Infinix is today unveiling the latest member of its Note series in Kenya.
The Infinix Note series comprises of devices that have large displays while still sticking with the brand’s budget price reputation.
This year’s iteration, the Infinix Note 3, is not any different.
Here’s a quick look at the most interesting aspects of the device:
1. Display resolution has been upgraded and it really pops
While the display size is staying at 6-inches, the resolution has been bumped up. The Infinix Note 3 has a full high definition display. Last year’s Note 2 had a 720p display.
2. Battery capacity has been bumped up to 4,500mAh
At this point, we are not sure if this means an increase in the Note’s already great battery life but we know it was a necessity since the display has even more pixels to push this time round.
3. It’s the first Infinix smartphone with a fingerprint sensor in Kenya
Globally, it is not but in Kenya it is. This is because the first Infinix smartphone with a fingerprint sensor, the Hot S, is not yet available in Kenya. That leaves the Note 3 to bask in all glory and hog all the limelight at the moment. Since the Note 3 is a budget smartphone, this also means that it is one of the very first sub-Kshs 20,000 smartphones in the Kenyan market to have a fingerprint scanner. Huawei’s GR3 is the other device but its price at any given point in the last few months since it became available in Kenya is incomparable to the Note 3’s.
4. The fingerprint scanner can also be used for other things besides just unlocking the device
The primary function of fingerprint scanners is enhancing security. This means that a fingerprint scanner should, first and foremost, be able to unlock a device. Well, the Note 3’s fingerprint scanner does just that, and then some more. Users can set up other functions like capturing selfies and receiving calls.
5. Memory has been doubled
The Infinix Note 3 has 2GB of Random Access Memory (RAM), an increase of 100% from the 1GB RAM on last year’s model. What this means is that users have more leeway when it comes to the number of apps and tasks that can be kept in memory without being killed by the system anyhow or slowing down the device considerably. Also, this is likely to have been necessitated by the demands of Infinix’s own custom UI.
6. XUI is now XOS
Talking about the user interface on the Infinix Note 3, it is now no longer being referred to as XUI, it’s XOS based on Android Marshmallow. And there’s a whole load of X-something apps to accompany it like we saw last year. From the fan membership zone, XClub to an XAccount and even XCloud to sync user data and XShare which takes the place of Xender for sending files using ad-hoc wireless pairing.
The UI appears to have gone through some thorough overhaul. It’s now much cleaner and looks well thought out. If you need to understand what we mean by that, consider what we had to say about XUI last year: “There are some ugly heads though like the way all applications that one installs seem out of place and out of shape since they are not warped in the theming of the phone’s iconography. They look like outcasts.”
We particularly like the colour inversion feature which can be toggled on and off from the quick settings.
Look at this:
Before inverting colours
After inverting colours:
7. Talking about X-things, there’s XHide
This is not something unique but it’s one of those things you cannot ignore since Infinix decided to include it as one of the pre-installed applications. It’s what you can call a “safe box” or a hidden vault where you can drop those apps you don’t wish anyone to see on your app drawer. For instance, Tinder users may not want to be so loud about their “extra-curricular” activities.
8. There will be two variants of the Infinix Note 3
Just as was the case last year, the Infinix Note 3 comes in two models. There’s the standard 3G model which is what is being launched in Kenya today and for those who are believers in the statement “patience is key”, there will be an LTE model come next month. As is always the case, besides the difference in the types of networks users can access, the two devices will also differ slightly memory-wise and price-wise. The LTE version will cost more at Kshs 18,000 and it will have even more RAM, 3GB.
9. Fast Charging is still onboard
Infinix asserts that simple 5-minute plug-in will result in you getting enough juice to last you as much as 200 minutes on a call. We’ll need to spend some more quality time with the device to verify this claim but from our past interaction with Infinix’s Note devices, it will even be hard to get to a point where you need to do this since the devices have a chequered history of being battery warriors.
10. The device is all-metal
Goodbye plastic, hello aluminium!
Last year’s Note 2 had an all-plastic build. The year before that, the Hot Note’s plastic was largely responsible for the peeling of colour. This year, it looks like some lessons were learned and there’s been a step up in the quality of materials used. However, that comes at a cost: the battery is no longer removable.
One of the things we duly noted during our short interaction with the Note 3’s predecessor late last year was its overheating. And imagine the device was only plastic. If the Note 3 in all its metal glory started overheating how would you handle that? That is probably why Infinix is implementing liquid cooling on the Note 3 to cool things off – see what we did there?
Liquid cooling is not an entirely new feature. It’s used widely on desktop gaming rigs (for obvious reasons) and on smartphones, we’ve seen it in use on high-end ones like Samsung’s Galaxy S7, Sony’s Xperia Z5 and Z5 Premium and Microsoft’s Lumia 950 and 950XL.
The Infinix Note 3 costs Kshs 15,000, a slight increase from the Kshs 12,500 that its predecessor went for when it was launched last year but probably warranted by the extra features and upgrades that the new device comes with.
Want to know how the Infinix Note 3 fairs when it comes to performance? Whether it lives up to the Note’s legendary good battery life and if those cameras are worth anything… Stick around for more coverage of the device including a review, soon.