Yes, the title says something about the phone already but then, there’s one such area where COMIO has worked on in this device, which is very important – the battery life. To begin with, COMIO is a new brand introduced in India and the parent company Topwise communications is known in China for making phones that are rebranded and sold by other brands in different markets, so you now know that the company knows well about how things work. The first three phones in the lineup introduced are the Comio P1, S1, and C1. The COMIO P1 is about power and thus, the device comes with a 5000 mAh battery.
You might not have noticed a lot about the device online because the company initially plans to sell its phones only in selected offline markets, but the phones should later cover several other markets, though still only in the brick and mortar stores. The COMIO P1 is priced at Rs. 9999 and for the price, in a way, you might feel that it faces a lot of competition from some other devices. Even the battery capacity won’t seem really unique, thanks to the number of devices around.
The hardware isn’t so good, as mentioned earlier. The phone can be called a basic one when you add up all of them and see how well it holds up against the competition. A MediaTek MT6735 quad-core chipset, 3GB of RAM, 32GB internal storage, and the regular connectivity options are on offer but it is only the 5000 mAh battery that holds up well.
To frankly speak about the design, the first look gave us an impression of the srt.phone from Smartron that was recently launched. But then, the design and build is actually good. It is a unibody design with the back plate not being metallic yet looking like one. The buttons are located on the left side, which is not the common side for most of the smartphones but things like these can become a non-issue after a good time of usage. On the front, the display shows up well but there are noticeable bezels making the phone wider than what one would expect it to be. The phone is a little thicker than the others in this price range and that can be attributed to the large battery packed within.
Towards the bottom on the back is the speaker grill and on the top is the camera with the LED flash. The center backplate has the fingerprint sensor a little on the uppish side but that’s where the finger can comfortably reach to scan for unlocking. The entire frame on the side has a textured finish that helps a bit in the grip. The bottom of the device has the MicroUSB port, which actually looks like a Type-C one. There seems to be only a single microphone offered here, and the overall comfort while holding the phone is good. It doesn’t seem like a cheapish device unlike the other two phones launched.
The display, as said, has wide bezels and since it doesn’t have any separate navigation buttons, a good amount of space in the bottom is taken up by the navigation keys. It is a 5.5-inch HD display (1280 x 720 pixels) and this is not the best of the lot when you talk of a quick comparison with some of the phones like Lenovo K8 Plus, Honor 6X, but then, it isn’t so bad except for the reflectiveness when viewing in bright conditions and thus the readability is affected. The auto-brightness sensor works quite well and it is fast enough to see the changes in background light to adjust the screen brightness. The colors come out well and the viewing angles are decent as well.
Let’s talk about the interface. Right from the lock screen, you’ll see the difference from the stock Android or most of the interfaces available around. Swiping right on the lock screen unlocks it for you unless you have one of the screen lock options made available. It is a COMIO UI and it is running based on Android 7.0 Nougat. There’s a lot of bloatware installed already with apps such as Speedup, Clone, Xender, Freezer, Anti-theft, UC Browser, Avatar Master, 360 Security, Duo, among others but Comio has maintained that some required ones like FM Radio, Sound Recorder, Music and video player are available as well.
There are no special gesture features but whatever is offered here is mostly in the form of apps, for example, the anti-theft feature. The UI is easy to get used to and understand, and just like some of the Chinese brand UIs, this doesn’t have the app drawer and everything you see is on the multiple home screens. There’s not a lot of trouble while scrolling through the screens or navigation through the interface, but the actual issue can be easily noticed while performing some high-intensive tasks like gaming or even switching between apps like Phone and Camera.
Having said that, the Comio P1 loses some points if we take it further about the overall performance. One would expect the phone to do well when it is about Rs. 10000 that you are paying, but here, there are several instances where lags are noticed and it takes a while to load when you open an app. The Speedup shortcut helps clear the RAM but the issue is not about multitasking but the response of the interface that depends on even the chipset. While gaming as well there was some lagging noticed on most of the games we played.
Surprisingly, the 13-megapixel camera is good enough to lock focus, to do well with the colors, but then, it is again the software department where it doesn’t do well. Every capture takes a second or two to process and get saved, and it is even more when you try the same with an HDR capture. The end captures don’t come out shaky even if you move your camera after hitting the shutter button, but the delay in saving annoys when we try to take quick multiple captures.
Otherwise, for the capture quality, it is good enough in bright light conditions and there is some noise in the low-light conditions though the details are retained to an appreciable level. The video quality is no good because even a small shake is evidently shown in the video captured. The selfie camera is supported by some modes and beatification features but we tried taking selfies without any setting enabled, and they came out to be good. We talk about comparisons, so here we are with the camera – the selfie camera on the Canvas Infinity is much better, and the rear camera is comparable enough, and it is better on the Honor 6X.
Check Camera Samples: Click here
Below samples are scaled down, check the above link for full-resolution camera samples of COMIO P1.
The area where we can easily vouch for the Comio P1 to do well is with the battery life. A 5000 mAh battery lasted easily for over a day and almost for two days on regular usage, and I’m not a very heavy user and have access to Wi-Fi for several hours a day. It might be a little lesser for heavy users who have their screens active for hours every day but for me, it was around 6 hours of screen-on time on average. Comio surely has done a good job in this department and there are only a couple of phones that can regularly offer this amount of battery life in this price range. One of them is the Moto E4 Plus from a known brand, which is also having a similar performance, not just the battery life.
As for the connectivity, the COMIO P1 does have the basic options including 4G with VoLTE and we tried using it with the Jio SIM, which worked fine. The speaker quality is not good, and the placement also is at a wrong place since the sound gets muffled when listening to music and having the phone on a flat surface.
Is the COMIO P1 a tough fight with the price of Rs. 9999?
While the phone is not available to everyone, let’s talk about how well it does for what is offered. This is a price range where you see some great phones, actually from brands that are known to offer great devices in the mid-range segment and thus, phones like Xiaomi Redmi 4, Redmi Note 4, and Lenovo K8 Plus are some great choices to compete the P1. While we know that the COMIO P1 has decent cameras and a good battery life, there’s other factors where it doesn’t do as well as the offerings from Xiaomi.
The COMIO P1 comes along with a bunch of offers such as extended warranty, replacement warranty as well, and a buyback offer if someone is choosing a COMIO phone in the future as well. But, how well does that read depends on the device itself, which is not the best of the choices for us at that price. As the title reads, we feel this is another basic phone that has a great battery life.