New Delhi: Fueling the fire in the most popular Rs 8,000-Rs 15,000 smartphone segment in the country, Micromax sub-brand Yu has come up with its flagship device Yunicorn -- the best designed Yu device so far.
Yunicorn is in for some real competition here. Priced at Rs 13,499, the 5.50-inch touchscreen display device running Android 5.1 lollipop operating system (which Yu calls "Android on Steroids"), the device is in direct fight with Xiaomi Mi Max (Rs 14,999), Moto G4 Plus (Rs. 14,999) and the LeEco Le 2 (Rs. 11,999) game-changer.
Let us see what works for the device.
Yunicorn features a full HD IPS 5.5-inch ultra-thin bezel display with 2.5D curved glass. The smartphone is powered by a 1.8Ghz Octa-core MediaTek Helio P10 processor paired with 4GB of RAM.
Once in the hand, it feels robust. Not very slim at 8.5 mm and weighing a bit over 170 grams (it will give you a pure phablet feel), the future ready, all-metal body device -- made up of magnesium, aluminium and manganese alloy -- is well-crafted with an aesthetic touch.
The device offers 32GB onboard memory and 32GB space on "social drive". The memory on the phone can be expanded by a 128GB microSD card.
The touch response was fairly good. The fingerprint sensor unlocked the phone really fast (which is not the case with many smartphones in the sub-Rs 15,000 category).
The device is equipped with a 13MP rear camera with LED flash and a five-element lens with electronic image stabilisation (EIS) - a technology that uses electronic processing to control image stability and cut blurring. The picture quality was superb.
There is also a 5MP front shooter for selfie lovers.
YU claims that the phone can run for four days in a single charge with its 4,000 mAh battery. And it lasted for nearly two days with moderate usage and almost a day with gaming and video watching.
Yunicorn has minor tweaks in the stock Android, including a vertical app drawer and a monochrome mode for reading and extending battery life.
The company had promised an upgrade to Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow during its launch on May 31. It will be coming soon.
The 8.5mm thick smartphone accepts dual-SIM (Nano-SIM, Hybrid) and the "Around Yu" services platform have been upgraded to v2.0.
Under the upgrade, the company has partnered with partnerships with Ixigo, Ola and Uber for cab services.
A new feature "Lybrate" is also integrated to help find a doctor and with Scandid for comparison-shopping.
The company also unveiled the Yu Wallet, which will be used to make payments. The Yunicorn comes with Rs 400 in the Yu Wallet.
Another new feature on the device is the smart gallery called Mi Gallery.
This feature lets a user share a set of photos with contacts and the photos can also come on home screen as dynamic wallpaper slideshow.
What does not work for the device.
The all-metal body gets heated while gaming or during high-use. Although a regular problem with most metal-body devices, we think someone, somewhere will soon find a solution to this.
The device lacks an FM radio and Near Field Communications (NFC) feature which allows portable devices to pass data from one device to another by touching them or putting them very close together.
Verdict: For multi-taskers, this is a good device. While you are spoilt for choice in the sub-Rs 15,000 segment, Yunicorn will not disappoint you.
(Sourabh Kulesh can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)