Huawei Ascend G525 Black
One would have thought that the rise in popularity of low-cost smartphones would have been a boon to Chinese brands like ZTE and Huawei, but their efforts have been largely trumped by the arrival of smaller, lesser known companies that in the past year or two have given them an unexpected run for their money. The Ascend G525 is Huawei's attempt to make up for lost time by offering an Android phone with semi-decent specs and a palatable price.
Display and Handling
A few months ago, Huawei caused quite a stir with the Ascend P6, an ultra thin mid-range smartphone with an aluminium body. Of course, we didn't expect to be as impressed with the G525, which is priced considerably lower than the P6. All the same, we would have liked to see a phone with a bit less of a generic looking body than this. It's a no-surprises design with a perfectly flat façade, slightly rounded edges and a soft-touch plastic back.
Big screen smartphones have become so common now that you can find them scrounging around the lower depths of the price range. The Ascend G525 is case in point. It has a 4.5 inches IPS screen with 960 x 540 pixels, which makes for a middling pixel density of 245 dots per inch. That's not amazing or terrible. Web pages and other content that contain text aren't difficult to read, but reading in landscape mode helps.
Interface and Navigation
As usual, Huawei spruced up Android 4.1 Jelly Bean with its own Emotion UI overlay. Emotion UI is an interface that iPhone-ifies Android, in the sense that it breaks the traditional home screens + app menu paradigm by doing away with the menu altogether and moving all the apps right onto the home screens. Every new app you download automatically goes into one of the free spots on the home screens, just like on iOS. But then there's the hardware that's driving the OS. Huawei used a 1.2 GHz Snapdragon S4 Pro Play MSM8225Q CPU with 1 GB of RAM, which is a far cry from the beefier processors that equip the most powerful smartphones right now. That said, it still gives a relatively decent performance and allows everything to run more or less correctly. There are times when it isn't as responsive as it should be, but the system runs fluidly enough in the majority of cases. Only when you have several processor-intensive apps open at once does it really start to become sluggish. The processor scores low in benchmarks, but the Ascend G525 was able to run all the apps we threw its way, including 3D games like Riptide 2 and Dead Trigger 2.
Videos look a bit better than we expected. The fairish resolution obviously doesn't make the most out of HD content, but it could be worse. We even watched films with subtitles and didn't have to squint to read them correctly. The default player supports most of the popular file formats and codecs, one exception being certain Full HD files, but for that you can just download a third-party app like MX Player. The Ascend G525 has relatively high volume for a smartphone, both through the built-in speaker and the audio-out. It has enough oomph to feed all types of headphones and earphones, including ones with high sensitivity and impedance. There's very little distortion, even at high volume, and the body doesn't vibrate or cause other disturbances. DTS mode deteriorates a certain amount of the precision and detail, but it adds a rather warm tonal balance and a sense of space it's artificial, granted, but it sounds alright. The G525 has good audio, made even more enjoyable by the reasonable price.
Between the 5MP sensor and the price tag, we never expected much out of this camera. And, as it turns out, we were right. Pictures contain even less detail than on the Ascend G510 and some photos taken in good lighting contain noise. The colours are relatively faithful and contrasts are handled fairly well, but with no flash there's only so much you can do with this camera.
A high capacity 1700 mAh battery with our one-of-a-kind power saving technology reduces power consumption by 30%. So you can stay connected, in touch, informed, and entertained for longer.
|General||2G Network||GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 - SIM 1 and SIM 2|
|3G Network||HSDPA 900 / 2100 - SIM 1|
|Sim||Dual SIM (Mini-SIM)|
|Display Type||IPS LCD Capacitive Touchscreen|
|OS||Name||Android Jelly Bean|
|Version||4.1 (Jelly Bean)|
|Display||Resolution||540 x 960 px|
|Sound||Alert Types||Vibration, MP3, WAV Ringtones|
|Card Slot||microSD, up to 32 GB|
|Speed||HSPA 7.2/5.76 Mbps|
|WLAN||Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, hotspot, DLNA|
|Bluetooth||v2.0, A2DP, EDR|
|Battery||Type||Li-Ion 1700 mAh|
|Standby Time||340 hrs|
|Talk Time||6 hrs|
|Physical||Dimensions||134 x 66.8 x 9.9 mm|
|Chipset||Qualcomm MSM8225Q Snapdragon|
|CPU||Quad-core 1.2 GHz Cortex-A5|
|Additional Features||Document viewer, Photo viewer/editor, Voice memo/dial|
|Rating*||1 Star||2 Star||3 Star||4 Star||5 Star|