It's not the most exciting phone, but you get an awful lot for your money with the G510
Android 4.1 (JellyBean), 4.5in 480×854 display
The Huawei Ascend G510 is a decent smartphone at a very competitive price – just £130 on pay-as-you-go from Vodafone. The handset feels well-made and looks impressively bland in a rather nice way. It’s a little chunky by modern standards, but it’s easy to keep hold off because of it.
The 4.5in display is the biggest we’ve seen on a budget handset, which usually have 4in screens at best. Its resolution of 480×854 means it isn’t particularly detailed at just 217 pixels-per-inch. The screen quality is better than we expected, it’s a little muted but colours look accurate and contrast is good. All that said, we did run the phone at maximum brightness most of the time to get a nice punchy image.
There’s a Gorilla Glass panel across the front of phone, so it shouldn’t scratch easily. Below the screen are three touch-sensitive buttons for the usual back, home and menu controls – meaning you don’t lose onscreen space for virtual buttons. There’s a front facing camera for Skype chats and the like, though it only has a basic VGA resolution. It also supports face recognition, so the phone will only unlock when you’re looking at it. This worked very well, and we couldn’t trick by using a similar-looking person or an image of ourselves on another screen.
The 5-megapixel camera surprised us with its quality. The test shots we took were mainly well exposed and full of detail. It did struggle in low light and its video was far less impressive than its stills though.
This resized shot from the camera is a little dark, but it’s still a good effort for a budget snapper. Below you can see a pixel-to-pixel enlargement, where you can see that fine detail is missing – click to enlarge
Most manufacturers of budget smartphones leave Android pretty much alone, but Huawei has here used a wide-ranging series of tweaks under the name Emotion UI. The biggest change, and the one that had us flummoxed for some time is that there’s no app tray. Instead all your apps sit on your home screens.
Pinch out and you can see all your home screens at once
It’s actually not a bad idea, as it means novice users won’t have to get their heads around the difference between the app itself and its identical-looking shortcut – a more iPhone style approach. There’s no need to install apps and then create shortcuts, just move important apps to more prominent positions, and leave those you rarely use off to one side. You can pinch-to-zoom to see all your home screens, jump to any screen at a tap, or add extra ones for more room.
Here you can see the customisable settings buttons and home screen options
There are also customisable shortcut buttons on the pull-down notifications screen, so you can have just the settings you regularly need. Other than that, it’s largely Android 4.1 as you’d expect, feeling slick as ever on the capable hardware inside.
|Main display size||4.5in|
|CCD effective megapixels||5-megapixel|
|Memory card support||microSD|
|Memory card included||0MB|
|Operating frequencies||GSM 850/900/1800/1900, 3G 900/2100|
|Wireless data||GPRS, EDGE, HSDPA|
|Operating system||Android 4.1 (JellyBean)|
|Microsoft Office compatibility||N/A|
|Accessories||USB Charger, headphones|
|Talk time||6 hours|
|Standby time||340 days|
|Price on contract||£13 per month contract|