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Tecno i7 – The Unbiased Review

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Every new smartphone maker that comes to India makes us wonder is it going to offer anything new to us. As customers, we are always on a look out for something extraordinary. We don’t want to spend extra but want the best of features. That’s when a new smartphone company comes as a blessing. To make a mark in the market, they sell good and competitive products at great pricing.

The latest entrant Tecno mobile is one such brand. It’s not a new company by any means, it’s owned by Transsion Holdings, the same company which introduced Itel in India last year. Tecno mobiles have come up with five variants of three smartphones i3, i5 and i7. As the name suggests, i7 is the most powerful of the lot.

We got the Tecno i7 the ‘Night Phone’ for review.

GENERAL
Release date April 2017
Form factor Touchscreen
Dimensions (mm) 151.50 x 75.20 x 7.70
Weight (g) 155.00
Battery capacity (mAh) 4000
Removable battery No
Colours Champagne Gold, Sky Black, Space Grey
SAR value NA
DISPLAY
Screen size (inches) 5.50
Touchscreen Yes
Resolution 1080×1920 pixels
HARDWARE
Processor 1.5GHz octa-core
Processor make MediaTek MT6750T
RAM 4GB
Internal storage 32GB
Expandable storage Yes
Expandable storage type microSD
Expandable storage up to (GB) 128
CAMERA
Rear camera 13-megapixel
Flash Yes
Front camera 16-megapixel
SOFTWARE
Operating System Android 7.0
Skin HiOS
CONNECTIVITY
Wi-Fi Yes
Wi-Fi standards supported NA
GPS Yes
Bluetooth Yes
NFC No
Infrared No
USB OTG No
Headphones 3.5mm
FM No
Number of SIMs 2
SIM 1
SIM Type Micro-SIM
GSM/CDMA GSM
3G Yes
4G/ LTE Yes
Supports 4G in India (Band 40) Yes
SIM 2
SIM Type Nano-SIM
GSM/CDMA GSM
3G Yes
4G/ LTE Yes
Supports 4G in India (Band 40) Yes
SENSORS
Compass/ Magnetometer No
Proximity sensor Yes
Accelerometer Yes
Ambient light sensor Yes
Gyroscope Yes
Barometer No
Temperature sensor No

IN THE BOX

We got a special edition personalised box from Tecnp mobiles. Have a look at it below!

For customers buying the Tecno i7, here is what comes in the retail box:

  • Tecno i7 Mobile
  • Micro USB cable
  • Power Adapter
  • Warranty and User Manual
  • SIM Ejector Pin

Tecno i7

DESIGN AND DISPLAY

The design of Tecno i7 is not something new and looks a lot like OnePlus 3/3T, which is a good thing. On the back, we have silver antenna bands which look good in contrast with the black colour of the device and gives it a premium look. The in-hand feel of the phone is good and the curved edges provide a very good grip. Despite having a 5.5” display it can be easily used with one hand.

It has the Micro-USB port at the bottom along with speaker grille and mic.

At the front lies a selfie camera, proximity sensor, ambient light sensor and a single LED flash for those Night Selfies.

A physical home button with embedded fingerprint scanner sits below the screen with two capacitive navigation buttons.

[FAG id=20196]

The Tecno i7 comes with a 5.5” IPS display with a Full-HD (1920X1080) pixel resolution. The Full HD screen does a very good job and gives you an immersive experience of watching movies and playing games. The display is bright, vivid, with good viewing angles. Thanks to the 2.5D curved screen, it gives the phone a premium look. 

HARDWARE AND PERFORMANCE

  • MediaTek MT6750T processor
  • Clocked at 1.5GHz Octa Core
  • 4GB RAM
  • 32GB Internal storage
  • Expandable storage up to 128GB
  • 4,000mAh battery (supports fast charging)

It is powered by a 1.5GHz octa-core MediaTek MT6750T processor coupled with 4GB RAM. A Snapdragon processor would’ve been a better choice though. Still, the MT processor didn’t bother us much as the phone was able to handle all the high-end games very smoothly. The phone showed 2GB of free RAM with no apps running in the background which is quite good.

There were no frame drops whatsoever and again the display made the gaming experience more amazing. There are some apps given to boost the RAM and clean the extra memory which come in handy. The phone didn’t heat up even after 20 minutes of heavy usage/gaming.

