By: Rahul Gupta, The Mobile Indian, New Delhi
Last updated : Saturday, August 24, 2013 - 17:50
Nice features and a slim profile make the Intex Aqua i-5 a good low cost device.
Awkward volume rocker placement
The quad core phablet category today is no longer limited to Rs 15,000 plus category but has gone way lower. Intex Aqua i-5 is one such low cost quad core processor based device which is priced at Rs 11,999. Let's find out more about the Intex Aqua i-5 Android smartphone.
Look and Feel
This Intex device has a slightly smaller battery and has a just 8.8 mm thickness. The glossy colour finish of the device adds a touch of look but at the same time also makes it prone to a lot of fingerprints and smudges. It has got capacitive touch enabled keys in the front that make the front neat and clean and gives a seamless look to the capacitive touch enabled input system as well. The device has been accented with a chrome strip on all sides which adds a touch of elegance to the device's appearance.
Intex Aqua i-5 has a 5 inch screen size but the reduction in the bezel size has made it sleek and easy to carry; most of the times it feels like a smaller device. The sidewise placement of the power/standby key really makes it easy to use. The left hand side houses the volume rocker and the right side features the Power key. Surprisingly the left side placement of the volume rocker is coved underneath the flip cover that comes bundled with the device, making it extremely difficult to operate. Design flaw or poor thinking, whatever it is users would not like it.
Overall, the build quality of the Intex Aqua i-5 is decent. It's sturdy and the casing of the device offers ample protection form accidental falls. The protective plastic capacitive touch surface on the display will protect it from damage but getting a scratch guard with the device earlier on would be advisable.
Display and touch
The 5 inch IPS LCD display comes with qHD (960 x 540 pixel) resolution which works flawlessly but at this price point many device makers are offering 720 p resolution based displays. The maximum brightness supported by the display makes it a perfect device to be used even in bright sunlight as well but then qHD is sad for otherwise a great display. The colour reproduction and the black levels are low but the picture quality offered by the display is sharp.
The Intex Aqua i-5 is based on Android's newest Jelly Bean operating system and hence the front of the device comes with three capacitive keys. The touch sensitivity of the Intex Aqua i-5 is accurate and the feather touch keys work well too. So be it gaming or web browsing, the touch sensitivity of the device has been tweaked for just the right performance and just a slight touch is required for most tasks and applications to perform the desired actions.
Hardware and Performance
The Intex Aqua i-5 is powered by a 1.2GHz Mediatek MT6589 quad-core processor and PowerVR SGX 544MP GPU. The processor performs well and holds its cool under pressure. On gaming front also the phone is capable of doing justice to most games, even the HD ones. But HD game seems to put the processor under a lot of strain and the device heats up quite fast. Within 10-15 minutes of gaming, the device gets really warm.
The Intex Aqua i-5 features 1 GB RAM memory and 4 GB of internal storage. This works great for all applications plus it can be further upped to about 32 GB with the help of external Micro SDHC data card.
The hardware combination for the Intex Aqua i-5 is good and the device did not suffer an application crash or froze during the review. Even in terms of multitasking there is ample headroom for applications with 1 GB RAM and a quad core processor.
Powered by Android's Jelly Bean operating system, the Intex Aqua i-5 comes with the stock user interface along with a number of customisations done from the manufacturer. There are a number of free apps like Fruit Ninja preinstalled but that too in free version, personally if given a choice we would opt for a clean device with less free apps as these can be anyways installed later on.
The operating system offers the device compatibility for most applications on the Google Play store. The most important and appreciable customisation is done on the camera part with a nice and very easy to use camera interface.
Performance and usage
The Intex Aqua i-5 offers decent all round performance that makes usage of this device fun to use. Most applications work well on the phone, including internet based applications as well. The onscreen keypad is nicely designed and spaced out as well making the device great to use.
The call performance of this device is also another major plus point for the device. The calls are received and made without any issue. The earpiece volume is abundant and the microphone also makes sure the receiver gets to hear every world loud and clear. One issue is that the loudspeaker is tuned for lower sound but one can always use a utility like speaker booster for some additional volume when needed.
The device features a dual SIM design with primary SIM featuring 3G connectivity while 2G on secondary SIM. Utilising and calling using two SIM's is not at all an issue and works smoothly.
Camera and Multimedia
There is a 12 megapixel camera in the Intex Aqua i-5 with an auto focus lens. The Intex Aqua i-5 offers a higher resolution camera. Along with that the device can record high quality videos as well. The front features a 1.3 megapixel camera good enough for video calling.
The image quality of the camera is good for the outdoor and for indoor mode sufficient light is provided by the LED flash but the flash is only effective for close objects.
On multimedia front all generic Android formats are supported for playback in terms of audio and video files by the Intex Aqua i-5. Anyway, there are numerous applications on Google Play store to extend multimedia capabilities. There is stereo FM reception also on the device that comes with FM recording option as well.
The Intex Aqua i-5 is a performance oriented budget Android smartphone that is priced at Rs 11,999. It can be expected at a price of Rs 12,000 or even lower in the retail market. The Intex Aqua i-5 with a sleek profile and its 2000 mAh battery offers up to 1-1.5 days' worth battery backup with moderate usage which is impressive overall for a device with a bigger 5 inch display.
The device overall looks great and as far as the hardware and the performance goes, the Intex Aqua i-5 is a good mix. Aptly targeted at the youth this device is sure to offer great fun and utility to its users. The Intex Aqua i-5 is a stylish device to have and flaunt while it offers decent performance as well. Most importantly the device scores on its price, but has its own set of pros and cons.
Photographs by: Sushil Kumar