Bandla recommends! The November smartphone list



December list is here

This month has seen huge change in the smartphone market. As usual, The list first:

  • LG Optimus Pro
  • Blackberry Curve 8520
  • Nokia E5
  • LG Optimus One

  • HTC Explorer
  • HTC Chacha
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Mini
  • Blackberry Curve 9300
  • Motorola Defy
  • Samsung Wave II

  • Nokia E6
  • Nokia 701
  • LG Optimus Black
  • SE Xperia Neo V
  • Blackberry 9360


  • Xperia Play
  • Nokia N8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc
  • LG Optimus 2X
  • HTC Radar

  • Samsung Galaxy S II
  • iPhone 4
  • Blackberry Bold 9900

LG Optimus Pro

Status: Widely available

Price: 9k-9.5k INR

Product page: http://www.lg.com/in/mobile-phones/all-phones/LG-smart-phones-C660.jsp

The Good:

  1. Price
  2. Good qwerty keypad and capacitive touch display (2.8″, 240 x 320, 256k colors)
  3. Digital Compass
  4. 800MHz Qualcomm processor
  5. Wi-Fi hot-spot

The Bad:

  1. No video calling
  2. Low amount of RAM (256MB) and only 150MB on-board storage.

Who should buy this phone:

Those who are looking for budget Android with qwerty keypad.

Blackberry Curve 8520

BB Curve 8520

Status: Widely available

Price: 8.5k-9k INR

Product page: http://in.blackberry.com/devices/blackberrycurve3G/

The Good:

  1. Blackberry services that are among the best for privacy and data security
  2. Good qwerty keypad

The Bad:

  1. average display quality
  2. very poor multimedia
  3. weak processor
  4. no 3G and no 802.11n and no GPS
  5. poor battery life

Who should buy this phone:

Only those desperate for a Blackberry and with budget less than 10k


Nokia E5

nokia e5 side

Status: Widely available

Price: 9,200 INR

Product page: http://www.nokia.co.in/find-products/products/nokia-e5

The Good:

  1. One of the best business class smartphones
  2. Superb qwerty
  3. Mighty battery life
  4. 3G, Wi-Fi, DLNA, GPS
  5. Document Editor
  6. Nokia maps.

The Bad:

  1. 256MB or RAM not that good for multitasking or heavy apps
  2. OS getting older and older every week.
  3. No video calling
  4. average camera and poor video recording quality

Who should buy this phone:

    If you are always traveling and need a phone with great battery life and solid navigation, this is among the best you can get. Just forget about what people say about Symbian and it’s end of life. Even though it is announced, it is not going to happen any time soon. S60 on E5 is very much usable and this phone is simply the best qwerty device that you can get for budget inside 10k rupees.


LG Optimus One

LG optimus one

Status: Available at many stores

Price: Around 9.5k-10k INR

Product page: http://www.lg.com/in/mobile-phones/all-phones/LG-smart-phones-P500.jsp

The Good:

  1. Android
  2. Good display
  3. Great GPU and decent CPU
  4. 3G, Wi-FI, GPS
  5. DivX/Xvid integration
  6. Document editor
  7. Almost stock android
  8. Loads of custom ROMs

The Bad:

  1. Battery life
  2. Average build quality
  3. Below average camera, no flash

Who should buy:

This, without a doubt is the best smartphone you can get inside 10k. If you are not bothered about battery life, go and get this one. If you are, then go get this one along with an extra battery. And btw, forget about LG’s past reputation. They nailed it with this one.

This brings us to an end to sub-10k market segment. Here is a short list of other worthy sub 10k smartphones:

  1. LG Optimus Net (successor to Optimus One)
  2. Spice Mi-310 (http://www.spiceglobal.com/SpiceMobiles/Model.aspx?id=187)
  3. Nokia c5-03(http://www.nokia.co.in/find-products/products/nokia-c5-03)
  4. Dell XCD 35 (http://www.dell.com/in/p/mobile-xcd35/pd.aspx)

HTC Explorer:

Status: Widely available

Price: around 10.8k-11.5k INR

Product page: http://www.htc.com/in/smartphones/htc-explorer

The Good:

  1. Good build quality
  2. Sense UI over Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)
  3. 512MB RAM and 512MB ROM
  4. Bluetooth V3.0 EDR
  5. Xvid support
  6. Price
  7. Digital Compass

The Bad:

  1. No video calling
  2. average battery life
  3. Okayish display
  4. Weak CPU

Who should buy this phone:

Highly recommended if you are on a very tight budget but need a HTC device. I would pick LG Optimus One over this one (for 1.5k-2k less) as it is slightly better phone on paper but many new users prefer SenseUI over vanilla UI.


