Indian smartphone company Lava today added a new flagship smartphone in its family of 4G LTE compatible devices. The company says that it plans to expand its budget 4G smartphone portfolio by adding a few more devices in this quarter in India.
In an interaction with GizBot, Lava's new COO, Navin Chawla, and Head of Products, Gaurav Nigam said that, "We plan to expand our smartphone family by launching 6 more 4G LTE compatible smartphones by March end, with the price of these phones ranging from Rs 10,000 going down to lower price segment, under Rs 5,000." All of these smartphones will feature user-experience driven specifications, instead of being specs-heavy just on papers.
The company focuses on offering a combination of good hardware with software elements that cater to the masses, but at the same time help it stand apart from others in crowd. The company doesn't believe in following the cat race set by Chinese smartphone players. Lava considers itself better for delivering the best in the class features and specifications that are usually seen on higher end smartphones.
Lava today launched the Lava V5 4G LTE smartphone at an MOP of Rs 11,499 via online as well as offline retail channels. The phone is loaded with good specifications, however the company is touting this phone to be a camera centric offering for its consumers. Lava says that the phone packs in features including a Samsung 3M2 ISOCELL sensor that will deliver great photography experience.
We went hands on with the Lava V5 4G LTE smartphone and here are our first impressions of the phone:
The Lava V5 looks good for its price, but there is nothing surprising about the device, in terms of its design. You get a plastic bodied smartphone with smooth finish and nice form factor. There is a brush metal rim across the sides, which goes well with the white coloured smartphone.
The front adorns a 5.5-inch display, a front-facing snapper, and three capacitive keys. Top and bottom sides of the phone have a 3.5mm jack and a microUSB slot respectively. The rear panel has a rear camera with LED flash placed at the top right of the phone, and company's branding and speaker grille. It is comfortable to use the phone single handedly and the phone offers good grip on hand.
The Lava V5 features a 5.5-inch HD IPS display with a Corning Gorilla Glass protection. The display is vivid and reproduces colours well. It offers good viewing angles and didn't seem much reflective. However, it does pick fingerprints and one will have to keep a cleaning pad handy.
The phone is powered by a 1.3GHz quad-core 64-bit Mediatek 6753 SoC paired with 3GB RAM. The RAM is clubbed with 16GB of storage along with a slot for memory expansion up to 32GB. Lava says that the quad-core chipset is powerful enough to take care of multitasking smoothly. However, we reserve our take on the performance of the phone for our detailed review.
Speaking of the camera, the Lava V5 4G LTE features a 13MP rear camera with f/2.0 aperture, a Largan 5P lens with Blue Glass Filter apart from the Samsung 3M2 ISOCELL sensor. The camera also comes with a PDAF (Phase Detection Autofocus Sensor) which enables the V5 to autofocus onto a subject in just 0.18 secs.
It has an 8MP f/2.2 aperture front-facing camera with a LED Flash, and can click 84 degree wide angle shots. In addition, the smartphone comes with Lava's MagicPix software which offers modes such as Beautification mode, Pic Focus (focuses on an images and blurs the background), panoramic selfie mode, Night Pro, GIF maker, Multi Angle View and more.
The presence of a Samsung 3M2 ISOCELL sensor does enhances the camera performance, though we need to spend more time with the camera to give our final take on it.
Chawla added that the company is focusing a lot of improving camera experience and is partnering with companies that support Lava at software as well as hardware end. He didn't reveal much information on partnerships with companies or what holds in the pipeline, though the company is aiming big in the camera segment.
The Lava V5 4G LTE runs on Android Lollipop 5.0 and the company says that it is upgradable to Marshmallow. The smartphone's user interface is smooth and it is easy to navigate. We noticed several additional pre-loaded apps on phone. These included ShopInSync and more.
Overall, Lava V5 makes for a good smartphone option for its price but it will be facing tough competition from its Chinese counterparts like Xiaomi, Gionee, and Vivo to name a few, as well as from domestic players like Micromax and Intex. The phone, however, gets an edge due to its availability across online as well as offline channels.
Now that Lava plans to launch around 7-8 4G device during the first quarter of 2016, they seem to be pitching home grown brand Micromax, which has been working on upgrading its existing smartphone lineup with 4G enable products.