Micromax A110 review – Superfone canvas 2 much better than A100

The Micromax A110 comes with dual core and houses an 8 MP camera. It is much better than its predecessor the Micromax A100. I bought the A110 for personal use, got it today and here is the review.

A110 box pack
The handset is big, it’s with a 5 inch screen. Inside the box you will find the handset, charger, USB to micro USB cable, earphones, 2000 mAh battery and warranty / user manual.

Design and build quality
The earphones are good but the one that I got with the Micromax A90 were even better. However the sound output is really good and loud.  The handset has got a greyish sliver side with black back cover (or white depending on your colour choice).

The handset looks more or less like a Samsung galaxy phone, it has that premium look. The rear back cover is made of thin plastic. If you look closely you can see small gaps between the body and the back cover – probably cause of the thin cover.  (Check the video review).

Micromax A110 box pack

The power button is placed on the right side, micro USB on the top along with 3.5mm jack and volume rockers on the left. The rear side is textured / embossed that helps get a good grip. You will also find the speaker out and 8MP camera with dual LED flash.

Micromax A110 superfone canvas 2 side view

Display and Performance
The screen is 5 inches (4.9 inches) with 854×480 pixels. There are 3 dedicated buttons on the front side.  The touch is smooth, I found it better than the A90 – probably cause of a bigger screen and it was fun typing as lot of space and few errors. The display glass is scratch resistant – no need for a protective film but for added protection you can add.

The performance was flawless, buttery smooth and apps installed much faster. The processor is MT6577 with PowerVR SGX 531 GPU. There was a mild rendering lag when zooming in on to a text matter while using the stock browser.

RAM = 512 MB – Usable is 473MB of which 231MB is free.
Internal Storage for Apps : 503MB – 400MB free.
Internal SD card :  2.05GB.

Benchmark
Quadrant : 1st test 2659, 2nd test = 2710.
Antutu: 4580. You can even get a score of around 5000 to5400 I got – 5352, if you uncheck “verify score by network time”.
NenaMark2: 25.4fps.
Linpack: Single : 36 Double : 61.

The quadrant benchmark score on my Micromax A90 was 2463. (image below with 2nd test)
CPU=2264, Mem =3104, I/O=5076, 2D=513 and 3D=1358.
When you compare this with the A110 with a total score 2710.
CPU=4346, Mem =2750, I/O=3843, 2D=455 and 3D=2158.

A110 v/s A90 benchmark

Do note that the A90 is with a 4.3 inch screen whereas the A110 is with a 5 inch screen. More processing power and time is required on a bigger screen.

A110 is better but the difference is not much, probably cause of the GPU that isn’t that powerful. This dual core performs slightly better than the A90 – compare the individual scores (CPU/MEM etc). A110 I think is also better than the A100 model. The benchmark test was done without default settings and without enabling “force GPU rendering”.

Entertainment
720p videos run pretty smooth and 1080p movies will not. This is the same as seen on the A90. You cannot play 1080p movies using the H/W mode in MX player app. The speaker sound is quite loud and even better on earphones.  I tried FM radio it worked well.

Camera
The camera features are the same as on the Micromax A90. There is burst mode 16, 8, 4 shot mode and can also record videos in HD (720p resolution).  When using the camera if you find unnatural colour for example red showing as pink, just go to settings and change hue, saturation, brightness and contrast to medium.

The camera quality is as good as seen on the A90. You can check the sample images here.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/gogirana/sets/72157631900030629/

When recording videos you do have an option to pause the recording, this is a good option for shooting different scenes in a single video. In the sample 720p video I have used the video recording pause feature. Videos are recorded in 3gp format.

GPS
When using GPS for the first time make sure you are out in the open and check all the GPS options. I got a lok on the GPS in about 11 seconds.

Gaming
I had paid for the NFS Shift game a few months back and it did not play on any of the handsets that I have used / reviewed. I tried it on A110 and to my delight it worked. This forced me to buy another gaming app, MC3 (Modern combat 3) and it too worked flawlessly. Watch the video to believe. I think these two games should be sufficient to get and idea of what kind of games the A110 can play.

I did face a strange issue with NFS shift. Since all you need to do is tilt to control the car movement after few seconds the  handset would go in standby mode depending on the timeout you have specified. That is the only issue. But if you are tapping the screen / using brakes than you will not notice it. No issues though with MC3 Alien Nation.