Sony Ericsson Xperia Mini and Mini Pro

se xperia mini

Status: Available in markets now

Price: 12,500 INR for mini and 15,000 for mini pro

Product page: http://bit.ly/lalyJI, http://bit.ly/ifCQvT

The Good:

  1. 3” LED display
  2. BRAVIA Engine
  3. superb audio quality
  4. very good qwerty keypad (mini pro only)
  5. Snapdragon chipset
  6. Good camera with 720p video recording
  7. cute looks
  8. Android (Gingerbread)
  9. Weighs just 99 grams

The Bad:

  1. Poor battery
  2. 3” display is not for everyone
  3. No video calling (on mini)

Who should buy this phone:

This phone is unique in the sense that it looks tiny but is powerful. I would pick mini pro over mini any day as the qwerty eliminates the need for onscreen keypad and hence gives more room for the actual content. If you are looking for a cute looking small form factor smartphone that is good at multimedia, go for this one. Unlike the earlier X10 mini pro, this mini pro has great display and more important, runs latest version of android. If your main requirement is ebook reading and internet browsing, this one is not for you.


Blackberry Curve 9300

blackberry curve 9300

Status: Available

Price: 13,500 INR

Product page: http://in.blackberry.com/devices/blackberrycurve3G/

The Good:

  1. BBM
  2. Excellent qwerty keypad with touch sensitive touch pad
  3. Upgradable to BB 6.0

The Bad:

  1. Low battery
  2. No video calling
  3. Very poor multimedia, near useless camera

Who should buy this phone:

  1. Blackberry boys
  2. Those for whom data security is of atmost important and want the best in class business features.


HTC Chacha

htc chacha

Status: Widely available

Price: 15,000 INR

Product page: http://www.htc.com/in/product/chacha/overview.html

The Good:

  1. Superb build quality
  2. Sense UI over Android Gingerbread
  3. Superb four row qwerty with dedicated facebook button and deep facebook integration
  4. 2.6” touch display
  5. front facing camera
  6. Good battery life

The Bad:

  1. Poor multimedia performance (audio video playback, camera)

Who should buy this phone:

Also known as facebook phone, this device is tailor made for facebook addicts. One touch access to facebook and to share content on facebook. If you love being of facing or if you love chatting nonstop using qwerty and if you prefer factory UI that is beatiful, close your eyes and go for this one.


Motorola Defy

motorola defy

Status: Availability is reducing slowly

Price: Around 14k to 14.5k INR

Product page: http://bit.ly/aLySYQ

The Good:

  1. Dust and water resistant
  2. Superb display
  3. Very good audio quality
  4. Great CPU and GPU
  5. Active noise cancellation with dedicated mic
  6. Superb battery life (among droids)
  7. Among the best when it comes to developer support. Loads of custom ROM available for use.
  8. Price

The Bad:

  1. Average camera performance
  2. no video calling
  3. Motoblur and official ROM stuck on Froyo
  4. Just a bit bulky

Who should buy this phone:

If you have a budget of 15k-15.5k, close your eyes and get this one. You cannot get a better smartphone for that price. Period!

Samsung Wave II:

Status: Widely available

Price: Around 14k to 14.5k INR

Product page: http://bit.ly/vPRrmD

The Good:

  1. 3.7″ SC-LCD display
  2. Price
  3. 1GHz Cortex A8 CPU, PowerVR SGX540 GPU
  4. Xvid/DivX integration
  5. Good multimedia features

The Bad:

  1. Bada OS still lacks developer support and 3rd party apps
  2. No proper navigation software.

Who should buy this phone:

If you want to try something new, something other than Android and Symbian, Wave II with Bada 2.0 is your best bet (only till midrange Windows Phone devices come out). This device, if it gets, Bada OS 3.0 update will be total VFM device.

