|Launch Date||September 5, 2017 (Official)|
|Operating System||Android v7.0 (Nougat)|
|Custom UI||COMIO UI|
|SIM Slot(s)||Dual SIM, GSM+GSM|
|SIM Size||SIM1: Nano|
|Network||4G: Available (supports Indian bands)|
|Build Material||Case: Metal|
|Colours||Royal Black, Sunrise Gold|
|Screen Size||5.2 inches (13.21 cm)|
|Screen Resolution||HD (720 x 1280 pixels)|
|Pixel Density||282 ppi|
|Display Type||IPS LCD|
|Screen to Body Ratio (calculated)||68.66 %|
|Processor||Quad core, 1.3 GHz, Cortex A53|
|Internal Memory||32 GB|
|Resolution||8 MP Front Camera|
|Optical Image Stabilisation|
|Image Resolution||4128 x 3096 Pixels|
|Camera Features||Digital Zoom, Auto Flash|
|Video Recording||1280x720 @ 30 fps|
|Network & Connectivity|
|SIM Size||SIM1: Nano, SIM2: Nano (Hybrid)|
|Network Support||4G (supports Indian bands), 3G, 2G|
|Wi-Fi Features||Mobile Hotspot|
|USB Connectivity||microUSB 2.0|
|Audio Jack||3.5 mm|
|Fingerprint Sensor Position||Front|
|Other Sensors||Light sensor, Proximity sensor, Accelerometer|
The Comio S1 priced at Rs. 8,999 is one of the worthy phones to consider buying in the sub Rs. 10,000 segment. The display is good, build quality and design are top notch, we get a latest Android version, and a decent audio and video experience. However, on the flip side, the performance is a bit disappointing as it can’t handle slight heavy usage, the battery is also not very impressive. The cameras are also a huge letdown. After using phones like the Redmi Y1, Redmi Note 4, Lenovo K8 Plus, Moto E4 Plus, we really find it hard to recommend the Comio S1. So, if you are in the market looking for a phone, we suggest you incline towards any of the phones mentioned above.
Chinese ODM Topwise Communication has entered the Indian market with the launch of Comio C1, S1, and P1 smartphones. Since it is the first ever launch for Comio in the country, it will be a while before we conclude how good the company is going to be and will it see the success that most Chinese brands couldn’t in India. However, the company with its three new phones has placed itself in different price segments instead of just sticking to one. While this is a good move, it needs to be seen how good the phones are. In our today’s review, we shall be taking a closer look at the Comio S1 which is priced at Rs. 8,999 directly competing with Xiaomi phones. Let’s get started.
The Comio S1 sports a 5.2-inches HD (1280 x 720 pixels) display and is powered by the Quad-Core 64-bit processor. There is 2GB RAM and 32GB internal storage that is further expandable up to 128GB via microSD. It runs on Android 7.0 Nougat right out of the box. In the camera department, there is a 13MP rear camera with LED Flash and an 8MP front camera for selfies and video chats. It also has a Fingerprint sensor. Connectivity features include 4G VoLTE, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.1, and GPS. A 2700mAh battery is on board.
Smartphones in the sub Rs. 10,000 have evolved so much in the past two years. The build qualities and designs are racing ahead matching the standards of mid-range smartphones. With a metal unibody design, the Comio S1 did start on a right note. The phone feels solid in hands and offers excellent grip too. At 5.2-inches size, we feel the S1 is a perfect smartphone for media consumption and gaming. Thanks to the compact size, one-handed usage was also comfortable. The edges are rounded, and the back panel is slightly curved so that you don’t hurt your hands even after extended usage.
Moving to placements, up front, you find the 8-megapixel selfie camera, ambient & proximity sensor, main earpiece. Down below the 5.2-inches screen are the three touch type capacitive buttons which are present within the display. The Fingerprint sensor is placed below the screen. You have the SIM and microSD cards slot on the left, while the power on/off button and volume rockers are present on the right side. There is nothing on the top, while the microUSB port, 3.5mm audio jack, and speaker grills are situated at the bottom. Flipping the phone to the rear is where you find the 13-megapixel rear camera with LED flash and Comio branding. The build quality and design are top notch, and it really is a good start for Comio.
The Comio S1 sports a 5.2-inches HD (1280 X 720) display with no protected glass on top. Since it is a 720p HD panel, colors look natural, and the viewing angles are good too. We didn’t notice any color shift or distortion while tilting the phone. The brightness levels are top notch; we never had issues accessing the content outdoors or under bright sunlight. The touch response is smooth with no lag or delay while scrolling.
Since it sports a 5.2-inches size, media consumption and gaming had good screen real estate. We didn’t notice any pixilation of text or images when zooming in. As there is no hardened glass on top, the company is compensating it by offering a screen guard within the box. While it can’t prevent the screen from cracking, it can withstand scratches and smudges to a certain extent. Overall, the display of the Comio S1 also scores big with good colors and viewing angles.
