Gigabyte GSmart Simba SX1 Review
Interface and Functionality
A wholly stock Android is what you'll find with the rest of the Gigabyte's latest crop of smartphones, and this bears some truth with the Simba SX1, too. We're treated to a very stock-like Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean experience, though the manufacturer has gone a notch farther with the amount of personal touch.
Starting with the lockscreen, you're greeted with a customized lock ring that features shortcuts to the camera, the dialer, and even quick access to sound profiles. Better yet, you can tweak these and add an app shortcut more to your liking, or altogether get rid of this extra fluff by reverting to the default Android look and behavior. The customizations extend to the notification bar, as well, which now houses a minimalistic slider with a bunch of quick toggles. Lastly, the Simba SX1 also has the extra perk of having control over its Wi-Fi/data usage, the CPU, and even RAM, all of which can be controlled and re-programmed with savings or performance in mind. This means that you can tweak the frequency of the CPU, Wi-Fi behavior and so on.
Unlike the majority of dual-SIM smartphones out there, the Simba SX1 actually has support for dual active telephony. Essentially, this allows the phone to be online on both SIM cards at any one time, including during calls. This is the way we think dual-SIM functionality ought to work by default, so we're happy to see that Gigabyte hasn't skimmed over this part.
Anything about the dual-SIM software, however, is completely stock with no signs of any kind of intervention from the manufacturer. The dedicated multi-SIM settings menu, therefore, is as bare as Google intended it.
Processor and Memory
Powering the Simba SX1 is a 1.4GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 MSM8230 chipset, with an Adreno 305 GPU lending a helpful hand with all graphical endeavors. Dual-cores are actually becoming rarer by the day, even in the lower end, though this particular chip does the category justice with an overall smooth performance. We're not talking blazing fast speeds, of course, but it handled itself just fine irrespective of what kind of tasks we decided to throw at it, including overall UI responsiveness and some relatively heavy games. Put simply, expect the Simba SX1 to power through the most common set of tasks with finesse.
The memory department of this phone reads a time-tested tale – a healthy 1GB of RAM plus overly frugal 4GB of on-board storage and a microSD card slot fitted at the back. Out of these, you get to play with about 2.2GB, which is higher than most, but still little for this day in age. This, more than likely, will result in you being forced to opt for expansion via the aforementioned microSD card.
Those of you in one of the still few areas in the world where 4G LTE is prevalent may be disappointed to know that no such capability is found on board the Simba SX1. Instead, we're treated to HSPA+ connectivity, with peak speeds of up to 21Mbps, which is still plenty fast.
Taking care of your browsing experience are a pre-installed browser, along with our preferred choice – Chrome for mobile – but also Firefox. As we touched on before, the SoC powering the phone is powerful enough to offer a smooth sailing in most regards, meaning that surfing the web does not include abnormal hiccups or wait times. On the connectivity end, one can rest assured that essentials such as Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 3.0, FM Radio and GPS are available.