comscore Obi Octopus S520 Review: Will former Apple CEO's first smartphone dazzle?
Review

Obi Octopus S520 Review: Will former Apple CEO's first smartphone dazzle?

obi-octopus-s520-review

Obi Mobiles is the newest entrant into the Indian smartphone market and is backed by former Apple CEO John Sculley. Unlike the Cupertino-based company however, Obi Mobiles is targeting the affordable segment with its focus on first time smartphone users and the youth in India. With that in mind, the company launched its first smartphone called the Obi Octopus S520. Priced at Rs 11,990, the S520 is currently the cheapest octa-core smartphone you can buy in India, but can it standout in a crowded segment? We spent some time with the smartphone to find out. Also Read - Ajay Sharma, CEO of John Sculley's Obi Mobiles quits

Also Read - Obi Mobiles target five percent market share in 2014

Also Read - Obi S400, Obi S450, Obi S500, Obi Python S452 and Obi Wolverine launched, prices start from Rs 4,200

The Obi Octopus S520, with its candybar design, looks like many of the budget Android smartphones being sold by Chinese or local brands. But the moment you take the smartphone out of the box, the weight of the smartphone or rather the lack of it will take you by surprise. Even with the battery inside, you barely feel the weight of the device in your hands and this is down to the build materials, which is disappointingly plastic.

The front is dominated by the 5-inch display with generous bezels, capacitive buttons near the bottom and the front-facing camera placed just above the earpiece. At the top there is a 3.5mm audio jack, power button on the right, volume rocker on the left and the micro-USB port at the bottom.

obi-octopus-s520-review (3)The back too is equally plain with the rear camera placed at the top-left corner alongside the LED flash and the speaker grille towards the bottom. Unlike other smartphones, there is no branding etched or painted on the rear; instead the company has stuck its logo to the rear panel. The logo is etched into a small piece of metal that is stuck to the panel, and it also has fake rivets. If the designers thought it would give the phone a cool rugged look, they were mistaken. It almost seems like an afterthought.

The back panel slides out to reveal the SIM-card slots, microSD card slot and a removable battery. It took us a few tries to pry the rear panel open and we nearly chipped our fingernail too. Initially it felt as if only the middle section of the panel would come out, but it turned out to be attached to the lower plastic section and whole thing slides out.

As mentioned above, the Octopus S520 has entered a highly competitive market, and for an unknown brand, first impressions are what matter. Unfortunately, the smartphone s plain design doesn t leave a lasting impression.

obi-octopus-s520-review (13)The display however makes up for the above disappointment to some extent. The 5-inch HD 720p display is bright, crisp and does a decent job in color reproduction. Viewing angles are good and the screen is comfortably legible under direct sunlight. The screen is however a fingerprint magnet and we would advise you to use the scratch guard bundled with the device.

The smartphone is powered by a MediaTek MT6592 octa-core processor clocked at 1.7GHz and paired with Mali-450 MP4 GPU and 1GB of RAM. This translates into smooth and near lag-free performance. The fact that the device runs on a near stock version of Android 4.4.2 KitKat also has a positive effect on performance. Aside from Truecaller, file manager, software update app and Movie Studio apps, the device is free of any bloatware.

obi-octopus-s520-review (14)Running multiple apps simultaneously and switching between apps is quite snappy. It even took graphic intensive games like Riptide GP2 in its stride when playing on medium settings. Only when we maxed the graphic settings did the game become jittery and even crashed a couple of times.

The Octopus S520 comes with 8GB of internal storage, of which around 5GB is available for the users. You can further expand the memory up to 32GB by using a microSD card.

