LG India today presented the K10 (2017) priced at Rs. 13,990. The new K-series phones isn’t a spec monster and, like other offline-centric phones, aims to distinguish itself by means of what can be aggregately termed as the first hands-on experience of consumers who come across it at their respective trusted offline outlets. We too experienced it within the confines of the press launch event and have summed up our first impression below.
Let’s first get the specs out of our way.
LG K10 2017 Specifications:
|Model||LG K10 2017|
|Display||5.3-Inch, HD IPS LCD|
|Processor||1.5 GHz octa-core MediaTek MT6750 Processor|
|Internal Storage||16GB, expandable up to 2TB|
|Software||Android 7.0 Nougat|
|Primary Camera||13MP rear camera|
|Secondary Camera||5MP selfie camera|
|Dimensions and Weight||148.7 x 75.3 x 7.9mm and 142g|
|Others||4G VoLTE, WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, 3.5mm audio jack|
The build is plasticky, but the design is pretty likable
This is a ‘Make in India’ phone and since the technology for assembling phones in India is in its nascent stages, we didn’t go into this hands-on review expecting much in terms of design or build. For instance, a metal-unibody construction, that’s all so prevalent in this budget, was out of the question here. To our surprise, however, we found the clever K10 design quite likable.
LG isn’t using premium materials here. The phone is entirely made of plastic with thick, gaudy chrome lining running all along the edges. The back cover has a familiar brushed metal texture and can pop out. And, according to LG, it’s also ‘scratch resistant’. Underneath it, you will find the modest 2800mAh battery, dual SIM card, and SD card slots.
On the plus side, LG has got the ergonomics right. The K10 2017 is quite compact with a 5.3-inch display and feels very comfortable to handle. The 2.5D glass layered on the front helps as well. We will also count the power button on the rear – that’s also a fingerprint sensor -as a plus point. The fingerprint sensor felt fast and you will get used to this unconventional arrangement in no time. Besides, the double tap to wake feature will ensure that you can conveniently unlock it even when the phone is lying on a table.
LG bundles an elegant flip cover in the box
Also, LG will be bundling some hip ‘Indianized’ flip covers in the box worth 2,999 INR. These magnetic flip cases look great and also have a curved-glass-patched cutout to see through basic info like time, date, notification count, etc. Since the phone uses an IPS LCD panel, this ‘Always On’ display should definitely take a toll on the battery. Right? Well, not so much. LG claims that when left on for 24 hours, it will consume only as much battery as is used while unlocking your phone thrice! Even if it consumes twice as much in practical usage, it still sounds like a good deal.
The display, in itself, felt perfectly decent. It also benefits from an eye-protection mode under display settings. But we would still like to reserve our verdict as, after all, we examined it under horrendous launch event lighting.
To sum it up, the design is quite interesting, and personally, we don’t mind the plastic build of the K10 one bit (the bundled case helps too). In all honesty, the LG K10 feels like a refreshing change of pace after going through a series of almost same and redundant metal-unibody or rather quasi metal-unibody phones. However, the hardware choices that LG has made are very difficult to look past.
It’s hard to expect much from the hardware
Even if we assume that the entry-grade 1.5GHz MediaTek MT6750 SoC can leverage a well-optimized Android 7.0 Nougat based UI to muster fast-enough performance, the limited 2GB RAM and 16GB internal storage are bound to be problematic in the long run for anyone but the most basic of Android users.
A lot will also be riding on its camera performance which we will have to test later in our own space.
LG also highlighted the presence of SOS button that dials emergency number 112 as soon as you press the power button thrice. This, however, shouldn’t be a big deal as it works on all four phones from different manufacturers that lay on my desk as of now.
So, who is it for?
The new LG K10 (2017) hasn’t got the numbers to go against online adversaries like Redmi Note 4 or Honor 6x or maybe the upcoming Moto G5, but if you are a very basic user (say, all you need is some Whatsapp, Some FB and a few calls) and are strictly looking forward to picking something from a trusted offline retail shop the LG K10 might just feel adequate.