GADGET WATCH: Huawei Ascend G300

Sometimes you don’t need the best, top-of-the-line machine. Sometimes you just need something to get the job done.

With the iPhone and HTC models winning a lot of the upper-priced market, there’s still a lot of room left for budget shoppers who want a handset for pay-as-you-go deals, or something similar. Can the Ascend G300 provide something decent at a low cost?

Hardware and features

For a cheap phone, the G300 still packs a punch. It features a four-inch screen, powered by a 1Ghz processor, with only 2.5GB of storage, although that’s upgradeable to 32GB through a microSD slot.

The device features WiFi, along with a WiFi hotspot utility, and a five megapixel camera with LED flash.

Like most smartphones it features an accelerometers, proximity sensor and a compass, along with a microUSB port as well. The battery is a standard Lithium format.

What’s the consensus?

There’s a lot to like about this budget model. Over at TechRadar, the publication notes a solid build, with the body remaining slim despite the four-inch screen. Using a smooth metal finish, most of the ports are located in easy to reach places, so the device is easy to hold.

“Weighing in at 138g with battery, the Huawei Ascend G300 isn’t too heavy in the pocket and whilst not pointing to the lightness of uber slim, high-end devices, it hints towards a sturdy construction. We don’t expect you’ll drop it much though, as it sits quite nicely in the hand.”

Using the Gingerbread version of Android, the interface is customised. Four icons take up the front of the screen, although these can be customised. The custom lock screen contains shortcuts for the camera, SMS apps and the call log.

On the notifications bar, Huawei has also added toggles for WiFi and data, along with GPS.

It’s a simple interface, but as TechRadar notes, it’ll appeal to people who haven’t used many smartphones before and don’t need that many features.

Over at CNET, the publication has given the device a good performance rating, saying it’ll perform most basic functions very well, including downloading and using maps – although you’ll encounter lag from time to time.

“Some of the things that tax the phone’s engine the most include loading and processing of photos you’ve just taken, which can take several seconds per photo, and loading thumbnails in your gallery.”

It also noted the camera performs well, “although colours do tend to be slightly washed out and it doesn’t excel in dingier or shady conditions”.

However, Pocket-Lint noted the camera isn’t going to replace any dedicated device you may have and, as for storage, you’re going to need to upgrade it if you want do anything substantial.

Who’s it for?

Make no mistake; this is definitely not a phone you want to be doing excessive business work on. For that, you’re going to need an iPhone, a BlackBerry, or any one of the high-powered Android devices.

But if you’re just after something cheap that can get the job done, the Ascend G300 is worth a look, if you can get over the low storage and the basic user interface.

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