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Karbonn Titanium X review: Affordable full HD phone


Karbonn Titanium X review: Affordable full HD phone



Top Features
1.Bright and vivid full-HD screen
2.Decent performance
3.USB on-the-go support


Overall Rating: 3/5

Indian handset firms have finally started upgrading their flagships to offer full HD (1080p) displays. After Micromax, the latest to join the bandwagon is Karbonn, with its Titanium X smartphone. Is the Karbonn Titanium X the best full HD economy smartphone available in the market? 

We put it to test and tried to find out in our review. 

Build and design
Karbonn Titanium X is designed in a way that all the attention goes to the display, which is a major USP of the phone. Though the phone doesn't look very different from the current crop of 5-inch Android phones in terms of shape, the display panel is placed atop the rear shell in a manner that accentuates it. It is surrounded by a thin metal frame and appears to be a little raised. 

The back shell is made of thick plastic that looks and feels durable but lacks the premium touch despite the matte finish. 

The front of the phone is dominated by the 5-inch full HD display which is flanked by thin, side bezels. The capacitive touch keys for navigation are located at the bottom, while the 5MP front-facing camera, an LED flash, a notification LED and the sensor array are placed at the top along with the earpiece. 

The Power key is located on the right side while the Volume rocker is placed on the left side. The bottom features the micro-USB port while the micro-sim slot and the 3.5mm headset jack sit at the top. If you don't read the quick-start guide, chances are you'll not be able to figure out the sim slot mechanism. The tool has to be used to push the flap that covers the sim tray. This mechanism is pretty different from what is usually deployed by device makers, where one needs to push the toll to eject a sim tray. 

The back of the phone sports a 13MP rear camera lens and a dual-LED flash, some Karbonn branding and a speaker grill. 

It won't be wrong to say that Titanium X is not really a looker, but it still feels nice to hold and use.

 

Display
As we pointed out, the full-HD display on the Titanium X is one of the best we've seen in the mid-range category, next only to Gionee Elife E6's display. The One Glass Solution IPS display offers good viewing angles, decent under-sun legibility and brightness. Text and images look crisp and sharp, colours look vivid and the screen is not very prone to smudges. 

Software
Karbonn Titanium X runs Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean with minor customization and some pre-loaded apps. The navigation structure is more or less standard with five home-screens, a lock screen and the app launcher. The only bit of customization offered is the inclusion of three themes that alter the interface in a very subtle manner. 

Other than that, the phone comes with some preloaded third party apps including Opera Mini, UC Browser, Maxthon Browser, true caller, Kingsoft Office, and demo versions of games like Bubble Bash 3, Death Racing, Fruit Devil and Modern Combat 4. 

With access to Google's Play Store, there's no limit to the number of apps that you can download. The phone also includes Karbonn's own content and services marketplace, Karbonn Zone and Karbonn Live. 

Camera
The Karbonn Titanium X sports a 13MP rear camera with dual-LED flash and a 5MP front-facing camera that also comes with a flash. Karbonn offers a custom camera app that also offers HDR and Panorama modes, in addition to face detection and continuous shot modes. The app offers granular settings for most attributes . 

The image quality offered by the rear camera is just average. Pictures suffered from soft edges, missed out on detail and had bland colours. Photos captured indoors in less light were grainy. The camera is capable of shooting 1080p videos and did a satisfactory job. 

The front camera captured decent quality pictures for selfies, but we didn't find the front flash useful. It's also good for video chats.

 

Performance
Karbonn Titanium X is powered by a 1.5GHz quad-core MT6589T MediaTek chipset and has 1GB of RAM with PowerVR SGX544 graphics chip. We were satisfied with the performance of the phone while navigating across the menu, launching apps, browsing the web and clicking photos. Games like Subway Surfers and Temple Run 2 were running smoothly without any lag or stutter. However, we encountered lag in the form of frame drops while playing graphics-intensive games like Asphalt 8 and Dead Trigger 2. 

The phone comes with 16GB of internal storage which can be expanded by connecting a pen drive with the help of a USB on-the-go cable with the phone. It supports flash drives up to 32GB capacity. 

In terms of multimedia, the phone comes with FM radio capability and the phone's built-in speaker offers decent sound output. The default video player doesn't support some multimedia file formats such as .AVI, but this can be solved by installing a third party player. 

We did not encounter any issues while making calls and were satisfied with the phone's network reception. Voice clarity and loudness levels were also up to the mark. The phone comes with GPS for navigation and maps and was easily able to lock a signal.



Talking about battery life, the Titanium X is backed by a 2300mAh battery with a claimed standby time of up to 240 hours and talk time of up to 6 hours. With moderate to high usage including about one to two hours of making calls, playing games, clicking some pictures, listening to music and browsing the web, the phone will easily last you a little more than a full working day, even if you put the screen brightness at the highest level and keep 3G turned on. 

Verdict
At a price point of Rs 16,490, the Karbonn Titanium X is one of the lowest-priced full HD display phones available in the market. The USP of the phone is indeed its display, which no doubt stands out among other mid-range/ budget alternatives. However, the average camera is a dampener. 

The other factors to consider would be software updates and after-sales support. Indian smartphone brands don't really have a good track record when it comes to after sales support. 

You can also look at the Micromax Canvas Turbo and the Gionee Elife E6, if you're only looking for a mid-range full HD display phone. If you're willing to settle for a 720p display with a smaller screen size and non-expandable storage, you can also consider the much awaited Moto G smartphone.
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