Spice has certainly jumped with both feet into the Indian mobile market with the launch of its Mi-310 Android based smartphone. The company has come a long way from making entry-level phones in a very short period of time, to making quality devices of this nature. This mobile phone is targeted at all generations and a cost to match budgets with max retail price at just Rs. 7,305 or MRP of Rs. 7,500. We recently reviewed the Huawei IDEOS U8150, and the price of Mi-310 beat it by a grand and a half, let’s hope it’s not only the price that’s better with this one…
To know more about the features from Spice Mobile’s latest offering, read on ahead and see what we discovered.
Spice Mobile's Latest Offering
Design and Build Quality
The bar designed Mi-310 is a simple phone to look at with a 3.5-inch capacitive touchscreen, there is a track pad at the bottom of the screen and designated keys for volume and camera, a micro-USB port at the bottom and a 3.5mm headset jack on the top at the centre. The power off/ sleep button is small and is placed on the left of the headset jack on the top, you could miss it as it fuses exceptionally well with the black border that runs along the side of the entire device. After locating it the first time, it was simple to operate and use on a regular basis without missing it. In addition to this, there are four designated touch sensitive buttons at the bottom of the screen being home, menu, back and search like there are on most Android phones. For some reason the middle two buttons (menu and back) light up brighter than the two on the extreme ends, this can be distracting on the eyes. Or, maybe this could be the case with the review sample we received. The mic is on the face of the phone itself, not under as in the case of most mobiles out in the market, it actually did help in the clarity of the call.The phone comes in a single color: brown, though this may not be the color of choice for me
The solid body of this spicy smartphone
The phone looks and feels extremely sturdy so no complaints at all in that department. To open the back panel to access the battery, SIM card and micro SD card took a little bit of strength because it wasn’t easy at all. The bundled up headset is very well built as well.
The Mi-310 is powered by Google’s Android 2.2 FroYo and as with all Android based devices the functionality of this phone is simple yet, very admirable. It has been fitted with a 3.5-inch capacitive HVGA screen though there is a slight lag and can sometimes be a tad bit frustrating while playing games or typing. There are five different home screens which are customizable through press, drag and drop. There is a slight stuttering while browsing through the different home screens which happens on an occasional basis and while it’s not often it can still be a bit bugging at times. Multi tasking on the Mi-310 is good as it runs the last eight apps quite seamlessly without slowing down or shutting down any of the recent apps.
The central dock for stereo headsets
The music feature on this phone works really well, with the audio output through the mono speaker at the back and through the bundled up headset the sound quality and clarity is above average.
The 2 mega pixel rear facing camera is nothing to boast about, it performs on an average basis. The picture and video quality is much better in a bright setting as compared to low light areas. The difference can be seen below:
The not so great low light pic
The crisp outdoor picture from a 2mp smartphone
The call quality of the Mi-310 is excellent; there was no stuttering, call drops, or disturbances even in areas where there was low cellular reception.
So now with 3G being supported on almost all carriers in India; this is a feature that can hardly be overlooked. Along with 3G there is also Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.1 for data transfer and connectivity purposes.
Spice has bundled a lot of apps into this phone that is really enjoyable to go through such as Facebook, Nimbuzz, Naukri, etc. With the built in Android Market app the amount of apps available are extensive; With the GPS and AGPS functions on the phone, you can perform functions such as location tracking or directions tracking. It is a little impossible to get lost with this phone except get lost into it.
Priced at Rs.7,500 through retail and at a MRP of Rs. 8,999, this is a phone that has excellent value for money and with its Android based operating software it is a strong recommendation for people who are just entering into the Android world. However, even though I strongly recommend this phone, it still should be noted that it is an entry-level smartphone as far as Androids are concerned. If you’re on a somewhat tight budget, the Mi-310 should definitely be your first choice if you are looking for a touchscreen phone.