iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G Review

iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G Review


  • The tablet runs on Remix OS, a fork of Android with a Windows-like UI
  • It is powered by an octa-core processor and has 2GB of RAM
  • The tablet shuts down abruptly when the battery level is low

The tablet market has’t found long-term traction, and we now see a lot of manufacturers shying away from this product category. There are still a few major players like Apple and Samsung showcasing products like the iPad Proand the Galaxy Tab S3, but the smaller manufacturers such as iBall, Micromax, and Intex that cater to the lower price segments have slowed down, releasing fewer new models than before. Today we have one such tablet from iBall, which claims to be different. The company says that it is designed for work as well as entertainment, and what’s also interesting is that it runs Remix OS, a fork of Android. Is this enough to make the iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G reinvigorate the tablet market? Let’s find out.


iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G look and feel

This iBall tablet looks like it was inspired heavily by the Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 and its siblings, so much so that it’s practically a knockoff. An original design might have been a better idea since the Yoga Tab 3 is available at roughly the same price. iBall has used plastic for the construction of this tablet and it does not feel premium. It has a cylindrical bulge on one side which houses a kickstand to keep the tablet upright when used in landscape mode.

When holding the iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G in portrait mode, it feels like you are holding a book with the pages folded back around the spine, which helps grip it better. There area speakers at either end, but this positioning means that audio isn’t directed towards the user. Also, the speakers aren’t very loud to start with which makes it harder to enjoy media.

iBall Slide Brace X1 4G Front NDTV iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G Review

The front of the tablet is dominated by a 10.1-inch display with a 5-megapixel selfie camera above it. On the top edge, you’ll find a DC power input, a 3.5mm audio socket, a Micro-USB port, a mic, the power button, and the volume buttons. With all the connection points at the top, the other sides are blank. Just like the Yoga Tab 3, iBall has positioned the SIM and the microSD slots behind the kickstand which acts like a cover of sorts. We found that the kickstand is made of metal and is a pain to use because you have to pry it open with your fingernails. There’s also an 8-megapixel rear camera with a single LED flash.

iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G specifications

The tablet’s 10.1-inch display sports a resolution of 1280×800 pixels and has decent viewing angles. While we found the big screen adequate for watching content on, the resolution could have been better. We have seen smaller tablets like the Xiaomi Mi Pad (Review) pack in a high-res display, which drastically improves the viewing experience. Powering the Brace-X1 4G  is a MediaTek MT8783 octa-core processor which is clocked at 1.3GHz, with an integrated Mali-T720 GPU. The tablet also gets 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage. The OS occupies close to 6GB leaving you with only about 10GB of space for all your stuff. Thankfully, storage is expandable and you can use a microSD card of up to 64GB.

The device has a single SIM slot and supports 4G and VoLTE. You can use a cellular data plan to access the Internet on the go, and you can also make voice calls using this tablet. As there is no earpiece you’ll need to use headphones, a Bluetooth accessory, or the main speakers.

iBall Slide Brace X1 4G Stand NDTV iBall Slide Brace X1 4G Review

iBall has provided a DC charger which keeps the Micro-USB port free. There’s also a USB-OTG adapter in the box so you can easily connect peripherals or storage devices. The tablet gets Bluetooth and Wi-Fi support but in terms of sensors, you’ll have to make do with only an accelerometer.

iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G software and performance

The iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G runs Remix OS which is based on Android Marshmallow. For starters, Remix OS feels like a mashup between Windows 10 and Android, as it has a Windows-like desktop rather than the usual homescreen. The traditional Android navigation buttons are found to the left of the taskbar, and there is a Start button which displays all the apps installed on the device. Icons for installed apps are also available on the desktop. The navigation buttons still perform the same functions as they do on any Android device, and long-pressing the Overview button displays a list of open apps.

