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We have spent quite a bit of time with the Micromax A116 Canvas HD and we think the smartphone is quite impressive. But being the first “budget” quad-core device, we do have our skepticism. Before we go into a detailed review of the device, we thought we’d compare the A116 Canvas HD to other smartphones, top-end quad-core offerings, as well as other budget devices in that price range.
Micromax Canvas HD A116 vs. Quad-core Flagship Smartphones
We know it’s not an apples to apples comparison, but we still decided to see how the Micromax Canvas HD A116 stacked up against the crème de la crème of the smartphone world. So, below, we have budget Micromax Canvas HD A116 compared with the top-of-the-line LG Nexus 4, Samsung Galaxy S III, HTC Butterfly, HTC One X and the Samsung Galaxy Note II, phones priced around the Rs. 30,000 mark.
Six months ago, we would never even have considered pitching a budget Android smartphone against any premium quad-core device. Now, though the Canvas HD doesn’t beat the top-end smartphones, it still does post some respectable scores, offering roughly 75 percent of the average benchmark performance of the other devices.
Micromax Canvas HD A116 vs. Other Smartphones in Rs. 15,000 Segment
Most of the devices in the Rs. 15,000 price range have a dual-core processor coupled with 1GB or 512MB of RAM. We compared the Micromax A116 Canvas HD to other smartphones around the Rs. 15,000 price point. This includes devices such as the Spice Stellar Pinnacle Mi-530, iBall Andi 4.5q, WickedLeak Wammy Sensation, Lenovo S560 and the HTC One V.
The Micromax A116 Canvas HD did outperform the competition and quite frankly, we were impressed with the results. In the Quadrant benchmark, the Spice Stellar Pinnacle Mi-530 scored second after the A116. The Stellar Pinnacle has a dual-core 1.2GHz processor coupled with 1GB of RAM whereas the A116 has a quad-core 1.2GHz processor and 1GB of RAM. Quadrant measures the performance of the CPU, I/O and 3D graphics of the smartphone. Higher the score, better the performance of the device.
In Antutu, the A116 blows the competition straight out the window, proving that the power under the hood is spectacular. Antutu tests a device on "Memory Performance", "CPU Integer Performance", "CPU Floating Point Performance", "2D 3D Graphics Performance", "SD card read-write speed", and “Database IO" performance. The higher the score, the better the performance of the device. The score gives you a mathematical representation of the potential of a smartphone so it can easily be compared to competing smartphones with similar hardware specifications at a similar price point.
The same can be said for the GLBenchmark Egypt Standard Classic (Frames) benchmark. This benchmark shows off the graphical capabilities of a device and is generally used to measure the gaming and graphical capabilities of the device.
If you are one who would like to play games on your mobile device and don’t like the stutter you get when the action gets intense on your smartphone screen, you are in for a treat. In NenaMark2 (FPS) the device ran at 40.8 FPS making it the best in its class. So, if you decide to play Dead Trigger or any other high graphical game on the phone, the game should play smoothly, which coupled with the good response of the touchscreen and the size of the device, make the Micromax A116 Canvas HD quite ideal to play games on.
Summing It Up
For the price you pay, you are getting a great package in the form of the A116. Of course, it's not just the device's performance that make it quite impressive, but a round-up of other solid features. The Micromax A116 Canvas HD has a 5-inch IPS LCD display with a 1280x720 pixel resolution. It is 10.7mm thin and weighs a mere 156 grams. It also houses a 2000mAh battery, an 8MP rear camera and a 2MP front facing camera. The Canvas HD runs on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, and comes with a refreshing 'upgradeable to Android 4.2' claim.
Coming back to the performance, it's safe to say most of the credit for the quite incredible showing of the Micromax A116 Canvas HD goes to the quad-core 1.2GHz MediaTek MT6589 processor powering the device, coupled with the PowerVR Series5XT GPU, and 1GB of RAM. If this is the future of budget smartphones, we can’t wait to see what Qualcomm does to take on MediaTek with its own ‘budget’ quad-core capable SoC.
Sadly though, we did experience some random reboots on the Canvas HD, and while this may just be an issue with the review unit, it's possible some element of 'budget' compromises did creep into this pioneering effort in the quad-core realm. Stay tuned for our detailed review of the device. In related news, the Micromax Canvas HD sold out within minutes of launch, but is now back in stock according to Snapdeal, and will ship in 20 business days.
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