While brands like Oppo, Lenovo, Huawei, Xiaomi, OnePlus, and Vivo amongst others have slowly solidified their hold on the market, iVoomi another Chinese OEM has also stepped into the scene. The company has already marked its entry into the Indian market by announcing several mid-range and budget smartphones for the Indian consumers earlier this year.
Meanwhile, the company has also always stated that it is looking to create a stir in the smartphone domain. And to fulfill its promise to deliver next generation experience to customers, iVoomi did launch another budget smartphone for the consumers in the month of April. Dubbed as the the iVoomi ME1+ this smartphone comes at a price of Rs. 4,999 with some decent features and specs.
However, it is worth noting that at such price range we can't expect the ME1 + to carry out high-end performance or deliver flawless user experience but it does bring in some interesting and unique bits for the users.
Besides, we had a chance to test out the device and here is what we think about it.
Design and Display
To begin with, we got our hands on the Rose Gold variant and the overall design on the ME1+ looks appealing. However, it does fail to provide that premium feel. The smartphone also bears a similar design language to iVoomi IV 505 .
The smartphone comes with a plastic body design with a removable back cover. The back cover does feel smooth and you can hold the device firmly with just one hand. Overall, one-handed operations can be done easily.
Coming to the display, this smartphone packs a 5-inch IPS HD display. So basically you will be getting 1280 x 720p resolution at a 16x9 aspect ratio with pixel density of around 300dpi. Further the display seems to have slightly rounded edges.
Futher, there are capacitative keys at the bottom but they are not backlit. The response of the capacitative key was a little dissappointing and could be improved. The volume rockers and the power button are on the left hand side of the phone and feels solid and tactile. At the top you have the 3mm jack port and a micro USB port. The speaker grill is at the rear and the memory card as well as the dual SIM slots are inside phone.
UI and OS
The iVoomi ME1+ does come with Android Marshmallow OS with a custom UI known as SmartMe OS on top. The apps interface and the stock icons does look okay and not too gimmicky.
Coming to other aspects, the UI is smooth but not as quick as other smartphones. Further, it also offers smart gesture features like we saw with the iV 505. These smart gesture features include double tapping to wake the phone where screen will light up, slide to control music, paint c to open camera, paint m to open music player and there's a lot more. You can also customize notifications settings.
Further, there's a dedicated theme store that let you change the complete look and feel of your smartphone and there is also a floating action buton similar to iPhone for shortcuts. Overall, the software is pretty well optimized and comes loaded with useful tweaks to enhance the overall smartphone usage experience in everyday life.
The good thing about this UI is that the company has now included an app drawer which was missing in earlier smartphones.
Considering the price and specs that you get with this smartphone, ME1 + does ensure that it offers the best experience as possible. Well, iVoomi ME1+ does come with a 1.2 GHz quad-core processor (possibly a MediaTek chipset) coupled with 2GB of RAM. It further comes with a 16 GB storage which can be expanded upto 128 GB vai a microSD card.
Coming to the performance aspect, on a daily use basis, the smartphone handles day-to-day tasks such as opening social network apps such as WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram, etc. easily. Well that's surprising inspite of the low RAM capacity. However, playing high graphic-intensive games on this handset will not be a good experience as it delivers a sluggish performance. Notably, the heating problem which was prominent ion the Iv 505 seems to be absent.
However, regarding the basic aspects, we did not face any issues with the call quality using an Airtel SIM card. The sound quality on both the in-ear and the main speaker was okay. The dual SIM smartphone does support 4G VoLTE as well.
Camera: Decent Picture Quality
To talk about the cameras, the smartphone offers an 8-megapixel rear camera and a 5-megapixel front camera. Nonetheless, we cannot expect great picture quality or sharp vivid images within this budget range. While the sensors sound big but the camera does lack in offering great details or some epic night shot or some good selfies.
While we were not expecting anything great, the iVoomi ME1 + did manage to take some decent pics. The pictures do ome out well with good and sufficient lighting but in a low light scenario the cameras struggle and the photos do tend to get a lot of noise and grains.
The phone locks the focus at a reasonable pace and the camera app has a Beauty and timelapse mode as well. The interface though is simple and minimalistic. However, the interface could be improved and more user friendly.
Likewise, the selfie cam does a decent job and we can't exactly blame the smartphone for the quality because in this case you get what you pay for. As for video the highest resolution that you can shoot on is 720p.
Battery Life Good Compared to Competition
Well, testing out the battery of iVoomi ME1 +, it deliverS relatively an "okay" performance with an average battery life as it comes with a 3000mAh battery. This might just be the main selling point of this phone apart from the price.
On using the smartphone from morning to night with some light gaming, replying messages using various apps, browsing the net, and making some general calls, the smartphone does give an easy one day backup. It took us roughly three hours to charge the device to it maximum capacity.
So again coming to one of the main question in any review, Will this be a good buy?
Taking note of all that we have said earlier, iVoomi is trying hard and infact has done a lot of with this budget device to enhance the user experience. Well, with iVoomi ME1 + the company has brought in improved features and is offering a bit more in terms of specs. The battery again is the distinguishing feature as other smartphone brands don't offer such capacity at this price range and further it has support for 4G.
In any case, if you are a user who is looking for a smartphone that does not fall heavy on the pocket and offers a reasonable performance then this entry level Android handset will be suitable for you.
Besides, as iVoomi has entered the market with several smartphone now it is worth mentioning that the smartphone is available for purchase at shopclues.com.