Flipkart Billion Capture+ Review: Solid specs make this promising
While Flipkart and Amazon might be the preferred medium for many other brands to sell their phones, the two companies have this year gotten into the business of marketing phones themselves. The Billion Capture+ comes backed by the former.
When it comes to the e-commerce space in India, there are two portals that stand out. Flipkart and Amazon India have been neck-and-neck in trying to win over the market, edging out smaller competitors to firmly establish themselves as the preferred platforms to buy things online. And while that war isn t fading away any time soon, the two companies have also taken the fight to a new battle: their own smartphones.
Amazon fired the first shot in this new battle, when it launched the 10.or E and 10.or G. While the name might be silly, the devices are fairly impressive and offer a lot for your money. The catch is of course the lack of brand awareness and the fact that you can only buy it on Amazon India. But if you re okay with those, it s an impressive pair of devices from Amazon that is definitely worth considering.
Taking the 10.or G on is Flipkart s entry into the market. The Billion Capture+ is priced identically to the Amazon-backed device, and comes with similar specifications and features too. There s also a very firm marketing pitch here; the Billion Capture+ is marketed as a smartphone made in India, and made for India. The phone starts at Rs 10,999 for the 3GB/32GB variant and goes up to Rs 12,999 for the 4GB/64GB variant. We ve given the Flipkart Billion Capture+ a go, and here s our review.
Flipkart Billion Capture+ Design
The Flipkart Billion Capture+, for all of the hype, impressive specifications and value-for-money, is rather uninspiring when it comes to design. Think of it as your typical smartphone, undistinguishable from many other smartphones. It doesn t quite have the instantly recognizable looks that many other phones have. If you re okay with standard looks, there s really not much else to complain about though. The device is built solid and feels tough as well.
A lot of that solid build can be credited to the metal back plate, which no doubt adds some durability to the device. The Billion Capture doesn t sport a unibody build though, with plastic at the top and bottom of the rear, as well as a plastic frame. As I mentioned earlier, the phone isn t about looks, but more about the durability and solid feel that is needed of a value-centric device being sold in India. The glossy border surrounding the screen is perhaps the only thing that shines (literally) in the phone.
The rest of the layout is fairly standard, with the USB Type-C port at the bottom, 3.5mm jack at the top, hybrid SIM slot on the left ,and power and volume buttons on the right. The dual-camera setup can be found at the top-left corner, while the Billion logo is closer to the bottom. You also get a notification light at the front. Of course, what s noteworthy here is the presence of USB Type-C and a dual-camera setup on a device that costs just Rs 10,999.
Flipkart Billion Capture+ Specifications
Here s where the Billion Capture+ stands out. The smartphone is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 SoC, and comes with either 3GB or 4GB of RAM and either 32GB or 64GB of internal storage, depending on the variant you buy. Expandable storage is supported, but since the phone has a hybrid SIM slot, you ll have to choose between storage expansion and dual-SIM connectivity.
The phone features a 5.5-inch full-HD IPS screen, which is sharp, has good colors and is generally decent, and 2.5D glass at the front enhances the look a bit. The battery in the phone is a 3,500mAh unit, which coupled with the proven efficiency of the Snapdragon 625 comfortably gives you a full day of use or more on a single charge, depending on how you use the phone. There is of course 4G VoLTE connectivity, a fingerprint sensor at the back for biometric security, and a Qualcomm Quick Charge 2.0 compatible charger right out-of-the-box. Charging is fairly quick, and you can top the phone off in less than two hours.
Flipkart Billion Capture+ Software
Just like on the 10.or G, the Flipkart Billion Capture+ comes with near-stock Android software based on Android 7.1.2. The software isn t entirely stock, and has some tweaks in place. The most significant of these is the TronX software, which is developed by the same company that markets Smartron phones. As a result, the entire interface looks and feels a lot like what we last saw on the Smartron srt.phone. While I can t say this with certainty, I wouldn t be surprised if Flipkart is getting these phones developed and manufactured by Smartron.