Before we head to 15k+ segments, here is a tiny list of other decent smartphones inside 15k:

  1. Nokia C6-01
  2. HTC Wildfire S
  3. Spice Mi-410
  4. Huawei Ideos X5


Sony Ericsson Xperia Neo V

Status: Available in the market

Price: 18,000 INR

Procuct page: http://www.sonyericsson.com/cws/products/mobilephones/overview/xperia-neo-v?cc=gb&lc=en#view=overview

The Good:

  1. Stunning LED backlit LCD display (3.7″, 480 x 854), BRAVIA engine for visual treat.
  2. Great looks
  3. 1GHz Scorpion processor, Adren o205 GPU
  4. Good camera with 720p recording, secondary camera for video calling.
  5. Deep social networking integration
  6. Very good battery (1500mAh Li-Po)
  7. VFM
  8. Android 2.3.4 (Gingerbread)

The Bad:

  1. None in particular.

Who should buy this phone:

  1. It’s fresh, it looks awesome and is packed with features. This is the new No.1 when it comes to sub 20k devices. With Nexus S out of the market, this would be the de facto choice at this price point.

Nokia 701

Status: Just appearing in the market

Price: 17,000 INR

Procuct page: http://www.nokia.co.in/find-products/products/nokia-701

The Good:

  1. Stunning LED backlit IPS panel TFT display (3.5″, 360×640 CBD), best in class.
  2. Great looks, stainless steel finish
  3. Powerful CPU/GPU, 512MB of RAM and 1GB of ROM
  4. Decent camera with 720p recording, secondary camera for video calling.
  5. Symbian Belle
  6. NFC
  7. Active Noise cancellation with dedicate mic
  8. USB OTG
  9. Great audio quality and watching videos is a treat, thanks to CBD
  10. Umnatched navigation (Nokia offline maps)
  11. DivX/Xvid Integration

The Bad:

  1. None in particular.

Who should buy this phone:

Like previous midrange Symbian devices, Nokia 701 is one heck of a multimedia device. If you are not among those who install a dozen new apps every day, this one will keep you more than happy. I would recommend this phone and the Xperia Neo V to those with budget under 20k as these two are way ahead of others at this price point w.r.t features and bang for buck.

Nokia E6

Nokia E6 side

Availability: Widely available

Price: 15,600 INR

Product page: http://www.nokia.co.in/find-products/products/nokia-e6-00

The Good:

  1. Superb touch display with 640×480 resolution
  2. Terrific four row qwerty
  3. 8GB user memory onboard
  4. active noise cancellation using a dedicated mic
  5. Office document viewer
  6. Video calling and 720p video recording
  7. Battery goes on and on and on
  8. USB OTG
  9. Nokia maps navigation got even better, thanks to Symbian S^3 Anna OS

The Bad:

  1. Nothing in particular but can say that EDoF camera is one drawback

Who should buy this phone:

E6, with Symbian Anna OS is a pleasure to use. If you are looking for a business class phone with monster battery life and if you want a phone that can navigate you to through those unknown route and take care of your corporate data (emails, documents etc), go for this device. You can’t get a better device for the price.


LG Optimus Black

Status: Widely available

Price: 18k to 18.5k INR approx

Product page: http://www.lg.com/in/mobile-phones/all-phones/LG-smart-phones-P970.jsp

The Good:

  1. LG Nova display (IPS panel with superb brightness)
  2. 2mp front facing camera for high quality video calling, 5mp primary camera with 720p video recording
  3. Gestures
  4. DivX, Xvide support
  5. 1GHz Cortex A8 processor with PowerVR SGX530 GPU
  6. Extremely thin and lightweight
  7. Very good ROM support

The Bad:

  1. Optimus UI is very poor
  2. Average audio quality
  3. no HD out

Who should buy this one:

  • Thanks to the IPS panel, the quality of text is amazing and sunlight visibility is very good, so are the viewing angles. If you are more into reading ebooks and webpages etc, this would be a perfect phone to get. Gaming on this phone is a pleasure, thanks to powerful GPU (and of course, superb display). Videos look crispy whether you are outdoor or indoor. If you are okay with loading a custom ROM, the phone feels much better and much more responsive.

