Lenovo K10 Note First Impressions- The Pros, The Cons, And The X Factor

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Lenovo has unveiled three new smartphones in the Indian market. The company has launched the flagship device- the Z6 Pro at Rs. 33,999. Lenovo Z6 Pro brings a 'Hyper Video AI Quad Camera and Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor paired with 8GB RA + 128GB ROM. It is going to give a tough fight to the OnePlus 7 series devices.

K series portfolio
 

Next in line is the budget device- Lenovo A6 Note which has also been unveiled in just one variant at Rs. 7,999. It offers a big 4,000mAh battery cell and flaunts a 13MP + 2MP dual AI rear camera setup. The flagship Z6 Pro and the budget A6 Note will be available on Flipkart.com on September 11, 2019.

The third device in the list comes from the company's K series portfolio. Lenovo K10 Note offers a triple-lens rear camera setup with 2x optical zoom and will be available in two variants- 4GB RAM + 64GB ROM at Rs. 13,999 and 6GB RAM + 128GB ROM at Rs. 15,999. Both the variants will be available on Flipkart.com from September 16.

Today we are going to talk in detail about the Lenovo K10 Note in the following first impressions. Let's get started.

The Pros

Sleek Design, Premium Aesthetics

Sleek Design, Premium Aesthetics

Lenovo K10 Note is quite sleek and compact. In-fact it is one of-the sleekest device I have got my hands on in a while. Despite the thin body (7.8mm), the handset offers a massive 4,050mAh battery unit. Lenovo K10 Note comes in a unibody design and is made out of polycarbonate.

The back panel has been given a glossy finish and houses a triple-lens camera setup and a conventional fingerprint scanner. The smartphone ships with a Type-C port which is placed at the bottom accompanied by a bottom-firing speaker, 3.5mm headphone jack and a microphone.

Crisp 1080P LCD Display
 

Crisp 1080P LCD Display

Lenovo K10 Note boasts a 6.3" Full HD+ display. The screen has a dewdrop notch at the centre that houses a 16MP selfie camera. The screen is quite crisp and vivid. The brightness levels are also good. If you spend a lot of time in streaming videos and playing games, you will like the 1080p display on the Lenovo K10 Note.

As far as screen protection is concerned, the company hasn't used Corning Gorilla Glass but some other form of protection to avoid the screen damage on the 1080p display.

Long-Lasting Battery Life

Long-Lasting Battery Life

Lenovo has managed to fit in a big 4,050mAh battery cell inside the sleek chassis of the K10 Note. The smartphone can easily last a day on moderate usage with one single charge. If you don't stream too many videos and occasionally play games, Lenovo K10 Note can easily last up to 36 hours.

Lenovo is offering a big 18W fast-charger in the package that can refuel the big battery at a much faster rate as compared to the 10W standard power adaptors.

Near Stock Android User Experience

Near Stock Android User Experience

If you prefer the stock Android user interface, you will like the clean and minimal UI on the new Lenovo K10 Note. The customized software skin provided by Lenovo is free of unwanted clutter and closely resembles the stock launcher of the vanilla Android. The bloatware is kept to a minimum. You will find some useful pre-installed apps such as FM radio, SyncIt (Contacts Backup and Restore app), Infohub news app, etc. and some insignificant apps that can be uninstalled as per your convenience.

Good Hardware- Snapdragon 710 SoC + 4GB/6GB RAM

Good Hardware- Snapdragon 710 SoC + 4GB/6GB RAM

For its price point, Lenovo K10 Note brings a snappy chipset paired and a good amount of RAM to handle moderate and heavy tasks without any major performance issues. The K10 Note is backed by Qualcomm Snapdragon 710 chipset. The octa-core CPU uses the same cores as the flagship SD845 processor but in 2+6 configuration. In the K10 Note, the chipset is paired with 4GB and 6GB RAM configuration.

