LeEco (previously called Letv) entered India last month and launched two devices, the Le Max, and Le 1S. Le 1s is a mid-range phone and comes with 5.5-inch full-HD (1080×1920 pixels) IPS display and powered by 2.2GHz octa-core MediaTek Helio X10 processor coupled with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of inbuilt storage, and supports dual-SIM (Micro + Nano-SIM).
The device has definitely created a buzz in the Indian mobile market with the pricing of Rs 10,999. In this detailed review, we check out whether the device is really worth the money.
Related Reading: Le 1S Unboxing
Design and Build:
Le 1S comes with a full metal unibody design finished in golden color and comes with terrific build quality for a budget phone. The rear panel has 13MP rear camera, LED flash, fingerprint scanner and Letv branding. The fingerprint scanner has a mirror like reflection. The front panel houses the 5.5 inches Full HD display, three capacitive touch buttons, 5MP front camera and sensors. The capacitive buttons are backlit. There is a black finishing on both sides of the display giving a feeling that the device has an edge to edge display. There is also a metal band running around the sides and it has chamfered edges. At 169 gms, the Le 1S is not the lightest of the devices, but definitely great to use and does provide with decent grip.
The right side houses the power and the volume keys and the SIM tray is positioned on the left side. The top houses the IR blaster and 3.5mm audio jack while the bottom portion has US C Type port and speaker grill. Overall, for a device priced Rs 10999, this is exceptional build quality.
The phone delivers a 5.5 inch Full HD (1080p) display with 401PPI. The display offers good colors and the texts look sharp and crisp. The viewing angles are also quite good and the sunlight legibility is also decent. The phone also comes with different display temperatures which included Vivid, Natural, and Soft which can be changed from display settings.
The touch response is very good and the display also offers protection in the form of Corning Gorilla Glass 3.
Le 1S runs on Android 5.0.2 Lollipop and it has a custom ROM called EUI similar to other Chinese OEMs. The EUI features multiple home screens and a notification center, but quick toggles are missing in the pull-down menu, instead they are weirdly placed in the multitasking option as a control panel. The implementation is similar to iOS, but accessing it is quite different. EUI does not have any resemblance to stock Android and employs a custom skin everywhere.
While the skin is completely a mash up of iOS and Android, there aren’t too many features being offered when you compare it with feature rich MIUI or EMUI. The phone comes with just a hand full of themes and there are no options to download more. Most common features like one-handed mode, gestures are missing in the UI. But having said that, one feature we liked is the ability to swap the back and multitasking keys.
There are few pre-installed tools and apps and one of the useful ones is the Remote Control app which makes it easy to use the phone as a remote for your TV, A/C, and others.
Le 1S is powered by MediaTek’s Helio X10 Octa-core chipset clocked at 2.2Ghz with PowerVR G6200 GPU and coupled with 3GB of RAM. The performance of the device was very good and we seldom noticed any lags in the day to day usage. Opening apps and switching between them were effortless and the Helio X10 powered quite well. The benchmark scores of Le 1s is more than 50k and almost close to Snapdragon’s 808 Hexa core.
So in performance, the Le 1S is definitely superior to the Snapdragon 616 available on Honor 5X. The gaming performance of the device was also very good with hardly any issues in gaming for a device in this price segment. We played graphic intensive games and Le 1s held up quite well although the temperature was slightly on the higher side at 46 degrees.
The call quality of the phone is quite good and we did not experience any call drops, the speaker performance is quite average and did not match up with the standard of Vibe K4 Note. The phone also comes with 32GB of internal storage, but there is no expansion slot available. The storage available in the first boot is around 24.5GB and you have to live with this storage which should be good enough for most users.
The device sports a fingerprint scanner on the rear panel and you can add up to 5 fingerprints. The sensor can be used to unlock the device and also to take snaps with the camera. The fingerprint scanner worked very well and unlocked the device quickly without any issues.
Le 1S sports a 13MP rear camera with LED flash and 5MP front camera for selfies. While K4 Note and Honor 5X comes with dual tone LED flash, Le 1S ships with single LED flash. The camera app is quite similar to other Chinese OEMs namely Honor and Xiaomi. The phone also comes with Phase Detection Auto Focus (PDAF) technology.
The camera interface offers all the bells and whistles including Slow motion, filters, Panorama, HDR, night mode, square shot and more and this is the first camera which offers 4k video recording at this price point.
The PDAF was quite good on the device and taking photos was pretty quick with minimal lag. Now coming to the photo quality, this is one area where the Le 1s disappoints. While the auto mode did produce some decent results, they are not consistent in the quality. While the sharpness levels were quite good, the colors and contrast were not good and consistent. The low light photos were quite good considering the price segment. Although it had noise, the detailing was good in low light images. The phone can record videos in 4k and 1080p and the quality was just average.
The front facing 5MP selfie camera is decent for social sharing and works with beauty mode. Here are some of the samples taken with the phone.
Le 1s comes with a 3000mAh battery with fast charging and the USB C Type port. The Le 1S is probably the first device to come with USB C Type in this segment. We tested the battery performance using 4G LTE SIM card along with regular usage which includes calls, browsing, social apps, gaming and a bit of camera usage. With this usage, we got around 23 hours of battery life with 4 hours and 10 minutes screen on time.
The battery performance of the Le 1s is quite good and will last for a day with moderate usage and since it comes with fast charging you don’t have to worry about the low battery. There is also power saving and ultra power saving modes included.
Priced at Rs 10,999, the Le 1S redefines the budget segment with one of the best value for money devices we have seen. It has a stunning design, good display, and performance coupled with decent battery life. The camera is the only area where Le 1s disappointing and we feel this can be fixed to an extent with software updates. The company has also set up 555 service centers across India which is quite a feat for a new entrant in India. Without a doubt, Le 1S is a terrific buy at Rs 10,999 if you can pick one from Flipkart.