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Lava Iris 501

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 Lava Iris 501 Available now
17th January 2012

Fancy a phablet but don't have the cash? Well, if you live in India or certain other south Asian, Middle Eastern or African countries then the Lava Iris 501 might be what you are looking for.

Let's start with the price: in India, the Lava Iris 501 costs just under 10,000 Rupees, the equivalent to around €140 or $185. By western standards that isn't a lot of money, but in India (for example) this is about two month's average earnings, so it's a pretty aspirational device.

The headline feature with the Lava Iris 501 is the large 5" display. Despite being a big panel, the resolution is only a modest 480 x 800 pixels, but that should be good enough for most applications.. and it's a 16 million colour capacitive TFT display, so it should be pretty decent when it comes to quality. On the back is a 5 megapixel camera with a 0.3 megapixel one on the front for video calls. Inside is a dual-core 1GHz processor with 512MB of RAM and 4GB of onboard flash memory plus a microSD slot.

 Lava Iris 501 The Lava Iris 501 is a dual-SIM device, but it only supports GSM 900 / 1800 and UMTS 2100 bands.. but that's good enough for most target customers. It also supports 3.5G (HSPA) and 3G (UMTS) data, plus WiFi, Bluetooth and GPS, and it also comes with a proximity sensor, G-sensor, light sensor and gyroscope plus an FM radio all the usual features that you would expect to find in an Android 4.0 smartphone like this.

Inside is a 2100 mAh battery which Lava say can give up to 7.8 hours talktime and 26 days standby time.. on 2G, and that is probably being highly optimistic. The Iris 501 measures 149 x 79 x 10.5mm.

Some additional features include preloaded games such as Asphalt HD and Cricket Fever, plus a multi-platform messaging application called "hike". And of course there are a mass of applications available to download as well.

OK, so it may not be the world's most powerful smartphone, but bear in mind that the Samsung Galaxy Note II costs around four times as much. In India the Iris 501 is available to order right now, but we don't know about other regions at present.

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Lava Iris 501 at a glance

Available:

Q1 2013

Network:

GSM 900 / 1800 + UMTS 2100

Data:

GPRS + EDGE + UMTS (3G) + HSPA + WiFi

Screen:

5.0" 480 x 800 pixels

Camera:

5.0 megapixels (main)

0.3 megapixels (sub)

Size:

Medium/large smartphone

149 x 79 x 10.5mm

Bluetooth:

Yes

Internal memory:

4GB

Memory card:

MicroSD

CPU:

1GHz dual-core

RAM:

512MB

Java:

Optional

GPS:

Yes

OS:

Android 4.0.4

Battery life:

7.8 hours talk / 25 days standby (GSM)

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