Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Kata V4 Review; V For Value

Kata V4 Review; V For Value
Kata V4 Review; V For Value

INTRODUCTION:

We've been seeing Kata rise up in ranks in the country through several devices designed for the entertainment and mobility of the masses. From a fresh line of uniquely designed smartphones and tablet, and the set top Android-based TV Box, Kata's portfolio has been nothing short of competitive. Now, the company wants to push things further as the V4 attempts to conquer the entry-level range of things.


PHYSICAL:

Unfortunately, the Kata V4 that we have on our hands right now didn't come with anything fancy – it's just the unit itself. Just do take note that Kata bundles its handsets with the standard fare inclusions, and that shouldn't go missing with the V4.

Kata V4 Back
Back

In terms of handling, the V4 is designed quite well. We've praised its build quality during our first impressions with it, and we're glad to say it still spells the same after thorough usage. As a recap, the V4 is a pretty solid device that feels nice to the touch, while still maintaining its premium aesthetics.

Kata V4 Left
Left

The volume rocker is placed on the left side, while on the opposite side is where the power button is at. At the top are the micro USB port and the 3.5mm jack, and at the bottom is the microphone.

Kata V4 Right
Right

The V4 definitely reeks of premium through its metal side trimmings and the minimalist black front that meld with the 2.5D glass. There's just the beauty in simplicity that you can't ignore. If there's one thing to nag about, though, it's the non-backlit capacitive buttons since you'll be finding yourself stumbling from time to time during the dark.

Kata V4 Top
Top
Kata V4 Bottom
Bottom
Kata V4 Special Back Button
Special Back Button

The V4 also tries to be special through its unique back button that has a couple of its own functions. Situated below the primary camera is a circular button that can perform several things such as powering on the device from standby, or as a shutter button if you're using it for selfies. Unfortunately, it's not user-programmable.


DISPLAY:

Kata V4 Display
Display

The V4 is quite a compact device all thanks to the 4.5-inch display gracing the front. Resolution is somewhat low at 480 x 854, but is kept dense all thanks to the smaller size, 217.7PPI is still welcomed in today's standards, especially in the budget range. However, don't let those numbers fool you. The V4's display is quite detailed for what it is. The color accuracy is accurate and the viewing angles are top notch, and the sharpness is really something for a budget offering. Sunlight legibility could be better, though, and the same could be said with the 2-point multitouch.


SOFTWARE:

Kata V4 User-interface
User Interface

The V4 runs the now dated Android 5.1 Lollipop with little customizations. There's no app drawer in tow, and all of your apps are launched straight from the homescreen. There are also a couple of app inclusions such as the KataCloud and MX Player. But other than that, you're good to go if you're an Android purist.


PERFORMANCE:

Kata V4 Benchmark Results
Benchmark results

There's a MediaTek MT6580 chipset with a 1.3GHz quad-core Cortex-A7 CPU, Mali-400MP GPU, and 1GB of RAM taking care of the V4's performance. In this range, that setup is one of the beefiest you can get so to speak.

Kata V4 Sample Game - Overkill 3
Sample Game - Overkill 3

While its benchmark results are fairly average, which you can check above, its performance on applications are superb. Games such as Modern Combat 5 Blackout and Overkill 3 can run, but not without stutters during several instances. But lightweight games such as 2D apps other light 3D titles such as Summoners War and the like work well. It can even run Pokemon Go, but you'll have to switch off AR since it doesn't have a gyroscope.


CAMERA:

Kata V4  Camera User-interface
Camera UI

There is not much to talk about the interface, it is the same old Android UI, which almost, if not all Android users, seasoned or not, are very much familiar with.

Kata V4 Camera Sample Shots - Close-up
Close-up Shot
Kata V4 Camera Sample Shots - Day without HDR
Day Shot
Kata V4 Camera Sample Shots - Day with HDR
Day Shot with HDR
Kata V4 Camera Sample Shots - Indoor
Indoor Shot
Kata V4 Camera Sample Shots - Low-Light with Flash
Low light with Flash

If there's one word to sum up the V4's camera performance, it would be “impressive” considering its price. The 8MP with AF captures nice details especially, with macro shots. However, there are times that the colors are a bit saturated, and light compensation is less dynamic, but the overall quality more than justifies its price.

Also Read: Kata Drive, 7-inch Quad Core Tablet with Phone Functionality for Php3,999


CONNECTIVITY:

Connectivity on the V4 comes quite standard for an Android smartphone. It comes with a dual SIM slot, as well as a micro SD card for expanding the storage up to 32GB. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 are both on board of course. And the 3.5mm audio jack as well as the micro USB port comes essential. LTE connectivity is out of sight, but that's not really a problem since this is a budget phone, albeit one that's masked as a premium.


BATTERY:

Kata V4 Battery Performance
Battery Performance

The V4 is powered by a 1,800mAh juice, which would be fine enough for a 4.5-incher with FWVGA resolution. Benchmark results with PC Mark's Work battery life that simulates real life application is somewhat low at 3 hours and 23 minutes. Of course, this is an area where your mileage will really vary. You can make it last a day or over if you're not extensively using it. Just lay off a bit on 3G connectivity and you'll be fine.


CONCLUSION:

There's a whole lot to say about the Kata V4, but it doesn't come complete without a couple of issues to fix. However, its price really does play a vital role in considering what it has to offer. It can perform well to provide a decent user experience, and its cameras are quite impressive for what it's worth. Its battery problems and non-backlit capacitive keys are easily solvable, so in the end of the day they're non-issues so to speak. Simply put, combining a premium design with capable performance, the Kata V4 is the phone to beat in its league. It's an easy recommend.

Pros:

Premium design
Solid build
Capable performance for an entry-level device
Performer cameras
Minimal bloatware
Special back button
Affordable price

Cons:

Non-backlit capacitive keys
Battery is on the low side
Android 5.1 Lollipop shows its age

Kata V4 Speciifications:

  • GSM: 850/900/1800/1900MHz
  • 3G: 850/1900/2100MHz
  • Dual SIM, dual standby
  • 4.5-inch FWVGA (480 x 854) touchscreen display
  • Dimensions: 135mm x 67.5mm x 8.9mm
  • Android 5.1 Lollipop
  • 1.3GHz quad core Cortex-A7 CPU, Mali-400MP GPU, MediaTek MT6580 chipset
  • 1GB of RAM
  • 8GB of ROM, expandable up to 32GB via micro SD card
  • 8MP primary camera with LED flash, dedicated shutter button
  • 5MP secondary camera
  • Multimedia player
  • FM Radio
  • 3.5mm audio jack
  • GPS with A-GPS
  • WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
  • Bluetooth v4.0
  • Sensors: light, proximity, accelerometer
  • Battery: 1,800mAh, removable
  • Price: Php2,699

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