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Friday, September 5, 2014

The Toss-Up Between The Xiaomi Redmi 1S, Moto E & Asus ZenFone 4

Left :Mote E ; Middle:Asus Zenphone4 ; Right:Xiaomi Redmi 1S
When it comes to smartphones on a budget, the Xiaomi Redmi 1S, Moto E and Asus ZenFone 4 are the names that pop up in our minds as viable options. All three devices come to consumers at a smart price of under Rs 10,000, which for a smartphone packed with features, is hard to beat. But, which of these seem to measure up to the top spot? Let's find out.
The Xiaomi Redmi 1S is a rectangular thick plastic block with a few subtle curves on the back. It measures 9.9mm, weighs 158 grams but seems to be built like a rock. The battery can be replaced thanks to the removable back cover. The finish of the phone is pretty impressive considering its modest price.
The Moto E is a sleek-looking phone that measures 12.3mm and weighs 142g. Despite that, it feels compact and sturdy to hold. Although the Moto E is predominantly plastic, it has a premium feel and is available in 9 colors. While the back cover can be pried open after much tedium, the battery cannot be removed. 
The Asus ZenFone 4 is compact, and easy to use and hold. It is available in black, white, blue and red, and has a satiny, high-quality finish. It is slightly wider and shorter than an iPhone 5, but thicker. The ZenFone 4 has a removable battery.
The Xiaomi Redmi 1S has a 4.7-inch screen with a 720p resolution, which is quite unlike other budget phones that have low-resolution screens. The Redmi 1S has a pixel density of 312 pixels per inch (PPI), making the text look sharper and more defined. The levels of brightness and viewing angles are worth a mention.
The front of the Moto E is covered by a protective latest generation Gorilla Glass 3. It has a 4.3-inch HD display which leaves a bit to be desired. The 256 PPI pixel density offers easy reading and sharper images. The displays isn't very bright though, and is quite reflective.
The ZenFone 4's screen is a 4-inch 480x800-pixel panel, which has poor viewing angles and is not too bright. Sharpness of text leaves a lot to be desired with this device.
The camera is undoubtedly the star of the Xiaomi Redmi 1S. The 8-megapixel rear camera with flash is known to click better pictures than most pricey phones. Macros are captured well and the HDR mode is especially useful in low-light conditions. It can shoot video at 1080p Full HD which is great for a modestly-priced phone.
The Moto E's fixed focus camera doesn't measure up to the Redmi's intuitive one. The phone's 5-megapixel rear camera has no auto-focus or flash. There is no front camera too, so selfie-lovers might be disappointed.
The ZenFone 4 has a 5-megapixel camera which takes pictures that measure only 2560x1440 by default. Despite the seemingly low-resolution, pictures come out sharp and clear. The full autofocus allows you to tap anywhere on the screen to change focus and metering. While there is no flash, picture quality in low light isn't too bad. The prowess of the front-facing camera is worth a mention.
The Xiaomi Redmi 1S runs Android 4.3 Jelly Bean and MiUI V5, Xiaomi's unique take on Android. This version is much simpler to use than stock Android, as it has tons of apps on the home-screen like iOS, where widgets and apps share space. The only issue is that Android updates don't come as quickly on the Redmi 1S as compared to the Moto E, which runs Android 4.4.
As mentioned, the Moto E runs 4.4.2 (KitKat) and is gearing up for at least one future upgrade. With the Moto E, the Android software is largely untouched, with a whole collection of Google apps, clean home screens, on-screen navigation buttons and more. There is also a handy Moto Assist app which offers intuitive resources for users.
Asus ships the Zenfone 4 with Android 4.3, with a heavy skin called ZenUI. The lock screen is simple and clean, with all the appropriate apps, widgets and shortcuts. Users can add up to nine homescreens. The ZenFone comes with a 'What's Next' widget that displays important events and upcoming tasks.
Hardware & Performance
A quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 CPU, clocked at 1.6GHz powers the Redmi 1S.It has a 2,000mAh battery and 1GB RAM, which makes gaming seamless and renders graphics well. In some ways, the RedMi 1S fares better as compared to the Moto G, but tends to lose out to the Intel Atom-powered Asus ZenFone 4.
The Moto E is powered by a low-end Snapdragon 200 dual-core processor which is clocked at 1.2GHz. It also has a 1,980mAh battery and an integrated Adreno 302 graphics processor and 1GB of RAM. This translates to the fact that the phone will run without any hiccups. It has 4GB of internal storage with 2.2GB available for use.
The ZenFone has a 1,750mAh battery and is powered by a low-end Intel Atom Z2520, which is a dual-core 1.2GHz model with Hyper-Threading and integrated PowerVR SGX544MP2 graphics. It has 1GB of RAM and 8GB of internal storage space.
All three phones, the Xiaomi Redmi 1S, the Moto E and Asus ZenFone 4 A400CG come to consumers at a price of Rs 6,999.
All in all, the Xiaomi seems to weigh in better than its two counterparts, mainly from a hardware point of view, its on-board memory, battery power, camera, PPI and screen resolution. The OS however, may be a deciding factor for many users. 

Madhav Biju

Author & Editor

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