There are ‘spec’ driven Smartphones ad there are ‘store’ driven Smartphones. The former if the pricing is right goes on an auto pilot mode and the later relies heavily on the salesperson to convince a buyer who walks in a store for a new phone. Gionee P7, a budget Smartphone which was launched last December in India at Rs 9,999 falls under the second category. With a glossy body and decent looks the company hopes it would sell especially in tier 2 an 3 cities. But how good is the phone? Let’s find that in this review.
Design, Build Quality and Display
- Polycarbonate body
- 5.0 inches IPS LCD display
- 1280 x 720 pixels
The front is a black slab with three standard capacitive buttons below the display, that are not backlit. The top has the selfie camera and the ear piece grille. The back is where Gionee hopes to convince the buyers. A curved shiny grey back looks pretty good, inspite of it being plastic. The curved sides also mean it sits neatly on your palm.
At the back you find the camera and LED flash aligned to the centre of the top part of the rear and a little below is the smiling Gionee logo.
The bottom has the mono speaker and a microphone
The top has the 3.5mm audio jack.
To the right side is the power and volume rocker and the left is plain.
The back panel can be removed and it gives access the battery, along with the dual-SIM card slots and the micro-SD card slot.
The Gionee P7 comes with a 5-inch 720p IPS display with SodaLime protection. The colors look natural and the viewing angles are decent enough.
At this price segment in phone’s mainly selling on offline channels, we cannot expect a fullHD resolution, and the HD resolution doesn’t look lackluster. The display settings though doesn’t have options like blue-light filter or other customization options but has a toggle for adaptive display.
Software and UI
- Android Marshmallow
- Amigo 3.2
The Gionee P7 runs on Android 6.0 Marshmellow skinned with Amigo 3.2.0 UI. Amigo UI mimics iOS by giving you certain shortcuts and quick options when you swipe up from the bottom, and the notifications can be accessed by swiping down from the top. There is no app drawer.
There are few smart gestures flip back to pause alarm, shake to clear recent apps, double click to wake etc. But nothing very dramatic. There is a floating dock that can give quick access to home, lock and back buttons but sadly cannot be customized with other actions. The screen can also be minimized for one-hand operation in case you want to. The lockscreen wallpaper can be changed by swiping to the left or right.
There is a LED indicator for charging and notification reminder for unread messages and missed calls, which can be turned off in the settings in case you find them annoying.
Hardware and Performance
- 1.3GHz MeidaTek processor
- 2GB RAM
- 16GB storage
- OTG support
- 4G VoLTE
Powering the Gionee P7 is a 1.3Ghz MediaTek Quad-core processor along with 2GB of RAM. For basic tasks like web browsing and multiple app switching, it does a neat job. Apps open quickly and it looks pretty good in the basic operations.
Despite, the low key specs the P7 is surprisingly able to handle most of the games, of course it would shift to low-graphic settings when you want to play games like Asphalt Nitro better. The loading time though is a a bit of a wait game but once loaded it is decently well for this price. Even with more than a half dozen apps running in the background, the phone didn’t struggle a bit, which was quiet impressive.
The dampener though is the 16GB of internal storage, which can be a limiting factor. Of course, there is an option for microSD cards up to 256GB but then the external storage is not an option for every apps. Out of the 16GB close to 10GB is user available. The P7 also supports OTG.
There is no issue with the call quality and the phone for normal use seems to be good. The 2300mAh battery looks underwhelming with many 4000mAh battery floating in the market. It could last a day though since it is easy on the specs and is not battery draining configurations.
- 8MP rear camera
- 5MP front camera
- LED flash
- 1080p video
The P7 is equipped with a 8-megapixel camera in the rear and a 5-megapixel selfie camera. The camera app has an array of cool camera modes such as manual mode, smart scene, text recognition, GIF maker, Smart scan, mood photo,beauty mode, night, panorama, time lapse, GIF and HDR. It can also take videos in 1080p.
Now coming to the quality of images it produce, it’s tad disappointing, most other phones in the price segment has leapt ahead of the P7. Even in daylight, the colors are bit washed out and it adds up more noise on closer look. Lesser said about the low-light conditions, then. The selfies are strictly ok.
What is good about the Gionee P7 is its shiny back which might impress some in the segment it hopes to sell. It also has a decently good display, user interface and steady performance. The camera though doesn’t impress. At this price segment, clearly there are better options. It stands no chance against the similarly priced phones that are online exclusive offering much better specs. Offline sales is a different ball game and that is where Gionee can hope to sell this with a little push from the retailers, like I said in the starting the Gionee P7 needs a ‘God’s hand’ to sell in the form of sweet talking salesperson in the stores.