When we unboxed this device weeks ago, we loved it as the first impressions were good. Infinix Hot S is a device you fall in love with at first sight, it breaks away from the traditional Infinix design we know. After using the device for a while now, it is safe to say that the Hot S is a feather in Infinix Mobility’s cap.
Infinix Hot S doesn’t only break away from the budget Hot series in terms of design, there’s something unusual about the pricing too, but this looks justified considering everything. Before every other thing, here’s an overview of the specifications:
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If you’re interested, you can check out the rest of the technical jargons on this page.
Design, display and build
Personally, I have no problem with the design. At just 140g, the phone feels very light. I’ve mentioned it over and over again that it looks great. The device comes with a 5.2-inch IPS LCD screen.
The display is quite bright and the colors really pop, but the colors appears way over the top. I had to tune this down from the MiraVision settings that lets you totally control how the screen displays.
Infinix Hot S comes with capacitive soft keys which are–sadly–not backlit. The front looks plain; no bells, no whistles. The centered earpiece is flanked on both sides by the 8MP front camera and the LED flash.
The shiny frame looks like it’s made of metal at first, but an intentional deep scratch reveals a plastic material underneath the coating. However, the back cover is made of metal.
The bottom has two speaker grills, giving the impression that the Hot S comes with two speakers. As mentioned when we unboxed it, only one speaker is present and the other is for the microphone. Between these grills is the micro-USB port.
The right side holds the volume rocker and the power button while the left side is where the SIM tray is. We’ve mentioned in an article that putting a hybrid SIM slot on a 16GB device is the same as putting a customer between the devil and the deep blue sea.
You either use 2 SIM cards and stay limited to the internal 16GB storage or use a single SIM to expand the memory with the second slot. This is unfair, and it’s the major issue I have the the Hot S.
At the back, the 13MP camera is centrally placed at the top with the dual-LED flash just is below it. Underneath that is the fingerprint sensor.
The design is quite commendable except for these two things: the soft keys that are not backlit and the presence of a hybrid SIM slot.
XUI looks like child’s play compared with the revamped XOS Infinix Mobility brings to the table. The software is beautifully designed. Unlike XUI which has certain parts of the UI retaining stock Android OS appearance, everything on XOS is fully customized.
The app drawer arranges your apps alphabetically by default and there’s no way to change this. The XManager app has loads of tools to help you effectively manage your device.
Storage, hardware and performance
The unit we got comes with 16GB storage and two gigabytes of random access memory. You can expand the storage with an SD card at the expense of using a second SIM.
The device is powered by a 1.3GHz octa-core CPU, a MediaTek MT6753 chipset. There’s a 2GB RAM on this unit but there is also another version with 3GB RAM which isn’t available in the Nigerian market right now.
Performance with popular benchmarks isn’t particularly exceptional, but there was no problem in normal day-to-day use. The device scored 37673 on Antutu Benchmark, 624 points in Geekbench 3 single-core processing and 2847 points in multi-core processing. It’s quite fast enough for a mid-ranger.
With the complexities of 4G network, getting a high-end 4G phone doesn’t guarantee 4G connectivity. But you can never go wrong getting the Hot S. It works flawlessly on ntel in 4G only mode. I also tried with Smile and it worked perfectly. It works with most available 4G networks in Nigeria, including Spectranet.
The camera on the Hot S isn’t the greatest I’ve seen in this price range, but it still performs. It comes with a night mode that significantly improves visibility under low-light. There’s also a professional mode that lets you tweak settings like ISO, shutter speed and more.
Here is an image take outdoor in normal mode:
Click the images in the gallery below to enlarge:
These below were taken with a universal macro lens attached to the camera:
The camera settings showed that EIS (Electronic Image Stabilization) is present but I haven’t been able to put this to test.
Security: Fingerprint sensor
Infinix Hot S is the first device from Infinix Mobility to come with a fingerprint sensor and the company got it right. The fingerprint sensor is sensitive and works great. It’s very accurate and the speed is amazing.
I did compare the unlock speed with that on the iPhone 6s Plus and the Hot S is the clear Winner. It is also said to be faster than that on Huawei Mate 7.
Infinix Hot S is VR-ready!
Quite a lot of low-end and mid-range Chinese phones have loads of useful sensors missing. There are more expensive phones in the Nigerian market right now with a sensor as important as the gyroscope missing. This makes it impossible to watch 360-degree videos or play VR games.
I was expecting Infinix Hot S to be just the same but I was surprised to see a gyroscope present. If this factor is important to you, be rest assured that the Hot S should work like it should with your VR headset. The only downside is the 720p resolution.
Infinix Hot S comes with a non-removable 3,000mAh battery like most phones these days. It should get you through the day with regular use, and you can drain the juice under 8 hours.
A 3,000 is sufficient, but the phone has one little issue: It takes a bit long to fully charge. To reach a hundred percent from ground zero, you need to wait for almost 3 hours.
While the Hot S is one adorable phone that redefines Infinix, the absence of fast charge and the presence of that unwanted hybrid SIM slot can’t go unnoticed. If you don’t consider these deal-breakers, then it’s an almost-perfect mid-ranger.
For now, it’s available on Jumia for 45,000 NGN.