Lenovo has launched a smartphone in the price range below Rs. 10,000 and although the box package of the Lenovo S580 says Rs. 11,999, the pricing it is available with makes it reasonable. There are already a few good smartphones in the price range, so it will make the competition even tougher. But after the aggression shown by Lenovo in pricing their smartphones in the recent times, the price set for S580 isn’t a surprise.
First off, the box package is filled with all the accessories, including a case and a screenguard. The earphones though as pretty cheap and basic.
The build quality is not bad, although Lenovo has used the basic plastic with matte finish on the back. Although a matte one, it doesn’t ignore fingerprints as the marks are evident. The phone is compact for a 5-inch screen and looks similar in size, to the Galaxy S4 from Samsung. And the weight isn’t much as well, as the device is mostly plastic.
On the right side, there are the physical buttons for power and volume controls, and in the top, the MicroUSB port and headset jack are located. On the back, the device has a 8-megapixel camera with the LED flash, raised from the back and just beside to the module is the speaker grill. Lenovo has saved quite some space around the display although the bezels are not really thin. There is a set of sensors, an earpiece and a front-facing camera above the display, and the navigation buttons with silver shine below it.
The removable back cover exposes the battery, two Micro SIM card slots and a MicroSD card slot. The build quality is not bad at all, and although the back cover seems to hold marks of finger and such, it is better than a glossy back which would have looked worse.
The UI isn’t really interesting and is similar to the other Lenovo smartphones, but some intuitive features are missing, mainly because this comes with Android 4.3 (and KitKat update is confirmed from Lenovo). About 5GB of storage is available for the user, out of the 8GB internal space, and the MicroSD card slot is there for the storage expansion. No app drawer could still be a problem for many who have used stock Android, but a simple change in launcher solves the problem.
Google’s apps are pre-installed and there is a big list of apps pre-loaded, including Security, SYNCit, SHAREit, Navigate, Truecaller, Evernote, Facebook, Twitter and Skype. Interestingly there are three browsers already – UC Browser, Chrome and Lenovo’s browser.
I did like the rear camera, although this is not the best of the smartphone cameras with 8MP lens. The disappointment lies with the speed of capture, as it drags a bit to capture and save the picture. But the quality is not bad at all, and nothing really to laud about the front facing camera of the S580.
So, for a quick initial review and thoughts – the Lenovo S580 is a decent looking smartphone with a decent UI and a good camera, but the front camera is not great, and we’ll have to play around with it for a few days before concluding about the performance of the device powered by Snapdragon 200 chipset and 1GB RAM.