When apps are launched, each one runs in its own window, which lets you have multiple apps visible simultaneously. Remix OS also adds icons of these apps to the taskbar just like Windows and you can switch between them by tapping on their icons. Closing apps requires you to drag the icon upwards from the taskbar.

iBall Slide Brace X1 Remix NDTV iBall Slide Brace X1 4G Remix Review

Notifications are done differently as well. You don’t have the traditional notifications shade anymore. Instead, like Windows 10, you get notifications tucked away in the rightmost corner of the taskbar. This also means that there are no quick settings, so you’ll have to hop over to the Settings app to do most things. Only brightness, volume and Wi-Fi controls are available in the taskbar, and this took us time to get used to.

There are quite a few preinstalled social networking apps such as WhatsApp and Facebook, as well as Dailyhunt, BeautyPlus Me and games like Bubble Bash 3, Midnight Pool and Modern Combat 4. While they take up some space you can uninstall all of them. Remix OS also has its own app store called Remix Central which lists app recommendations from Remix. Thankfully, the Google Play store is also available.

Remix OS tries to deliver a PC-esque experience on top of Android, which makes it interesting.

iBall Slide Brace X1 Notification NDTV iBall Slide Brace X1 4G Remix Review

In terms of performance, the Brace-X1 4G is reasonably capable. We did not face lags while using the device and it could run a few apps simultaneously. However, we noticed that the tablet would get warm while playing games. It also shut down without warning a few times when the battery level was low.

We ran benchmarks and got 34,270 in Antutu, and 536 and 1,781 in Geekbench’s single and multi-core tests. The tablet also managed 9 hours, 23 minutes in our HD video loop test. This means that you can binge watch a couple of movies or episodes of your favourite TV series. We found that it lasted for close to a day and a half of manual usage. In real-world terms people don’t usually use tablets continuously like they do with smartphones, meaning it’s possible to stretch this out longer. However, we did also find that the Brace X1-4G’s battery level drops significantly even when it is left in standby. When the battery finally wears down, it does take time to charge it up using the supplied adapter.

iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G cameras

Taking photos with this tablet feels quite awkward because of its size, shape and weight. It sports an 8-megapixel camera with a single LED flash at the back, and a 5-megapixel selfie camera on the front. The stock Android camera app is used, and it doesn’t seem to be optimised for bigger screens. Icons appear huge, and going through the menu while holding the tablet with one hand is inconvenient.

We also saw that the buttons are positioned towards the top of the device when holding it in portrait mode which isn’t comfortable to use. The camera takes quite some time to focus and may need multiple taps on the screen at times, which can be annoying. Photos weren’t sharp, and most of them lacked detail.

Tap to see full-sized iBall Slide Brace X1 4G camera samples


While we see the popularity of tablets declining, we must say that this iBall tablet introduces something new in the segment. Remix OS tries to deliver a PC-like experience which some might find good for productivity and there’s definitely more flexibility than stock Android. For example, you can run more than two apps simultaneously and use the common keyboard shortcuts you’re used to. It might take some time to get used to, but it looks like iBall is clearly targeting people who want more than just a tablet for entertainment.

While the software was good we felt let down by the hardware. The display has a low resolution which is a major disappointment, and overall the specifications and quality of the Brace-X1 4G don’t live up to its asking price of Rs 15,999. Also, with the device shutting down abruptly it is quite hard for us to recommend it seriously.

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iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G

iBall Slide Brace-X1 4G

  • NEWS
  • Design
  • Display
  • Software
  • Performance
  • Battery Life
  • Camera
  • Value for Money
  • Good
  • Remix OS makes multitasking easy
  • DC charging pin keeps the Micro-USB port free
  • Bad
  • Low display resolution
  • Switches off abruptly when battery is low
  • Camera performance is below average
  • IBall Slide Brace-X1 4G (Bronze Gold, 16GB) – OFFER


