Byond Phablet PII review
2013 is turning out to be the 'Year of the Phablet' with not just big brand names like Samsung (that started it all with the Galaxy Note) and Huawei launching 5 inch devices but also device manufacturers on home soil. Micromax, Karbonn, Spice have marked their entrance into this territory.
A recent entrant that made its debut in the once niche segment is Byond Tech that literally carved the category into its device name with the Phablet PIII and the Phablet PII.
While the PIII comes with a massive 6.3 inch display blurring all lines between a smartphone and tablet, the PII sports a 5.7 inch screen. It bears an uncanny resemblance to the Galaxy Note II in its entire look and feel, except that the screen is slightly bigger at 5.7 inches, thicker at 9.7mm and there is no S Pen of course.
Let's begin with the box contents. It comes with a free flip cover (like the Galaxy Grand Duos), a charger/Micro USB cable, in ear earphones (again just like Samsung, but with the Byond branding), 2,200mAh power bank (portable charging device), user manual, warranty card and www.officialhockeyauthentic.com/womens-youth-jordan-eberle-authentic-jersey-c-1_167_178.html a 2,500mAh battery.
At 9.7mm thick, it is close to the Galaxy Grand Duos (Review I Pictures) but is pretty bulky at 215 grams. If users with small hands are planning on buying the device, just carrying it around could become quite cumbersome let alone other tasks such as taking pictures or typing.
The device sports a similar front and back like the Note II and even the 5 inch Galaxy Grand Duos with the front facing camera, earpiece and other sensors on top, the central physical home button and capacitive touch buttons for back and menu on either side. Unlike Samsung, the company's Byond branding is seen at the bottom of the screen.
The Phablet PII also has a chromium strip running along the bezel separating the front and the rear. The back panel is plasticky and attracts greasy fingerprints. It features an 8 megapixel camera with LED flash, the Byond branding etched on a silver stripped background and the bottom has the loudspeaker opening.
Coming to ports, the right side has the power/wake button, the left houses the volume rocker, the top makes room for the earphones jack and the base is reserved for the Micro USB/charging port along with the microphone.
Opening the back panel was quite a task. We'd advise a word of caution, you might end up chipping your fingernails. It opens from the left and once you've accomplished that, you'd witness the microSD and the dual GSM SIM slots arranged in a linear fashion adjacent to each other.
The company has provided a free scratch guard that comes neatly stuck on the device screen. The device incorporates a PDA Arc touch screen, which supports 5 point multi touch. Icons, images and videos look sharp and crisp at a 720x1280 pixel resolution. Colours and contrast in the images are rendered well and there is no visible pixilation, despite the low ppi.
Text, however, appears slightly blurry when you open web pages but once you pinch to zoom www.officialhockeyauthentic.com/womens-youth-steve-yzerman-authentic-jersey-c-1_147_151.html it appears more crisp.
Under sun visibility was better when compared to the Galaxy Grand Duos at full brightness levels even though the screen is reflective. The device has wide viewing angles thereby aiding in the watching experience.
The touch sensitivity however is not that great.
Outdoor shots, especially macro ones, in broad daylight are pretty decent, though indoor shots appear a bit dull and washed out. Those taken under low light conditions are also average and not that high quality. Colour reproduction is sub par and clearly not the best for a camera of this resolution.
The device offers limited and simple software functions such as White Balance, Flash mode, Scene mode, Panorama and ISO. It also has continuous shot mode that allows you to take upto 16 shots at a time, though there is considerable amount of lag between 2 consecutive shots.
Other camera settings include self timer, brightness, hue, saturation and more. Jordan Eberle Authentic Jersey You can also add filters for different colour effects like sepia, aqua, negative, mono, blackboard and whiteboard. What is interesting is that it is layered with a similar looking TouchWiz UI like Samsung. Various icons and the overall look bears uncanny resemblance to the TouchWiz UI found in most Samsung devices. We compared it to the screen of the Galaxy Grand Duos and you can see from the screenshots below what we mean.
The notification tray includes toggles for settings such as Wi Fi, Bluetooth (BT), GPS, Data and Airplane mode. Additional toggles for Brightness, Screen timer, Auto Rotation along with phone profiles for General, Silent, Meeting and Outdoor are also present.
The UI isn't as smooth as you'd expect with a sluggishness that is quite noticeable especially while switching between the five customisable home screens. There is more than sufficient space to populate these screens with apps and widgets as per your convenience and preferences. Pinch zooming on any one home screen offers quick access to other screens listed as tiles.
Switching between apps is possible by long pressing the physical Steve Yzerman Authentic Jersey Home button. Once the app list shows on screen, you can close background apps by a single left swipe.
Holding the power and lower volume button enables you to take screenshots and the images are imported by the Gallery app, which also lists other pictures in case you choose to sync your Facebook and Google accounts.