Micromax Bharat 1 Review

Micromax Bharat 1 Review

HIGHLIGHTS

  • The Bharat 1 runs on a custom version of Android
  • It comes preloaded with WhatsApp and Facebook Lite
  • It is a dual-SIM device and can be used with any network provider

A few months ago, the Jio Phone grabbed everyone’s attention for delivering smartphone-like capabilities at a feature-phone price. It triggered manufacturers to push down the prices of VoLTE-enabled devices.

One such product is the Bharat 1, which was launched by the Indian device maker Micromax in partnership with BSNL to take on the Jio Phone. Can it offer a competitive balance of cost and features? Read on, we have the answers.

 

Micromax Bharat 1 design

The Micromax Bharat 1 sports a 2.4-inch display and has a numeric keypad at the front. The display has a resolution of 240×320 pixels. Viewing angles aren’t good and colours appear washed out. There are two function buttons, a D-pad with a centre button, call and disconnect buttons, and the number pad. The buttons are made of plastic and have blue backlighting. The keys are hard to the touch but have a reassuring click. The earpiece doubles up as a loudspeaker. The phone also has a VGA selfie camera on the front and a 2-megapixel primary camera on the back.

The rear cover pops off to reveal a removable 2000mAh battery. Under that are two Micro-SIM slots and a dedicated microSD card slot. The Bharat 1 has a Micro-USB port and a 3.5mm headphone jack next to it. Like many other feature phones, it also has an LED torch on the top, which you toggle by pressing down on the D-pad’s centre button.

Micromax Bharat 1 Ports NDTV Micromax Bharat 1 Review

Micromax ships the Bharat 1 along with a hedaset and a charger with an attached Micro-USB cable. The charger is rated at 3.5W and takes over three hours to fully charge the phone’s battery. A detachable Micro-USB cable would have been helpful for transferring files to and from a computer.

Micromax Bharat 1 specifications and software

The specifications of the Bharat 1 look rather good for a Rs. 2,200 phone. It is powered by a dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 205 processor and has 512MB of RAM. There is 4GB of internal storage, out of which you get around 2.13GB to use. Storage is expandable using the microSD slot, and cards of up to 128GB are supported. When connected to a computer the phone goes to storage mode by default, allowing you to transfer files easily.

Unlike the Jio Phone (Review) which has only one SIM slot, the Bharat 1 is a dual-SIM device. There is support for 4G and VoLTE but only on the first SIM. The SIM in the second slot is restricted to 2G/3G networks and there is no way to determine what speeds you are getting at any point. We found that the phone isn’t locked to any carrier and worked fine when we tested it with multiple SIM cards.

There is support for Wi-Fi, which can be used to access the internet without using mobile data. There is also support for Wi-Fi hotspot functionality and USB tethering. Bluetooth connectivity allows you to exchange files with other devices. There is no NFC. Surprisingly, you do get GPS, but there is no app to use it with.Micromax Bharat 1 Screenshots NDTV Micromax Bharat 1

Micromax told Gadgets 360 that the Bharat 1 runs on a customised version of Android. The company didn’t provide specific details and it isn’t stated clearly anywhere, but we saw a few hints that at least some apps, services and UI elements were designed for Android 4.4 KitKat, which is now several years old. There is a tiled menu instead of an app drawer. and everything is accessed using the D-pad to navigate and the centre button to select. Navigating through the menu is easy, and the function keys flanking the D-pad work as ‘option’ and ‘back’ buttons. Sadly, the four buttons of the D-pad itself aren’t mapped as shortcuts, which could have helped to launch apps quickly.

The Bharat 1 has preloaded icons for WhatsApp and Facebook Lite but these need to be downloaded before you can use them. T9 predictive input is enabled on the keyboard by default but you can switch between different input methods. The D-pad can be used to move a cursor around in several apps but it’s clunky. For example, WhatsApp doesn’t feel fully optimised for such phones. On the other hand we tried video calling on WhatsApp and we could carry on a conversation without any issues.