Airtel to launch Rs 1000 4G feature phone to take on Reliance Jio? All you need to know

jio phone, airtel phone, Reliance Jio phone, Airtel 4G feature phone, micromax, intex, Reliance Industries Limited, Mukesh Ambani, Bharti airtel, jio phone booking, Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) Chairman Mukesh Ambani took the nation by storm when he announced to launch Rs 1500 Jio Phone. But, now a report is doing the rounds that telecom giant Airtel is coming up with a Rs 1000 phone to take on rival Jio. According to a report in Phone Radar, Airtel is coming up with a 4G feature phone to give a competition to Reliance Jio 4G feature phone. Moreover, Phone Radar report claims that Airtel may join hands with Micromax or Intex for the manufacturing of the 4G feature phone. If this happens, it will be a win-win scenario for phone users as the fierce competition between the two telecom giants – Airtel and Jio – will eventually give users a big benefit as there will be no monopoly of any telecom provider. Mukesh Ambani on Friday had announced the launch of Jio Phone, offering life-long free voice calls bundled with 4G data streaming at an effective price of zero.

Jio phone, targeted at 50 crore feature phone users in the country, will be available for pre-booking from August 24 on payment of a refundable security deposit of Rs 1,500. The JioPhone will be available for user testing in beta mode from August 15.

This deposit will be refunded after 36 months on return of the phone, Mukesh Ambani had said, adding that the price of the phone will be effective zero.

Reliance Jio, the fourth-generation telecom arm of Reliance Industries, will provide unlimited data on the phone for Rs 153 per month.

Ambani had taken the telecom sector by surprise with free voice calls and data last year. Jio already has 125 million users since its launch in September last year.


Panasonic Eluga Icon Review: Another Low-Cost 4G Option

Panasonic Eluga Icon Review: Another Low-Cost 4G Option

Panasonic Eluga Icon Review: Another Low-Cost 4G Option
Airtel’s aggressive marketing strategy for 4G has spurred handset makers to pump out new, 4G-compatible phones in rather quick succession. The latest launch is the Panasonic Eluga Icon which supports 4G and features a sizeable battery, which is always welcome.

At Rs. 12,399 on Amazon, this phone aims to compete with the Lenovo K3 Note (Review | Pictures), Redmi Note 4G (Review | Pictures) and even the Motorola Moto G (Gen 3) (Review). Panasonic boasts of heavy software optimisations and a long battery life in the Eluga Icon. How this actually translates in the real world is what we’re about to find out.
Look and Feel
The Panasonic Eluga Icon measures 7.95mm in depth and weighs around 147g, which are both respectable. The slate-coloured phone (also available in gold) looks good without being flashy thanks to the matte finish. This also helps it be a bit resistant to scratches or minor dings from everyday use. The phone does get a bit slippery, however, and there isn’t much in terms of grip on the sides either.

The fit and finish of the chassis is quite excellent. Edges are smooth and beveled at places making the phone comfortable to hold. The power button and volume rocker are placed mid-way on the right so it’s easier to reach when you hold it. The ElugaIcon is a dual-SIM phone which accepts Micro-SIMs through slots placed on either sides of the unit. Rather than needing a pin to eject them, there are flaps which can be popped open by simply pressing down on a nub. Around the back, we have the 13-megapixel camera module along with the single-LED flash. The camera module bulges a bit which can cause unwanted scratches over time. There’s a mono speaker grille down at the bottom. The headphone socket and Micro -USB port take their usual spots at the top and bottom respectively.
The Eluga Icon features capacitive buttons on the front which unfortunately, aren’t backlit. They are responsive enough but you’ll have to guess your way in the dark. The display is a 5.5-inch OGS HD IPS panel. Even though the pixel density tops out at 267ppi, it’s never really an issue. The display is vibrant with good brightness levels and good colour reproduction. The auto brightness function isn’t the most intelligent though as the display is always a bit dimmer than it should be with it on. We also found legibility under direct sunlight to be quite poor as the display gets washed out quite badly.

