Chinese 'Superphone' maker LeTV is all set to enter the smartphone market in India in January 2015. It will announce its plans for India and showcase LeMax smartphone in an event to be held on January 5, however the company plans to host another major event on January 20. We have been told by a company representative that the company will do an event on January 20 at Kingdom Of Dreams in Gurgaon, India, where it will launch a couple of smartphones including the LeMax and Le 1S. The smartphone will retail via an exclusive online partner, details of which will be unveiled at the said event. Besides launching the smartphone, the company will also make announcements around partnering with content providers to offer services on the company's web services in India.
LeTV promotes itself as a 'Superphone' maker which makes it different from others in the crowd. It sees great future in India, for the country is critical in terms of growth opportunities for smartphone companies. In order to have a better reach to the consumers in India, LeTV has been interacting and engaging with its fans base in the country for a few months now, and says to have received an overwhelming response so far. The company has been hosting meet-ups in major cities including Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad and more to introduce the company and products to a set of fans, tech enthusiasts and media.
At a meet up held in Delhi on December 30, 2015, the company previewed the LeMAX smartphone, which was still in beta state. We were present at the meet and go to check the handset for a short while. Here are our first impressions of the LeMax smartphone.
Design and display:
The LeMax is unquestionably a good looking handset that is particularly great for those who want at a really big screen device. Its metal body gives it a premium look and feel, and the phone seems sturdy to us. Donning a unibody design, the phone is thicker than many others, but thickness can be ignored if you consider its design, and form factor.
The front of the phone particularly looks spectacular due to the edge to edge running display, with very thin bezels. LeTV has smartly played with the front design, as you will not be able of notice the narrow bezel on side of display until you wake the screen up. This make the display look even bigger and the front look pretty, however it also makes the screen vulnerable to damages.
Speaking of display quality, the 6.3-inch display with 2K resolution with 2560x1440 pixels display is a visual delight and absolutely stunning. It reproduces colours well and offers good viewing angles.
Bottom side of the phone is home to USB Type C port and speakers and the top has a slot for audio jack. The left and right sides have power key, volume keys, Wi-Fi HDMI port, and slots to accommodate SIM card.
The device showcased to us was a beta unit, and the company is yet to introduce the actual units meant for India. There will be some design changes incorporated in the LeMax handset for India. We have got to know that the back panel design for the LeMax units in India might differ from its Chinese version.
Processor and memory:
The LeMax is powered by a 2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 MSM8994 octa-core processor paired with 4GB of RAM, and 64GB memory. The octa-core chipset with a massive RAM and ROM make for an impressive combination and seem promising in terms of performance. We hope that the phone does not heat up while multi-tasking, which is usually the case with most smartphones running this chipset. However, we will reserve out take on its performance for our detailed review of the phone.
The LeTV LeMax features a 21MP rear camera with Sony IMX214 Exmor RS CMOS sensor offering 5344 x 4016 pixels resolution. The camera has autofocus, dual LED Flash, f/2.0 aperture, 6-element lens, and is capable of recording 4K Ultra HD videos with resolution of 2160p at 30fps. We could not test all camera features of the phones. During the brief time we spent with the phone, its camera worked fine. To know about extensive review of the camera performance of the phone, wait for our review of the device.
Software is one of the key highlights of the LeTV smartphones, considering that the company is a leading web service provider in China and offers these services on its smartphones as well. However, in India, LeTV is yet to partner with content providers to create an ecosystem for its web services. Moreover, the company is also making relevant changes in the software to meet the requirements of Indian audiences. We have got to know that they will be making announcement around content partnership with companies in India during its upcoming events in India.
Fingerprint scanner has kind of become a must-have feature for smartphones. LeTV LeMax too features fingerprint recognition pad, which is placed right below the rear camera of the phone that we tested during the meetup. It worked pretty smoothly and recognized fingerprint instantly during our test. We will say more about it once we review the device.
LeTv LeMax is powered by a 3400mAh battery, which as per the company is supported with battery saving software for an enhanced performance. The company did not mention if the phone supports quick charging feature.
The LeTV LeMax phone does score well in terms of looks and feels premium, but on the other side it feels bulky and thick. However, it is clearly meant for those who want to use a phablet. As far as its hardware is concerned, LeMax has powerful specifications and seems promising. Software-wise, we cannot say much considering that we are yet to see the final version of the phone.
The phone will surely give tough competition to its rivals in the market, however a lot will depend n teh pricing of this smartphone. According to its price in China, the phone should cost around Rs 32,000, however it might get launched for higher in India. We will judge its performance when we review the commercial version of the phone.