Review Lenovo A606

Discussion in 'Gadgets and Consumer Electronics' started by JD666, Jan 12, 2015.

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  1. JD666

    JD666 RAID Leader Staff Member

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    The Lenovo A606 is a recently launched device that caters to the lower to mid segment. Lenovo has created three lines of mobile devices. These are namely the A Series (for Affordable), S series (Stylish) and Vibe (Premium designer smartphones).

    The A606 is the first device in the series that packs 4G data connectivity and brings Android 4.4.2 out of the box (all others are 4.2).

    The phone packs mediocre hardware at a good price point that provides a decent balance of Battery life, performance, features and screen size. I picked up this phone recently for a first timer in the household.

    Here's a quick look at the device -

    WP_20150105_004.jpg
    iPhone inspired box. Slightly bigger though. The tech specs of the device are -



    Processor
    MT6582M Quad Core 1.3GHz
    Operating System

    Android™ 4.4 KitKat
    Dimensions (WxTxH)
    141.5mm x 73.2mm x 9.1mm

    Display

    • Size: 5’’ FWVGA (854 X 480) IPS
    • Type: Capacitive touchscreen
    Memory
    • RAM: 1 GB, ROM: 8 GB
    • Up to 32GB expandable storage with microSD card
    Battery
    • Type: Li-Po 2000 mAh, replaceable
    Sound
    1x Speaker
    Integrated Camera

    • Rear: 8 MP Auto-Focus
    • Front: 2 MP Fixed-Focus
    Color Options
    • White
    • Black
    SIM
    Single, Regular SIM
    Sensors

    • Gravitation
    • Vibration
    • Proximity
    • Light
    Connectivity/Radios
    • 4G Network: LTE FDD 2100/1800/2600/800 MHz
    • 3G Network: UTMS 900/2100MHz
    • 2G Network: GSM 850/900/1800/1900MHz
    • Speed: HSPA+ 21Mbps(DL) / 5.76Mbps(UL)
    • Data: HSPA+, GPRS, EDGE, GSM
    • WLAN: Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi hotspot
    • Bluetooth®: 4.0
    • Radio: FM Receiver
    • A-GPS, Satellite
    • 3.5mm Audio Jack

    Opening up the box we find the following items -


    WP_20150105_008.jpg
    The phone does come packed with the usual suspects like a charger +USB cable, but a mobile cover and screen guard are also included in the deal. This does sweeten the purchase, since one does not really need to buy anything. Though I am not sure what message a mobile cover will send out to a buyer? The manufacturer wants you to have something that you will buy eventually, for free? or that the phone is prone to scratches and you need to protect it from day 0.

    A closer look at the equipment -

    WP_20150105_009.jpg
    WP_20150105_011.jpg
    The 2000 mAH battery.

    WP_20150105_012.jpg
    The 1 Amp Charger. I was hoping for a 2 or 2.1A charger that would provide fast charging, but then considering the budget option that this is, probably this was the best choice.

    WP_20150105_013.jpg
    The headset is a pretty cheap affair, not recommended at all. Seems like they picked up the cheapest passable headset that they could find and bundled it along with the pack. I have seen much better quality on headsets coming with Nokia phones that retail for much much lesser.

    The USB cable was good quality though. Definitely should last pretty well. The connector plastic at the Micro USB end is pretty big though, So using it for any other device can be a bother.

    WP_20150105_014.jpg

    WP_20150105_015.jpg
    The bundled cover (black) on the device (White). I guess it would look better on the Black phone, but to keep it simple they put only one color cover. The cover is finished in a nice grippy matt texture. Makes it easy to hold and handle. The actual phone back is also covered in a similar finish.

    WP_20150105_16_01_30_Pro.jpg
    Single SIM and Micro SD Card slot. Takes a full size SIM, no Micro/Nano SIM here.

    WP_20150105_018.jpg
    The chrome bezel of the rear camera (8MP) protudes slightly, and the LED flash is flush. The speaker grille is to the left of the lens.

    WP_20150105_020.jpg
    The bottom houses the pin hole for the microphone. No noise cancellation mic here.

    WP_20150105_021.jpg
    The lock/unlock and volume on the right hand side of the device.

    WP_20150105_022.jpg


    The USB and Headset ports on the top of the device.

    For size comparison I placed it next to the Samsung S3. And this is a much bigger and heftier device. At 170 Gms, its no featherweight either.

    WP_20150105_023.jpg
    The Chrome bezel of the Lenovo is pretty prominent. Oh and the bottom 3 navigation buttons do not light up. So using this device in the dark might be an issue for people who do not get used to the placement.

    WP_20150105_024.jpg
    The amount of bezel and un-used space is pretty evident in the above shot.

    WP_20150105_025.jpg
    Both the devices are nearly the same when it comes to thickness.

    WP_20150105_028.jpg
    Here's a shot of the battery cover or back shell to show how thin it is (pretty). The physical buttons are present in the shell itself. Not bad to press, though not the tactile response one would desire.

    Moving on, now to power up and use the device -

    WP_20150105_031.jpg

    Contd. in the next post.

     
  2. JD666

    JD666 RAID Leader Staff Member

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    I used this device for about 3 days and these are my observations -

    The A606 uses a custom Lenovo launcher called Vibe. What this does is put every application on the home screen. You can add and remove screens and arrange the applications into folders, but there is no secondary App Drawer that one is used to. This takes more from iOS than default Android GUI.