Panasonic bundles the phone with a charger, data cable, headset and screen protector. We didn’t get the headset with our review unit but the charger and cable were decently built.
Specifications and Software
The Eluga Icon is powered by a 64-bit MediaTek MT6752 SoC with eight ARM Cortex-A53 cores. We have the Mali-T760 on the GPU front, as well as 2GB of system RAM. Other specifications include 16GB of storage that’s expandable by 32GB, Wi-Fi b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, FM Radio, and USB OTG. The MediaTek SoC also has an embedded 4G LTE modem which supports band 40 for India. The 3500mAh battery is one of the highlights of the phone, for a rated 19hrs of talk time.

The software is where things get a bit disappointing. For starters, you get Android KitKat 4.4.4 out-of-the-box and there’s no mention on Panasonic’s website about a future upgrade to Lollipop. Panasonic has also heavily skinned KitKat with their ICON UI. This is a bit unnecessary, to be honest, and not the most user-friendly. Thankfully, apps do come pre-organised in folders so it’s not too difficult finding them. Apart from the usual suspects, Panasonic also bundles some apps that you might actually use, including a file manager, Truecaller, Saavn, Clean Master, Paytm, WPS Office and Amazon.
The lockscreen has shortcuts to the dialler, messaging app and camera. You also put a host of customisable toggle switches in the notification shade. The settings app reveals more cusomisations to the OS. First up is HotKnot, which is MediaTek’s answer to NFC transfer. Of course this only works if the other phone supports HotKnot as well. Gesture Play lets you open apps by tracing letters on the screen, even when it’s off. Smart iSense is a gesture-based implementation which does things such as automatically answering a call when you lift the phone to your ear, or sifting through your images when you swipe your hand over the screen – essentially everything you’ve seen in Samsung’s offerings in the past.
The interface is quick with no discernible lag creeping in. The screen is responsive but there are times when it intermittently fails to register touches, which we noticed happened while trying to capture a shot.
Coming to some performance numbers, we got 39,879 points in AnTuTu and 17,792 in Quadrant, which are both good. Graphics performance was pretty good as well for a mid-range phone, as 3DMark Ice Storm Extreme gave us 5,842 points while GFXBench gave us 22fps. Overall, the Icon packs in enough horsepower for most 3D games and apps.

The video and audio player plays most popular formats well enough. Since the display is very reflective, watching videos in the daytime can be a challenge. Even with Full HD videos and games, the phone only got a bit warm but never uncomfortably hot. High-bitrate videos and taxing games such as Angry Birds 2 and Rayman Jungle Run played without a hitch. The volume from the speaker is also quite good for a mono speaker.
(Click to see full size)

We have an 8-megapixel snapper up front and a 13-megapixel module around the back. The latter manages to capture pictures that look decent when viewed on the phone, but zooming in reveals another story. Landscape shots lack detail and sharpness, while colours seem noticeably oversaturated in macros. Night shots aren’t too great either as there’s a lot of noise which creeps into the scene. The camera is simply unable to focus on a subject very well in the dark, even with the flash.

You get a few scene modes like Face Beauty, PIP (which uses the front camera as well), HDR, Filters and Fix Me. The latter lets you adjust the contrast, brightness and ISO settings manually, however, the implementation could have been a lot simpler and the sliders don’t change orientation to landscape mode, which is inconvenient.
Coming to one of the highlights of the phone, the 3,500mAh battery will easily get you through an entire day and maybe a bit more if you activate the power saver modes. In our video loop test, we clocked a battery life of 10 hours and 12 minutes, which is good, but we expected more considering it’s only a 720p display.

