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Spice Stellar 526 Review

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Spice recently unveiled the Spice Stellar 526. Spice has always had something new up its sleeve, whether it be a new affordable smartwatch or the upcoming Firefox phones.

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But what about its mainstream Android phones, how do they match up in terms of innovation? Well, Spice has been trying to reinvent in every department, whether it be the hardware, the software or the camera.

The Spice Stellar 526 is something that tries to match up in the same way. It is a mid-range phone, designed to give a sophisticated look, both in terms of hardware and software.

It is priced at Rs. 11,499. Should it, be worth looking into?

Well, our detailed review will let you decide on that.

Spice Stellar 526 specs

  • 5 inch display
  • 1280 x 720 pixels resolution
  • 1.5 GHz Hexa-core processor
  • 1 GB RAM
  • 8 GB internal memory
  • 8 MP primary camera
  • 3.2 MP front facing camera
  • Google Android v4.4.2 KitKat
  • 2500 mAh battery

Hardware

The general look and feel of the Spice Stellar 526 is good. The handset looks pretty good with the aluminum on the back, surrounded by some plastic with a pearly feel. I would go so far as to say that the handset looks best at the back!

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Apart from that, the styling is done pretty well. In fact, the phone flaunts a ‘designed in London’ label.

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The front is totally plastic. The display is surrounded by a Chrome lining, which feels good. Apart from that, the speaker and front cam above the display look good.

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The capacitive buttons at the bottom look cool too, and the camera at the back along with the speaker at the bottom lend a sophisticated feel to the handset.

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The button and slot placement is good. The Volume rocker and the power button on the right side of the handset feel good.

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The MicroUSB slot is located at the bottom, while 3.5mm jack is located atop the handset. One side has been left completely plain to emphasize the aluminum finish.

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A unique thing is the MicroSD and SIM slots for which you have to open up the top half of the handset.

Overall, the Spice Stellar scores good points in the hardware department.

Display

The 5-inch 720p display does pretty well for itself. The display was adequately sensitive, bright and mostly worked out pretty well. It was actually my favorite part of this device not because of how it looked, but in terms of performance.

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It is actually a well performing HD display, which is a pleasant surprise. It was a sharp display, more vibrant than I expected. The sunlight visibility and smudge resistance could have been a tad better though.

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But, if you will be using the phone indoors, the display does pretty well for itself. The display will also do well in a dark environment. It is a display that will put you in a quagmire – you will absolutely love it indoors and wish that it could perform so outdoors too!

Software

The Spice Stellar 526 comes with Android 4.4.2 on board and generally does well for itself. Spice has kind of done better than before on the software front.

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This time, the interface was good, the icons were spread out, easy to access and mostly simple to use. The homescreen and the lockscreen were easily usable. You can also create your own folders by dragging and dropping icons upon each other.

The icons seem like they have been redesigned and give a certain gleam to the phone.

The Spice Stellar 526 comes with two camera apps. I would prefer the Spice one, over the Stock Android one. It is a pity that you can’t make folders inside the app drawer which would have given an even better look to the interface.

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There are lots of apps pre-installed such as Getit, Flipkart, Gplayer, Quikr, OLX, apart from Spice’s own Spice Gang, Spice Cloud and surprisingly, Swiftkey for Spice. There is also a Spice Smart Calls app on board, which will let you manipulate how different functions respond during calls.

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Not only that, the gallery app does pretty well for itself, by offering video previews. There is also a floating browser and note app for multi-tasking.

I would rate the UI as pretty user-friendly and would want Spice to further improve upon it in their future phones.

Camera

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The General camera performance of the Spice Stellar 526 was better than I expected, to be honest. The 8-megapixel snapper doesn’t disappoint too much. The things I was surprised by was, the colors it captured. Something that I was desirous of though, was  better light capture and shake sensitivity.

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As far as the camera is concerned, you will be better off clicking shots without switching on the HDR mode, and taking pics in the normal mode.

The camera, though generally will keep an average user happy with its performance.

Performance and Battery Life

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As far as the performance of the Spice stellar 526 goes, it is generally good, thanks to its Hexa-core processor and 1 GB RAM. The general performance was better than my previous experiences of Spice smartphones. Spice has kind of optimized the software better than before, it seems, which I find pretty cool.

As far as the battery life goes, I just have one device – try to use the device at medium brightness rather than full brightness at all times.

Verdict

The Spice Stellar 526 is actually a good phone. The hardware has a hint of metal at the back, which lends it elegance. The software is actually great with, clear icons, clear menu and easy accessibility. It also feels good to use.

The display is the one thing I felt pretty good about. It was a little smudgy but lighted up pretty well. It was also well optimized, and mostly gave me no lags. The camera is, well, an average mid-range snapper, and will feel good to use.

As far as the performance goes, I would rate it as decent.

Overall, I find the Spice Stellar 526 to have achieved a certain level of performance in terms of most of its features.

I would think that people who prefer a touch and feel factor while buying their phone should be giving it a go, vis-a-vis Xolo and Micromax.

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