The Comio S1 is powered by the 1.3GHz Quad-Core processor with 2GB RAM. The company didn’t reveal the chipset name even at the launch, and we wonder why. Moving along, the performance in general day-to-day usage is smooth; there is pretty much no lag in the interface or animations. Apps open up fast, but they do take a good two seconds time to load. You can even do multitasking with up to 4-5 apps smoothly and not have to put up with the lag. Switching between apps back and forth was also stutter free. However, the performance takes a hit once you put pressure on it. The device can handle most apps but fails to handle all at once. You need to clear the background running apps to allocate space for new apps.
The interface becomes quite laggy, and frame drops are quite evident too. Since the performance seems like a mixed bag, we assume the chipset under the hood might be from MediaTek. The slower response rates and the laggy interface becomes quite annoying after a certain point.
In the gaming department, we played high-end to moderate games like Asphalt 8, Modern Combat 5, Nova 3, Subway Surfers, Temple Run 2, and Leo’s Fortune. While the medium level games had no issues, the high-end titles dropped frames, and the graphics struggled to render properly. There is also a Fingerprint sensor on board, and you can register up to five fingers. The unlock animation is fast, and the finger detection is also accurate.
Overall, the performance of the Comio S1 is again a disappointment. It can only suffice the needs of a primary smartphone user, but not anything beyond.
The Comio S1 features a 13-megapixel rear camera with LED flash and an 8-megapixel shooter on the front. The interface is quite simple, and it has features like beauty, Bokeh to enhance your camera experience. Talking about the performance, the images shot in good lighting conditions have acceptable colors and a decent amount of details. There are no dull moments in the pictures. The Bokeh effect is just a gimmick and doesn’t offer perfect edge detection and background blur. The beauty mode certainly enhances the skin tone before clicking the shots. The HDR mode does help in brightening the images. However, there is no auto HDR support. Focusing is quick, so is the image processing. In the low-light conditions, the photos are completely washed out with no colors and dark output. The pictures are nowhere usable even on the social media. Though there is an LED flash, we didn’t really see the use of it since the output is more often than not is overexposed.
The front 8-megapixel is no better, it does an acceptable job in good lighting conditions, and outdoors, but falls short in artificial and low-light conditions. The rear camera can record 1080p videos and the output is pretty average. The footage intakes too much ambient noise and is also shaky. Overall, the camera performance of the Comio S1 the weakest aspect of the phone. We hope the company pushes an OTA update focusing on the low-light camera performance of the device.
The Comio S1 packs a moderate 2700mAh battery with no support for fast charge. The company should have included a large capacity battery considering the metal unibody and phone’s thickness. Moving along, with moderate to casual usage, we did manage to pull through the end of the day. However, our usage was very restricted in order to get through the day. We did all our testing with 4G or WiFi turned on and occasional GPS navigation as well. While there is no idle overnight drain, the battery did drop a bit fast on heavy usage.
Though there are no heating issues, the S1 drains the battery significantly on slight heavy usage making us charge once again before we ended the day. We couldn’t really appreciate the battery performance after seeing phones like Redmi 4, Lenovo K8 Plus in the same price segment. With the bundled charger, the Comio S1 took close to 3 hours of time to charge it back to 100% from 1% which is quite a stretch. Overall, the Comio S1 disappoints with very average battery performance.
The company did include a pair of earphones within the box, and they are of in-ear style. The quality of the wire is good, so is the audio quality via them. Since the speaker grills are present on the bottom, the audio doesn’t get muffled, but it indeed gets blocked by your hands when holding in landscape mode. The default music player can play a wide range of audio formats, and the equalizer lets you tinker around with the sound profiles. The loudspeaker is quite loud and can easily cover an entire room when playing songs. We never missed a call or a message because of the speaker issue.
In the video department, the device was able to play 1080p videos that are stored locally and even while streaming. We didn’t notice any heating or freezing issues while playing videos even with 4G turned on. Overall, the audio and the video experience of the Comio S1 is impressive.
The Comio S1 runs on Android 7.0 Nougat with a custom skin on top. The interface like on many other Chinese brands phones resembles iOS style with all the icons present on the home screen. There are few customization options in the form a theme store, wallpaper where you can download images or themes to change the U.I the way you like it. If you wish to have stock Android experience, you can download 3rd party launchers from Play Store. Apart from Google native apps, there are pre-loaded applications like Freezer which freezes the unused apps, 360 security Anti Theft, UC Browser, Xender, Clone that do take up the internal space. While few of them are handy, rest merely is useless, and there is no way to get rid of them as well.
The theme store though doesn’t have too many themes like Xiaomi’s theme store; it is still growing. Since it is an Android phone, you can anyway rely on Play Store for any sorts of customizations.
It has 2GB of RAM out of which around 950MB is free when just default apps are running in the background. Since it is not a stock interface, the RAM usage is on the higher side, but that doesn’t mean the U.I is laggy. Animations render smooth, and the multitasking experience is also fine. You won’t notice any significant lag in the interface unless you are running more number of an app than the phone can actually handle. Overall, the software experience of the S1 is decent, but we wish the company had gone with Stock.