IDEA IVORY: High on features

Written by Sudhir Chowdhary | Updated: Feb 14 2013, 14:40pm hrs
When you have plenty of time on your hands, you tend to think up the most innovative things. At least my mind gets creative when I have plenty of time. Last weekend, my living area in Noida witnessed massive power cuts lasting ten hours at a stretch. In order to kill time, I decided to check out some of the gadgets yet to be reviewed by me. A dual-SIM smartphone from Idea Cellular and a portable mobile charger in slim-waist shape caught my immediate attention. Putting my mind to work, I brought the Android phone to life by charging it with the Recharge+ charger and achieved two objectives with a single effort.

Let us talk about Ideas dual-SIM Ivory phone here; the charger gets reviewed separately in the accompanying story. This is the Aditya Birla Group companys first Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS) offering. It is feature rich and has beautiful aesthetics. The pocket friendly Idea Ivory is priced at R7,000 and is competing in a very crowded entry-level smartphone segment. Can it be a value for money ICS handset in this category Let us find out.

Idea Ivory is a dual-SIM smartphone that supports 3G on one SIM. Its white colour body gives a glossy finish and it does not leave fingerprints on the body. The front panel has a large display with three capacitive keys and one clickable button below them (more on it later). The volume setting keys are placed on the right side and the power button is on the top of the phone. The phone does not have sharp edges anywhere and has curved corners.

The phone has a 3.5-inch capacitive screen with pixel dimensions of 320 x 480. It is powered by a 1 GHz processor, and has 512 MB of RAM. Take my word, this hardware is decent enough to run Android 4.0 ICS smoothly and with minimal lag. Apart from that, you get a 3.2 megapixel camera and 4 GB internal storage. Thankfully, the company has bundled a 2 GB micro SD card and enabled the micro SD card slot to hold up to 32 GB memory.

Idea has pre-loaded some popular apps such as Facebook, Twitter, Music Video Player, documents to go, etc. on this smartphone. To access them, there is an additional button placed below the default capacitive Android keys. This tactile button allows you to create a list of your favourite apps for quick access.

During the testing, I didnt encounter any issue with its touch response. The camera quality is just about average without the Flash. The call quality of the device is crisp and clear at both ends. Browsing the internet on the device, watching videos, etc runs well on the Ivory. You can even run flash heavy websites once you have downloaded flash from the Android market place. As far as apps go, Android is the best place to go as there are 300,000 odd apps to choose from and most of them are free apps.

All in all, the device feels sturdy and is a decent performer.

Estimated street price: Rs 7,000