Tenor (10.or) has made the headlines very recently with two smartphones- the Tenor E and the Tenor G (first look). The company is following the principle of offering premium specifications at affordable prices. Tenor entered the Indian market with the Tenor E smartphone priced at Rs. 7,999 (for the base variant).
With the Tenor E, the company is going against the India' second best-selling smartphone, the Xiaomi Redmi 4. And the Tenor G battles with the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 which incidentally is the best selling smartphone in 2017. Does the Tenor E has enough firepower to kill the Xiaomi Redmi 4 and become the best? Here's my opinion on the same.
Design and Display
The Tenor E features a polycarbonate body, unlike most other budget smartphones which feature metal body today. It looks like the Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 from the front, and from the back, it resembles the Lenovo ZUK Z1. There's nothing new in the design part, but it offers decent in-hand feel. The edges are nearly chamfered, but at the same time, the smartphone is slippery. Sadly, Tenor did not include a back case in the retail box.
The volume rockers and power button are placed on the right side of the phone. Sadly, the power button also has the same size of the volume rockers and its placed on top of the volume keys, which makes you press the volume up all the time assuming it as a power button. On the left, we have two trays for dual SIM's and microSD card, and at the bottom, the micro USB is present. The phone has a 3.5mm headphone jack.
Talking about the display, the Tenor E flaunts a 5.5-inch Full HD display. The Tenor E is possibly the cheapest smartphone in the country with a Full HD display. The other smartphone with a Full HD display in the same price range is the Yu Yureka Black, which did not appeal the customers. Offering a Full HD display at a price point of Rs. 7,999 is a great move from the company as its counterpart, the Redmi 4 comes with a 5-inch HD display.
Hardware and Software
The Tenor E is powered by the entry-level octa-core Snapdragon 430 chipset with four Cortex A53 cores clocked at 1.2GHz, and another four cores clocked at 1.5GHz. The Tenor E comes in two variants-one with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage, and the other one with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage video. The chipset is paired with Adreno 505 GPU to take of graphics in the smartphone.
In contrast, the Redmi 4 offers a Snapdragon 435 chipset, and also comes in different storage models with 2GB/3GB/4GB RAM.
Tenor is betting big on the software aspect in India. Both its smartphones, the Tenor E and the Tenor G runs clear stock Android 7.1.2 Nougat out of the box, and the brand even promised Android Oreo update by the end of 2017 for both the phones. The Tenor G recently received October security patch update, but the Tenor E is yet to receive an update.
The Tenor E even has a fingerprint sensor at the back of the phone, which is quick in unlocking the phone.
Cameras and Battery
The Tenor E comes with a 13MP rear camera and a 5MP camera on the front. The best part is both the cameras have support for an LED flashlight, which makes up for good images in low-light.
Lastly, we have the 4000mAh battery inside the Tenor E, which possibly is alone for you to purchase the device because it easily lasts for two days with a single charge. Sadly, Tenor did not use any fast charging technology in the smartphone, and it might take two hours for the device to charge from zero to 100 percent.
Overall, the Tenor E is a great smartphone in the sub Rs. 10,000 price point. It is one of the rare smartphones to offer a Full HD display and LED flash for both cameras. There are some downsides when compared to the Redmi 4 though. It is powered by the Snapdragon 430 SoC, which was seen on the Redmi 3s, but there won't be any huge performance difference, and also it loses the battle in the build quality aspect as the Redmi 4 features metal body. That said, we will be bringing out the full review of the Tenor E in coming days, stay tuned for that.