We have have had plenty of time playing with the Pro version of the Note 4, close to a month I must say so there is no way we could spare you a review. Here to deliver on our promises, ladies and gentlemen the Infinix Note 4 Pro review is here.
First we gave you our first impressions and the spec sheet about the device and today we deviate from what is it like to first hold an Infinix Note 4 Pro out of the box to actually putting everything into use.
Important to note is how the hardware and the software work together and if the vendor lives up to their promises.
We can summarily say that the Note 4 Pro is a solid device as we first predicted but it would be a disservice for not giving you a rundown. The good things? It has a lot but not without flaws so keep reading.
Hardware & build
The Note 4’s hardware is sturdy and very welcoming with subtle but comfortable edges. It is a metallic uni-body with visible antenna lines at the back, a camera bump, dual tone flash with volume rockers and the power buttons on the right rail plus the micro SD expansion slot.
On the opposite rail is the sim tray and 3 pin connector for the Xpen, which unfortunately, we never got our hands on. The front slab has the camera escorted by flash, speakers at the top and a home button which doubles as the Fingerprint reader at the bottom.
The Fingerprint reader took us some time to get used to it at first but I later on, we got around it — as in adapted having been used to it being placed at the back, making use of the index finger.
This time around, it was the thumb at play but nonetheless it didn’t disappoint, it was pretty quick at not only unlocking the phone but my apps and other controls that we threw at it.
The device feels sturdy and premium though awkwardly felt big in the hands (Forgive me, I hold a 5.5Inch smartphone compared to the 5.7Inches of the Note 4 Pro) the sharp edges somewhat made the phone pleasant to hold so I was able to overcome the above.
It’s not a one handed device but software tweaks can make that possible buy shrinking the screen size to welcome those with small hands to the party.
Back to hardware, the Note 4 comes with micro USB port at the bottom. Of course for charging and transferring files plus stereo speakers and the top has the 3.5mm headphone jack (something un Apple) but still welcome for those that can’t live without headsets. It’s positioning also deviated from the previous device but could still get the job done with out hassles. I believe you will get around this too.
Infinix stamped it’s logo at the back and Note insignia because Hey, it’s a Note, a Pro for that matter.
The charging port inputs a maximum of 5V for that fast charging experience which we are to explain later in the battery test.
Ohh, the camera! The primary 13MP shooter is good. There is realism in its photos than these overblown photos we’ve seen from other manufacturers. It could also take a little patience to get you even impressive results but for the point to shoot aficionados, auto focus should be your thing.
You can calibrate it to manual mode if you love tinkering with stuff. Infinix calls it the professional mode which allows you tweak stuff like ISO, white balance, exposure, Manual Focus among others and added on the list are other modes like Night, Wide Angle, Night, PIP, Panaroma, beauty each with its pros and cons. Some even take time to get used to.
Shifting focus to the Selfie shooter, this impressed me more than the rear camera. It is very bright and straight to the point. It’s in beauty mode by default with a scale of 0 to 9. I found 5 the most interesting one and could work well for SnapChat lovers and other people that prefer to broadcast themselves than handle the camera to another party and do the magic.
Other tweaks or gimmicks are from the settings like delay capture which allows you to set a timer after which the camera snaps and gesture controls like flashing the peace sign in front if the camera to capture photos.
Videos recording was okay with the quality up to 1080p enough for SnapChat, Instagram & Whatsapp stories.
So after taking those photos, they better be shared elsewhere which brings us to the connection options available. The Note 4 has fast 4G connections. I was always on with MTN’s 4G in my default SIM card while the second SIM card tray was covered by Airtel.
I could occasionally switch between the two but still the experience was seamless as all have stable reception across the CBD and it’s surroundings where most of my activity revolves.
Others on board are Bluetooth and WiFi all of which I occasionally use too, they were both stable.
The photos, apps and other data better be stored somewhere and the default option is always local. The Note 4 Pro comes with 32GB of storage paired with 3GB of RAM. Both of which qualify it for the ‘Pro’ moniker given the Standard Note 4 comes with a 16GB ROM and 2GB RAM. However, part of the 32GB is occupied by the Android Operating system and pre-installed apps likes Opera, Aha, PalmChat, Palm Play, plus the X suite of Infinix apps like X Club, X Hide(For privacy Freaks), X Account, X Cloud, X Note among others.
Some of these you can uninstall while others will forever wave at you for the Note 4 Pros lifetime. They cannot be removed we mean.
The Note 4 Pro is powered by XOS Chameleon v2.3 atop Android 7.0 Nougat and Infinix promised to update it to 8 Oreo as soon as it becomes available. XOS has features like Power and X Manager that optimize the system resources that you get more out of your device in terms of standby time and prevent it from slowing down.
XOS arranges it’s apps in an alphabetical order but the most used one come on top with a search bar to ease your in-app drawer search.
It felt fluid but over time it could hang and shortly regain its fluidity. I suppose this is an isolated case.
The other Note software feature that Christens this device the Pro moniker is the X Note app. It here that you use the Xpen to jot down notes, doodle among others thing. Unfortunately the Xpen was unavailable but nonetheless it could read fingers
You can color, set brush sizes, add text and rub as you deem fit. We couldn’t get the best out of it since It lacked the Xpen stylus. We could have strained it the more had the pen been available.
It’s a speedy device but at one time it experienced hiccups that would render the screen unusable. It would later regain full thrust and the experience was as seamless as it sounds. Apps ran smoothly and the proverbial “App has stopped working” with 2GB RAM like phones never dared to surface on the Note 4 Pros screen. The 3GB RAM paired with 32GB of ROM was a good choice on Infinix side.
However, the phone would get warm under heavy duress with endless surfing and heavy apps at play like YouTube with other apps running in the background. This happened after a substantial amount of time spent doing the above. Nominal activity never experienced such warm occurrences.
No complaints at all here. The battery is the one outstanding feature about the Note 4 Pro aside from the speed. The 4500mAh battery endured the heavy handedness we threw at it and if it dared chop some battery juice, the included Xcharge (quick charging system) would get us filled with a few minutes.
The battery could last a day or two with minimal activity. At one time I ignored it for a full week and by the time I picked it up, it was still reading 15% on the battery counter
It can also last a day with heavy use of YouTube, Gmail, Spotify, social media and constant browsing. We only hope it won’t deteriorate with time but the Note 4 Pros battery is one to reckon with.
The Note 4 Pro is available at Infinix branded shops spread across Kampala and other towns in the price range of UGX 750,000 – UGX 790,000