Micromax also offers a link to the YouTube website, a Web browser, music and video players, a file manager, and FM radio in terms of apps in the menu. There is a Fun app powered by Zenga TV that gives you access to live TV, videos and movies, but the content on offer is far less than what you get through Jio’s apps. Also, the screen isn’t suitable for watching content because of its size and poor viewing angles.

Considering that this phone runs Android, we did try to sideload a few apps but Micromax seems to have disabled app installations. There is no way to enable this, which means you can’t take full advantage of the Android operating system. Also, unlike the Jio Phone, there is no voice assistant and you do not have the option to connect to a TV to watch content.

Micromax Bharat 1 performance, cameras, and battery life

The Bharat 1’s hardware is extremely basic, and the underlying software isn’t as functional as Android on a smartphone, so we didn’t have very high expectations. The performance of the phone is average and we did see lag when doing things like dialing numbers and typing. Even at a normal pace, the dialer would fail to register a few digits at the beginning of a phone number. The pre-installed video player does not support all formats, but it could play an HD video file that we tested it with.

Micromax Bharat 1 Battery NDTV Micromax Bharat 1 Review

If you have used Android on a touchscreen, using it with a keypad might feel a little weird at first. However, first-time users of a smart feature phone like this should adapt to it fairly quickly.

The battery life on the Micromax Bharat 1 is quite good. With light use limited to a few calls and a few WhatsApp messages we could go on for over two days with some juice still left. Since there is no way of installing more apps, you can expect similar battery life. However, if you use the phone as a hotspot, especially with multiple devices, the battery does drain quite quickly. You can also use USB tethering to charge the device while sharing data.

Tap to see full-sized Micromax Bharat 1 photo samples

The Bharat 1’s rear camera does not have autofocus which is acceptable considering its price. We found the viewfinder to be laggy even during the day, and nearly unusable in low light. The app is basic, with the D-pad allowing you to switch modes and zoom. The app also lets you change white balance, and set the exposure level and a timer if required. There is location tagging which uses the GPS chip on the device.

The setting to switch between the rear and the selfie cameras is buried in the settings list; a quick toggle would’ve been more user-friendly. These cameras are barely functional and the output looks good only when viewed on the Bharat 1’s tiny display. Photos lack detail and most will end up blurry if you don’t stand perfectly still after clicking the shutter. We also saw chroma noise in most photos taken indoors. Both the front and rear cameras can record video at VGA (640×480) resolution but the output is sub-standard.

Verdict

If you want a low-cost phone for basic calling, Facebook and WhatsApp, then the Micromax Bharat 1 fits the bill. You will have to shell out Rs 2,200 for the Bharat 1 and you can use it with any network provider of your choice. The advantage of using BSNL is that you can use a special Rs 97 recharge pack which gives you unlimited calls and data only for the Bharat 1.

The Wi-Fi hotspot and USB tethering capabilities, and the fact that this phone has two SIM slots and isn’t locked to a single carrier, give it a slight edge over the Jio Phone. On the other hand, you don’t get as much entertainment content. However, Micromax seems to have limited the usability of Android by restricting the sideloading of apps. Since there is no Google Play store and no way of installing more apps, you have to live with what you get. If you are looking for your first smart feature phone or at a secondary backup device, the Bharat 1 should be able to keep you happy.

For the latest tech news and reviews, follow Gadgets 360 on Twitter, Facebook, and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

Micromax Bharat 1

Micromax Bharat 1

  • REVIEW
  • KEY SPECS
  • NEWS
  • Design
  • Display
  • Software
  • Performance
  • Battery Life
  • Camera
  • Value for Money
  • Good
  • WhatsApp and Facebook support
  • 4G and VoLTE
  • Dual SIM
  • Wi-Fi hotspot
  • Excellent battery life
  • Bad
  • Low-quality screen
  • Below average cameras
Also See
  • Micromax Bharat 2 (Champagne, 4GB)
    Rs.3,180
  • Micromax Bharat 2 (Gold, 4GB) – OFFER
    Rs.3,499
  • Micromax Bharat 2 Plus (Champagne, 8GB) – OFFER
    Rs.3,949

