A few days back, Lenovo launched its first smartphone, the K8 Note, with a dual-camera setup and the stock Android user experience. It was a fine device in terms of performance, and the cameras weren’t bad either. At Rs 13,999 (the model I reviewed ), Lenovo K8 Note was a value for money smartphone. Over a month after, Lenovo released the K8 Plus, a scaled-back version of the K8 Note. It offers a slightly degraded spec sheet, and even looks identical to the K8 Note.
I had a chance to test the Lenovo K8 Plus for a brief period of time at the launch event. Here’s our first impressions of Lenovo K8 Plus.
Lenovo K8 Plus first impressions: Design, Display
Lenovo K8 Plus looks identical to the K8 Note in terms of design. Like the K8 Note, the mid-end phone has a metal unibody design, a dedicated music key, and a fingerprint scanner present on the back. Lenovo K8 Plus comes in two colour options: Venom Black and Fine Gold. I believe Lenovo will continue to stick with the same design language for future smartphones as well. Though I still wish the design could have been tweaked to make it more appealing.
Speaking of the display, Lenovo K8 Plus has a 5.2-inch display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. In contrast, the K8 Note gets a bigger 5.5-inch Full HD display. During my limited hands-on, I was pleased with the phone’s 5.2-inch display. Sure, it’s small in size but the panel itself was sharp and colours look bright.
Lenovo K8 Plus first impressions: Performance, Battery
Under the hood, Lenovo has made a few important changes in the K8 Plus. The phone is powered by a MediaTek’s Helio P25 processor. It’s an octa-core processor clocked at 2.6GHz. Combined with 3GB RAM, the CPU should result in smoother performance. During my hands-on I only had the opportunity to open a few applications and browse the web, but in general, I was pleased with the phone’s performance. Lenovo K8 Plus comes in 32GB storage, which can be expanded further up to 128GB via a microSD card slot.
Lenovo plans to launch the K8 Plus with 4GB RAM/64GB storage, but that variant will be up for sale during Diwali. The K8 Plus is backed by a 4000mAh battery life, which according to the company, will last at least 2 days on a single charge. Until I get the review unit, I won’t be able to comment on the K8 Plus’ battery life.
Lenovo K8 Plus first impressions: Dual cameras, Software
Lenovo K8 Plus gets a dual-camera setup on the rear, comprising of a 13MP primary camera with an 5MP secondary sensor. Lenovo claims the setup will improve the camera’s performance, resulting in high-quality photographs. It’s hard to comment on the K8 Plus’ photographic prowess, until I get to take the phone out into the real world and see clicked photos on a computer monitor. But taking photos around the demo zone I found the dual-camera setup was fairly impressive and photos looked sharp with less noise. The bokeh effect also didn’t look terrible during my limited time spent with the phone. You will find an 8MP selfie camera on the front, but I couldn’t test the selfie shooter at the launch event.
The K8 Plus runs Android 7.1 Nougat of the box, promising a pure version of Android. Lenovo says the phone will be upgraded to the latest Android 8.0 Oreo sometime in the near future. Lenovo is the latest company to ditch to a custom user interface in favor of stock Android.
Lenovo K8 Plus first impressions: Early impressions
Lenovo K8 Plus appears to be the latest attempt from the Chinese company to solidify its position in the crowded smartphone market. The launch of the K8 Plus comes at a time when Xiaomi has recently announced the Mi A1 smartphone in association with Google. The latter device, which is also an Android One smartphone, promises a stock Android experience and the dual-camera setup on the back. Xiaomi Mi A1 is priced at Rs 14,999, and it will be made available through Flipkart on September 12. Lenovo K8 Plus meanwhile is priced at Rs 10,999, and it will go on sale on September 7 at 12 pm in India via Flipkart.
The price might be cheaper than that of the Xiaomi Mi A1, but I’m more interested in the performance of dual cameras and how long the battery will last. I’ll have to wait and see how it fares once I get the review unit, but from my limited hands-on time with the device, I can definitely see a great potential in the K8 Plus.