You have probably heard of Aamra, a local company offering smart technology solutions in different fields of industry. WE is a product of AAmra that aims to not just provide a smartphone to the end user, rather a cohesive experience by adding cloud storage and free high speed access to their growing WiFi network. We took an in depth look at their X1 smartphone and here’s what we thought.
Pulling out the device from the box, you wouldn’t be blamed for thinking an iPhone got shipped to you by mistake. The design inspirations of the X1 are crystal clear however this isn’t a haphazard knockoff. The build quality on the X1 is excellent. Starting from the machine drilled speaker holes to the shiny chamfered edge, everything looks clean and well polished. The metal buttons produce a satisfying audible click and are very responsive. The matte finish on the metal makes it feel nice in the hand but the soft plastic parts on the top and bottom of the back side (probably for cellular antennae) may be prone to damage. A row of capacitive keys lines the bottom of the display and are unfortunately not backlit. There is a notification LED though which is hidden discretely next to the proximity sensor. At only 6.5mm thin and 124.5 grams, the X1 is easy to hold and pocket although it is a tad on the slippery side.
When you pack an HD AMOLED display, it is quite difficult to disappoint. At 5 inches across, the 320 pixels per inch make for a sharp display. As typical of AMOLED, you get deep inky blacks as well as high saturation and contrast. Colour reproduction too is pleasant and so are the viewing angles. Brightness goes very high making the display legible outdoors. At night, the display dims down to comfortable levels too. Topping things off is Corning’s Gorilla Glass 3 which helps significantly against scratches. Overall, you would expect such high quality from a large big name OEM so WE has nailed this.
The camera is one of the main points of focus for WE. The main shooter is a 13MP Samsung S5K3M2 unit and the secondary shooter is an 8MP OmniVision OV8858 sensor. How do they perform? Quite impressively in all honesty. The main shooter is capable of catching lots of detail in both low and daylight situations and does a good job with colour reproduction. There is good depth of field in images and dynamic range. The selfie camera does a great job too, producing high quality images worth sharing. WE delivered on the cameras and lived up to their promise on this department.
Seeing a new device at this price run 4.4.4 KitKat in 2016 is disappointing. Nevertheless, the outdated software is brilliant on the X1 though. The provided launcher has adequate customization options in the form of built in themes and transition animations along with a solid lockscreen interface. Unfortunately it isn’t buttery smooth. This has to do purely with the home screen launcher so changing that up with something from the Play Store makes it feel fantastic. Other areas of the OS are zippy and smooth as it should be.
A 1.2GHz quad core Snapdragon 410 powers the X1 coupled with 2GB RAM. To put things simply, you can comfortably play high end games like Modern Combat 5, Asphalt 8 Airborne and Nova 3 on it. You will notice some stutters in intense situations but nothing that will annoy you long. Although the 2,000mAh battery may seem miniscule, it punches above its weight giving you full day battery life consistently.
With excellent design, a display that made us smile and praiseworthy cameras, WE has done a very good job with the X1. That combined with Qualcomm’s silicon makes a very convincing smartphone. Yes the software is quite outdated but performance does not suffer because of it. The X1 is different from other phones though because as we mentioned before, it comes as a package. With 100GB cloud storage and free high speed WiFi at select locations thanks to Aamra, the X1 is definitely more alluring than your average run of the mill smartphone. Overall, at Tk/-18,600 price tag gets you a very capable smartphone with bonuses that are sure to come in handy in 2016.