Let’s start with the latest piece of news: OnePlus (acclaimed flagship killer) won’t upgrade OnePlus 2 (released in August 2015) to Android O. Meanwhile, Apple just announced iOS 11, iPhone 5S (released in September 2013) will be supported with the update besides other models like iPhone 6, 6S and 7.
Talking about myself, I am a fan of the Xiaomi smartphones and I love the way they offer great hardware for the price tag (subjective to where you buy them). I bought Redmi 1S for almost 90$ and Redmi Note 3 – 32GB for 150$ (both outside Nepal) and I am absolutely happy for what I got out of them. Also, Xiaomi has the largest forum (MIUI Forum) for discussions on consumer experience, be it about the latest build of software or about the hardware, the developers and end-users conversation is probably the easiest with this brand.
The downside though, there were many occasions when I had to go deep into the process of flashing and rooting (geeky stuff) to make them perform their best; on one occasion, the over the air (OTA) update was not working for Redmi Note 3 and I had to flash the latest update externally (there was a serious bug draining the battery and the latest firmware update was very important). With this kind of experience, I won’t be able to recommend this brand to my parents and friends (non-geek) with the same amount of confidence that I have for myself (I’m planning on buying Mi6).
Again, another piece of news: HMD Global has launched Nokia 3310, 3, 5 and 6 globally. Nokia 3310 and Nokia 3 has initially been made available in Nepal. The price for Nokia 3 is around NRs 15,800 with 2GB of RAM, 16 GB ROM, Mediatek (MT6737) processor and latest build of Android 7. Nokia has assured that these models will be continuously updated with security patches (very important) and latest stock android builds. I will definitely recommend this phone for budget-oriented customers instead of more specs budget lineup from other brands like Coolpad, Xiaomi, Oppo and Huawei. Having experienced the hardware quality of Nokia, the stability of its software and the customer service of Paramount Electronics (authorized Nokia distributor), I am sure the experience will be better.
With all this in the backdrop, I would like to reiterate that when it comes to overall experience, specs are just a portion of the picture. Post sale support, software updates, hardware endurance, and brand value are other aspects that we often ignore. Remember, iPhone has the least spec hardware for the price, but the customer satisfaction and total life span of their smartphones is the highest in its category.
Further, to give you an overview, a table has been presented below with brief information on the hardware and software that is on offer for different price segments in Nepal.
Price, NRs (June 2017)
2GB RAM, 16GB ROM, Snapdragon 435, FP Scanner
2GB RAM, 16GB ROM, Mediatek MT6737
6GB RAM, 64GB ROM, Snapdragon 821, Dash Charge
2GB RAM, 32GB ROM, Apple A10, IP67 dust & water res.
iOS 10.3.2 (soon 11)
3GB RAM, 64GB ROM, Snapdragon 821, ultrasonic FP
4GB RAM, 64GB ROM, Snapdragon 835, Infinity Display, IP 67
3GB RAM, 32GB ROM, Snapdragon 430, 16MP and 8MP Cam
4GB RAM, 64GB ROM, Mediatek MT6750T, 16 MP FC
3GB RAM, 64GB ROM, Exynos 7870, Super Amoled
Samsung Experience -Android(7)
* – Expected
PS: When it comes to Samsung, Sony, etc. the experience below the price bracket of NRs. 30,000 is pathetic. They heavily moderate the Stock Android and discontinue software updates after 1-1.5 years. Experience in their higher-end models is better.
*Note: This article was written by Aashis Sapkota for Gadgets In Nepal