S Mobility (Spice Mobiles) is betting big on entry-level dual-SIM Android smartphones and it is clearly visible in company’s offerings in the recent past. The latest product to join that list is Mi-350n, a full-touch Gingerbread smartphone with decent specifications, but is it a value for money product, we will find out in the review below.
650 MHz processor
3.5 inch display
3.2MP rear camera
VGA front camera
1400 mAh battery
WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS
Spice has clearly come a long way in its Android products and one can see that in Mi-350n. Mi-350n comes with a decent build quality and feels nice in the hand. Front and battery cover are made of metal, rest of the body is plastic with a matte finish, so you don’t get the feeling of a cheap a plastic-y budget phone. Although due to metal presence, Spice Mi-350n does feel heavy.
One thing that I did not specifically like about the Mi350n hardware, is the plastic Android keys, they are awful and capacitive keys in place of them would have been a worthy edition.
Talking about the other hardware elements, there is a volume-rocker on the left, and you will find USB port on the right side along with dedicated camera button. On the front you have the Android keys, sensors and front camera; on the back you will get a 3.2 MP camera and speaker. There is nothing on the bottom, but on the top you have the power/sleep button and 3.5mm headset jack.
Spice has included 3.5 inch capacitive touchscreen display with 480x320p resolution. The touch sensitivity is nice and much better than I expected. Display is however average and under-sun visibility is almost negligible.
Phone offers multi-touch input, but supports only two fingers and performance is also sub-par.
Spice Mi-350n comes with MediaTek MT6573 650 MHz single core processor with a GPU. During our testing, Mi350n gave decent performance and was responsive in daily tasks and even the normal games like Angry Birds played nicely. But don’t expect to play any high quality games on the phone.
Coming to the dual-SIM performance, it support two GSM SIMs, one can work on 3G network, while other will only support 2G. Company has tweaked the Android interface to include the relevant additions wherever needed to include the proper dual-SIM compatibility. As you would expect, you can instruct the phone to do the specific tasks with specific SIMs and it works fine.
I was a little disappointed with mobile network connectivity, as I normally get full network at my home with other phones, Spice Mi-350n would show only 3 or 2 bars and certainly had issues.
Spice has pre-loaded Gingerbread on the smartphone and pretty much a stock interface apart from a few tweaks here and there. Some of the tweaks like quick settings in notification bar are certainly a value-add for MI350n users. . Stock UI works in favor of the phone, and does not put too much pressure on the 256MB RAM present in the phone.
Company has pre-loaded a lot of applications and many of them are unwanted and cannot be removed without rooting. But rooting and un-rooting the phone is pretty easy and works well with this tool.
Company has also included the support for video calling over 3G network in the phone, which is normally absent from other Android smartphones apart from the ones like Galaxy S II.
Mi-350n UI Gallery:
Mi-350n performs decently with all the present connectivity options like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and the 3G network. During out testing, we did not have any issues with Wi-Fi while connecting with the home wireless network.
Being an Android 2.3 smartphone, you get the Wi-Fi hotspot feature and you can convert your phone to a Wi-Fi modem and share your phone’s 3G data network. Bluetooth also works nicely and you will not have any issues with file transfers.
Phone comes with a 3.2MP rear camera and a VGA front camera. Performance is so-so for both the cameras, so don’t expect any point n shoot replacements here. There is no LED flash but rear camera does support auto-focus instead of fixed focus, which is normally present in entry-level Androids.
Battery performance is fine, not great. Mi-350n comes with a 1400 mAh battery and as you will be using dual-SIM, get ready to see battery drain. With normal usage, you will get past one day but that is it.
Overall Spice Mi-350n is a decent entry-level dual-SIM Android smartphone, it has its fair share of problems but you will not get too much choice in this budget, if you want a dual-SIM phone. The other choice for you is Micromax A75.