"A roundup of the top smartphones and tablets launched in October 2014"
October has been a month full of flagship launches, with biggies like the Apple iPhone 6, Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and BlackBerry Passport hitting the shelves. As usual, there were a spate of Flipkart-exclusive devices, including the dual-screen YotaPhone, the budget Huawei Honor Holly and Lenovo’s massive Vibe Z2 Pro. Without further ado, here’s a list of the top smartphones that went on sale in India last month.
The YotaPhone, the brainchild of the Russian smartphone maker of the same name, went on sale in India in mid-October. The YotaPhone is unique because it features not one, but two displays. The secondary screen located at the back is an e-ink display, capable of displaying important information and doubling up as an e-book reader. The main display measures 4.3-inches in size and features a modest qHD resolution. The remaining specs include a 1.7GHz dual-core Snapdragon 400 processor, 2GB of RAM, 13MP/1MP cameras, 32GB of fixed internal storage, an 1,880mAh battery and Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean.
Samsung’s fourth-generation flagship phablet, the Galaxy Note 4, was released in India last month. One of the most awaited launches of the year, the premium smartphone features a 5.7-inch Super AMOLED display with 2K resolution, and runs Android KitKat with Samsung’s TouchWiz UI on top. Powering the internals is a quad-core Snapdragon 805 processor clocked at 2.7GHz, mated to 3GB of RAM. The device offers 32GB of internal storage, expandable up to 128GB via microSD. Photography is handled by a 16MP primary snapper at the back, and a 3.7MP camera in the front. A 3,220mAh battery fuels the smartphone.
Related read: Samsung Galaxy Note 4 first impressions
This year, Apple released its two biggest iPhones yet – the iPhone 6 with a 4.7-inch screen, and the iPhone 6 Plus with a 5.5-inch display. Both iPhones are powered by a custom A8 chipset and M8 motion co-processor, feature 8MP iSight and 1.2MP FaceTime cameras, and run Apple’s latest mobile operating system, iOS 8. While the iPhone 6 features a resolution of 1,334 x 750 pixels, the 6 Plus flaunts full HD resolution. Both smartphones are available in 16GB, 64GB and 128GB storage variants in Gold, Silver and Space Grey colour options.
Last month, Lenovo unveiled its monster-sized phablet, the Vibe Z2 Pro. It flaunts a massive 6-inch display with 2K resolution, and is powered by an equally hefty 4,000mAh battery. At its core ticks a 2.5GHz Snapdragon 801 processor, accompanied by 3GB of RAM. A generous 32GB of internal storage is on offer, but there’s no microSD card for further expansion. The device features a 16MP primary camera and a 5MP front shooter. It runs Android 4.4.2 KitKat laced with Lenovo’s Vibe UI, but if you prefer, you can boot it with stock Android too.
Huawei entered the budget performance smartphone category with the attractively-priced Honor Holly. The device features a 5-inch display with HD resolution, and runs Android 4.4 KitKat with Huawei’s Emotion UI on top. Powering the smartphone is a quad-core MediaTek MT6582 processor clocked at 1.3GHz, paired with 1GB of RAM. It comes loaded with a generous 16GB of internal memory – one of the highest in its price range – with a microSD card slot for further expansion. There’s an 8MP primary camera with a Samsung BSI sensor, and a 2MP front camera for video calls and selfies. A 2,000mAh battery fuels the device.
Alongside the Honor Holly, Huawei launched the 7-inch Honor X1 Android tablet boasting full HD resolution. It runs Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean with Huawei’s Emotion UI on top, with a promised update to 4.4 KitKat in the future. At its core ticks a quad-core Kirin 910 chipset clocked at 1.6GHz, accompanied by 2GB of RAM. The slate features a 13MP rear shooter and a 5MP front camera. It offers 16GB of internal memory, expandable via a microSD card slot. The voice-calling tablet is equipped with a 5,000mAh battery.
Related read: Huawei Honor X1 first impressions
Last month, HTC announced the camera-centric variant of its flagship One (M8) smartphone, the HTC One (M8 Eye). The devices are essentially the same, except that the M8 Eye features a 13MP Sony IMX 214 sensor instead of a 4MP UltraPixel camera. Like its predecessor, it sports a 5-inch display with full HD resolution, a 2.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of expandable storage, a 5MP front camera and a 2,600mAh battery. It runs Android 4.4.4 KitKat with HTC’s Sense 6.0 user interface on top, and offers a range photography enhancements via HTC's EYE Experience camera software.
Samsung’s first smartphone with a metal frame, the Galaxy Alpha, was launched in India a few weeks ago. It sports a 4.7-inch display with HD resolution, and features a slim 6.7mm frame. Powering it up is Samsung’s own Exynos 5430 octa-core processor, consisting of two quad-core clusters clocked at 1.8GHz and 1.3GHz. For memory, it gets 2GB of RAM and 32GB of fixed internal storage. The camera department consists of a 12MP primary snapper and a 2MP front shooter. The Galaxy Alpha runs Android 4.4 KitKat with Samsung’s TouchWiz UI, and is backed by an 1,860mAh battery.
The BlackBerry Passport is the Canadian brand’s comeback smartphone, and is loaded with the much-loved full QWERTY keyboard that sports new touch and gesture capabilities. The device features a 4.5-inch square screen with a resolution of 1,440 x 1,440 pixels. It’s powered by a quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor ticking at 2.2GHz, alongside 3GB of RAM. For photography, it is endowed with a 13MP primary camera and a 2MP front shooter. The device is equipped with 32GB of expandable storage, and draws power from a 3,450mAh battery. The operating system on board is the latest BB 10.3, which provides access to the Amazon Appstore to download a range of Android apps