Chinese electronics manufacturer Lenovo recently made a comeback to India’s smartphone market with the launch of the K10 Note. The company’s previous K Note-series smartphones were budget and midrange offerings with big screens, colourful designs, big-capacity batteries and powerful processors. The recently launched K10 Note continues that legacy, and adds imaging to the mix.
But the Lenovo K10 Note is a mix bag overall — it has several impressive features but misses out on a few key ones. We find that this smartphone is a performer, but the areas where it lacks lustre cannot be ignored, either.
Business Standard tested the Lenovo K10 Note to see how the new avatar of the K Note-series fared with regard to design, display, features, imaging, performance and on-battery time. Here is our review:
The K10 Note has a minimalist look — a sleek profile with a glossy rear panel, which is a treat to the eye. But the phone is a fingerprint magnet. What's good is the missing gradient scheme. On the rear, it has a triple-camera set-up and a fingerprint sensor that works really fast.
This lightweight phone has a 6.3-inch Full HD+ display with thin bezels on the sides and slightly thick bezel at the bottom.
There has been some compromise on display in that it is not an OLED panel but only an LCD screen. The front camera is nestled under the notch at the top of the screen. At the bottom, there is a type-C port, a 3.5mm headphone jack and loudspeaker.
The display of the K10 Note is not one of the best we have seen in recent times. The screen size is great and the phone doesn't look too big, but the display could have been sharper and crisper.
When it comes to brightness, you understand that LCD screens have their own limitations, unlike Full HD+ displays which offer better viewing experience while streaming Netflix or Amazon Prime videos.
The K10 Note is powered by a Snapdragon 710 chipset paired with either 6GB RAM and 128GB storage or 4GB RAM and 64GB storage. The phone runs on the Android 9 Pie with Lenovo's custom ZUI interface.
Thanks to its Snapdragon 710 chipset, the smartphone does almost all tasks without any lag. It handles long gaming sessions well, and it is also a good multitasker. We could switch from streaming 'Money Heist' on Netflix to long social media sessions. When it came to gaming, this phone did not let us down. We played PUBG, Asphalt, and even Call of Duty, all fairly smoothly. Let's just say you would enjoy gaming, and the Dolby-tuned speakers would add to the experience.
However, so far as interface is concerned, the custom skin isn't one of the easiest to use and the clutter of app icons makes navigation a bit difficult.
The phone’s 4050 mAh battery, on the other hand, lasts long enough, and its 18W fast-charger powers up the phone quickly. You can expect the battery to last for over a day even if you play heavy games for long sessions. It can easily sail through with long social media and streaming sessions, too.
The Lenovo K10 Note has a triple-camera setup at its back — a 16-megapixel primary shooter, a 5-megapixel depth sensor and an 8-megapixel telephoto camera with 2x optical zoom. On the front, there is a 16-megapixel selfie camera. This might not sound very impressive, considering there also are phones with 48- and 64-megapixel cameras available in the market. But the imaging output of the K10 Note far exceeded our expectations.
The camera set-up is capable of producing sharp images. The colour contrast was better than some of the other phones we reviewed recently. We got the best results during indoor as well as outdoor photography, but found detailing to be unimpressive in wide-angle shots and dim light. The images did not look too grainy or smudged when zoomed in, but do not expect much with low-light photography.
The Lenovo K10 Note is priced at Rs 13,999 for the 4GB RAM + 64GB storage variant and 15,999 for the 6GB+128GB variant. Considering the price point, it looks like a good deal. But let’s not ignore the fact that the smartphone competes with the likes of the Realme 5 Pro, Real XT, Vivo Z1X, and a few other good phones in its segment. The Lenovo K10 Note does make a statement with smooth performance, but the interface and display play spoilsport.