It is unbelievable that 3 to 5 years ago the big question in Africa was when will the phone makers come up with a smart phone which is below $100 in price. In other words phone that can be afforded by the masses in Africa. Fast forward today and every phone maker with exception of a few has some great Smartphones trading below that range. In the next two years or so everyone in Kenya would probably have a smartphone. When I wrote this post “The reasons why it is time to dump dumb phones and develop for Smartphones” some three years ago, there were those who did not believe what I was saying then. But the question one would asking now is why buy a feature phone for Ksh.7000, when you can get Infinix Hot X507 for the same amount or Samsung Galaxy Star Dual Sim.
For many observers the question is no longer the adoption of the smartphones but the performance of the new players on the market. Personally I am more interested to see how Infinix will do in the coming months and years. I have been using Infix Hot X507 courtesy of Infinix for the last few days and I am impressed with the phone considering its price. The specs of the Infinix Hot X507 which I will come back to in a short while are good, the price, 7K is more than awesome for the price sensitive market like Kenya, but still there are a number of challenges which Infinix would need to overcome.
The first challenge is the availability of the Phone. The phone is available on Jumia on a pre-order basis. That is good in many ways, but limited in reach. The other problem with that is the fact that one has to wait for between 10 to 21 days for the delivery. Majority of Kenyans buy phones when they need them immediately, and that means they can’t wait for that long. The good news is Jumia responded to the post “The irritating wait: It takes 21 days to get items from Jumia Kenya” by saying that they will shortened the delivery period soon
— Jumia Kenya (@JumiaKenya) March 12, 2015
I am waiting…
The other challenge for Infinix in Kenya would be the deep pockets of their established competitors. Infinix will need to come in with a substantial budget to do proper marketing and awareness. The best example to learn from would probably be Tecno. Nobody gave Tecno a chance in Kenya when they came in but now they rule the lower end of the market (Feature phones). The good news is that the lower end of the smartphone market is still wide open and that is the chance that Infinix should take with two hands.
Having said the above, it is time to look at the phone which I think is capable of propelling Infinix to the top of the Kenyan market. Starting with the performance, Infinix Hot comes with a 1.3GHz quad-core processor and 16GB built-in storage with microSD slot for storage expansion to 32GB. Just to put that into perspective, when S3 was launched, it had a Quad-core 1.4 GHz processor. The Kenyan variant which was going for 60K at the time also had 16GB internal storage. Of course there are many other factors about s3 that cannot be compared with Infinix Hot but it should give an idea on the performance capacity of the phone being sold at 7K.
The bigger the size the better these days when talking about phones but the standard size for many seems to be 5-inch. With 5.0 Inch capacitive touch display, Infinix Hot should interest many who like large screens for productive work like typing, browsing, reading and even gaming. Better still 480 x 840 pixels resolution is very decent for some of those productive work I have already mentioned.
I guess they will have to do better on the back Camera department but 2 Megapixels on the front end is awesome for the selfie generation. The back camera is 5 Megapixels. Yes, I know 5 MP is still good but the demand for the better pictures has never been as high as it is now. So it is upon the phone makers to improve in that, regardless of the target level of the phone.
Since the controversy of local variant of Note 4 not having 4G, it is important to talk about the type of connectivity available on some of these phones. Infinix Hot X507 is capable of accessing both 2G and 3G connections. Note that it is not a 4G enabled device. The net access can also be done via built in WiFi, and if the Government make good of their promise of Free WiFi, the owners of Infinix Hot would be on point. By the way, I learned recently that the Kisumu Free WiFi is working well and Itumbi also has insisted in several occasions that the Nakuru one is doing well. I reserve my comments for now but soon I will be in both places to test them.
A rechargeable 2000mAh Li Ion battery. I think my favorite thing about the phone is its battery life. Capable of staying a full day with full capacity use and by that I mean data use, camera and others. When you go with basic functions (call and text) then we are talking about three days, just like the good old feature phones
The Infinix Hot X507 runs on the Android 4.4.2 ( KitKat) operating system.
Price and Location
I know i have talked about both the price and where to get the phone but it is worth repeating the two here. The exact price on Jumia is Ksh.6,999, while at the moment you can only get the phone through Jumia.com
Summary Of The Specs
Network 2G and 3G
CPU : 1.3 GHz Quad Core Processor
Display: 5 Inch Capacitive Touch Screen
OS: Android 4.4.2 Kitkat
Storage: 16GB Internal storage.
Connectivity WiFi + 3G
Rear Camera 5MP
Front Camera 2 MP