Micromax Wednesday added yet another 4G enabled smartphone dubbed the Canvas Xpress 4G in its budget smartphone portfolio. With the addition of this new 4G variant of the company's Xpress series, Micromax now has 13 4G LTE smartphones across price point in India. The company's MD Vineet Taneja says that they plan to add 5 to 7 more 4G smartphones by the end of this fiscal year.
Micromax launched the Canvas Xpress 2 a few months back, however with the introduction of the Canvas Xpress 4G, the company plans to fade out the previous version. Taneja says that the Micromax Canvas Xpress 4G is essentially a refreshed version of its predecessor. Moreover, the shelf life of their products is 6 to 9months. So it was time for the company to introduce an updated version of the Canvas Xpress.
The Xpress 4G is an online only device, like the other Xpress smartphones, however this time the phone will be available in open sale model instead of flash sale. The phone retails for Rs 6,599 exclusively on Flipkart.
Here are our first impressions of the Micromax Canvas Xpress 4G smartphone:
Design and display
There is nothing new or great about the device, in terms of design. The first generation Xpress smartphone looked quite nice, however the new Canvas 4G variant does not look as good. Well, we understand the price constraint, but still were hoping for something different this time. The Canvas Xpress 4G feels pasticy, and is heavy on hand.
The front has a selfie camera, 5-inch display and three soft touch keys. The wide bezels on all sides of the display make it look like a yesteryear device. The removable back has an 8MP camera with LED flash, and Micromax's branding. The back cover can be taken off to expose the battery, dual SIM slots and a microSD card port. The right side of the phone is home to Volume and Power keys, while the left is kept free. The top accommodates audio jack and microUSB port.
In terms of visual experience, the 5-inch HD display is nice but not the best. It offers good viewing angles, but is reflective. Moreover, the touch interface did not work very smoothly either.
Processor and memory
The Canvas Xpress 4G is powered by a 1GHz quad-core Mediatek MT6735 processor, while the Xpress 2 is powered by an octa-core chipset. The good part however is that the CPU is paired with a combo of 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage, which is quite rare in this price range. Moreover, the storage space can be expanded using a microSD card. We expect the smartphone to perform smoothly.
Speaking of the camera, Micromax has reduced the camera from a 13MP in the Xpress 2 to an 8MP on the new model. Up front, there is a 2MP front-facing camera. In terms of camera performance, during the brief hands-on period, we did not find the camera impressive. We noticed a lag in default shutter speed and the results were not great either. However, we will reserve our final take on the camera for our detailed review.
The good thing is that Micromax Canvas Xpress 4G offers Android Lollipop out of the box, however the company hinted that it will not receive Marshmallow anytime soon. The UI is laden with pre-loaded apps which makes the UI heavy and affects performance.
The Canvas Xpress 4G brings improvements in some departments which include storage space that has been doubled, Cat 4 LTE compatibility, and software which now has Android Lollipop flavor. But, on the other hand, the company has reduced the cores, rear camera resolution, and battery size (2000mAh in Xpress 4G). Moreover, it certainly does not fit in if you are looking for a good looking device.
Over all, the phone seems good in terms of specs on paper, but we have its equivalents or better competitors in the market.