As a result, you get a theme and a handful of pre-installed apps that come from the TronX overlay, including the distinctive FM radio, gallery and the TronX virtual assistant. You do also have the option to use Google Assistant if you choose.
There are some bothersome inclusions in the form of bloatware apps, such as the Microsoft Office suite, Skype, Flipkart and Myntra apps for shopping, a shortcut that directs you to open a savings bank account with Kotak, Ola Cabs, PhonePe and Sony Liv. None of these can be uninstalled, and will sit forcibly on your smartphone even if you don t want to use them. I guess it isn t right to call this near-stock software at all, since beyond the basic look and feel of the interface there isn t much else stock Android about it. Perhaps Flipkart is subsidizing the phone for buyers by pre-installing these apps and services, but as a user, it s not something I appreciate.
There are some bothersome inclusions in the form of bloatware apps
Flipkart Billion Capture+ Performance
With the proven capabilities of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 SoC and up to 4GB of RAM, the Flipkart Billion Capture+ doesn t let you down when it comes to performance. What you get is a level of capability that does somewhat exceed the price tag of the phone. The Billion Capture+ is reliable efficient, easy on the battery and has enough to keep your smartphone use and experience comfortable. The fingerprint sensor is quick and accurate as well.
From multi-tasking to gaming, the phone won t let you down. Even at high graphics settings for intensive games such as Riptide GP, the Billion Capture+ can keep up, albeit with small frame drop issues. Performance is on par with the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4, which is powered by the same Snapdragon 625 SoC. However, the chipset is aging now, and perhaps the newer Snapdragon 630 SoC may have been a better choice, particularly considering the focus on camera quality.
Flipkart Billion Capture+ Camera
One of the key focuses of the Billion Capture+ is on the camera. With dual-camera setups in rage these days, it isn t surprising that a value-driven offering such as this would include the technology. The smartphone comes with two 13-megapixel rear camera sensors and an 8-megapixel front camera. The rear camera setup uses an RGB + monochrome setup for better detail and light capture, and also features depth-sensing abilities for portrait shots.
The camera app and interface are somewhat bothersome, primarily because it automatically switches options around depending on the video recording resolution and more. However, it s easy to get over this once you get used to it. Switching between modes is easy enough, although the phone does suffer a bit in terms of shutter lag and the time taken to process images. Ordinary photos are processed quickly enough, but using modes such as portrait or super night need a steady hand and some patience to get the right shot.
Using modes such as portrait or super night need a steady hand and some patience to get the right shot
(Camera samples shot on the Flipkart Billion Capture+)
The camera itself comes across as disappointing. Regular images looks decent enough on the face of it, but zooming in will show you a fair amount of noise and a lack of detail. Color is decent enough though, at least in regular light. In low-light, images tend to be grainy and lacking in detail again, but using super night mode offers some improvement.
Portrait shots are perhaps the most disappointing, as the algorithm simply cannot get the image right. Depth sensing exists, but it s so inaccurate that you re better off shooting without the portrait mode switched on. On the whole, the Billion Capture+ camera is simply not up to the mark, and you re better off spending a bit more on the Xiaomi Mi A1 if you want better photos.
The Flipkart Billion Capture+ is exactly what it claims to be. It s a value-driven offering that promises a lot for an amount that isn t huge. The trade-off is of course the lack of recognizable branding, which brings with it questions of reliability, after-sales service and more. After all, Flipkart is a portal and not a company known for its hardware offerings.
But if you can get beyond that, the Billion Capture+ is a decent smartphone on the whole. It s built well, runs efficiently and reliably, has a good screen, and sports software that while not perfect, certainly isn t bad. Although the camera is a definite disappointment, the Capture+ might still be worth it purely for the rest of the package. It s available exclusively on Flipkart, and worth considering if you re looking for a value-for-money mid-range smartphone today.
Published:Thu, December 07, 2017 3:37pm