Xolo India offers a number of smartphones under its Q series which come with quad-core mobile processor packed inside. While most of its sub-Rs 15,000 devices house a MediaTek chipset, Xolo has slowly moved towards implementing the Qualcomm Snapdragon solutions. Back in November 2013, the company introduced the Xolo Q500 with Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 mobile chipset. The competition went fierce when Motorola Moto G was launched in India for Rs 13,499 back in January. Xolo decided to answer that with the new Q series smartphone – Q1100.
Xolo’s handset portfolio includes devices packing solution from Intel, MediaTek and Nvidia. The Xolo Q1100 integrates the Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor. However, the Xolo Q1100 can be easily confused with Xolo Q1010 which costs about Rs 2000 less and offers completely different set of features. We got our hands on the Xolo Q1100 to have a closer look at the device.
Xolo Q1100 has a mono-block design with glossy front which is a fingerprint magnet. The back panel though has matte finish and is removable. Chromed metal rim runs around the Q1100 which is just 8.3 thick.
The power-sleep key is on the right hand side of the phone while on the left side rests the volume rocker. At the rear, the camera module is right in the center with a microphone on top of it and LED flash below. On the bottom left corner at the back is the speaker mesh. Back panel basically provides better grip and the device feels great in hand. This might be one of the best designed smartphones in the Rs 15,000 price segment. However, it lacks the trivial yet useful USB On-the-Go support which is offered in Moto G.
Rating for design: 7.5 (out of 10)
Xolo Q1100 packs a quad-core 1.4 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 mobile chipset, integrating the Adreno 305 GPU and 1 GB RAM. Xolo has packed 8 GB on-board storage out of which only 5.27 GB is available for the users. There is a memory card slot at the back which can accommodate up to 32 GB micro SD card.
The Q1100 flaunts a 5-inch IPS LCD display, made using One Glass Solution, and it features 1280×720 pixel resolution. Though its pixel density of 294 pixels per inch sounds quite moderate, it still manages to create crisp visuals. The touchscreen can support up to five fingers at a time.
This smartphone offers dual-SIM connectivity out of which only one slot supports 3G network support. For faster internet, you can employ its WiFi support. There is a 3.5 mm standard audio port at the top of Q1100 where you can plug any pair of headset or headphones. Besides, it has Bluetooth 3.0 and has a USB 2.0 High Speed port at the metallic chin at the bottom of the phone.
If compared to the Motorola Moto G (hyperlink:https://www.themobileindian.com/handset-guide/details/Motorola-Moto-G-(8GB)), the Xolo Q1100 scores brownie points for offering memory card slot, removable battery and higher resolution camera. However, when it comes to software, Moto G has an edge with the Android 4.4.2 KitKat while the Q1100 runs Android 4.3 Jelly Bean. The basic hardware in the Q1100 affirms a promise for longer shelf life and decent performance.
Rating for hardware: 8 (out of 10)
Software and Apps
Xolo has offered the Q1100 loaded with very basic Android 4.3 Jelly Bean. Like many other Xolo smartphones, the Q1100 has a set of utility apps like Xolo Power, Xolo Security and freshly introduced X-TransPic mobile apps. The X-TransPic app helps to translate Hindi Text into English when the phone camera is pointed at the text. There are three capacitive keys on the front bottom – Menu, Home and Back. Press and Hold on Home key brings up the Android’s native multi-task user interface.
Total lack of pre-loaded makes does save anyone from remove/uninstalling the unwanted apps. But it also adds the task of searching and downloading required basic apps for the operating system. Thankfully Xolo has packed the File Manager onboard. The Reverie Phonebook allows the user to save contacts in multiple languages. Sad part is the the Music app bundled looks old and lacks any additional features.
Xolo has made no promises about pushing the Android 4.4.2 KitKat update for this smartphone so any possible performance improvements can not be expected.
Rating for software and apps: 5 (out of 10)
The Q1100 features an 8 megapixel camera that comes integrated with the Backside Illumination 2 sensor which can be expected to be relatively better than the first generation BSI sensor. There is an LED flash just below the camera. In the front, it has a 2 megapixel camera which is ideal for video calling but certainly not for self portraits. The default camera app is quite different than other Xolo devices but is mostly a stock version of Android. The user interface offers confusing streak of options in the options menu.
The Settings are divided in three different options vaguely named as Option1, Option2 and Option3. The features are spread across these three options and includes interesting ones like Histogram, Focus Mode, Zero Shutter Lag, Colour Effects, AE-Bracketing, White Balance and even Anti-banding. It appears that the camera app uses a very tight algorithm for post processing for the image quality was just average. Focusing is still bit of an issue, even in Macro mode where the focus went for a toss several times. Using HDR did not help much with the images for it created the extreme version of actual image and the colours product goes for a toss.
With any of the options, the resultant image is certainly different than expected. For instance, the Option3 would give close to natural colours in macro mode but would end up overexposing the image. Xolo really needs to fix the issues with camera app for the resultant images look goofy and worth only if shared over social networks that allow moderate quality. Image capturing is very slow on the camera app.
To check the sample images that we have clicked using its rear camera, clicke here.
Ratings for camera: 6.5 (out of 10)
The Q1100 packs quad-core muscle at heart to ensure overall smooth experience. The basic user interface work just fine and we believe with next major update it can be as smooth as other devices. When it comes to Benchmarks, the phone score 19701 in AnTuTu Benchmark. As the benchmark suggests, the phone allowed us to enjoy some casual as well as large games. The graphics experience was pretty fine and this can be easily slotted in our one of the Top 5 game handsets in sub Rs 15,000 price range. With reference to gaming, the Q1100 bagged 56.9 fps in the Nenamark2 benchmark.
The phone surprised us a bit with the Vellamo benchmark by scoring 632 points. Even in the GFXBenchmarks, the phone scored 596 points in the Open GL ES 2 based benchmark. The native camera user experience irked us a bit with slow capture performance in auto mode.
The GPS took about 13 to 15 seconds for locking the location without using the help of WiFi or mobile network support. So believe, that it should be just fine for those who use Google Maps and Foursquare app. However, keeping the location services ON affected the battery life just like any other device. Audio quality is quite pleasing with balanced sound
Rating for performance: 8 (out of 10)
Xolo has packed a 2000 mAh Lithium-Polymer battery in this handset and we obviously had high hopes with that. While the large HD screen does look enticing, it is also a big battery muncher. If you keep the brightness too high, the battery charge continues to decline little quick than the usual low setting. We tried the usual charging method and battery took about 2.5 hours to charge from dead to full 100 percent. Since the Qualcomm chipset supports QuickCharge 1.0 method, the charging time was reduced with that to about 2.1 hours.
Moderate usage of the device with couple of phone calls, web browsing, using social network apps and listening to music made the phone last for just about a day with the charge left in single digit percentage. Heavy users of the smartphone users will have to keep a powerbank or charger handy all the time. We hope that Xolo releases any updates to fix the performance and improve battery life. Or at least provide higher capacity battery for this smartphone. Battery Guru app by Qualcomm does help in squeezing out some extra hours from the phone but it hampers the overall experience since it disables background refresh for select apps.
Rating for battery: 7 (out of 10)
Images By Sushil Kumar