Infinix is a relatively new brand in Pakistan's smartphone market, but if online sales are anything to go by, the brand's budget friendly android phones have taken users by surprise with their performance and affordability.
Reluctant to opt for a new brand, I bought the Zero 3 as my third product from Inifinix within the last 6 months.
It's price? Rs20,899.
Let's see how it fared as the brand's premium flagship Android smartphone.
For a rupee less than 20,900 we are getting a handful. The highlights are:
OS: Android 5.1 (Lollipop with XUI)
Display: 5.5 inch Full HD IPS, 178o Wide-viewing, 1920x1080 (400ppi)
Processor: 2GHz, 64 bit Octa-Core, MediaTek MT6795
GPU: PowerVR Rogue G6200
Memory: 3GB RAM
Storage: 16GB, SD Card slot for up to 128GB
Back Cam: 20.7mp, Dual Colored LED Flash
Front Cam: 5mp, LED Flash
Connectivity: 4G LTE, Dual SIM Slots
Sensors: Accelerometer, Proximity, Light, Orientation, Magnetometer, Noise Cancellation
Battery: 3030 mAh, Fast Charge
In the Box
Infinix Zero 3 the handset | Charger Plugs x 2 | USB Data Cable | Transparent Soft Back Cover |
Zero 3 is a slim, sleek and light weight handset made of Gorilla Glass 3 and aluminium framing with an absolute ‘no curve’ design. Even its 20.7 megapixel camera is designed in a square shape, and the phone's corners are tapered at bottom to avoid any discomfort if one holds the device for long time.
The back case is not removable because of its built-in battery. The handset overall has three LED flashlights, the first one is the dual coloured light at the back, the other is in the front for a selfie cam, and the third is an almost invisible notification LED above the earpiece.
I picked the 'Luxurious Gold' color variant and unexpectedly it turned out to be better than the box picture. It is easy to hold, and only glass case at the back makes one feel like they need to put in extra care.
The only bad thing about the design is a huge bezel at the bottom.
Hardware and Performance
The phone's 5.5 inch screen makes images and text beautifully sharp and text easy readable at a 1080 x 1920 resolution.
Colours appear perfect from all viewing angles, but users still have option to manually adjust colours from the settings. Navigation is in the form of on-screen keys.
Its 2ghz Octa-core processor does all the heavy lifting and PowerVR Rogue G6200 GPU ensures smooth navigation and a wonderful gaming experience. Zero 3 can playback commonly used video formats up to 2k or 4k at a decent pace.
The 3030 mAh fixed battery only takes about an hour and half to full charge, courtesy of Flash Charge technology introduced by Infinix.
Having 3GB RAM on the phone sounds exciting and fit for multitasking but on the flip side, this much memory allows consumption of more and more resources and drains the battery at a much faster pace.
If you use this phone, you must clean apps from your memory to avoid such lags.
As far as storage goes, although Zero 3 has 16GB internal storage, I would recommend using a 64GB data card if you want to enjoy taking photos and recording 4k videos with its 20.7 megapixel camera.
The 20.7mp Camera
The 20.7 megapixel Sony camera— with its dual-coloured LEDs flash and a 5 megapixel front facing camera with flash— is at the center of Zero 3's sales pitch. The camera module's processing power enables you to record videos up to 4k.
The company updates Android stock camera interface to take advantage of features available in Sony camera module. We can swipe to switch between 6 different modes which are Beauty, Professional, Normal, Night, Panorama and PIP or Picture in Picture.
Normal mode is basically the Auto mode while under the 'Professional mode', one can manually change settings like atmosphere, white balance, ISO or brightness.
The pro-mode also allows you to set shutter speed for up to 10 seconds to create artistic effects and making light paintings possible.
As Infinix uses its own user interface called XUI, the interface for Zero 3 provides much needed enhancements in Stock Android UI.
There is a long list of useful gesture commands and users don't even need to find third party apps to enhance sound, change display colours, theme or font, or to prolong battery life.
But if I will have to name the best thing about this device's XUI, then it is the gestures function.
You can double tap the screen to Lock or Unlock it, swipe down with three fingers to take an instant screenshot, swipe on the Home Key left or right to Shrink the 5.5inch display into 4 or 4.7 inches.
Zero 3 also allows you to set custom gestures and you can store a maximum of eight user-defined gestures like I did for directly jumping to videos by swiping V over the home screen.
Suggestions for future
Zero 3 has all it takes to become a successful flagship device, but let me add few things that should be part of the 2016 flagship device Infinix offers.
A 2016 device should have a fingerprint scanner, a dedicated hardware camera button, bigger display and a split screen option. Plus, its camera should have Optical Image Stabilization rather than Electronic Image Stabilization.
The device also heats up very fast, so the brand should come up with a solution for this.
Infinix’s Zero 3 may not be at par with the big players in the market, but having a phone which has a 20.7 megapixel camera, Octa Core processor coupled with 3GB RAM for only Rs.21,000 is a blessing.
As I said earlier, I had a pretty satisfying experience with gaming, apps and overall performance while using Zero 3.
I think this machine is a good example of how to be attractive, inexpensive and satisfying for beginners and high-end users at the same time.
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
The author is a graphic designer and freelance writer with a focus on tech.
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