Micromax Canvas Xpress 4G review: Budget phone with some surprises

Micromax Canvas Xpress 4G gives you a slightly curved design on the back, and bright blue colour on the back.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Written by Shruti Dhapola | Updated: December 6, 2015 3:08 pm
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Micromax has recently launched a slew of smartphones at various price points ranging from the high-end Canvas 5 (Rs 11,999) to the Canvas Amaze (spotted online for Rs 7,999) and Canvas Pace 4G (online for a price of Rs 6,812).

The Canvas Xpress 4G is another such device in Micromax’s ever-growing list and unlike the mid-budget Canvas 5, this is a budget offering at Rs 6,599. This phone is available on open sale on Flipkart. So is Micromax’s latest budget phone worth it ? Read our review.

Specs: 5-inch 720p HD display| 1 GHz quad-core processor | 2GB RAM & 16GB internal memory (microSD card supported) | 8MP A/F rear camera with LED Flash, 2MP front camera | 2,000 mAh battery| Android 5.1| 4G LTE

Price: Rs 6,599
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Micromax has been trying something new with the design of its latest phones. With the Canvas Xpress 4G, you get a slightly curved design on the back, a more rectangular shape and a metal frame on the sides.

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On the back, Micromax has gone for a metallic, dark blue-colour with the rear camera bang in the centre and the Micromax logo below. Considering the price point, the colour and the design makes the Xpress 4G stand out. At least Micromax has made sure that your budget device won’t look like every other one on the market with their boring blacks.

What’s good?

The 5-inch HD display is actually quite good and given that this is not a bulky device, it is easy to handle with one hand. Browsing, watching videos, etc should not be a problem on this phone’s screen. However, the screen gets covered in smudges with barely any use at all and I suggest getting a screen guard for this one.

Canvas Xpress 4G review, Micromax Canvas Xpress 4G, Micromax Mobiles, Micromax budget 4G phones, Canvas Xpress 4G price, Canvas Xpress 4G vs Redmi Prime 2 The metallic frame on the side looks good on the Xpress 4G.

I’ve also tried playing some high-end graphic games like Beach Buggy Racing and Asphalt 8. The phone surprised me. Frankly, I didn’t expect it to handle these well but the the games looked pretty sharp on the screen (Beach Buggy more than Asphalt) and the apps ran smoothly. From a gaming perspective, I think  this is pretty decent for its budget pricing. But do note that running these games ends up using pretty much all the RAM in the smartphone very quickly.

The rear camera is the second strong feature of this phone and while it is not the fastest camera in a phone, it handles some colours like blue very well. I particularly liked how it managed to capture some sky shots, again a bonus point if you consider the price. If you have sufficient light, the camera is good enough. The selfie camera is another story though.

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What’s not good?

Micromax still feels the need to add bloatware like ‘Trending apps’ and install apps like Temple Paradise, Scandid, Chaatz, etc, which frankly no one is going to use. Sure this is a 16GB phone, but I still feel that customers should not be burdened with apps they are unlikely to use. The Trending apps feature is one I tend to remove almost immediately as it keeps on giving useless notifications.

The selfie camera in this one is quite terrible, and has woeful performance especially indoors. But then this is a budget offering so this is not exactly the worst trade-off.

Canvas Xpress 4G review, Micromax Canvas Xpress 4G, Micromax Mobiles, Micromax budget 4G phones, Canvas Xpress 4G price, Canvas Xpress 4G vs Redmi Prime 2 Battery is not a strong point with the Canvas Xpress 4G.

The battery on the Xpress 4G is also nothing to boast about. Even when the smartphone had no SIM and was just on WiFi, the battery would drain out in less than 7-8 hours. This is one area where Micromax really needs to improve.

Finally, the call-quality on this phone is not great and the other person’s voice sounds like it is coming from a great distance.

Verdict

This is a budget 4G device and will compete with the likes of the Redmi 2 Prime, Motorola Moto E, and even Micromax’s own YU brand’s Yunique smartphone. Personally, I prefer the Yunique and Redmi 2 Prime in terms of performance and battery. While the Yunique has only 8GB space, the Canvas Xpress 4G offers double for its price point and its rear camera is better.

Xiaomi’s Redmi 2 Prime costs Rs 6,999 which is just slightly more than the new Xpress 4G. So if you’re really tight about your budget, then you might just prefer the Micromax phone.