[“Source-gadgets.ndtv”]

Micromax Selfie 2 With Front Flash Launched in India: Price, Specifications, Features

Micromax Selfie 2 With Front Flash Launched in India: Price, Specifications, Features

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Micromax Selfie 2 will only be available offline
  • The smartphone will be available from August 1
  • The Selfie 2 smartphone is priced at Rs 9,999

After listing it quietly on the company website last week, Micromax on Monday launched its Selfie 2 smartphone in India officially. As you already know, the big highlight of the Micromax Selfie 2 is its front camera setup, its latest Android software, and the fingerprint scanner support at the back. The smartphone is priced in the country at Rs. 9,999 and will be made available in all major retail stores from August 1.

Coming to the aesthetics, the Micromax Selfie 2 at its price point offers a sleek metallic body with no home button in the front, and volume and power keys on the left edge. The fingerprint scanner, as mentioned, is seen residing at the back right beneath the rear camera sensor. The speaker grille is also sitting at the back on the bottom.

Micromax Selfie 2 price, offers

As mentioned, the Micromax Selfie 2 is priced at Rs. 9,999 and will be available via offline retailers from August 1. There’s also a 100-day replacement guarantee scheme, where Micromax promises to replace the smartphone if there is any damage. The company will replace the device with a similar or equivalent priced unit within 100 days of activation of the unit. The company notes that this includes the one-year warranty period. A similar offer was launched for a few of its feature phones earlier this month as well.

Micromax Selfie 2 specifications

As for specifications, the Micromax Selfie 2 runs on Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box, bringing all the latest features like multi-window view, reply in notification panel, enhanced doze mode, and much more. The Micromax Selfie 2 dual-SIM device features a 5.2-inch HD (720×1280 pixels) display with 2.5D curved glass protection. It is powered by the 1.3GHz quad-core MediaTek MT6737 SoC paired with 3GB of DDR3 RAM. Inbuilt storage is at 32GB, and the smartphone additionally offers expandable storage through a microSD card slot (up to 64GB).

Talking about the main feature, the front camera has an 8-megapixel Sony IM135 sensor with a soft flash and f/2.0 aperture. It supports real-time bokeh effect, has a wide angle lens, and sports features like face beauty mode and one touch shot. At the rear, there is a 13-megapixel sensor with LED flash support, f/2.0 aperture, and it supports features like auto scene detection, super pixel, and panorama. There’s also the introduction of Gallery 4.0 which uses image and facial recognition technologies to allow users to search for photos in the gallery by recognising a person’s face.

The Micromax Selfie 2 packs a 3000mAh battery to keep the lights on, and is rated to offer 250 hours of standby time, 11 hours of talk time, and 22 hours of music playback. Connectivity options include 4G VoLTE, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi support.

For the latest tech news and reviews, follow Gadgets 360 on Twitter, Facebook, and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

Micromax Selfie 2

Micromax Selfie 2

  • KEY SPECS
  • NEWS

Display

5.20-inch

Processor

1.3GHz quad-core

Front Camera

8-megapixel

Resolution

720×1280 pixels

RAM

3GB

OS

Android 7.0

Storage

32GB

Rear Camera

13-megapixel

Battery Capacity

3000mAh

Also See
  • Micromax Canvas Selfie 2 (Black, 8GB) – OFFER
    Rs. 5,440
  • Micromax Canvas Selfie 2 (Black, 8GB)
    Rs. 5,744
  • Micromax Canvas Selfie 2 (Black, 8GB) – OFFER
    Rs. 6,100

[“Source-gadgets.ndtv”]

Micromax Smartphone Users to Get Exclusive Discounts on Oyo Rooms

Micromax Smartphone Users to Get Exclusive Discounts on Oyo Rooms

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Apart from discounts, a simplified booking experience is promised
  • The new booking experience will be accessible through Steroid Launcher
  • 25 percent instant discount, 100 percent cashback on checkout touted

Micromax on Thursday announced a partnership with Oyo Rooms to give customers of its devices a ‘seamless booking experience’ as well as exclusive deals. The integration will available either in the form of an on-device native experience via its Around-Steroid Launcher, and via factory preloaded Oyo app on other devices, the two companies said in a joint statement.

