight factor to it.
But the device's form is just not limited to its slim build. While the device sports a somewhat emaciated look and appearance, it actually boasts quite the sturdy build with the magnesium alloy material that built with. But most importantly, the device looks better than most of the flagships in the same price range.
Taking a good look at the Elife S5.5, you will find out that on the right edge of the device, there's the micro-SIM card tray, while on the left edge are the power button and volume rocker. The device comes with slightly protruded physical buttons that aren't a pain to the fingers.
The bottom edge of the S5.5 has the 3.5mm audio jack while the top edge features a Micro-USB port for charging the device. There are also a host of invisible sensors on the front alongside the front-facing camera. The battery remains un-removable.
Gionee Elife S5.5 Review: Operating System
The Gionee Elife S5.5 comes sporting Gionee's own "Color OS" UI which runs on top of the dated Android 4.2.2 (Jellybean). And with
no news of whether the device will ever receive the latest Android KitKat update, it just breaks our heart to see that such a great device has to go through this dated ordeal.
Other things the company could have mended is the fact that it wasted so much space in the phone that the company could have otherwise used to put in more features. Also the presence of just a single screen view for all apps doesn't help its cause either. The settings panel in the notification menu may also seem a bit cluttered to most.
Also, the phone's default theme needed a bit more work before the final release as its not really great. But just when you feel that you can make changes to that by adding others in the deafult list, let us tell you that doesn't help much either. And the keyboard is not upto the mark, for us.