Blackberry Curve 9360

Status: Widely available

Price: 20,000 INR approx

Product page: http://in.blackberry.com/devices/blackberry-curve-9360/

The Good:

  1. BB OS v7.0 is far better than previous versions of BB OS.
  2. NFC
  3. 2.44″ 480 x 360 resolution display is crisp
  4. 512MB of RAM and 800MHz processor
  5. Excellent keypad and optical trackpad

The Bad:

  1. Price. should’ve been available at a lower price
  2. Average multimedia quality
  3. No video calling
  4. Poor battery life
  5. Need to pay for BIS and pricier dataplan to make full use of this device.

Who should buy this one:

Thanks to BB OS 7.0, those who love to have a business class device and with budget under 20k can go for this phone, eyes closed. This phone, avaialble for just under 20k is better than Bold 3 which costs 2k-3k more.

Other good devices inside 20k:

  1. Samsung Galaxy S-LCD

Nokia N8

nokia n8

Status: Widely available

Price: 21,700 INR

Product page: http://www.nokia.co.in/find-products/products/nokia-n8

The Good:

  1. Strong build quality
  2. The best camera in smartphones
  3. Continuous autofocus in Video recording (after anna update)
  4. Gorgeous display
  5. 16GB internal storage
  6. Powerful GPU, making games run smoothly
  7. Nokia Maps navigation
  8. Active Noise Cancellation with dedicated mic
  9. DivX and Xvid support
  10. USB OTG
  11. HDMI Out
  12. Very good battery life for a feature rich smartphone

The Bad:

  1. Battery cannot be replaced by user
  2. Nothing else in particular

Who should buy this phone:

  1. Shutterbugs
  2. Multimedia lovers
  3. Frequent travelers
  4. Hell, this is one of those rare models that can cater to every kind of users needs. The OS is currently written off but with Anna and Belle updates, N8 can definitely match it’s rival droids in all round performance.


LG Optimus 2X

lg optimus 2

Status: Widely available

Price: 23.5k-24k INR

Product page: http://www.lg.com/in/mobile-phones/all-phones/LG-smart-phones-P990.jsp

The Good:

  1. Cheapest Dual core smartphone
  2. Tegra 2 at the heart
  3. LG Nova display (IPS LCD panel which is among the brightest)
  4. Good audio quality
  5. DivX/Xvid supported
  6. Gingerbread ready
  7. Very good support from developers, lots of custom ROMs available
  8. 1.3mp front facing camera for video calling
  9. 1080p video recording
  10. 8GB storage onboard
  11. Good battery
  12. Price

The Bad:

  1. Seriously buggy UI

Who should buy this phone:

If you trust LG and if you are one of those who like loading 3rd party ROMs, this would be the best one to get. The factory ROM is very buggy and the first thing to be done is to load custom ROM. All in all, a very good and powerful smartphone hampered by overlay UI, which should be fixed in upcoming Gingerbread update. And once you load the custom ROM, this thing can fly.

Sony Ericsson Xperia Play

XperiaPlay

Status: Available

Price: 24k-24.5k INR

Product page: http://www.sonyericsson.com/cws/products/mobilephones/overview/xperia-play?cc=in&lc=en#view=overview

The Good:

  1. Game controls
  2. Display
  3. Active Noise cancellation
  4. Music quality
  5. Price
  6. Game catalogue and upcoming game list is promising

The Bad:

  1. Bulky
  2. Less power than dual core devices which are cheaper
  3. Average battery life

Who should buy this phone:

With the heavy price cut in place, this is the best smartphone to go for for those who doesn’t mind the bulky size. With ever improving game catalogue and proper game controls, Xperia Play is without a doubt the best smartphone for gamers.

