Tecno Boom J7 – Review

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Due to sometime fierce discussions about the suitability of Kenyan 8-4-4 system, I normally take keen interest to see the difference between what people learn in schools and what works especially in business field. My latest fascination is around the market entry strategies taken by different brands getting into Kenya. One brand which has captured the attention of many on how they do things is Tecno mobile. When they came into Kenyan market, Nokia was the king of the low-end phones (dumb phones). Nokia was everywhere and it was hard to see how a new brand from China would penetrate the same market. Then without warning and with less fuss, somehow they managed to displace Nokia as the number one sellers of the low-end phone.

Tecno strategy involved aggressive pricing and one on one connection with the mobile phone sellers in places low-end streets of Nairobi like River road. Almost every shop on River road and nearby areas are branded with Tecno logo. On the pricing, they came up with even cheaper phones as compared to what the others like Nokia were selling. Looking at that, I have always been curious to see if they can replicate the same with high-end smartphones. Two years ago I did a post about things Kenyan consumers look for when they are buying a smart phone. Top on the list were price and trendiness. Fast forward and much has not changed, and the price is still among the top consideration. In reality whenever someone ask me which phone to buy, the first thing I get them to clarify is their budget range. From there it is easy to fit in and tell them the best phone that their money can get them.

Looking at Tecno , it is easy to see that they are using tried and tested method for the Kenyan market. With the Price being the number one consideration. Take a look at the phone they introduced in the market recently, Tecno Boom J7. We did unboxing here that you can watch after the article. The phone is going for Ksh.12,999. So that is basically 13k but what does it get you. Below is a rundown of the specs

Speed

I am more interested on the speed of the phone because of a number of reasons. Chief among them being my bad habit of forgetting the fact that phones are not yet in the same level as the computers. I normally go overdrive in multitasking. A good speed or processor, would enable me to do so without the phone hanging on me or misbehaving. Tecno Boom J7 comes with 1.3 GHz quad-core Cortex-A7 processor. A multi-core processor is a single computing component with two or more independent actual processing units (called “cores”). In this case 4 of them. In real life 1.3 GHz quad-core processor for 13K is actually very good.

Storage

We have all seen it, people are no longer buying the external hard disks or flashdisks. The main reason being the storage provided by the new Smartphones. In terms of storage, Tecno Boom J7 hold its on among the best. With internal storage of 16 GB which can be expanded to 32 GB through MicroSD slot, you get almost the same value as the phones priced at over 40K in Kenya. So if it movies you want to watch or music you want to listen to, you have enough space to do so.

Camera

What is really the definition of a good camera in a good phone…simple, the ability to take clear picture and a good selfie. I am not selfie mad person but I would say that Tecno Boom J7 is good in that aspect, with a 2 MP front end camera. Not sure but I think it would excite the selfie taking generation. But I am more impressed with the 8MP back-end Camera. When comes to taking pictures I am an amateur of the amateurs but I was pleased with ones I took at the balcony of the Nailab. See for yourself below

My attempt to take the Sunshine did not go well...I will try again next time

My attempt to take the Sunshine did not go well…I will try again next time

 

Uchumi, among others on the background was much better

Uchumi, among others on the background was much better

 

This was just in case  ..avoiding the sun

This was just in case ..avoiding the sun

Display

I still don’t understand the purpose of the tablet. Until they will able to be useful than phones on one end and computers in the other far end, I will continue to have my doubts. The tablets were meant to replace the computers but still the manufacturers have not got away to fix the productivity issue. Anyway why I am talking about tablets instead of Tecno Boom J7? The reason being Tecno Boom J7 Display. With Display Size of 5 inch HD, Tecno Boom J7 comes with what is now the standard display of the smartphones. With 5-inch display, I always feel that anything you can do on the tablet, you can do on the phone. I am not saying we should do away with tablets, I am just thinking that more should be done to make them more useful in all aspect of life.

Design

I am more for the functionality than the design thing but I know most people are opposite of that. For this I have a weak judgement, and so I will try to illustrate what I have seen on the phone with pictures than words. From my weak judgement point, I think it is well designed but at least take a look and share with me what you think about it.

Back

Back

 

Front

Front

 

Battery

We are still waiting for the day smart phone battery life will match what we used to have with feature phones. But I must say that two phones so far have impressed me with their battery life. That is Tecno Boom J7 and Infinix Hot Note. From the look of it or from the battery specification, Tecno Boom does not look like it can last long with charge. I mean it has a 2020mAh battery capacity. That seems very normal by any measure but in reality, I have seen the phone go 48 hours with active use. By active use I mean having the data and notifications on, taking pictures, playing chess when I am bored and many more. So what it is the trick with the battery life? Honestly, I have no idea….My tests show that it outperforms better battery phones, some with upto 3500mAh battery capacity.

Data connection

It is important that I mention this. For those keen enough you might have seen some people going after Samsung for not telling them that Note 4 version for Africa did not come with 4G. In reality they did not read the local articles about the phone. Anyway, Tecno Boom J7 is 3G enabled and is capable of up to 21Mbps downlink and up to 5.76Mbps uplink. Well, the uplink and downlink speeds are mostly down to ISPs or the mobile network provider you are using. Remember some do not deliver on their promises, just like politicians, but that is a story for another day. Just before we move to something else, no 4 G on this.

Operating System

If there somewhere that I feel that Tecno should improve is the software part. Tecno Boom j7 runs on Android 4.4.2 Kitkat and yes it is Android but there is something that is not completely right on how it works on Tecno Boom j7 . As I use the phone, I will continue to investigate. Still the experience is ok.

Conclusion

Tecno Boom J7 is a very good phone given its price.

Here is the unpacking video

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Kennedy Kachwanya
Lead Blogger at Kachwanya.com
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Kennedy Kachwanya is a technology blogger interested in mobile phones both smart and dumb, mobile apps, mobile money, social media, startups ecosystem and digital Savannah. New media must not forget the strength of old tech.
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