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Off late, Indian handset makers are trying to shed their so-called ‘local' image. Despite their rising status, a select few are ready to take risk. We're talking about Xolo - an upmarket domestic handset player. The company recently launched its 8X-1000 Android phone with Hive UI. Xolo claims it took 1 year to design the native UI from scratch.
The Hive UI is not an OS to be precise; rather it is a native custom layer slap on top of Android 4.4.2 kitkat. On the surface, the claim seems sensible enough - but can Xolo challenge the Xiaomi Mi 3 with the Hive UI. Xolo, being an Indian company, will face a tough challenge in this direction.
We haven't seen an Indian manufacturer to come up with a unique user interface platform. In that way, Xolo manages to trounce local players like Micromax and Karbonn. Many found the excitement generated by the Hive UI befalling and unrealistic. We set out to try and find an answer. Here's our first impression of the Hive UI on Xolo 8X-1000 Android smartphone.
Xolo 8X- 1000 - Form factor, Design, Display and Operating system
The Xolo 8X-1000 appears to be a solid phone, and will immediately attract you on the spot. It has a unibody-style design. So you can't remove the rear-back cover or battery fitted inside. Xolo's 8X-1000 doesn't disappoint in respect of built-quality.
In addition, the rear-back is covered with Gorilla Glass 3 which protects the surface from regular wear-&-tear. However, the back side of the phone is prone to finger prints. The new device is less curvy but more rectangular in nature.
The power button is given on the right side, alongside the volume rocker and the dual-SIM card tray just above it. The Micro USB port and the 3.5mm headphone jack are present on top. There's a little to dislike about the phone's design and form factor.
The new device sports a 5-inch HD display. It has a 720 HD screen, but the makers could have opted for a 1080p panel. Display quality appears to be decent, considering a 720p HD resolution screen. Color reproduction and viewing angles were notably good, as per our way of looking at a device. But our final verdict will be based on intensive testing.
The Xolo 8X-1000 will be the first phone to feature the Hive UI. So what exactly do you mean by Hive? Is it a native UI slap on top of Google's Android OS? Or, it is an operating system similar to Android. Based on our understanding, we tried to solve this puzzle. Let's dig further in.
The Hive UI is a stylish and neat looking User Interface (UI) exclusive to Xolo's 8X-1000. The custom built UI is designed by Xolo at their Bangalore software design center. The firm believes that each feature of Hive UI has been designed to provide ease of use and flexibility.
Hive UI is the biggest highlight you'll find in the handset. The core feature of Hive UI, Connect, is an online feature that lets you connect the likeminded people or collaborate with software team over at Xolo. Users need to join the Hive forum, where ideas get better and bigger.
Then there is another feature, Edge, which gives you freedom to download ringtones, themes and wallpapers. Xolo has partnered with various designers to design exclusive content. We found this feature or service, similar to Xiaomi's MIUI. The quality of themes available to download should appeal to young users.
The Hive Key feature, on the other hand, will connect users to sign in their Facebook, Google, Twitter accounts in one place.
Other than three core features, Hive UI offers tons of valuable yet intriguing additions. >From revamped phone dialer to calculator app to redesigned lock screen, Hive UI does seem to be mini success for the company. The Hive UI is practical but not confusing.