The device s battery life, however, is another disappointment. The 1,800mAh is grossly under powered and is not enough to last a day. On heavy usage involving voice calling, push notifications from two email accounts, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, half hour of gaming, half hour of video playback and texting the battery was barely able to last four to five hours. With a more judicial usage, we were able to boost the battery life for another hour or so. So essentially you will need to carry a charger every time you step out of your office or home.

obi-octopus-s520-review (5)On the photography front, the smartphone boasts an 8-megapixel rear camera and a 2-megapixel front-facing camera. The primary camera is only useful as long as the lighting is optimum. In brightly lit outdoors, the photos were quite decent, but even a slightly cloudy sky resulted in significant loss in details and colors. The camera does surprisingly well indoors as long as there is enough light. It managed to capture a lot of details when clicking macro shots in our office. The front-facing camera is only good enough for video chats and selfie lovers will be a tad disappointed with the quality of the photos.

To conclude, the Obi Octopus S520 is an ordinary smartphone and is unlikely to set the market on fire. While the display, stock Android and octa-core performance are more than decent, the overall design, build materials and battery life leave you disappointed. We are spoilt for top notch build quality ever since the Motorola Moto G was launched, and for Rs 2,000 more you could also get the Xiaomi Mi 3, which is a flagship-level smartphone in terms of build quality and performance.

obi-octopus-s520-review (1)RELATED: Ex-Apple CEO John Sculley is hell-bent to sell you his new phone; and we know how

In a chat with BGR India, John Sculley revealed that Obi Mobiles is gearing up for a big push around Diwali when it plans to have half-a-dozen smartphones in the market. He also mentioned how the company will go on a marketing blitzkrieg towards that time to develop a brand image. The smartphones too will have to live up to the hype and Obi Mobiles will have to do much better than the Octopus S520 to leave a lasting impression on an Indian buyer s mind. Until then, buyers will continue to flock towards the likes of the Moto G and the Mi 3.

For the latest tech news across the world, latest PC and Mobile games, tips & tricks, top-notch gadget reviews of most exciting releases follow BGR India’s Facebook, Twitter, subscribe our YouTube Channel. Also follow us on  Facebook Messenger for latest updates.
  • Published Date: August 11, 2014 1:24 PM IST
  • Updated Date: January 12, 2015 3:44 PM IST



