The Lenovo S860 is part of the Chinese giants Android lineup in India and one look at it will make you realize how different it is from most phones today. Phones are getting slimmer by the day but that comes at the cost of a smaller battery. The Lenovo S860 is way thicker than most phones because it has a 4000 mAh battery. In some way, we could say that it is unapologetically heavy. Weight aside, the phone actually looks good. The back of the phone has an aluminum casing with a brushed titanium finish. which gives it a premium feel. The power button is placed ergonomically and is easy to reach when using the device in one hand. However, the same cannot be said about the volume buttons which sit right above the power button. They are definitely not easy to reach and ideally should have been placed to the left of the phone. In fact, there are high chances of you pressing the volume buttons to unlock the screen. Thanks, to a feature given by Lenovo, you can do so.
The phone has a 5.3 inch display with the resolution of 1280×720 pixels. Colours are quite le in the Power Manager if you want to save more battery. The Driving App gives you options to text, navigate, call and music.
Camera is the second best feature on this phone after the huge battery life. It has surprisingly wide aperture of f2.4 which means it takes very bright shots in low-light. The camera app is decent and provides sufficient manual toggles for people who like to have more control over their shots. It gets very difficult to hold the device while taking a photo because of the boxy edges. As compared to its competitors, this phone has fewer camera modes but the ones provided are really useful. “Macro” mode is worth mentioning because it manages to produce stellar sharpness. One needs to hold the phone steadily to get a accurately focused shot. A slight move will cause a blurry output.
Just like the iPhone, only one of the two grilles on its bottom is a speaker. The sound of the phone is pretty average.
Being an LCD screen, the display does look a bit washed out when compared to other AMOLED displays in similar price range. A long press on the menu button will let you multitask. This whole UI looks heavily borrowed from Xiaomi’s MiUi. Single press on the home button takes you to the default home screen while a long press opens Google Now.
Apart from the System Settings, there are Feature Settings. Like mentioned above, one can use the volume buttons to wake up the screen. Wide Touch is very similar to Assistive Touch on iOS, where the user can get one touch shortcut access. Smart Dialer proved to be very useful as the dialer pad just tilts to the direction of the phone. Shake Lock is feature to lock the phone by swiftly shaking it in one direction. There is also the option of Slide Lock in which you unlock the phone by swiping either to the left/right on the bottom of the screen. There are also features lifted from the Samsung Galaxy series like Smart Call where it calls the person from your contact/messaging screen as soon as you put the phone to your ear.
Then there are pre loaded apps too. Power Manager has a Power Saving Mode and an Emergency mode, . While Power Saving mode lets you optimize your usage by letting you toggle some features on the phone, Emergency will only let you access four basic options. The battery can approximately last up to 5 days in Emergency Mode. You can also freeze a set of apps that are rarely used to save and reduce memory usage. There is a LED notification toggle.
Although the phone runs on Android 4.4 (KitKat), it will take users sometime to get used to every feature on this phone. The launcher on the Lenovo S860, is quite similar to that of the iPhone.
To sum it up, this is a decent effort by Lenovo. At the price point of ~Rs 20,000, you’ve got phones like the Huawei Honor 6 that’s truck loaded with high-end features like a Full HD display, better camera and is considerably thinner and lighter. The Lenovo S860 isn’t a feature loaded phone, but it stands out because of its big battery. So if battery life is important to you, and you don’t mind compromising a bit on other features, then this phone could work for you. But it’s kinda like carrying the weight of a phone and a power bank with you at all times, we just hope you’ll be OK with that.