Indian smartphone maker iBall has launched a budget Android smartphone mSLR Cobalt 4, which comes with an interesting concept. In addition to high resolution lenses that come fitted as integral parts of the body, mSLR Cobalt 4 also has three extra lenses for different photography needs.
Features: The phone features a 5-inch, 540×960 resolution display and runs on Android 4.4.2 KitKat OS. It is powered by an octa-core processor, backed with 1GB RAM. It offers 8GB internal storage, actually offering 3.5GB to the user, expandable by up to 32GB.
The phone houses an 8mp rear camera on board with a dual-LED flash and autofocus, while on the front it packs a 3.2mp front-facing shooter with a soft LED flash for high quality selfies.
The handset comes along with the USB Cable, charger, earphones, three lenses and a clip to fix them on the phone. The clip fixes the external lenses on the rear camera to make sure that it does not move while clicking. The clip has a screw mount on one side, while the other side has a rubber casing to ensure that the screen does not get damaged.
Of the three additional lenses, the telephoto lens offers 8X optical zooming and can capture subjects well within a distance from 3m to 24m. Another lens, the fisheye lens has 180 degree viewing angle, while the third one, a wide angle lens, can capture subjects up to 0.65X wide.
The extra lenses come with a front cap for protection from dust, fungus, fingerprints and smudge. However, it does not have a similar ens cap for the back. So you need to replace and carry the lenses carefully.
mSLR Cobalt 4 features good built quality with polycarbonate rear and glass front with a metallic bronze strip on both the sides. The curvy rear of the smartphone feels comfortable and looks stylish in hand.
This is a dual-SIM smartphone with 3G, Wi-Fi, USB on the go, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS and HotKnot. iBall is also offering a free pouch and cleaning cloth for the lenses with mSLR Cobalt4.
Highlights: Highlights of iBall mSLR Cobalt4 are the four detachable mSLR lenses that come bundled with the package, which includes a zoom lens with 8x zooming power, fish eye lens with 175-180 degree viewing angle, macro lens with 10x magnification and 10-15mm minimum object distance, and a wide-angle lens with 130 degree viewing angle, a pouch for lenses and a cleaning cloth .
The dual-SIM dual-standby supporting iBall mSLR Cobalt4 smartphone runs Android 4.4 KitKat out-of-the-box. The mSLR Cobalt4 comes with a 5-inch (540×960 pixels) qHD IPS display with a pixel density of 220ppi. The smartphone is powered by a 1.4GHz octa-core Cortex-A7 processor (unspecified) coupled with 1GB of RAM. It comes with 8GB of inbuilt storage, which is further expandable via microSD card (up to 32GB).
mSLR Cobalt 4 is a bold step by iBall in the highly competitive budget smartphones market. It is decent in use and focuses well on the USP of the phone. But if iBall is serious about the smartphone business, it needs to focus on interface and feature the latest operating system on its future handsets.
iBall launched its mSLR Cobalt4 smartphone in India on June 22, 2015. The handset will be available across the region in the coming weeks for an inaugural offer price of Rs. 8,499.
Verdict: The mSLR Cobalt 4 may not be a powerhouse but its capability to use add-on lenses to boost its camera capabilities would be welcome for a lot of enthusiasts who do not have cash to spend on a dSLR camera and would prefer to hone their skills on a smartphone instead.