new arrivals in india

Infinix Note 10 Pro
Infinix Note 10 Pro

16,999

Infinix Note 10
Infinix Note 10

10,999

Vivo Y73
Vivo Y73

20,990

OnePlus Nord CE 5G
OnePlus Nord CE 5G

22,999

iQOO Z3
iQOO Z3

19,990

Realme C25s
Realme C25s

9,999

Poco M3 Pro 5G
Poco M3 Pro 5G

13,999

Realme X7 Max 5G
Realme X7 Max 5G

26,999

Oppo F19
Oppo F19

18,990

Motorola Moto G40 Fusion
Motorola Moto G40 Fusion

13,999

POCO M2 Reloaded
POCO M2 Reloaded

9,499

OPPO A74 5G
OPPO A74 5G

17,990

Oppo A53s 5G
Oppo A53s 5G

14,990

Vivo V21 5G
Vivo V21 5G

29,990

Realme C25
Realme C25

9,499

Realme C21
Realme C21

7,999

Realme C20
Realme C20

6,799

Motorola Moto G60
Motorola Moto G60

17,999

iQOO 7
iQOO 7

31,990

Samsung Galaxy M42 5G
Samsung Galaxy M42 5G

21,999

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra

69,999

Xiaomi Mi 11X Pro 5G
Xiaomi Mi 11X Pro 5G

39,999

Xiaomi Mi 11X
Xiaomi Mi 11X

29,999

Realme 8 5G
Realme 8 5G

13,999

Samsung Galaxy F02s
Samsung Galaxy F02s

8,999

Samsung Galaxy F12
Samsung Galaxy F12

10,999

POCO X3 Pro
POCO X3 Pro

18,999

Realme 8 Pro
Realme 8 Pro

17,999

Realme 8
Realme 8

14,999

Vivo X60 Pro Plus
Vivo X60 Pro Plus

69,990

Vivo X60 Pro
Vivo X60 Pro

49,990

Vivo X60
Vivo X60

37,990

OnePlus 9 Pro 5G
OnePlus 9 Pro 5G

64,999

OnePlus 9R 5G
OnePlus 9R 5G

39,999

OnePlus 9 5G
OnePlus 9 5G

49,999

Samsung Galaxy A72
Samsung Galaxy A72

34,999

Samsung Galaxy A52
Samsung Galaxy A52

26,499

Micromax In 1
Micromax In 1

10,499

Asus ROG Phone 5
Asus ROG Phone 5

49,999

Samsung Galaxy M12
Samsung Galaxy M12

10,999

Motorola Moto G30
Motorola Moto G30

10,999

Motorola Moto G10 Power
Motorola Moto G10 Power

9,999

Oppo F19 Pro Plus 5G
Oppo F19 Pro Plus 5G

25,990

Oppo F19 Pro
Oppo F19 Pro

21,490

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro Max
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro Max

18,999

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro

15,999

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10

11,999

Realme Narzo 30A
Realme Narzo 30A

8,999

Realme Narzo 30 Pro
Realme Narzo 30 Pro

16,999

Infinix Smart 5
Infinix Smart 5

7,199

Samsung Galaxy F62
Samsung Galaxy F62

23,999

Samsung Galaxy A12
Samsung Galaxy A12

12,999

Nokia 5.4
Nokia 5.4

13,999

Nokia 3.4
Nokia 3.4

11,999

Realme X7 Pro 5G
Realme X7 Pro 5G

29,999

Realme X7
Realme X7

19,999

Vivo Y31
Vivo Y31

16,490

Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G
Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G

35,990

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G

1,05,999

Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus 5G
Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus 5G

81,999

Samsung Galaxy S21 5G
Samsung Galaxy S21 5G

69,999

Vivo Y12s
Vivo Y12s

9,990

Vivo Y51A
Vivo Y51A

17,990

Samsung Galaxy M02s
Samsung Galaxy M02s

8,999

Xiaomi Mi 10i
Xiaomi Mi 10i

21,999

Oppo A15s
Oppo A15s

11,490

Tecno Spark 6 Go
Tecno Spark 6 Go

8,499

Vivo V20 2021
Vivo V20 2021

24,990

Vivo Y20A
Vivo Y20A

11,490

Xiaomi Redmi 9 Power
Xiaomi Redmi 9 Power

11,999

Motorola Moto G9 Power
Motorola Moto G9 Power

11,999

Motorola Moto G 5G
Motorola Moto G 5G

20,999

Vivo V20 Pro
Vivo V20 Pro

29,990

Xiaomi Mi 10T
Xiaomi Mi 10T

35,999

Xiaomi Redmi 9i
Xiaomi Redmi 9i

8,299

Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro

39,999

Infinix Hot 10
Infinix Hot 10

9,999

Vivo V20 SE
Vivo V20 SE

20,990

Vivo V20
Vivo V20

24,990

Micromax In 1b
Micromax In 1b

6,999

Micromax In Note 1
Micromax In Note 1

10,999

OnePlus 8T
OnePlus 8T

42,999

Samsung Galaxy F41
Samsung Galaxy F41

15,499

Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max

1,29,900

Apple iPhone 12 Pro
Apple iPhone 12 Pro

1,19,900

Apple iPhone 12 Mini
Apple iPhone 12 Mini

69,900

Apple iPhone 12
Apple iPhone 12

79,900

Poco X3
Poco X3

16,999

Realme Narzo 20A
Realme Narzo 20A

8,499

Realme Narzo 20
Realme Narzo 20

10,499

Realme Narzo 20 Pro
Realme Narzo 20 Pro

13,999

Oppo F17
Oppo F17

16,990

Samsung Galaxy M51
Samsung Galaxy M51

22,999

Poco M2
Poco M2

10,999

Oppo F17 Pro
Oppo F17 Pro

22,990

Realme 7 Pro
Realme 7 Pro

19,999

Realme 7
Realme 7

14,999

Best Sellers