The smartphone battleground is already extremely competitive, but as big brands release ever more powerful handsets at increasingly discounted prices, it really starts to get interesting. If you like having a smartphone but aren’t too fussed about having top of the range, the following mobiles will certainly be worth considering: the Huawei Ascend Y550 and Nokia Lumia 630.
The two phones we’re looking at aren't the best in the world, nor are they attempting to be. However, when we consider the value for money that they offer, these handsets certainly are in a league of their own. Costing less than $100 each, customer demand has prompted retailers to put together some interesting combo offers around these two handsets. So not only will I be looking at what deals you should be keeping your eyes open for, but also how these two stack up against one another. This will allow you judge which one suits your needs more accurately.
If the recent spate of offers on these phones as anything to go by, then I suspect further price drops are very likely in the near future. Judging by the deals we've seen so far, it's likely that they'll be in the form of a bundle package including data or even a gift card. An example of is was the Nokia Lumia 630 package from Harvey Norman which appeared on Buckscoop last month. The deal included the phone as well as a $50 Coles Myer gift card for only $96. One way to look at it was that the phone itself would have only ended up costing you $46, which is phenomenally low for a smartphone with this level of specifications. This deal has since expired but you can still pick up the phone on its own from Harvey Norman for $96.
Then, starting from today, Dick Smith have a bargain running on a Vodafone prepaid Huawei Ascend Y550 4G quad core handset for an even lower $89. Included within this bundle you will receive 3GB of data on a $50 Vodafone cap starter pack plus, as well as a "selfie stick" (valued at an apparent $39.98).
Both phones are exceptional value for money, but how exactly do their specs compare? As I've never owned either of them, I have included below a brief table highlighting the key points of interest to show where the specifications of one trump those of the other (i.e. red=inferior and green=superior):
|Huawei Ascend Y550||Nokia Lumia 630|
|OS||Android 4.4||Windows Phone 8.1|
|Size||4.5 inches||4.5 inches|
|Resolution||480 x 854 pixels||480 x 854 pixels|
|Megapixels||5 megapixels||5 megapixels|
|Camcorder||1280x720 (30 fps)||1280x720 (30 fps)|
|Fron Facing camera||2 megapixels||No|
|Processor||Quad core 1200 MHz||Quad core 1200 MHz|
|RAM||1024 RAM||512 RAM|
|Built in Storage||4GB||8GB|
|Storage Expansion||MicroSD up to 32GB||MicroSD up to 128GB|
|Talk Time||8 hours||16.4 hours|
|Talk Time (3G)||8 hours||13.1 hours|
|Data||LTE Cat 4||HSDPA+ (4G)|
Glancing at the comparison above both phone's sizes, screen resolution and rear facing cameras are all equal. They also both have quad core processors, extendable memories and the same camcorder recording specs. But, where these phones start to differ is what you should be focusing on as the decision to purchase will come down to what your personal preferences/needs in a new handset are. The specs that make the Y550 stand out for me are; the fact that it has a front facing camera, LED flash for the rear camera and twice as much RAM. However, the Lumia is slightly lighter, has larger built-in storage and double the amount of battery talk time.
I’m an Android fan (specifically Galaxy S models) so for me to adjust to a different operating system on a lower-spec'd phone, I believe, would provide too much of a hurdle. The fact that the Nokia Lumia doesn’t have a flash or a front facing camera also make the Y550 more favourable to me, being somebody who regularly uses their phone to take pictures. On the other hand, if I were looking for a secondary/back-up phone I would probably choose the Nokia Lumia. The reasons behind this are down to three simple factors. The 630’s battery life on standby is a whopping 25 days, while the talk time and built in storage are double compared to the Y550.
So, depending on your motives for buying one of these phones, the better value for money mobile in my opinion is the Huawei Y550 device. You get superior specs, additional tech (camera & flash) and it’s also cheaper to unlock all for a total of $89 at Dick Smith. If however, you are still undecided check out the discussion surrounding these phones on Whirlpool for even more details along with the personal experiences of owners. One particular comment regarding the Huawei Ascend Y550 summed it up quite nicely for me though: "Ok it mightn't feel as solid as some of the other phones out there, but overall it is snappy and bloody good value for the price."