Micromax M2 – Hot swappable dual SIM, half-baked music phone Review

Micromax M2 – Hot swappable dual SIM, half-baked music phone Review
VERDICT:

The Micromax M2 is targeted as a music phone, but it does not fully justify this tag. Music lovers would want to stock up their favourite collections on expandable memory and being constrained to a limited 2 GB internal memory with no support for expansion is a serious drawback. Also, the playlist interface is not very user-friendly and the phone lacks dedicated volume buttons. This makes the Micromax M2 not recommended even at its price tag of Rs. 4,500, as there are plenty of music phones available with better overall performance, such as the Fly MV135. The MV135 is priced around Rs. 3,500 and supports up to 8GB of expandable storage with microSD.

M2 – side, front and rear view

Look and Feel

[RELATED_ARTICLE]The Micromax M2 is sleek and stylish with its looks and form-factor to a certain extent identical to a portable media player, including the click wheel. The matte-gray finish on its body blends well with the black finish on the keys and the battery cover. If we ignore all the keys on the front panel, the M2 has a physical resemblance to a typical fifth generation iPod Nano from the front. However, the physical similarities end there, as the iPod Nano is much sleeker and lighter. There is no separate keypad on the M2, as the keys are physically etched onto the front panel. The response and tactile feedback of the keys is good. However, the touch wheel’s multimedia keys are a bit hard on the fingers, particularly the rewind and fast-forward buttons. On the positive side, the click wheel is very responsive. A clock-wise swipe on the click wheel allows you to navigate the menu icons on the right and an anti-clockwise swipe does the opposite. Thus, it is a quick and efficient way for browsing the playlist. However, if you are not so accustomed to the click wheel, you could even use the multimedia buttons on the click wheel, which double up as navigation buttons.

The Micromax M2 features a new way of inserting the dual SIMs by opening the two tiny flaps at the top and pulling the trays out. In other words, it is hot-swappable, and one does not have to remove the battery every time to insert, remove or change the SIMs, which is a neat plus. However, inserting the battery is not as easy as the traditional method, since the user is required to precisely follow instructions printed on the back-panel to access the compartment.

Features

The M2 features a dedicated power button, dedicated call buttonsfor each SIM, and a 3.5mm audio jack among its key features. The handset ships with a stereo headset for the music lovers, in addition to the regular bundled earphones that is a big plus. Also, we could not miss the bundled plastic mobile cover, which fits snugly onto its body. The other interesting feature is the 2 GB internal memory, which came in more than handy for taking snapshots and recording videos on the go, and of course, for music. But, the M2 trades off the external memory slot for the 2 GB onboard memory. So, we were quite disappointed that a user cannot upgrade memory any further.

Read on to know the performance, our take, specifications, ratings and test results on the next page…

 

Performance

[RELATED_ARTICLE]The Micromax M2 delivered decent sound reproduction particularly with the bundled stereo headset and the overall music performance was satisfactory. The Micromax M2 does a good job by delivering consistent signal reception across all the test locations and filtering out ambient disturbances particularly with the handsfree unit. Though the loudspeaker audio is loud enough, it distorts at volumes higher than 50%. The earpiece is loud and clear in most cases. The captured photo colour is a bit washed out in areas where the object is not clearly focused and lacks image clarity. The captured video showed pixelation in normal light and delivered poor clarity and colour accuracy in low-light conditions. The display quality isn’t impressive with very limited viewing angles. The fonts and icons become totally illegible under bright sunshine. The video playback quality is mediocre with intermittent freezes marring the user experience.

 

Our Take

The Micromax M2 is targeted as a music phone, but it does not fully justify this tag. Music lovers would want to stock up their favourite collections on expandable memory and being constrained to a limited 2 GB internal memory with no support for expansion is a serious drawback. Also, the playlist interface is not very user-friendly and the phone lacks dedicated volume buttons. This makes the Micromax M2 not recommended even at its price tag of Rs. 4,500, as there are plenty of music phones available with better overall performance, such as the Fly MV135. The MV135 is priced around Rs. 3,500 and supports up to 8GB of expandable storage with microSD.

Specifications: SIM (GSM GSM); Display: 2-inches, Screen resolution: 240 x 320, Maximum screen colours: 262K; Memory: 2GB internal; Battery: 850mAh, Talk-time: up to 8 hours, Standby-time: up to 152 hours; Dimensions: 113×44.8×10.8mm; Weight: 79 grams;

Ratings
Features: 6
Performance: 5.5
Build Quality: 6
Value for money: 6.5
Overall: 6

Brand Micromax
Model M2
Price (MRP, Rs) Rs. 4500
Features  
Physical Specs  
Form Factor Candy Bar
2G Network Bands (MHz) Dual GSM 900/1800
3G Network Bands N/A
Screen Resolution 240 x 320
Screen Size (inches) 2.0-inches
Maximum Screen colours 262K
Touchscreen / Dual Screen (Y/N) N
Battery Rating 850mAh
Dimensions (L x W x H) in mm 113×44.8×10.8
Weight 79 grams
Expandable Memory Type N/A
Hot Swappable (Y/N) N
Available Colours Grey, Silver
Other Features  
Operating System Proprietary
Charging via USB (Y/N) Y
Hardware Keypad (Regular/QWERTY) Regular
Accelerometer (For auto rotate) (Y/N) N
Address Book Capacity 500 entries
No of calls in register 20 dialled, 20 received, 20 missed
Talk Time / Standby Time * up to 8 hours / up to 152 hours
No of Profiles # / Customisable (Y/N) 7/Y
Offline Operability (Y/N) Y
Inbuilt GPS / A-GPS support (Y / N) N/N
Connectivity  
Browsing (GPRS/EDGE/3G) Y/N/N
EDGE max speed N/A
3G max speed N/A
Connectivity (WiFi/Bluetooth/IR/USB) N/Y/N/Y
Bluetooth Version/A2DP support (Y/N) v2.0/N
Accessories  
Bundled Accessories Charger, handsfree, stereo headset, USB cable, Mobile case
Size of memory card provided 2GB (internal)
Overall Build Quality (So 10) 5.5
Overall Ergonomics (So 10) 6.5
Keypad Design (So 10) 6.5
Camera Specs  
Camera Resolution (Mega Pixels) 2MP
Video Capture Resolution 320 x 240
Dual Cameras / Auto Focus / Flash (Y/N) N/N/N
Mirror for self portrait (Y / N) N
Camera Settings (So 10) 6
Zoom (Optical/Digital) Digital
Multimedia  
Music Formats supported MP3, MIDI, WAV
Video formats supported MP4, 3GP
FM Radio (Y/N) Y
Performance  
Signal Reception and Voice Clarity (So 10)  
Zone 1 6.5
Zone 2 6
Zone 3 6
Device Earpiece Volume 6.5
Device Loudspeaker clarity 4.5
Handsfree Clarity 7
Speaker Volume (on call) 6
Bluetooth Transfer Speed (kbps) 1228kbps
WiFi signal strength (Zone 2) N/A
Captured Photo Quality (So 10)  
Captured Photo Colour 6
Captured Photo Crispness 6
Captured Video Quality 3.5
Loudspeaker Audio Quality 6
Bundled Earphones Quality 7
Bundled Stereo headset Quality 7.5
Display  
Quality of display 5.5
Viewing angle of display 5
Legibility in bright sunlight 3.5
Video Playback Quality (So 10) 5

Contact: Micromax Informatics Ltd.
Phone: 011-45082591/92
E-mail: Info@micromaxinfo.com
Website: www.micromaxinfo.com
Price: Rs. 4,500

 

Vinod Yalburgi
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