    Screenshot_2015-01-05-16-06-39.png

    Though this necessarily isn't a bad thing for first time Android users (which was the intended purpose), it can be annoying for former users who would like better tweaking ability of the GUI.

    Screenshot_2015-01-05-16-07-07.png

    I had to re-arrange the apps in such a manner so that the most frequently used apps are on the home and second screen (like calculator, flashlight, camera,gallery, settings etc). Useless apps like Sync, share and some others had to be moved to the last screen so that they do not interfere with regular usage.

    Screenshot_2015-01-05-16-06-49.png

    Also bundled is a hogging Security application which had to be disabled. There were several other apps bundled by default, but what I was happy about that I could delete some of them at least. The feeling of removing the Facebook app was unparalleled :D

    Screenshot_2015-01-05-16-12-00.png

    Device RAM

    Screenshot_2015-01-05-16-11-54.png


    I was able to uninstall all these applications plus more

    Screenshot_2015-01-05-16-07-00.png
    Another screen shot of the homescreen.


    Screenshot_2015-01-05-16-07-37.png

    The settings for the Lenovo Launcher.
    Now this is where it gets messed up a bit. I can only disable the security app, and it insists on scanning everything that I have running. There is no way to disable or configure it unless I go to the Application and disable it, which will do that only until the next reboot.

    Another gross oversight by Lenovo, or probably the Launcher is still under development, is that there is no way to change the Lock Screen wall paper. Yes. I googled around a lot, and found others reporting the same issue. Moreover you can only select one out of two available themes for the GUI.

    Usage - The phone was snappy and fast. No lag or delay. For the price and the offering, this was extremely satisfying.

    I tried the camera, which was above average for the front cam (Skype Video) and the rear camera was at par with a 5 MP shooter. To shoot in the full 8 Megapixel mode you have to change the image to 4:3 ratio from the 16:9 default shooting mode. The 16:9 mode will allow capture only at 6MP resolution.

    Screenshot_2015-01-05-16-09-19.png

    The tweak abiility was at par with any other phone in the segment, and was pretty decent. The image quality was average to be honest.
    Here is a sample comparing the image between the Lenovo A606 and the iPhone 6. Both were shot in 8MP (resized to half), same distance and same light -

    First up. The Lenovo A606 image -

    IMG_20150110_110323.jpg

    And the same taken with the iPhone 6 -

    iphone image.JPG


    The difference is evident.

    Battery Life - I was able to get a decent full day's work from the phone, which was quite impressive to say the least. The low resolution does help matters. Unless one is really finicky about the screen resolution, I personally feel it is more than adequate for everyday usage and browsing.

    Finally a quick look at the pros and cons of this device -

    Pros -

    - 4G on a budget
    - Bundled cover + screen guard (nice touch)
    - Battery life
    - Screen size (5 inches)



    Cons -

    - UI needs improvement or at least an option to not use the default launcher.
    - More widgets needed, the default list is pretty limited
    - Weight - 170 Gms
    - Screen resolution - For some



    I forgot to mention, that the widget options are severely limited. They should really look into adding some more widgets or on screen options.

    Over all, for a phone priced at 8,100 INR, I feel this is a worthy option looking at the competition. This might not be a Xiaomi beater, but then they (Xiaomi) have underpriced their devices in India intentionally.

    My score - 3/5
     
  3. JD666

    JD666 RAID Leader Staff Member

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    So I ran Antutu and Quadrant benchmarks to get an idea of the device' performance level -

    Here are the results -

    Antutu Details.png

    Antutu score - 19610

    Antutu.png



    CPU Z.png

    The Mediatek 6582 processor details.


    Quadrant.png

    Quadrant score of 5567
     
  4. BANHAMMER

    BANHAMMER Teh Almighty BanHammer Staff Member

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    so you bought another phone?
     
  5. JD666

    JD666 RAID Leader Staff Member

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    For someone in the family. I'm just reviewing it.
     
  6. BANHAMMER

    BANHAMMER Teh Almighty BanHammer Staff Member

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    ha ha, how many phones do you have including yours and your wife's.
     
  7. JD666

    JD666 RAID Leader Staff Member

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    Lost count at 8. This is for Mom.
     
  8. BANHAMMER

    BANHAMMER Teh Almighty BanHammer Staff Member

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    You need an intervention.
     
  9. JD666

    JD666 RAID Leader Staff Member

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    Wait for my OnePlus One quick look.
     
  10. JD666

    JD666 RAID Leader Staff Member

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    So apparently, Lenovo has launched a 720P display, 2300 mAH battery variant of similar spec and 4G connectivity in India, the A6000. And it is a steal deal for 6,999 INR!

    The only bit that the A606 holds over it, is a metal trim and metal speaker grille. In probably all other aspects, the A6000 makes for a better buy.

    The phone -

    lenovo-smartphone-a6000-back-4.jpg lenovo-smartphone-a6000-back-detail-5.jpg lenovo-smartphone-a6000-back-detail-6.jpg lenovo-smartphone-a6000-front-1.jpg lenovo-smartphone-a6000-front-camera-3.jpg lenovo-smartphone-a6000-side-detail-7.jpg

    You can register for the sale on FlipKart
     
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  11. JD666

    JD666 RAID Leader Staff Member

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    And it runs a SnapDragon 410 Quad core processor with an Adreno 306 GPU.
     
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  12. Stuge

    Stuge RAID Rookie

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    Those are good antutu scores for a budget phone.
     

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