The internal memory of the device is 32GB which can be expanded up to 128GB by Micro SD card. Talking about the battery, there’s a 4,000 mAh massive battery which also supports fast charging. The company calls it ‘Rocket Charging’ and claims that it can reduce the charging time by up to 20 percent. During our testing, we found that it charged from 0-100% in less than 90 minutes which is not bad.

There’s one Nano-SIM slot and one Micro-SIM slot given but users have to choose between a secondary SIM card and a Micro SD. The fingerprint scanner on Tecno i7 is not the fastest and takes a considerable amount of time to recognise the fingerprint. It starts recognising when the home button is pressed and not on the touch which again increases the unlocking time.

SOFTWARE

  • Android 7.0 Nougat
  • HiOS

This is the only second device in this price range to come with Android 7.0 Nougat in India, first being the Moto G5. The Tecno i7 runs a customised UI named HiOS on top of Android which is slightly different from stock UI. Surprisingly there’s a feature like 3D touch which gives you certain options you wish to do with that particular app like delete, share, see info, freeze etc by long pressing.

There are a lot of preloaded apps including Hi Manager, Hi Theme, Hi Cloud, Micro Intelligence, PHX Browser, etc. There’s also an app for customer care services which shows you the list of service centres nearby or help you connect with one of the executives.

The Tecno i7 comes with a Whatsapp mode which restricts data consumption for all background apps other than Whatsapp. This is a useful feature for those who are concerned with their data usage but this mode is not that necessary. It comes with all features of Nougat like Split Screen which lets you use two different apps simultaneously.

CAMERA

  • 13 MP rear camera with Quad LED flash
  • Supports video recording of up to 1080p
  • 16MP selfie camera with LED and screen flash
  • Supports video recording of 720p
  • Wide Angle Selfie mode is also supported

The USP of this device is the 16MP front camera which comes with a LED flash and a screen flash as well. The rear camera is however put on a low side and is a 13MP shooter which comes along a Quad LED flash.

The image quality of both front and back cameras is good. You can take some really good selfies with this device for your Whatsapp, Instagram or other Social Media.

In some photos, we noticed that the colours of the image splashed a bit but other than this we loved the camera on Tecno i7. 

The shutter and focusing speed are both good and the autofocus also works great. Multiple filters are given along with HDR, Panorama mode, Slow Mo, Night screen, Super Pixel etc. of which we liked Super Pixel the most. What it does is that the image captured is a full-screen image which covers the whole of the display. However, this mode lowers the image quality a bit and takes 1-2 seconds to capture the image.

There’s a Makeup mode as well which you can use after the image has been shot. This mode can be very useful for girls if they missed doing their makeup while taking a pic (which happens rarely). One can apply lipstick with different shades, set their eyebrows, skin tone, adjust the eyes and chin size and do a lot more stuff with this edit option.

Here are some sample shots we took with Tecno i7.

TECNO i7 camera samples

TECNO i7 camera samples

TECNO i7 macro camera samples

TECNO i7 low light camera samples

TECNO i7 pano camera samples

TECNO i7 colours camera samples

TECNO i7 night camera samples

TECNO i7 moving camera samples

TECNO i7 moving camera samples

THE UNBIASED VERDICT

If you have a budget of 15K then the ‘Night Phone’ Tecno i7 is the phone to look out for. The performance of this phone won’t let you feel that you are using a new brand. At a price of Rs 14,999, it is a device to be considered even in this tough competition. Its competitors are Moto G5 Plus, Honor 6X, Lenovo Z2 Plus.

You can consider the Pros and Cons before buying given below:

Pros:

  • 2.5D Display
  • Good combination of hardware and software
  • Competitive price
  • Fast Charging

Cons:

  • Fingerprint scanner could have been faster
  • Lack of Gorilla Glass 
  • Limited Availability

Social Media Evangelist | Gadget Guru | Model | Photographer | Ex- BlackBerry Boy - Now iOS | WP8 | Droid. Founder and Chief at ‘The Unbiased Blog’. I breathe in WiFi zone, prefer LTE over LIT. Ex MSFT, MCP, A+ and coder. I like news to be served to me on twitter.