The smartphone segment in India is still growing at a fast pace since last few years which has brought several new brands and manufacturers especially from China. Phicomm is one such brand which has entered Indian Smartphone market with their first smartphone in India i.e. Phicomm Passion P660. We will be reviewing the Phicomm Passion P660 which is a mid range smartphone priced in the range of Rs. 10,000. This review is based on our experience with the device for more than one week.
Passion P660 Technical Specifications
- Display : 5-inch Full HD, Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection
- CPU: 1.5 GHz Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 MSM8939
- GPU : Adreno 405
- RAM: 2 GB
- Storage : 16 GB internal, expandable up to 64 GB via microSD
- OS: Android 4.4 (KitKat)
- Dual SIM (2nd nano SIM slot also used as microSD slot)
- Camera: 13 MP rear camera with LED Flash, Sony IMX214 sensor, f/2.0 aperture and 5 MP front-facing
- Dimensions: 139.5 x 69 x 7.4mm; Weight: 110g
- Connectivity : 4G LTE, 3G, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS
- Battery : 2300 mAh
Design, Hardware and Build Quality
On holding the phone first time, you may get confused whether it is a 5 inch device. It appears quite small just like a .7 inch device. The next thing that you will notice is that it is quite light and you may wonder if the device battery is not inserted at all. It is just 110 gms in weight which is rare in a mid range device. In terms of design and build quality, it looks sleek and slim with a combination of metal and plastic. The back cove though is of polycarbonate plastic, it feels great to hold it.
The Power button and Volume rockers are placed on the two sides just like most smartphones along with 3.5 mm audio jack at the top side and micro USB port at bottom.
The three Menu buttons at the bottom of screen are not backlit which is unlike with many popular smartphones. This can be serious drawback advantage if you are using the device in dark surroundings. Many users including me prefer devices with back lit menu buttons.
The back camera and flash is integrated seamlessly and not protruded which gives it a seamless feel at the back. The speakers are at the bottom part of back cover, The front camera and proximity sensors on front are at the top side by side with a small speaker next to it for voice calls.
Phicomm Passion P660 is powered by 1.5 GHz Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 (MSM8939) processor with Adreno 405 GPU along with 2 GB of RAM giving it enough power to run it smoothly. It comes with a LED notification light and G-sensor, L-sensor，P-Sensor, E-compass, Barometer, Step-counter sensor, Gesture sensor; Barometer being an exception in most of the smartphones.
It sports a 5 inch Full HD display with 1080 x 1920 pixels resolution and a pixel density of 441 ppi with Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection. The display appears crisp and clear with good Colour reproduction in normal lighting conditions and in sunlight. The viewing angles are good enough and we didn’t face any issues in terms of viewing angles during out review period.
Performance, Gaming and Benchmarks
During our review period of one week, we didn’t encounter any issues like lags in the UI or any other problem which hangs up the smartphone. Everything worked great without any issues.
We played some heavy games on it too such as Asphalt and it ran almost smoothly on the device. But we didn’t encounter any frame drops during our game-play. We did felt a bit of minor heating issue at the back during prolonged game play, that’s the case with almost every other smartphone in mid-range segment except rare exceptions.
In terms of Benchmark scores, it came out with a score of 26,700+ score for Antutu Benchmarks and a score of 16,600+ score for Quadrant benchmark which is quite good for a mid range smartphone.
One of the features that we missed is the support for USB OTG devices. It doesn’t support USB OTG devices which means that you can not add external storage using USB OTG flash drive and you can only use the micro SD card for expanding your storage.
The sound from speakers are loud and clear.
In terms of call quality, we faced no issues during our use. The call quality was good throughout our review period.
It comes with dual SIM support, but you can only use either the second SIM or use the Micro SD card in the same slot. That may be a problem for people who want to use both the second SIM and the micro SD card at same time.
It also comes with FM radio support using which you can listen to FM radio stations on the go.
It comes with a 13 MP main rear camera with LED flash and 5 MP front shooter. We used both the cameras for almost a week shooting images in different lighting conditions. The cameras were able to shoot great pictures in varying light conditions and the quality of images were good in different light conditions with good colour reproduction, though the pictures in low light conditions were not good. We also faced some focussing issues while the lighting wasn’t adequate.
There is lack of options with camera application though and it’s more like a bare-bone camera application with no camera modes or even HDR mode was absent. Even though it provided some filters and other common options, yet Phicomm should improve the camera app to improve the user experience and offer more functionality to the camera.
You can check out the camera samples below.
The device is powered by a 2300 mAh Li-Polymer removable battery. In terms of battery life, we are not impressed. Even with moderate usage, it lasted for almost a full day and we need to charge it up at night. For heavy usage, it didn’t last full day.But for normal usage, it can lasted for almost one and half day and I had to charge it next day.
Operating System and UI
P660 is powered by Android 4.4.4 Kitkat operating system. The company though has promised for a Lollipop upgrade later on, we cannot be sure unless it’s announced. It comes with almost stock launcher as default which usually is my own preferable choice for launchers, but yours choice can be different.
The user interface appears clean just like stock Android and we didn’t faced any issues while using it. Even though an Android 5.0 lollipop operating system would have been better, yet Kitkat does the job for most users.
It also comes with smart gestures which lets you customise gesture to control different functions of the smartphone such as opening a particular app by typing an alphabet on the blank screen of the device. These options are disabled by default but you can enable them easily in settings.
It comes with a pedometer inbuilt which can track your daily activities, but we found out that it is pretty much inaccurate. The app or the hardware needs to be fixed to make it more accurate. Hopefully Phicomm will be doing that with a OTA update but we cant be sure.
Review on Youtube
In short, we found out Phicomm Passion P660 met our expectation but much more needs to done. Considering that the device is priced at Rs. 10,999 it faces serious competition from existing smartphones in the same or even lower price range. If the price has been a bit lower, the device would be better placed with competitors. The pricing gives advantage to other competitors like Lenovo K3 Note and many other similar devices.