Other
There is an option in settings -> storage to select the external or internal SD card as a default location for new apps that you would download.

In phone dialler there is a dedicated video call button – native video calls are supported.

Phone in call speaker clarity is good and loud. The speaker mode during phone call is hear-able when you are in a silent environment.

Does not support flash in stock browser, may need to install flash APK. https://www.gogi.in/dwnload/Adobe_Flash_Player_11.1.115.8_4.0.apk

You can view the screen / read the content easily even in direct sunlight with max brightness.

When I connect the MMX A110 with the PC using USB cable. I get 3 drives. The first is the 2GB internal, second is the external SD card (in my case its 8GB) and a third one with 9.30 MB space which has the required MMX drivers.

Its dual SIM with dual standby – When using 3G on SIM 1 you can call and surf at the same time. When using 3G and even when you are downloading you will receive calls on any of the SIM – both SIM 1 and SIM 2 are active. I tried downloading a file using 3G and called the seconds SIM I received the call, the download paused and once disconnected the download resumed.

Even though if you set the default app location to external SD card it still installs the apps in the internal storage. There is no option to move it to external storage.

Battery
When the battery gets fully charged the LED notification indicator turns green from red.

  • I charged the battery to 100% at 8:00 PM on 2nd nov.
  • For the test Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth are Off and 3G on all the time.
  • Within few hours (I think 2 to 3) the battery dropped from 100 to 70.
  • After that the battery drop was very slow, in fact excellent.
  • Now (3th Nov) its 7:00 PM one hours to go after a complete charge and battery level is still at 36% (I am seeing 36% for a long time). I think the discharge will be even slow now.
  • I am going to let the phone run until it auto shuts itself i.e. at 5% battery.
  • Overall I am very happy with the battery performance. I did use GPS for 30 seconds to check, made few calls and my email are sync every now and then.

Those having battery issue is cause of calibration error. I would suggest just let the phone run and charge only when it auto shuts off. Do not charge even when you get the message to charge.

In case of error like your battery is over current protection please remove your battery, follow the same and wait for the battery to drain (use the phone in normal way as you would) and do not charge until the phone completely shuts down on its own.

What is this battery calibration issue?
When the battery is packed by the manufacturer it is charged to a certain level say 75%. You may buy the handset after few days or week or even months. The battery even when not used gets discharged. Say for example the battery drops to 50%. When you insert the battery the system cannot get the accurate data since the battery was not used and the battery memory will say 75%, that’s when the problem starts. That is what the sudden drop in the % and even if you put the phone on charger it gives a wrong signal in the above case it will be -25%. So the best best is to let drain the battery to minimal and then recharge. The battery memory will also improve and so will your phone backup. Observer the battery drop every 15minutes you will find that at the beginning it will be fast but as it goes down the drop gets very slow, it means you battery needs to be calibrated.

Micromax A110 Review
Overall I find it a very good buy. It is better than A100 and also better performance wise when compared with the Micromax A90, though I still love the A90 display. Considering the price tag (hardly any difference between the single core A100 and dual core A110, the A110 is definitely a good buy.

Do note that there are no light sensors, there is only Proximity and G-Sensors.

The benchmark scores are low but I guess that’s probably cause of the GPU which fails to deliver as excepted even with dual core processor.  If you compare the benchmark scores with other devices you will find it to be lower that’s cause of the 5 inch screen, the bigger the screen the more work required.

The benchmark difference is not much (or what was expected out of a dual core) but the speed / performance when launching, installing apps is noticeable. I did a review on the Sony Xperia Sola (read review), a dual core with mali 400 GPU, it gave a (quadrant) benchmark score of 2280. I guess for the price the A110 is worth it!

Image Gallery

Micromax A110 unboxing and review video

720p video sample taken from the Micromax A110 camera

High end Games, HD videos and Youtube demo on the A110

ASPHalt 7 and Whatsapp video demo
For those who were not able to run the ASPHalt 7 on the Micromax A110 or doubt if the handset can run ASPhalt game check this video. The game worked perfectly well, and runs smoothly. Even Whatsapp worked without any glitch.

Connecting pen drive with Micromax A110 using OTG cable

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