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Hannspree SN 50 Smartphone – nice looking budget Android does a nice dual SIM job [Review]

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Well here we are at that time of year again, when men are men and budget phones are… well cheaper than ever. One of the interesting things about the current boom in Android smartphones is the fact that everyone seems to be jumping on the bandwagon, even brands you wouldn’t expect. For instance Hannspree, the Taiwanese company best known for televisions and other consumer products.

The new Hannspree SN50MC1 is a new Android budget smartphone which is positioned firmly at the higher specification end of the scale. The phone looks nice, and works well, and we took it for a spin recently to see how it matches up with the more conventional Chinese handsets.

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First impressions
The Hannspree shows its consumer pedigree immediately you open the box, since it comes with a nice set of user guides, along with the typical accessories you would expect to find. Nor are the specs shabby either. The phone features a 1.7GHz octa-core processor, 5 inch IPS touchscreen, Dual SIM, Dual Standby, Android 4.4.2, an 8 megapixel rear camera (2 mp front), 1 GB RAM, 16 GB internal storage with support for a 32 GB external microSD card. See our video below for an overview of the phone and features.

In use
The phone is actually very nice to the touch. It’s pleasantly and surprisingly slim-line, with a faintly rubberized rear panel which makes it easy to hold. The screen is crisp and clear, and the company has fortunately not installed any nasty junk on top of the standard Android system. It’s clean, and fast in use.

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In fact the whole phone is so benign that we found it hard to find any real faults for the price. We found it to be equally at home browsing the web, playing games or handling Google Maps navigation. With this kind of processing power on tap, most things are easy. Mind you, with only 1 GB RAM, we can definitely foresee a few problems if you want to install a large set of apps, but that’s probably not the real market for this handset.

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Of course the huge bonus for users of this type of phone is the inclusion of dual SIM slots, which let you install work and leisure, or home and abroad SIM cards and use them instantly on demand. There’s no way to overstate how useful this feature can be in real day to day use, so we’ll just say that the Hannspree comes with all the SIM management goodies you’ll need to make the most of this feature.

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In terms of battery life, it doesn’t have the largest battery around, at 2000mAh, but we’ve found that this size seems to be an optimum compromise between delivering a good day’s worth of use and maintaining a nice slim shape in the hand. It’s a worthwhile bargain. One of the big surprises we found however, is the quality of the camera, which takes surprisingly good photos for this price level, especially since it’s ‘just’ an 8 megapixel unit.

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Conclusion
The Hannspree SN50MC1 doesn’t deliver any extraordinary sizzle to the Android smartphone market, but on the other hand it doesn’t provide any nasty surprises either. Which is a big win in our book. The build quality feels robust and solid, and the performance, while not earth shattering, holds its own with rival budget phones. The screen is nice and sensitive and it’s a great little phone for doing all the standard functions most people will need while on the go.

Sample images (click on thumbnail to expand)

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Price: £119.99

Specifications:
O/S – Android 4.4 KitKat + Play store
CPU – MT6592 Cortex-A7 Octa Core – 1.7GHz
Storage – 16GB EMCP Flash (onboard), expandable MicroSD up to 32GB, 1GB DDR3 RAM
Display – 5″ Multi Touch Display, 1280×720 HD
Ports – Hi-speed Micro USB, 3.5mm stereo headphone jack
Audio – Built-in speaker-Box, MP3, MIDI ,M4A, WAV, PCM, OGG
Connectivity – Bluetooth 4.0, Support WIFI 802.11 b/g/n
3G/2G: GSM 850/900/1800/1900MHz,WCDMA 900/2100MHz
Battery – Up to 12 Hours Talk Time, 3.7V 2000mAH Li-Polymer rechargeable battery
Cameras – 2MP Front camera, 8MP AF Rear camera
SIM Type – Daul SIM Card (WCDMA+GSM), Dual Standard SIM Card,Support 3G&2G
Dimensions and weight – Height 145mm, Width 72.8mm, Depth 8.6mm, Weight 155g

Nigel is the managing editor of the Red Ferret, as well as a freelance columnist for the Sunday Times newspaper in London. Loves tech and fancies himself as a bit of a futurist, but then don’t we all?

Nigel – who has written posts on The Red Ferret Journal.


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