CENTRiC is a less known and new Indian mobile phone brand from the house of Priyanka Telecom, which is 20-year-old distribution company based out of Mumbai. Recently, the company launched its new smartphone CENTRiC A1 in India for Rs. 9,999. I tested this phone as a primary drive for over a week and here is my review of CENTRiC A1. If you are thinking to buy this phone, this review will tell you everything you need to know about CENTRiC A1
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Design and build
CENTRiC A1 is a good looking phone with premium metal unibody build. The design of this phone is similar to what you have already seen in this segment. It has front camera flash as an advantage over the rivals of this price segment. It has three non-backlit capacitive keys below the display. It has a power button and volume rockers on the right side. The left side has SIM card slot.
The top edge has 3.5mm audio port and the base side has speaker and USB Type-C port for charging. The back panel has a rear camera, LED flash and fingerprint sensor aligned vertically. You can also see Centric branding at center and DTS audio branding at the bottom side of the back panel.
The Back panel has slight curves around the edges for an easier grip. The display also has a steel frame that also contributes to its look.
The phone weighs 160 grams. Due to metal build, it is bit slippery. But the company has already provided silicon back cover within the box. You will also get a tempered glass to protect the display.
Considering the price, the design and build quality are good.
The phone has 5.5-inch Full HD LTPS LCD display. The display is also protected by Dragon trail glass. The display offers good viewing angles and nice colors. It performs well in both indoor and outdoor. You also get an ambient display. If you turn it on, it will wake screen when you receive a new notification.
The phone runs on Android 7.1.1 Nougat with almost stock experience. The phone also comes with few bloatware but doesn’t put customisation on stock Android. It comes with Microsoft office apps and SwiftKey keyboard app. You get gestures and quick access to Centric support centers. The experience is fine. There were miner lags but it can be easily be fixed with regular updates.
The phone is powered by octa-core Snapdragon 430 processor clocked at 1.4GHz. It has 3 GB RAM to offer good multitasking. The phone is good in terms of performance and is capable of handling most of the tasks easily. It offers lag-free performance in day-to-day tasks and handles heavy apps as well.
It has Adreno 505 GPU for graphics processing. The gaming experience on this phone is good but I feel game takes longer time in loading than it should take. But there is no issue in performance. Playing game longer is also not an issue as there is no overheating on this phone.
It scores 44000+ on Antutu benchmark. On Geekbench, it scores 650+ on single core and 2100+ on multi-core score.
You get 32GB of storage that can be expanded up to 256GB with a microSD card.
The phone also has a fingerprint sensor on the back panel. This fingerprint sensor is slow and takes time to unlock the phone.
CENTRiC A1 comes with a 13 megapixels rear camera with LED flash and 8 megapixels front camera with selfie flash. The Camera app has several modes including HDR, Portrait, Backlight, Candlelight, Sunset and Night mode. You also have option to change ISO, Exposure and white balance by selecting from list of specific values. I tested this camera in several conditions and found notable results.
Outdoor photos captured from the rear camera look good but lacks sharpness and few photos look oversaturated. But I still managed to capture few good shots. You can see that in the gallery below. It also has an HDR mode that doesn’t work well. The photos taken in low-light had a good amount of noise, washed colors and there was considerable loss of details. If flash is the only source of light, the photos show a good amount of light on a single side of photos.
The front camera is average. Photos lack details and have washed colors. You also have the beauty mode. In low-light, you have the front flash for capturing photos. It works better than the flash at the back.
The video recording capability is fine. It can record Full HD videos from the rear camera. The EIS works pretty well and videos are less shaky. I also impressed with its quick focus on videos.
Overall, I find the camera setup on this phone above average and it can be improved with improved photo processing. I even tried few third-party apps and found slightly better results than the default camera app of the phone.
The phone is good for music lovers. It offers DTS Sound that enhances music experience. You also get earphone within the box, but that is just fine. If you are a music freak, you need to get better earphone to enjoy music on this phone. If you love watching videos and movies on your phone, you will love this phone. As it has a good display and good music.
Connectivity and Battery
The phone supports 4G with VoLTE. It works fine with Reliance Jio SIM. Other connectivity options including WI-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and USB Type-C. All these options work well.
The phone packs 3000 mAh battery. It offers 15-18 hours of backup depending on usage. There is also a battery saver mode to further enhance the battery back. I even found that Bluetooth consumes most of my battery even when it was off. So, I guess there is a software issue that could be fixed to further enhance the battery backup. The battery backup is fine considering the 3000 mAh battery, it is less than its closest competitor Redmi 4 that comes with 4100 mAh battery.
The phone supports Quick Charge 3.0 that takes around 1 hour and 30 minutes in charging this phone from 0 to 100%.
CENTRiC A1 is a new entrant and I was not expecting much from it. Still, this phone impresses with a good build and solid performance. It offers attractive design, good display, and nice performance. The phone only struggles in the camera department. At this price, you cannot expect much from the camera of a phone, but you have better options as well.
CENTRiC A1 is a good phone for just Rs. 10999. It will directly compete with Redmi 4 in the market. CENTRiC A1 has front camera flash as an advantage and camera performance of Centric A1 is similar to Redmi 4. Redmi 4 also has availability issue. So, decide based on your priorities.
What do you guys think about CENTRiC A1? If you have anything to ask, you can leave it in the comments.
"CENTRiC A1 is a notable phone in the lower-midrange segment. The phone got nice Display, good design and powerful performance for just Rs. 10999."
- Good Display
- Good performance
- DTS audio
- Front camera flash
- Camera could be better
Value for money 80%