Ever since Jio introduced its network, 4G-enabled smartphones have seen a spike in demand, especially the low budget ones. Reliance Retail has directly targeted that audience with LYF phones by launching a number of 4G smartphones in the low to mid-budget segments. Eventually, this resulted in LYF becoming India’s third largest selling phone brand.
Considering this scenario, I spent the last couple of weeks using different LYF phones and this time I had the Wind 2 as my primary device for two weeks. The Wind 2 is just another 4G-enabled smartphone from LYF but with a huge 6-inch display. Big screen phones are not everyone’s cup of tea, definitely not mine. That’s the exact reason I picked this phone for review and get acquainted with a phablet. So, here’s my take on the same.
Design And Looks:
At first glance, the device looks premium, but the story is completely different when you hold the device in hand. Well, for starters, the device is very bulky at 223 gms, and the metallic frame is rough around the edges. Though it looks like a metal unibody but the back panel is made of plastic and is non-removable. The phone also has asymmetrical top and bottom bezels with top one being slightly smaller than the one on the bottom. The phone is 8.5mm thick and has a camera bump on back causing it to rock when placed on a table. The device has volume rockers and power button on right side.The power button is positioned above the volume rockers, thereby forcing you to stretch the thumb every time you want to press it. This isn’t comfortable, especially when you consider the size of the phone. Also, it doesn’t include the “Double Tap to Wake Up” gesture support found on other LYF devices, which would have been of great help. Overall, the device is good to look at, but it would have been better if LYF could have avoided the poor craftsmanship.
The LYF Wind 2 has a big 6-inch HD IPS display with a resolution of 1280×720 pixels. It’s good to look at with accurate colour production and decent brightness. It has good viewing angles and is viewable under direct sunlight. It has a PPI of 245 which is less for a screen of this size, still it’s very good to look at. The display supports up to 5 touch points which means it can detect up to 5 fingers simultaneously. The phone also has a notification LED on top which is a great way to find out whether your device has any notification without having to actually turn on the display.
The LYF Wind 2 is powered by a quad-core MediaTek 6735M coupled with 2GB of RAM. It performs just fine for regular uses such as calling, WhatsApp and Facebook. But once you push if for multitasking it fails drastically. The RAM often gets choked up, and the device shows the clear sign of lagging. The phone has Mali-T720 GPU for graphics, which on playing graphic intensive games like Asphalt Nitro didn’t show any sign of lagging. But it lagged a bit while playing the ReVolt 3 which is surprising as this game is not even as graphic intensive as Asphalt Nitro. Though the device gets hot while playing games, it doesn’t get too uncomfortable. On benchmarking the phone with AnTuTu, it scored 23388 which is similar to Wind 5 with the same processor. To put things into perspective, the Xiaomi Redmi 3S priced scored an impressive 39,744 with the same AnTuTu benchmarking test. Overall, the performance of the LYF Wind 2 was nowhere near to “flawless multitasking” as LYF claims it to be. It is not even on par with other smartphones in the same budget segment.
Also see: LYF Wind 5 Review
The LYF Wind 2 flaunts an 8-megapixel rear camera with an LED flash and a 2-megapixel snapper on front for clicking selfies. The performance of rear camera was really disappointing, and it performs very poorly outdoors. The indoor results were significantly better in comparison. The images appear full of grains, desaturated and definitely not sharp at all. As expected, the low-light performance goes way below the mark. Even the beauty mode in selfie camera doesn’t add up much here.
Also, the default camera app is only allowing to capture images of 6-megapixel with the primary and 1-megapixel with selfie opposed to what stated in specs sheet. Talking about the video, the LYF Wind 2 can record videos up to 720p with rear camera and 480p with front camera. Overall, the camera performance is really disappointing and way below the average. If you’re looking for a phone with a good camera, we would highly recommend against buying this device.
With all things going south the battery performance on the LYF Wind 2 was a pleasant surprise. Its performance exceeded my expectations from a 6-inch phone powered by a 2850mAh battery. It usually lasts even more than a day and gave a whopping 6 hours of SOT (Screen on Time) at 50% screen brightness. Even with full brightness, the device manages to offer more than 4 hours of SOT. I used the device during a 20-hour journey on a 3G network, and the phone kept going along without being plugged into a charger. Though I haven’t tested it on 4G network, it is expected to provide pretty much the same battery backup. Wind 2 comes with an 1A micro-USB charger which takes around 3 hours to fully charge the device.
Coming to the software part, the device runs on Android 5.1 Lollipop with near stock UI. We can find it in all LYF phones and is a great move by the company. The device comes with few Jio apps pre-installed which can be uninstalled if you consider them as bloat. Talking about the storage, it has 16GB of inbuilt storage out of which 11.19GB is user available. It is further expandable up to 32GB with a MicroSD card. It is important to note that it doesn’t have a dedicated MicroSD card slot and has to make do with a hybrid SIM slot.
The LYF Wind 2 also misses out on a fingerprint scanner which is quite common these days on smartphones in this budget. While it’s not entirely necessary it does make locking/unlocking and securing the device a lot easier.
It is dual SIM smartphone with both the SIMs 4G enabled. However, the catch is that only one SIM can access the 4G network while the other is restricted to 2G. It has a hybrid slot for the second SIM which means you have to choose between the MicroSD or second SIM card.
During my review, the phone showed no issues in terms of audio performance. The audio was loud enough during calls. The speaker grill located at the bottom is loud enough. The phone also features BesAudEnh audio enhancer, unfortunately, it doesn’t offer any “Loud Thumping Beats” as LYF claims. One more thing, which I found little annoying with the device is the 3.5mm audio jack of the device. It is a little loose which often resulted in headphone pin coming out. This could be the case only with my review unit, but I cannot confirm.
Apart from the awesome battery life and nice display, the phone has nothing else to offer. The performance is below average, the cameras are poor and the phone is very bulky. So, I don’t see much reason here to spend more than Rs 7000 for this device when you can opt for a Redmi 3S which has a more powerful processor, better camera along with an impressive battery. If the design of this phone appeals to you, Lenovo Vibe K5 Note is another option here to consider. If performance is what you looking for then Moto G Turbo is the best choice, hands down. We would also highly recommend the Redmi 3S for its premium build and metal unibody design. Also, after using this device I’ve realised that bigger phones are certainly not my cup of tea.