We got the 4GB RAM variant and it was able to handle multiple apps and even some graphical intensive game titles without any major issues. PUBG runs at high settings by default and gameplay is also smooth. Whatever lag and stutters I have experienced on the device was majorly due to the lack of a fine-tuned OS. Lenovo can easily address these minor issues with some software updates.

The Cons

Poor Haptic Feedback

Poor Haptic Feedback

Haptic feedback plays a very important role in the overall user experience of a smartphone. Good haptic feedback is the result of better vibration motors and actuators. So far Apple and LG have got it right in the premium segment and Xiaomi is doing a decent job in the budget price category.

We can say from our experience that Lenovo K10 Note fails to offer convincing haptic feedback. The taptic engine installed in the device is weak and fails to offer good vibration feedback. You won't feel a satisfactory vibration response when you press the home and back button. This is one major reason why the user interface of the K10 Note feels sluggish even though the phone runs near-stock Android UI.

Underwhelming Camera Performance

Underwhelming Camera Performance

Lenovo K10 Note boasts a triple-lens camera system. As per Lenovo, the company's research team has heavily optimized the camera with 300 big and small optimizations to enhance the camera output. The camera assembly comprises of 16MP primary lens (F/1.8 aperture), 5MP depth-sensor (F/2.2) and an 8MP telephoto lens that offers 2X optical zoom.

Poor Low-light And Inconsistent Portraits

Poor Low-light And Inconsistent Portraits

The 16MP primary lens captures decent shots in daylight but the low-light shots are just disappointing. The same can be said for the 16MP selfie camera, which softens the details and adds a mild beautify effect even when the mode is disabled. The default settings of the selfie camera are not fine-tuned. We have tested much better selfie cameras in this respective price bracket.

The dedicated night mode is not of much use when light conditions are unfavourable. Check the above sample. The long-exposure spikes the ISO levels that also tend to add a great amount of noise which is very much visible in the pictures. The 5MP depth-sensor does a decent job. The portraits look good but show inconsistent blur-effect on a closer look.

Sluggish Camera Application

Sluggish Camera Application

The most annoying part is the sluggish camera app. Some modes, for instance, the portrait mode and night mode take forever to capture a shot. The camera app on the Lenovo K10 Note is one of the slowest we have tested on a budget smartphone in a while. Some things that the camera on the K10 Note gets right are the color accuracy, contrast levels and crisp video footage from 16MP primary lens and 8MP telephoto lens.

The X Factor

2X Optical Zoom

2X Optical Zoom

While most of the smartphone manufacturers are now offering a dedicated wide-angle lens and some are even providing macro lenses, Lenovo K10 Note brings optical zoom to the budget price-point. As advertised, the 2X optical zoom brings the subject closer without any loss in the details. The 2X zoom shots look crisp and show natural colors. There's a toggle to enable the dedicated telephoto lens to capture 2x pictures.

Interestingly, the dedicated lens also allows you to shoot videos with 2x optical zoom. The lens shift process is not seamless and you will experience a minor transitioning effect while tapping on the 2x optical zoom toggle.

It would have been great if the 8MP telephoto lens could utilize the 5MP depth sensor to create a bokeh effect. The functionality would have made Lenovo K10 Note a great budget device for portrait photography. Nevertheless, the 2x optical zoom is still one major plus for the handset as it allows you to capture lossless pictures and videos.

Should You Buy It?

Should You Buy It?

Lenovo K10 Note comes equipped with good hardware but the poor optimization makes it a slow performer. The camera app is quite sluggish and the haptic feedback is also not very convincing. On the other hand, the near-stock Android UI, crisp 1080p display and long-lasting battery work in the favour of the smartphone.

The 2x optical zoom is a good camera feature in the budget price segment; however, the tradeoff for a wide-angle lens is justified or not is something we want to ask from you. Would you prefer a wide-angle lens or a 2x telephoto lens for lossless images and videos? Let us know in the comments.

We will soon put the Lenovo K10 Note to some more strenuous tasks to evaluate its complete potential. Stay tuned on Gizbot.com for a comprehensive review of the Lenovo K10 Note.

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