Review: INO One Plus (no camera)
Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Front

I recently bought this phone about 2 weeks ago. After using it for around a week, I think I know enough about the phone to write about it. In case anyone else (Singaporeans) is thinking of buying it. (well, mostly army boys)

This phone is only available in SG, it's a certified non-camera phone cleared by MINDEF so you don't need a security sticker to bring inside your camp. Details of the phone can be found here, and the full specifications can be found here.

Back

A list of the important specifications.
CPU: Qualcomm 1.2GHZ Dual Processor MSM8225
OS: Android 4.0.4
Display: 4" IPS 480 x 800 Capacitive
RAM: 512MB
Battery: 1450mAh
Network: GSM 850/900/1800/1900, WCDMA 2100
Dual-SIM
On paper it looks rather impressive, and I decided to get one. So let's break it down.

CPU
It is utilizing a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 CPU, albeit being the lowest tier of the S4 series (2012), it is actually rather decent in performance. Notable phones using this CPU are the HTC Desire X and HTC Desire SV. Both of which are rather good when I played with them at the store.

However, the phone really has subpar performance. From basic navigation to launching applications, it simply feels sluggish. It is a combination of many different factors which I will go into in the later sections, but I am confident that the CPU is up to the task.

DISPLAY
Yes, it is not HD at 480 x 800, but when the phone retails at SGD 288, you have to make some cuts here and there. The most disappointing part about the display is that even though it is an IPS display, the colour reproduction is horrible. Colours appear washed out, black levels are high and the viewing angles are poor for an IPS panel.

That said, most of the problem stems from the fact that the glass isn't optically bonded to the display as you've seen in most phones nowadays. That means that there is actually a visible gap between the display and glass, which you could see from the white line (LED) in the first picture. The other problem is that the screen is LCD and not AMOLED. Even though HTC phones uses LCD panels as well, the quality seen on the INO One Plus is simply miles apart.

Also, because of the gap, it does means that there is quite a large amount of glare when you use it under the sun, the redeeming factor is that the display is really bright, so it shouldn't be a problem.

The capacitive touch screen seems to be a little unresponsive at times, and wildly inaccurate in typing. Which forces you to type slower, and just do everything else a tad slower, ruining the experience.

MEMORY
With a paltry 512MB of RAM, well.. don't expect to multitask much. Even their website advised you to use some application to clear the ram from time to time. The storage comes 2GB standard, and usually they would offer you an 8GB micro-sd card for free.

BATTERY LIFE
This is the only point about the phone that I am happy with. It has excellent battery life even with a 1450 mAh battery; probably due to the slow/low-powered internals. Either way, I had a standby time (idle) of over 5 days, and with medium usage you could get around 2 days. With light use you could probably squeeze out 3 days.

SOFTWARE
Stock Android ICS 4.0.4, which is a good thing in my book but man, it really does lags. It simply feels like this phone is not build for ICS, but rather 2.3.7 Gingerbread.

The screen doesn't have an oleophobic coating, so finger prints sticks with every touch.

The hardware also have a weird quirks. First, the middle home button doesn't fully light up, and yes they know about it but decided that it doesn't matter. Second, the volume buttons cannot be pressed when you close up the back cover. Reason being that the cutting is so tight/perfect that the buttons become stucked. I had to sand down the sides in order to get the buttons to work again. Third, the power button sometimes doesn't work when you first boot up, it does eventually work after a couple of minutes but it is very unsettling. This is simply unacceptable.



Conclusion
This is a rather shitty phone. Not many people have it yet so there are little to no tweaks/hacks/guides online that you can find. In fact, this might actually be the first proper review.

Nonetheless. I have to take into consideration that it is meant to be a low-end phone. This is probably the only non-contract, no-camera, dual-core Android phone at $288. I would say that it really sucks as an android phone, however, it does everything else a phone is supposed to do wonderfully. (they included a spare battery for me too)

Call quality is good, loud and clear; the speaker on the back is definitely loud enough; unlike some other phones that sounds like a squeaky mouse. Reception has been excellent so far with zero problems. I tested it's 3G speed with speedtest and got a score of 3000kbps, so the radio/antenna is definitely of quality.

The only quirky thing about the 3G is that it drops back to standby state a lot more often than other phones. To put it simply, when you're in standby state, you're not connected to the network, only when you start using data then it will start the connection, which is excellent for battery life, but it means that when you want to quickly browse through something, or whatsapp, it will take a little longer time to do it.

Overall I would give it a 5/10.

If you were expecting something lower, it's because that even though it isn't a very pleasant experience using it; it does it's job. And especially since most people who get this is bringing it into army, I think that the battery life is a very compelling factor.

So yes, for the army guys out there, I would recommend you getting it. Everyone else... I don't even know why you're considering this phone in the first place.



Moving forward, since there isn't a single rooting guide or custom ROM for this online at all, I decided that I would probably start developing for it. But, that will have to wait until my first book out. I have a strong hunch that much of the lagginess is simply due to the incomplete software. I'll see how it goes and post updates in the future.

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Leave a comment (3)

3 Comments:

:/
should have read this mannn..

By Anonymous Anonymous, at August 31, 2013 at 6:27 PM  

Awesome review..I have a I no one plus phone n it lags like crazy...if u succeed in getting it resolved,..then pls email me...my email id is Kabra.sagar@gmail.com. ..

Thanks a ton for this review

By Blogger Sagar Kabra, at October 30, 2013 at 1:59 AM  

Thanks a lot for the review man, I have to buy a non-camera phone, and there aren't many information or reviews available online except yours. Now they started teh iNo 2 with new screen and bigger RAM, I wonder how that is, Seems I will be the one to review that.

By Blogger Nader Al-Ghazu, at February 11, 2014 at 1:15 AM  

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