Gionee Elife S5.5: First impressions

Gionee Elife S5.5As you would have already read, Gionee has unveiled the new Elife S5.5 Android smartphone in the Indian market. It is set to go on sale beginning April 27 for INR 22,999 in the country. At the S5.5 launch event, I spent some time with the device and here are my first impressions of this beautiful looking Gionee smartphone.

Packed in a chassis made solely of the glass and metal, the Elife S5.5 is a treat to look at. The phone is surprisingly thin and feels nice in hand. The construction of the smartphone is solid and and it is surely a feat for this relatively new Chinese brand to pack so much in just 5.5mm thick body.

The phone features Corning Gorilla Glass 3 on both front and back, which should give it protection from scratches and small mishaps but I don’t see it standing a fall on cement floor. It is very likely that whichever side bears the brunt of the fall will be shattered but that is an issue with every smartphone that packs glass prominently.

On the display front, Gionee has included a Samsung-made full HD Super AMOLED panel, which offers vibrant colours and crisp text. The viewing angles are also decent. Among other features, the phone comes with a 13MP rear camera and 5MP front camera, which provide good captures but I found small lag in the camera software, which could easily be fixed by a more optimised software.Gionee Elife S5.5

While I am on the topic of software, the phone run on Android 4.2 with the company’s Amigo 2.0 UI on top. The Amigo experience borrows a lot from other UIs and custom firmwares and thus includes plethora of useful tweaks and features. There is no app drawer and the phone packs MIUI like interface, which I am not really fond of. Not sure why manufacturers want to put everything on the home-screen of a smartphone, however thanks to Android, one can always switch to third-party launchers. Also, Gionee should have included a newer version of Android and without any clear upgrade plan in place, I am a little disappointed.

Powered by the MediaTek octa-core processor and 2GB of RAM, the phone provides zippy performance. There is visually no lag while doing the basic operations on phone but I need a longer look for a more detailed analysis of the overall performance of the phone.

Overall, the Elife S5.5 is a great effort from Gionee and if the company gets its software in order, there is no doubt, it will emerge as a big contender in the smartphone arena.

Gionee Elife S5.5 Gallery

Disclosure: Author’s travel and stay for Elife S5.5 India launch was arranged by Gionee

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