The Panasonic Eluga Icon is good budget 4G option with pleasing aesthetics and solid build quality. There’s isn’t anything in particular that really stands out apart from this, though. The price also could have been a little lower considering there are better options with similar features already in the market. Other misses are the fact that it comes with KitKat, and rather than sticking with the stock interface, they’ve gone ahead and overhauled it a bit too much for our liking.
Panasonic Eluga Icon in pictures
Panasonic Eluga Icon Panasonic Eluga IconRs. 8,882
Battery life
Value for money
Good aesthetics
4G compatible in India
Strong performance
Sub-par camera performance
Older version of Android
Read detailed Panasonic Eluga Icon review
Panasonic Eluga Icon (Gold)
Rs. 8,882
Panasonic Eluga Icon (Slate, 16GB) – OFFER
Rs. 8,991
Panasonic Eluga Icon (Slate, 16GB) –
Rs. 9,989
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Tags: Android, Eluga Icon, Panasonic, Panasonic Eluga Icon, Panasonic Eluga Icon 4G, Panasonic Eluga Icon Review, Panasonic Eluga Icon features, Panasonic Eluga Icon performance, Panasonic Eluga Icon price, Panasonic Eluga Icon price in India, Panasonic Eluga Icon specifications, mobile, review, smartphones


Xiaomi Mi Notebook Air 4G Windows 10 Laptop Launched: Price, Specifications, and More

Xiaomi Mi Notebook Air 4G Windows 10 Laptop Launched: Price, Specifications, and MoreXiaomi Mi Notebook Air 4G Windows 10 Laptop Launched: Price, Specifications, and More
The laptop was launched in collaboration with China Mobile
It comes with bundled access to a 48GB per year data plan
Only the 13.3-inch variant sees a upgrade in specifications
Xiaomi on Friday as expected unveiled a new variant of its Mi Notebook Air laptop, with LTE Cat. 4 4G connectivity support. The Windows 10 Home-based laptops were launched in collaboration with China Mobile, and the laptops natively support the telecom operator’s networks without requiring a separate SIM card. The company has also announced that users will get free access to 4GB of 4G data every month, totalling 48GB a year. The Mi Notebook Air 4G 12.5-inch model has been priced at CNY 4,699 (roughly Rs. 46,500) while the 13.3-inch model has been priced at CNY 6,999 (roughly Rs. 69,500).

To recall, the non-4G variants of the Mi Notebook Air were launched back in July, and featured price tags of CNY 3,499 (roughly Rs. 34,000) for the 12.5-inch variant, and CNY 4,999 (roughly Rs. 49,500) for the 13.3-inch variant. The premium can be attributed to the 4G data plan – said to be worth CNY 1,560 a year, however, some other upgrades exist on the specifications front for the 13.3-inch variant.

The 12.5-inch Mi Notebook Air 4G retains its full-HD display resolution, is powered by an Intel Core M3 processor coupled with 4GB of LPDDR3 RAM (1866MHz), and offers a 128GB SSD (SATA) that’s expandable via a second SSD slot. Other features include Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth v4.1, AKG dual speakers, and Dolby Digital surround sound support. It is 12.9mm thick at its thinnest, and weighs in at 1.07kg. The company is touting a battery life up to 11.5 hours. It comes with an HDMI port, two USB 3.0 ports, a USB Type-C port, and a 3.5mm headphone jack.
xiaomi mi notebook air 4g prices xiaomi
The 13.3-inch Mi Notebook Air on the other hand comes with a sixth-generation Intel Core i7 (2 cores, 4 threads, max clock speed of 3.0GHz) processor, which the company says will provide a 10 percent improvement over the Core i5 processor of the non-4G variant. Other specifications remain the same as last time, including a Nvidia GeForce 940MX GPU with 1GB of GDDR5 VRAM, 8GB of DDR4 RAM, and a 256GB PCIe SSD.

Just like the 12.5-inch model, a second SSD slot on the 13.3-inch Mi Notebook Air 4G can be used for expansion. As before, the new 4G variant is touted to deliver a battery life up to 9.5 hours. Other connectivity, ports, and audio options are the same as the 12.5-inch model. It weighs 1.28kg and is 14.8mm thick.

Tags: Xiaomi Mi Notebook Air 4G, Xiaomi Mi Notebook Air, Xiaomi Mi Notebook Air 4G Price, Xiaomi Mi Notebook Air 4G Specifications, PCs, Laptops, Xiaomi, Mi Notebook Air, Mi Notebook Air 4G, China Mobile