HTC Radar

Status: Available

Price: 24k to 24.5k INR

Product page: http://www.htc.com/in/smartphones/htc-radar/

The Good:

  1. Display (3.8″, 480 x 800 px is perfect for most users)
  2. Windows Phone 7.5 Mango, butter smooth and filled with features. Is a refreshing experience
  3. 1GHz Scorpion processor
  4. Decent camera with 720p video recording, front facing camera for video calling
  5. 8GB onboard
  6. Superb build quality
  7. Wireless content sync using Zune client.

The Bad:

  1. Price could be lower
  2. Poor GPU
  3. Battery should’ve been bigger and user-replaceable

Who should buy this phone:

Windows phone 7.5 is without a doubt the most fluid and feature rich OS out there right now. Yes, it’s restricted but use it once and you won’t go back to any other OS. Highly recommended. But, given that Nokia’s Windows Phone devices are just around the cornet, you can wait for Nokia’s offerings.

Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc

xperia_arc_ne..376_large

Status: Widely available

Price: 25,000 INR

Product page: http://www.sonyericsson.com/cws/products/mobilephones/overview/xperiaarc?cc=in&lc=en#view=overview

The Good:

  1. Breathtaking design
  2. Superb display, BRAVIA engine
  3. Awesome camera quality, Exmor R sensor gives terrific low light image capture
  4. Trademark Sony audio quality
  5. Very good battery life
  6. Powerful CPU/GPU
  7. Active noise cancellation
  8. just 8.7mm thick

The Bad:

  1. Price. One can get Samsung Galaxy S II for 1k-2k more.
  2. No video calling
  3. No Bluetooth 3.0

Who should buy this phone:

I would any day go for SGS II or wait for HTC fix issues with Sensation instead of buying this phone. But if you are one of those who don’t care about dual core and stuff and want a phone that has monstrous multimedia performance, go for Arc. It is sexy, feature rich and would be perfect replacement for your aging multimedia phone/player.

Other good devices inside 20k:

  1. HTC Incredible S
  2. Nokia E5
  3. Dell Venue Pro


Samsung Galaxy S II

GALAXY  S II_3

This phone is meant for Samsung Galaxy series fans. For others, there are better phones for lower and similar price.

Status: Widely available

Price: 28.5k-30k INR

Product page: http://bit.ly/j5VDpq

The Good:

  1. Mightily powerful (dual core Exynos, 1GB of RAM)
  2. 16GB of onboard storage
  3. Stunning display quality
  4. Very good camera, records videos as 1080p
  5. 2mp front facing camera
  6. NFC, Active noise cancellation
  7. DivX/Xvid support
  8. Good battery life
  9. USB OTG
  10. Bluetooth 3.0 HS
  11. Gestures

The Bad:

  1. Price (30k for a phone, you gotta be kidding me)
  2. Touchwiz and Kies are irritating

Who should buy this phone:

If you have the money and are looking for most powerful smartphone available in the market, this one is for you


iPhone 4

iphone 4

Status: Widely available

Price: 33,000 INR for 16GB and 40,000 for 32GB

Product page: http://www.apple.com/in/iphone/

The Good:

  1. Premium build quality
  2. Breathtaking display
  3. Good camera
  4. iOS
  5. front facing camera
  6. Superb battery life
  7. Active Noise cancellation

The Bad:

  1. Price
  2. Far behind top level droids in all round performance and feature set

Who should buy this phone:

  1. The best phone with simple UI that money can buy
  2. Apple loyals

Blackberry Bold 9900

Status: Widely available

Price: 31,500 INR

Product page: http://us.blackberry.com/smartphones/blackberry-bold-9900-9930

The Good:

  1. Very good build quality
  2. Touch screen and very good qwerty
  3. BB 7 OS
  4. 1.2GHz processor and 768MB of RAM, 8GB of storage
  5. DivX and Xvid support
  6. 720p video recording
  7. Blackberry Internet Services

The Bad:

  1. Price
  2. BB7 is better than BB6 but still far from being perfect in the new era
  3. No video calling

Who should buy this phone:

  1. The best traditional looking Blackberry
  2. Among the best for those who prefer Business class device.
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