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Japanese technology giant Panasonic is trying to establish its smartphone business in the Indian sub-continent. It is working relentlessly to introduce its smartphone line-up to masses. We have already seen several smartphones from the brand make their way to the Indian market and more keeps joining the affordable and mid-range segment at a steady pace.
- Good at multitasking
- long lasting battery
- Heavy built
- Not meant for gaming
Having said that, it is essential that I mention about the brand's latest offering in the budget smartphone segment.. The Panasonic Eluga Ray 700 and Ray 500 budget handsets offer big battery units and focus on photography respectively.
We have already published a review of the Eluga Ray 500 and now we will try to give you a detailed insight of the Eluga Ray 700.
Specifications: Ray 500’s elder sibling
Panasonic Eluga Ray 700 bears a price tag marked at Rs. 9,999 in India. It is a grand and a half costlier than the Eluga Ray 500 and the specifications of 700 quite boldly justify the price difference.
Eluga Ray 700 boasts a 5.5 inch IPS LCD display which has a resolution of 1080x 1980 pixels and a pixel density of 401 ppi. The aspect ratio of the display is the standard 16:9 and it is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 3
The device is powered by an octa-core processor from MediaTek. The MediaTek MT6753 clocked to 1.3 GHz gives the smartphone an essential upgrade over handsets that boast a much cheaper MT6737. Coupled with 3GB of RAM, Eluga Ray tries not to disappoint consumers; however, when compared to a squad of well performing devices in the price segment Ray 700 seems to have left some room for improvement.
It houses a Mali T720 MP3 for advanced graphics rendering. Ray 700 has an internal storage of 32GB and supports memory expansion via microSD card to an extent of 256GB.
The device has a 13MP rear snapper supported by a dual LED flash. The camera has an aperture value of f/2.0. The front camera has a 13MP sensor as well with video recording prowess of 1080p.
It has a 3.5 mm audio jack and a MicroUSB2.0 port. The smartphone has a big battery unit of 5,000 mAh.
The specifications of Panasonic Eluga Ray 700 are as good as that of any other smartphone in the price segment. It certainly has a big battery and a performance promising camera duo which we will keep an eye out for.
Design: A heavy built
The design of Panasonic Eluga Ray 700 is quiet simple to look at and there is nothing too appealing about it. The front snapper rests adjacent to the earpiece. Two touch sensitive physical buttons viz. apps and back button lie at the bottom and are simply represented by exactly similar back lit dots. The home button lies in the center which also has the fingerprint sensor. The sensor is responsive enough and detects users' prints quite easily.
Camera has been placed at the top with the dual LED flash lying right below it. Earphone jack lies on top left edge while USB type C port occupies the center base. Speakers are placed at the bottom as well. Volume rockers lie on the right side of the phone while the power toggle lies just below it.
The phone has nothing much to boast off as far as looks are concerned. It looks very similar to smartphones from Samsung in the sub-20K price segment that were quite prominent a few years back.
The smartphone is heavy to hold and users can feel the weight very well even after using the device for a few days. But this is due to the fact that Eluga Ray 700 packs in a mighty 5,000 mAh battery unit and the tradeoff of a slightly bulky design for a long lasting battery will please consumers.
Performance: MediaTek tries to pull this one off!
MediaTek processors are best suited for pocket friendly devices and with Qualcomm looking to flush in more complicated processors; MediaTek seems to have taken a grip over smartphones in the budget price segment.
The MT6753 on the Eluga Ray 700 is great for multitasking but it is certainly not meant for gaming. The smartphone heats up when the processor is challenged by running graphic intensive games; however it is great for multitasking and can also address casual games well.
Camera and picture quality: Trying to make the cut!
A 13 MP primary camera and a 13 MP selfie camera rest on the smartphone. The primary snapper is specified with PDAF, F2.0, and a dual LED flash. The primary camera takes decent pictures during the day whereas in dim lit conditions it starts loosing details and pictures tend to get noisier.
The phone also offers FHD video recording support and the results are no different for video recording as well. When the light is appropriate the primary camera manages to record videos of good quality.
During dim light condition you would rather prefer using the flash because the F2.0 aperture doesn't seem to be quite effective. The Eluga Ray 700 has the same shortcoming which most of its contenders in the price segment seem to be poised with. It has an outdated camera app.
We hope Panasonic will actually go ahead and update the camera app sometime soon.
The secondary camera is nothing too impressive; however t he pictures it capture are not artificially structured which also retains the natural saturation.
Display and battery: Crisp 5.5-inch screen
Panasonic Eluga Ray 700 has a 5.5 inch IPS LCD display. The pixel density on the screen in 401 PPI and it has impressive viewing angles which makes it convenient for users to view the screen from different point of views. The display is aptly visible in daylight. The screen is also very similar to those found on Samsung smartphones a couple of years back in the sub-15K price segment.
The smartphone has a big 5,000 mAh battery unit which makes Eluga Ray a device to look forward to if you are always on the go and have less time to plug the device in. The microUSB 2.0 port makes for a sluggish charging time; however it does not take more than 3 hours to have its fill. It easily lasts for more than 24 hours under normal circumstances and 20 hours if you go a bit hard on it.
Operating system and GUI : Android 7.0 with stock UI
The phone runs on Android Nougat 7.0 which is a positive for this smartphone. The user interface is as simple as it could have been and no extraordinary element takes up the storage of the smartphone. The UI works without a glitch and has every component in a well deserved spot. We have seen several smartphone manufacturers resorting to stock UI as the Oreo release date comes in close.
We can only hope that the smartphone gets an upgrade in less than 6 months.
Conclusion: Great for binge watching!
The Panasonic Eluga Ray 700 has a big battery which lasts long. It has a decent quality crisp and vibrant display which makes it a device for movie buffs and people who enjoy entertainment on the go.
The smartphone is a bit bulky and also the design is not too impressive; however as we mentioned above, the tradeoff for a long lasting battery unit is undoubtedly a positive factor here.
I really loved the smartphones' glitch free multitasking ability. It simply never gives up when it comes to browsing through apps. I also hope Panasonic has some great looking smartphones coming out soon.