Hands on review of Karbonn A9+, a value for money smartphone
If you are looking for an affordable Android smartphone, consider the new Karbonn A9+. This Android Ice Cream Sandwich phone is affordable, stylish and does the job perfectly. Read this hands-on review to learn more about the features and disadvantages of Karbonn A9+.
Karbonn, one of the top Indian mobile phone manufacturer recently launched an enhanced version of its smartphone Karbonn A9, called A9+. The new A9+ comes with many interesting features that make it a value for money. This is not an Apple iPhone, but it has a lot to offer at Rs 10,000 price range.
Some of the highlights of the new Karbonn A9+ are:
1. Dual SIM capability
2. 4.0-inch IPS display, with 480x800 px resolution
3. Android Ice Cream Sandwich OS
4. 1.2 GHz dual-core Snapdragon processor
5. Dual cameras (5mp auto focus with flash back camera, 1.3mp front camera)
6. 1420 LimAh battery
7. 3G (HSDPA 7.2Mbps), Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth with A2DP and GPS
8. Elegant design
The Karbonn A9+ phone includes the following accessories in the box, in addition to the phone itself:
1. White ear phones with standard audio jack for phone
2. Power charger
3. USB to micro-USB cable for power and data transfer
4. Manual and warranty card
5. Screen protector (Karbonn cares for your phone!)
The A9+ phone I received was a glossy black one and have an elegant look. On the first look, you will think it is an expensive premium phone. The edges where the back panel joins the front panel is bit uncomfortable since the backpanel slightly projects than the front panel, but this appears to be a common design for many of the Karbonn phones in this range.
On the front bottom, the phone has 4 standard soft touch buttons: Home, Context Menu, Back button and Search
Top edge has the 3.5 mic jack input option and next to it is the power on/off button. Right edge is pretty much empty except a tab to open the back panel to change SIM or battery. Bottom edge has a tiny mic input. On the left edge, there are micro USB port and the volume adjust button. Back panel has the camera, LED flash light and the speaker window.
If you open the back panel by separating the front and back panels using the tab located on the left edge, you will see the options to insert 2 SIM cards and then the place for the big battery on top of it.
In general, the design is decent and elegant suitable for a smartphone.
Karbonn A9+ is powered by 1.2GHz Dual-core processor, which make it easy for the phone to handle any normal day to day tasks for a basic smartphone. I did not notice any lag in doing any tasks or starting any applications. I had a smooth experience throughout the period I used the phone.
The 4 inch screen is standard for smartphones in this price range. Size is decent enough to watch videos and browsing. The multi touch capacitive with high resolution WVGA screen make it very comfortable to use hundreds of Android apps.
Operating System & Apps
Karbonn A9+ is loaded with Android Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0. Even though not the latest, the phone runs smooth on this version and gives you access to hundreds of Android apps and features. The phone comes preloaded with a good number of apps including Times of India, WeChat, WhatsApp, YouTube, Gmail, FM Radio and so on.
FM Radio app works only if I use a wired headset. It appears that it need to use the wire as an antenna for the FM Radio.
Calling features in Karbonn A9+
For me, a phone should be a phone before it is anything else. I love fancy features on a smartphone but I would hate to use it as a phone if it is not easy to access the calling features easily. Karbonn A9+ has nothing more to offer than standard Android-Phones. However, the calling options are pretty convenient and gives you quick access to various options like call log, contact list and so on with easy navigation.
The Karbonn A9+ is equipped with dual cameras, a feature that you don't see on phones in this price range.
Front camera: Useful for video chatting. As expected, the front camera is not the best one. The 1.3 mega pixel camera is pretty decent for video calls but definitely not as great as the ones you see in premium phones.
Back camera: The 5 mega pixel back camera offer very clear pictures and is equipped with auto focus, face detection, and LED flash. The pictures looked very clear under various light conditions.
This is a decent phone and offers value for money. If I like to see some improvements to this camera, here are they:
1. It is pretty heavy.
2. There is no indication when you connect it to power. You will end up shaking the power plug several times to see if it is really connected or not.
3. The phone I received was in a glossy black color but it came with nice white accessories, which looks pretty odd.
Best price and deals for Karbonn A9+
The MRP for this device is Rs 9,990 but you can get it a lot cheaper at online stores. The best price at Flipkart is Rs 8,399.