InFocus Epic 1 review: Well designed, but falters in many areas in an aggressive price segment
American phone maker InFocus has been in the country for over a year now. Apart from making smartphones, InFocus is also into making TVs. InFocus has generally been associated with affordable smartphones – under Rs 10,000 price bracket – barring the M810 which is priced at Rs 13,999. With the Epic 1, InFocus brings in a smartphone with the 10-core processor housing Helio X20 chipset at Rs 12,999. So let us take a look at the phone
Build and Design: 8 / 10
The build quality on the InFocus Epic 1 is quite impressive. The first thing that grabs your attention is the metal casing with the brush metal finish on the rear side. The edges are neatly bevelled so that there aren’t any sharp edges. A circular finger print scanner is located in the top half in the centre, just below the 16MP camera unit and the dual LED flash unit. The metal casing is complemented with plastic covering at the top and bottom on the rear.
The top edge of the Epic 1 has the 3.5mm audio jack and the IR transmitter. On the right hand edge, you get the volume rocker buttons followed by the power / standby button whereas on the left hand side, you get the hybrid dual SIM card tray. At the base, there is the USB Type C port with a microphone on the left and a speaker section on the right. I found the dual volume rocker buttons placed in close proximity to the power/standby button quite annoying, as a lot of the times when I wanted to reduce the volume, I would end up making the device go to sleep and vice versa.
On the front, just above the display, you have the earpiece speaker which seems to have taken some inspiration from that found on the Nextbit Robin. It has the similar circular shape with perforations. To its right you have the indicator LED, proximity sensor and to its left you have the 8MP front-facing camera.
The phone has quite a slim profile, measuring just 7.6mm thick and weighs around 160 grams. The screen to body ratio of the Epic 1 isn’t the best. The build quality is good. The metal back does make it a bit slippery to hold.
Features: 7.5 / 10
The star feature of the Epic 1 has got to be the presence of the MediaTek Helio X20 chipset which houses a 10-core processor arranged in a tri-cluster formation. What that means is that instead of having two clusters of processor cores, the Helio X20 adds another cluster, thereby adding in more granularity. Of the 10 cores, you have two high performance Cortex A72 cores running at 2.1GHz, one cluster of quad-core Cortex A53 running at 1.85GHz for medium loads and another quad-core Cortex A53 cluster running at 1.4GHz for low power tasks. The chipset is paired with 3GB of RAM. The phone comes with 32GB of storage on board and you can expand it using a microSD card slot.
The InFocus Epic 1 runs on Android 6.0 Marshmallow, but it has its proprietary InLife UI interface atop it. Right out of the box, there is a lot of bloatware on the phone which is an immediate downer. There’s a 5.5-inch Full HD display on the Epic 1.
In terms of imaging, you get a 16MP rear camera with a dual LED flash unit and an 8MP front-facing camera. The Epic 1 supports Cat 6 LTE, VoLTE and has a dual 4G SIM slot, with dual standby. Other connectivity features include Wi-Fi 802.11n, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS with A-GPS and GLONASS. It does have FM Radio and no NFC. The Epic 1 houses a 3000mAh non removable battery.
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