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Huawei Ascend P1 Android smartphone

Huawei Ascend P1 Android review

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Video niceties

Though it’s solid enough the P1 isn’t quite built to Samsung standards. The entirely plastic and gloss-finish body feels slippery in the hand and it shows up fingerprints badly. There’s also a very slight rattle from the volume control buttons when you shake it.

Huawei Ascend P1 Android smartphone Huawei Ascend P1 Android smartphone

Browser and music player

The flaps that cover the SIM and microSD card slots are tough to prise ajar but thankfully the micro USB and 3.5mm audio jacks at the top of the device are open to the air. The P1 lacks anything in the way of an HDMI port but the micro USB socket is MHL-compatible so you can can still watch 1080p videos on your telly.

The 8MP camera is rather impressive - certainly better than I was expecting - and also has some funky effects like a crowd mode similar to that fitted to HTC’s One phones. Take a burst snap of a group and you can swap up to 25 facial images from any of the five images taken making the inadvertent pic-spoiling blink or stuck-out tongue a thing of the past.

Huawei Ascend P1 Android smartphone Huawei Ascend P1 Android smartphone

File manager and storage allocation

Mercifully there’s little in the way of software bloat just the always welcome Polaris Office, a good file manager and something called Security Guard which is a handy little app for blocking unwanted calls and texts. You also get Dolby Mobile 3.0 which has an impressively positive effect on the sound you get from audio files especially if you are using a half-decent pair of headphones. Though Huawei’s website says the P1 has an NFC radio my sample didn’t.

Curiously the gallery app on my handset wouldn’t sync with my Picasa account so all I could see were locally stored images. I’m waiting on clarification from Huawei about this but hopefully it’s a bug that will be fixed by the time handsets make it to punters later this month. On a more positive note the built-in 1670mAh battery is easily good for a 36 hours of heavy use and and will keep the video player running a 720p file for a pretty impressive 5 hours 15 minutes.

Huawei Ascend P1 Android smartphone

A decent camera and a respectable spec for the price

Verdict

Despite its slightly cheap body the P1 ticks a lot of boxes. It has ICS from launch and while both thin and light still packs a decent battery. The screen is bright and vivid, it has a microSD slot and the camera is not half bad. The chipset may not be the latest word in modernity but it offers a more than sufficient amount of grunt and the option to use the stock ICS launcher is welcome. If it weren't for the Gallery app sync issue, the mystery of the NFC functionality and a few rattles, I'd happily give it a higher rating. ®

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Huawei Ascend P1 Android smartphone

Huawei Ascend P1 Android review

Huawei moves up in the world with a 4.3in ICS mid-ranger.
Price: £380 or £26/month on Vodafone RRP

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