By: Sandeep Budki, The Mobile Indian, New Delhi
Last updated : Monday, September 21, 2015 - 17:00
With a price tag of just at Rs 4,999, the Yu Yunique looks exciting but there are a lot of things that you should know.
Me: Yu seems to be in a hurry to launch devices one after another.
Rahul Sharma (co- founder of Micromax and Yu Brand): No, it's not the case.
Me: Then how do you explain Yu launching Yunique just a few weeks after Micromax launched Xpress 2 which also falls in the same league (price).
Rahul: We wanted to launch an affordable HD display device before others do it.
Me: So, are you part of 'spec war' gang?
Rahul: There are a lot of consumers who buy devices based on their specs and to address their needs we had to do it.
You must be wondering, whether this is a review or an interview. Don't be mistaken, it is a review only. But, before talking about Yu Yunique, I thought, let me share with you what was in the mind of the founder of Yu when he launched the cheapest smartphone of his company.
Micromax's subsidiary brand, Yu earlier this month launched the Yunique at Rs 4,999. The Yu Yunique has a 4.7-inch HD display with Corning Gorilla Glass 3, 1GB RAM, 8GB internal storage and 32GB expandable storage slot. The smartphone is powered by a 1.2 quad-core Snapdragon 410 processor which is paired with Adreno 306 graphics processor. The Yu Yunique comes with an 8 megapixel rear camera with f/2.0 aperture and LED flash and for selfies, it offers a 2 megapixel front shooter which claims to offer 83 degree wide field of view.
This dual SIM phone offers 4G, FM with recording option, WiFi, WiFi Hotspot, Bluetooth 4.0, micro USB 2.0, USB host, GPS with A-GPS and GLONASS. The Yunique measures 134.5 x 67.5 x 8.3 mm and weighs 128 grams. It has a 2000 mAh non-removable battery that claims to offer 7 hours of talk time.
Here we present to you the review of Yu Yunique in a SWOT (strength, weakness, opportunity and threat) format.
If you look at Yu Yunique you will have a feeling that the design has been heavily borrowed from its predecessor, the Yu Yuphoria, and the Micromax Canvas A1. So was that bad? Well not at all; both Yu Yuphoria and Canvas A1 were appreciated for their designs, so Yu did a good thing by not trying to reinvent the wheel.
The Yunique sports a matte finishing and curved sides and is extremely comfortable to hold and operate. Its back panel extends to cover the phone from all four sides as well. There's a big power button in the right hand side, on either side of which are the volume which are comfortable to access. The camera panel in the rear has a protruding rim around it which prevent the lens from accidental scratches. A big speaker grill towards the bottom of the back panel offers a decent output for a budget smartphone.
The Yu Yunique has a 4.7 inch display that has a high definition resolution (1280x720 pixels) that offers decent 312 ppi pixel density and response to touch is good.
The phone uses a 1.2 GHz processor of Qualcomm which along with 1GB of RAM offers a decent user experience and doesn't show any lag while playing games like Candy Crush and Temple Run. But when you go for heavy games like Asphalt 8, it shows some lags. Navigation and web browsing were smooth and multitasking is quite satisfactory too (provided you have not opened heavy games).
As far as the rear camera is concerned, it delivers decent pictures in good as well as in low lighting conditions. Even it manages to focus on objects pretty quickly.
In the connectivity department also, Yu Yunique is pretty strong. It comes with USB OTG functionality so you can use a pen drive with it directly via an OTG cable to further extend its memory. Besides, it has decent call quality and 4G connectivity was good whenever I was not troubled by call drops or lack of signal which off late is a common problem that most of the smartphone users are facing.
As far as the battery back is concerned, on heavy usage it will last around 10 hours which is appreciable. Coming to software, Yu Yunique runs latest Android 5.1.1 Lollipop out-of-the-box with negligible pre-installed bloatware instead of Cyanogen. This seems to be a good move because entry level smartphone users don't do heavy customization with their devices, which is the USP of Cyanogen OS, and in such a scenario Android is good enough to address their needs.
However, you can load the Cyanogen OS 12.1 in this device but for that you have to flash the device â€“ either by yourself or take it to the service center. Also, this will not result in warranty being void.
The Yu Yunique is armed with 8GB of internal memory out of which only around 4.5 GB is available for the user. Well for a phone priced below Rs 5,000, it is not that bad but it is at the same time pretty average. Thankfully, there is a micro SD card slot and it has and USB OTG support as well as I said earlier.
Another, drawback in this device is its front camera. The pictures clicked using it are just decent but sometimes looked faded.
If want you read or view something in bright sunlight on the display of Yu Yunique, it is not an easy task and you will have to cover the screen with your palm to do it. Another, weakness in the device is that both its SIM slots don't support 4G connectivity.
For Yu Yunique, the company has started a new after sale service model wherein a customer can physically visit any one of its 825 authorized service centers across more than 600 cities in case they have any issue with their device. Earlier offline support was not there for Yu devices, support was in the form of reverse pick up and online support. Now the thing to watch out is how smoothly Yu implement this model.
Another opportunity is that the company should try to set up experience zones in the service centers so that potential buyers can have a hands on experience of the device.
Also, if Yu is able to bring on the updates at the right time, consumers will definitely give the company a thumbs up.
The most glaring threat for Yu Yunique is the availability of the device. As of now the device is available on Snapdeal and is sold through a flash sale model. As per our past experience related to flash sale, we have seen that consumers don't wait for eternity to lay hands on the device even if they love it. In short there shouldn't be a mismatch in supply and demand because the market is full of options.
Yu Yunique at Rs 4,999 is a perfect device for a first time smartphone user as they can enjoy the goodness of Android ecosystem and 4G in one device. But that doesn't mean it has no competition - Infocus M2 and Lenovo A2010 are decent challengers while Phicomm Energy 653 is a strong challenger which is better than Yunique in a couple of departments.