Friday, Dec 19, 2014

Lava Iris 504Q+ review: Camera disappoints, but the phone is stylish

Iris-504Q+-Composite Lava Iris 504Q+ is priced Rs 14,999
Written by Abhimanyu Chakravorty | Posted: May 26, 2014 4:17 pm | Updated: May 29, 2014 3:30 pm

The Lava Iris 504Q+ is not just any other budget Android smartphone that’s struggling to stand out amongst a deluge of similar-looking, similar-feeling phones. Phony, therefore, is not the correct description.

If anything, it is a torch-bearer for other Indian smartphone manufacturers. Why? Because after the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S4, that made motion and gesture controls mainstream, Lava was one of the first smartphones to adopt gesture control with the Iris 504Q.

Some might consider this as a gimmicky feature and for all practical purposes not use it daily, but it does add that extra punch. Gesture controls aside, the general trend seems to point at more budget Android smartphones cramming in high-end features bringing better displays and great performance to the table.

As technology evolves at break-neck speed, smartphone manufacturers are left with little elbow room to scale up their hardware specs beyond a point. So the focus is on adding more value to existing products. But how does the Lava 504Q+ measure up with all its high-end features? We put this phone to test and find out.

DESIGN
There’s simply no dissing the phone build quality. It’s a sturdy phone that looks and feels upmarket. So upmarket that 8 out of 10 people we showed it to couldn’t believe that at Rs 14,999 you can get this good-looking device from an Indian manufacturer.

“ Is this really a Lava?”  asked one of them almost in shock, until she flipped the rear to notice the inconspicuous Lava logo. “It can totally pass off as a high-end Samsung phone,”  she said. That’s because it is quite sleek at 7.9mm and relatively lightweight at 149g. The matte-finish rear panel is also well-crafted and doesn’t look cheap. Even though the phone might appear dainty, it’s not.

We had the misfortune of dropping the phone twice and surprisingly the metallic outer body panel registered only some scratches, definitely no complete dismantling. We also found its edges slightly sharp, but it doesn’t gnaw at your skin inside your pocket. Over a period of a time, the shine that lends this phone a premium feel, especially the chrome strips on the edges, fade or chip away.

That’s a cause of worry. However, this phone doesn’t look plastic and Lava gets thumbs up for looking good.

DISPLAY
The 5-inch HD display (1280×720 pixels) offers stunning resolution for watching HD videos and games. The colour reproduction is vivid and crisp, while viewing angles don’ t disappoint. Even if you hold the phone at a 45 degree tilt, you can still read without your eyes hurting.

One of the compelling reasons for buying this phone could be its display. Of course, we would have loved full HD, but then again we shut up because of the punchy price-tag. Screen responsiveness is also good.

But there’s one thing you should know about the screen: The screen coating is a scratch-resistant Asahi Dragon Trail Glass. It’s apparently tougher than the Corning continued…

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