Thursday, February 17, 2011

Spice Mi-310 Front

Look what we found lurking in Spice Mobility’s corner of the Internet?! It’s the Mi-310 that may be manufactured by HTC. When we published that previous article with our opinions on why HTC could be building the Spice Mi-310, we reached out to Spice’s PR department; but received no response. Anyways, Spice Mobility has since priced and launched this phone since that time. It costs a wallet-friendly Rs. 8,999/- and one-ups the previously released Spice Mi-300 on several counts, but reduces a few niceties to stay within that tightly budgeted selling price. The four photos available at Spice Mobility’s website of this Android-based smartphone are available below; click them to view the full-sized images. Follow us beyond the break for the full specifications and differences between this and the Spice Mi-300.

Spice Mi-310 Front Spice Mi-310 Left Spice Mi-310 Rear Spice Mi-310 Right

First, let’s get the full specification list out of the way.

  • Operating System - Android 2.2
  • Processor – Unknown
  • RAM – Unknown
  • ROM – Total size unknown; 85 MB available for user storage
  • Display – 3.14 inch 320x480 HVGA capacitive display
  • Memory card – microSD upto 16 GB
  • Battery – 1200 mAh (Rated 2.5 hours of talktime)
  • Camera – 2 MP
  • Connectivity – 7.2 Mbps HSPA (3G), Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1, A-GPS, FM Radio
  • Wi-Fi tethering and hotspot built-in

Our thoughts

First off, we’ll be clear about one thing. Our previous guess that HTC maybe building this could be completely untrue. The curve of the Back arrow is slightly different on HTC Android phones, along with a few minor differences in the other capacitive touch buttons for the Mi-310 and HTC Android devices. That being said, this phone does seem to have very decent design and construction quality – check out the speaker grill next to the rear camera. Can’t really say till we handle one and/or review one. This could be built by some other Original Device Manufacturer, such as ZTE or Huawei or Commtiva (who manufactured the Spice Mi-300) itself.

Coming to the plus-es that the Mi-310 has over the previously released (currently out-of-production) Mi-300, the first thing is obviously the official Android 2.2. Obviously, this is bringing along the default Mobile Hotspot functionality along for the ride. The Mi-310 also gains about 6 g in weight over the Mi-300, while being taller and wider by 1.1 mm (h) and 3.2 mm (w). The Mi-310 is a few hairs thinner by about 0.65 mm. The Mi-310 also adds a much-needed FM Radio, and converts that scrolling trackball to an optical trackpad (Some tend to prefer the non-optical solution, though). The HSPA upgrade to 7.2 Mbps download speeds from 3.6 Mbps is definitely welcome, though it might take some time for Indian 3G operators to allow mobile phones to access data at those speeds.

In terms of removals, the so-so quality 5 MP camera with LED flash has been reduced to a 2 MP affair. Support for microSD cards is mentioned as being only upto 16 GB; this may not matter too much - because most people aren't willing to part with that much cash to buy a 32 GB microSD card. The lack of the Call/End Call buttons may be a deterrent if you are planning to upgrade from an Android phone that currently has them (like the Spice Mi-300) but it shouldn't be an issue at all.

With the introduction of the Mi-310 at Rs. 8,999/- Spice Mobility has once again hit a sweet spot between features and price. When the Huawei Ideos and Samsung Galaxy 5 are selling for a few rupees less with 240x320 QVGA displays, who can argue that this is value-for-money buy? Spice Mobility is showing Videocon and Micromax the lesson - how to make an Android phone. We wish every budget Android phone maker in India would follow Spice's example. That would make for an interesting range of budget Android smartphones.

Source : Spice Mobility


Niceice said...

Seems to be a good phone. But there are TWO IMPORTANT misses - QUAD BAND, The lowest of rated talktime (2.5 hours is extremely low, should have been atleast 4-4.5 hours)

The Indian Geek said...

Hello Niceice,

Yes, you are absolutely right. The phone is only dual-band, and it has a low rated talk time. The reason that we're highly stoked about this phone - is the value-for-money component. People with an 8-9k budget could spring for this instead of the Huawei Ideos with a QVGA display, or the Micromax Andro with a resistive QVGA display.

This is a value-for-money buy at the lowest-end of the HVGA Android market segment in India.


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