Whenever we talk about the mobile market, we almost always refer to smartphones. However a large population in Bangladesh still relies on feature phones, whether it be due to the cost of affording a smartphone or due to feature phones being easier to use. Okapia has recognised the needs of such consumers and has developed a product that can act as both a primary phone as well as an auxiliary device to a smartphone. The Okapia Freedom is a feature phone which harnesses the power of Bluetooth to evolve into a smart supporting device.
Design & Hardware
From afar the Freedom looks like a regular feature phone.The device is made of plastic with a speckled finish. It is extremely lightweight at only 37.67 grams and is in fact the lightest phone I have ever seen or used. The lightweight construction is meant to keep the device inconspicuous and non invasive however it comes at the cost of in-hand feel. The Freedom does not seem very sturdy although its low weight should actually reduce the damage done by drops.
There is a traditional T9 keyboard for input along with directional buttons, two multi purpose selection buttons and the accept and reject call buttons. All these are round and make a satisfying click whenever pressed.
There is a single speaker on the front which does not get very loud and call quality through it is decent. Under the speaker is a 1.44 inch 128 x 128 pixel black and white TFT display. On the back is a small removable cover which gives you access to the single SIM card slot.
Once the device is unlocked, you can immediately access the Bluetooth connection option by pressing the three dotted key on the upper left. From here you can scan for Bluetooth devices around and pair or disconnect with them. We will talk more about the Bluetooth functionality in a bit.
Pressing the big select button in the middle takes you to the main menu from which you can access the call log, contacts, messages, settings and tools. There is also an Okapia Care app which tells you where the numerous Okapia Care centres are along with their hotline numbers.
You can directly call any number by typing it on the T9 keyboard. The keys have Bangla characters too if you wish to text in Bangla. The top right portion of the screen has a battery indicator whereas the top left shows indicators for network signal and Bluetooth connectivity.
Performance & Bluetooth Functionality
Everything works swiftly and there is no lag when the Freedom is used as a standalone device. Once the Freedom is connected to a smartphone, certain functions depend on how fast data is transferred between the devices and so leads to slowdowns.
Connecting to a smartphone is a simple one step process. You can keep the SIM in your smartphone but still have access to contacts and messages on the Freedom. You can receive certain notifications on the Freedom from your phone. By downloading a Bluetooth Notifier application from your smartphone’s app store, you can even use the Freedom as a camera shutter and a music playback controller. The best part is that the Freedom does all these seamlessly and is compatible with Android, iOS and Windows Phone devices.
Battery life when connected to Bluetooth is quite good. The small 350mAh battery will last a whole day and some more on a single charge and should be enough for the average user.
At Tk/- 1,990 the Freedom is an excellent option for those looking for a feature phone or a companion to a smartphone. The Bluetooth connectivity is genius and makes the Freedom excellent for individuals seeking perform primary functions off of a smartphone. As a side effect, your smartphone’s battery will last longer. This concept is also great for those who require tactile interaction such as bikers who can not afford to take their eyes off the road to dismiss an incoming call. It is also great for students and other pedestrians who are at risk of getting mugged as the Freedom is inexpensive. To conclude, the Freedom is a smart product that is easy to use and fits the needs for a diverse audience. Checkout more used smartphones on Bikroy.
Display Size: 1.44 inch
Display Type: TFT
Display Resolution: 128*128
Single SIM Standby: Yes
Band: GSM 900/DCS1800
Battery: 350 mAh
Dimension: (Height*Width*Thickness) (113*38*8.2)mm
Internal memory: 32Mb+32Mb
Bluetooth Dialer: Phone Book/Message/Camera
Hands free: Yes
Wireless FM: Yes
Micro 5 Pin USB: Yes
Memory card support: N/A
Vibration Motor: Yes
Weight: 37.67 g