Karbonn S9 is another attempt to bring a premium phablet device to the market at an affordable price, it comes powered with 1.2GHz quad core MT6589 chipset with 1 GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage. It seems to be a good device, however does not seem to be very competitive in terms of specifications, but with 5.5 inch display whether this can be affordable phablet you should buy, find it in this review.

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Karbonn S9 Quick Specs

  • Display Size: 5.5 inch IPS LCD capacitive touch screen with 720 x 1280 HD resolution
  • Processor: 1.2 GHz Quad Core MediaTek Mt6589
  • RAM: 1 Gb
  • Software Version: Android 4.2.1 (Jelly Bean) OS
  • Camera: 12 MP AF camera.
  • Secondary Camera: 5 MP front-facing camera FF [Fixed Focus]
  • Internal Storage: 16 GB
  • External Storage: Expandable up to 32GB
  • Battery: 2600 mAh battery Lithium Ion
  • Connectivity: 3G, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP, aGPS, 3.5mm audio jack, FM Radio
  • Others: OTG Support – No, Dual SIM – Yes, LED Indicator – Yes
  • Sensors: Accelerometer, gyro, proximity

Box Contents

Handset, flip cover with good build material, data cable, USB Power Adapter, earphone, battery, warranty card and user manual and one thing to note there is no additional screen guard included but there is one which comes applied on the device out of the box.

Build Quality, Design and Form Factor

Karbonn S9 looks decent in build but nothing exceptional, but the quality of the plastic seems better than some of the previous Karbonn phones, design wise it looks like a premium device with chrome on the edges but the glossy back cover will easily get scratches and finger prints. The form factor of the device is not that good as it is a big device in terms of size so not very suitable to used with one hand. At 176 grams it becomes slightly heavy and big as well, but still as it is quite slim device, so it can go into your pocket quite easily and is quite portable.

Camera Performance

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The rear 12 MP with auto focus takes good photos in day light and low light performance is average but not bad, but one thing which is no so good is that it can only record 720p videos not 1080p. The front camera is 5MP and can take decent self shots provided you don’t shake the device much and light conditions are better, you can also do good quality of video chat from the front camera.

Camera Samples

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Display, Memory and Battery Backup

It has 5.5 inch 720 x 1280 pixels, 5.5 inches and has 267 pixel density, the viewing angles are pretty wide, however the display is bright enough with ambient light sensor which makes it better as per the environment you are using it. The in built memory of the device is 16Gb out of which around 13Gb available to the user for apps and storing other data, you also have the option to expand the storage with SD card but you cannot install apps on SD card.  You have support for expanding the storage with Micro SD memory card, upto 32 Gb card will be supported and you can also install apps directly on the SD card as well, after selecting SD Card as default write disk. Battery backup is just average as it will last upto 1 day on moderate usage if you don’t play a lot of games and watch videos much, but with heavy usage you will not get more than 8-9 hours of usage.

Software, Benchmarks and Gaming

Software UI is stock android in terms of the looks and its snappy and there is no major lag in UI. Gaming performance of the device is good if not the best as you can play casual games like Temple run oz, Subway Surfer etc smoothly, medium graphic intensive games like asphalt 7, Front line commando runs fins as well and you can also play MC4 and Nova 3 as well with a little graphic glitch. The benchmark figures are mentioned below.

Benchmark Scores

  • Quadrant Standard Edition: 4851
  • Antutu Benchmark: 13542
  • Nenamark2:  45.1 fps
  • Multi Touch:  5 point

Sound, Video and Navigation

The sound output from the loudspeaker the is loud enough and the voice from ear piece was clear, but the loud speaker is placed at the back side of the device, so it will get blocked at times or at least will get muffled when you place the device flat on a table. It can play HD videos at 720p and 1080p without any audio and video sync issues. It can also be used for GPS navigation with the help of assisted GPS and it does not have magnetic sensor for precise navigation. You will need internet connectivity to use navigation on the device as it requires some data download to lock the GPS. GPS Locking took around 5 minutes to get locked indoors and outdoors it was less then 2 minutes to get the GPS coordinates to get locked.

Karbonn S9 Photo Gallery

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What We Liked

  • Big Display
  • Slim profile
  • Affordable Price

What We Did Not Liked

  • Heavy weight
  • Average Camera Performance

Karbonn S9 Full In Depth Review + Unboxing [Video]

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Conclusion and Price

Karbonn S9 is a pretty decent phablet available at affordable price of Rs. 16,000 Approx. It comes with decent hardware specs which includes a decent CPU and GPU but the build quality is something we are not too happy about but still its is one of the most affordable big display device.