A smartphone in tribute to the ‘God’ himself, this would have been the mission statement for the folks at Smartron when they come up with the idea for a Sachin Tendulkar phone. The Smartron SRT phone or Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar phone, is a device with mid-performance specs and is clearly aimed at the average Indian consumers. However, if you take out the label ‘Sachin phone’ out of the picture, you may find yourself looking at a device which is nothing but a solid smartphone packed with average specs. If you consider the other way and follow the hype, you may find that the smartphone is signed by the cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar. Also, being a startup company, Smartron gives you some goodies as a token of appreciation on your purchase of Smartron SRT phone. This post is a comprehensive review of the Smartron SRT phone.
Smartron SRT Phone Review
Design and Build Quality
If you call the bezel-less designs and infinity displays futuristic, the Smartron SRT phone is surely not futuristic in that department but, an elegant looking device with metallic finish body. The slightly contoured design is definitely an added advantage when it comes to holding the phone. The unibody chassis body gives the device a fluidic look and feel. The phone weights 155 grams and has a thickness of 8.9mm, slightly heavier than the elder brother Smartron tphone. The metallic finish is quite deceiving that you almost can’t believe the phone body is made of plastic.
Available in Titanium Grey color, the Smartron SRT phone comes with a back cover emblazoned with Sachin’s signature. In the box, you also get an extra back cover, without any graphics, if in case you are not a fan boy or you don’t want to show off how much you love the ‘God’. The non-removable 3000 mAh battery can be a problem if you are into intense social media action and gaming. One thing I didn’t like about the design is that, one should remove the back cover to access the two Nano-SIM slots. There is no microSD memory expansion option but, you can make use of tcloud, offering unlimited cloud storage. This design can come handy for people who wants to switch the SIM occasionally without carrying the SIM card ejector tool.
In the front, the 5.5-inch LCD screen with a resolution of 1920 * 1080. Comes with an all angle IPS display and 401 ppi, the screen offers decent sunlight visibility. Though the display is not an AMOLED panel but the color reproduction is brilliant. The display is protected by the Corning Gorilla Glass 3. Underneath the display, on the front panel, we have 3 illuminated dots which serves as navigation keys, which also means you don’t get the option to enable on-screen navigation button. On the top, enclosed together, the ear piece, light and proximity sensor. The absence of notification LED is a huge let down for me.
Up top, the headphone jack, microphone and an oddly positioned power button. The device is 153 mm long and for that reason I find it little hard to reach the power button using either index finger or thumb. Luckily, we can use the fingerprint user to unlock the device but turning the display off using the lock button will be quite hard to do in this phone. There is no ‘double tap screen to wake up’ feature as well.
On the bottom, the speaker grill and USB Type-C connector. The addition of USB Type-C, though many hates it, is a plus point in my opinion. Finally, on the back of the device; the camera unit, second microphone, flashlight, an elegant orange Smartron line, Smartron branding, fingerprint scanner and in the bottom the phone model name with the tag line “Designed and Engineering in India”.
Hardware and Performance
Powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 652 Octa Core processor, 4GB of RAM, Adreno 510 GPU and 64/32GB Storage options, the Smartron SRT phone barely makes its way into the mid-range smartphone segment. Since the chipset supports fast charging the 3000mAh battery can be fueled up faster.
For a mid-range smartphone, the Smartron SRT phone performs well especially during heavy gameplay, switching between apps was smooth and multi tabbed browsing went well. The sharp display of the phone was at its best when playing full HD videos. The speaker output was of good quality and was decently loud.
Too much of extreme game play and turning navigation for a while may turn up the device heat up to 48 degree Celsius, that is hot. The other devices loaded with 652 SoC also has been reported similar issue and it is a discomfort during extended game play. This can be managed mainly by a software update and I believe Smartron will address this issue soon.
The Smartron SRT phone is fitted with sensors like Accelerometer, Gyroscope, Proximity sensor, light sensor, digital compass and fingerprint sensor. Talking about fingerprint sensor, the response time was very fast and it never failed to unlock the device during the entire testing phase. The phone is also equipped with NFC chip.
Smartron SRT phone is one of the devices with Android 7 Nougat pre-loaded right out of the box. Unlike the other manufacturers, where the customer wait for months to get the software update, the Smartron promises to roll out the next two major Android updates, Android O and P, as soon as they are available.
The Android N in this device offers almost similar experience that of a stock android. There are few Smartron bloatwares like; tstore, tcloud, tcare and a forum. The tstore offers unlimited cloud storage and that, for me, seems like a great deal. The tstore, similar to oneplus store, lists and sells the company products and accessories.
When most of the startup fails at delivering customer support, the Smartron overlooked it one step ahead and introduced tcare. The tcare offers you in-call assistance to solve any issues you are facing with the product. The forum is a platform where the customers and experts can discuss general things about the device and may be able to address any problem you are facing. The phone has Microsoft’s Office suite of apps which cannot be uninstalled. I loved the menu launcher, swipe up from bottom, the typical Android N style.
The front camera is 5MP shooter with a wide-angle lens. For me, who create vlogs on the go, the wide-angle lens seemed quite handy for both video and selfies. The rear camera is a 13MP sensor with f2.0. There is BIS sensor and single flash mounted to it.
The front camera gives out good quality selfies in good lit conditions and fail to do so during dim-lit scenarios. The main camera also performs well during day light but fails to impress other times. The white balancing is badly handled and I have seen other devices in this price range which can easily outperform the SRT phone.
The Smartron SRT phone comes with support for Quick charge 2.0 that means, you get to charge your device ultrafast. This comes handy when you are in a hurry and you want to quickly fuel up the battery.
Though the phone has a mid-range specs, it doesn’t make the battery life any better. On my usage, I saw a battery drop from 100% to 65% within two hours. Thanks to the super bright display. However, the phone should be able to live a whole day on moderate usage.
Let me first talk for the non-fan crowd out there; honestly, there are other phones in this price range which packs better specs. The Xiaomi’s are always there but, I am talking about Moto G5 and Asus Zenfone 3S Max. However, I would say, for just a couple of thousands you get a better processor, quick charge 2, sharp and large screen, tcloud, good software updates and even NFC.
The processor is of course a good point about this device. In terms of looks, the Smartron SRT is shimmered by a premium and elegant glow even though it has a metallic finish body. If you are Sachin fan then, just three words for you; ‘Go for It’.