Micromax users will also be able to avail of Oyo’s recently unveiled feature of assured early check-ins at hotels across the country along with exclusive offers – 25 percent instant discount and 100 percent cashback on checkout. A precise timeline for when these features and discounts will become available to Micromax smartphone users was not specified.

To recall, Micromax’s ‘Around’ services are centred around the Steroid Launcher that aggregates information from various popular apps in categories such as food, travel, shopping, cabs, cricket, news, and weather. The service was first launched with the company’s Yu brand of smartphones in December 2015.

Commenting on the partnership Rahul Sharma, Co-Founder, Micromax Informatics, said, “In our pursuit to provide innovative product services hassle free experiences on a click of button rather than logging into multiple apps downloaded from play store, Micromax will now offer hotel stay across 200 cities in India with exclusive offers deeply integrated in Micromax in-house platforms such as Around-Steroid Launcher or / and a full Oyo App Experience to Micromax users. With the holiday season and long weekends in the New Year 2017, our users can enjoy the deep integration of OYO, and avail offers, anytime anywhere in India.”Speaking on the partnership Anurag Gaggar, VP – Product, Oyo, said, “We have been consistently working towards providing best in class hotel experiences to our consumers across the country. This partnership enables us to deliver Oyo’s premium booking and stay experience to our guests and new users through innovative delivery platforms such as Around-Steroid launcher, notification updates & other exclusive platforms of Micromax to its 3.3 million monthly active customers.”

Tags: Micromax, Mobiles, Apps, Steroid Launcher, Oyo Rooms, OYO
[“Source-Gadgets”]

Micromax Alpha LI351 Windows 10 Laptop With 15.6-Inch Display Launched at Rs. 26,990

Micromax Alpha LI351 Windows 10 Laptop With 15.6-Inch Display Launched at Rs. 26,990

HIGHLIGHTS

  • The laptop sports a 1366×768 pixel display
  • Alpha LI351568W packs an Intel Core i3-5005U processor
  • Laptop is priced at Rs. 26,990 and sold exclusively by Flipkart

After announcing the Alpha and Ignite series of laptops in India last month, and launching its first Ignite laptop, Micromax has now launched the first laptop in its Alpha series with the Alpha LI351 (aka Alpha LI351568W). The laptop sports a 15.6-inch (1366×768 pixels) display and has been priced at Rs. 26,990.

The Micromax Alpha LI351 packs a fifth-generation Intel Core i3-5005U processor (clock speed of 1.6GHz, 3MB Cache) coupled with 6GB of LPDDR3 RAM. The laptop comes with an Intel HD Graphics 5500 integrated graphics, and 500GB of HDD storage (expandable up to 1TB).

The laptop comes running Windows 10 and has a 4-cell battery that can last up to 4.7 hours. The Alpha LI351 comes with a microphone Jack, a headphone jack, dual-speakers and weighs 2.1kg. In terms of connectivity, the laptop offers WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, an HDMI Port, two USB 2.0 ports, two USB 3.0 ports, and a RJ45 Ethernet port.

The Micromax Alpha LI351568W is available in only a Grey colour variant and is being sold exclusively through Flipkart in India.

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At its launch last month, Micromax said that the Alpha series of laptops is targeted at first-time laptop users compared with its Ignite, which is aimed at power users specifically. Regarding the launch, the company said in an emailed statement that the launch followed an “overwhelming response” for its entry-level Lapbook laptops and Laptab 2-in-1s.

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Tags: Laptops, Micromax, Micromax Alpha LI351, Micromax Alpha LI351568W Laptop, Windows

 

[“Source-Gadgets”]