If you don’t have enough money for the real Samsung S6, and you are happy to live with a clone the $110 Landvo S6 could be the answer or could it?
At $110 the Landvo S6 is certainly a cheap phone, but does this clone warrant further inspection. Keep reading our mini review for more details.
Landvo S6 Review: Design
There’s simply is no beating around the bush with this one, the Landvo S6 is a clone of the flat screen Samsung S6. It really is the a 1:1 replica of the look of the S6. The camera location is the same, the rounded edges are the same and it even boast an alloy chassis.
At $110, clone or not, an alloy chassis on a phone costing this little is a huge bonus, and it actually looks rather well machined and finished. It certainly doesn’t look like the knock offs of yesteryear that’s for sure. I suppose 111 minutes of polishing really does make a difference.
The front of the device has a 5.1 HD display, with a claimed 5 mega-pixel front camera above it and LED notification light. There is also a rounded physical home button like the Samsung S6. It’s just a physical home button though, there is no fingerprint scanner.
Volume buttons are located on the left side of the alloy chassis with dual nano SIM card trays and power button on the right. An IR remote in the head of the frame is a neat feature at this point. A 3.5mm headphone jack , USB and single speaker are all located in the base.
Turn the Landvo S6 over and we have the same protruding camera design as the Samsung S6. To the right of that is a single LED flash and heart rate monitor. The rear of the phone looks like glass but is actually just plastic and on our model the corners do not sit flush. You can easily get your finger nail under there to prise the rear up and see the double-sided tape holding the rear on. This doesn’t really bode well for the overall longevity of the device.
Also, our review phone rattles! There is something loose in their…
Landvo S6 Review: Screen
The display on the S6 is a 5.1-inch 1280 x 720 display, or a HD panel in other words. Like the alloy chassis, the HD panel really is a neat feature for Landvo to offer at this low price. Touch response is good, and colours are nice and bright.
The max brightness of the screen isn’t the highest we have seen. I assume Landvo have limited this on purpose to get the best battery life possible.
Landvo S6 Review: Hardware
So with an alloy chassis, HD display and heart rate monitor, how much is left in the $110 budget for the rest of the hardware in the Landvo S6? Well if we were to believe the specifications that Landvo publish then it would seem that they have managed to add a few additional high end features to their phone. According to the published specifications the main camera on the S6 is a 16 mega-pixel and the front a 5 mega-pixel.
Fortunately we know enough about the cost of phones, and the compatibility of the rest of the hardware to quickly figure out this isn’t quite true. Sure the rear camera can take interpolated images at 16MP, but the sensor is actually an 8 mega-pixel. We know this as we have seen the real specs, but it would be simple to figure out it’s not a 16MP unit as the SoC in the phone cannot support such high-resolution cameras.
The SoC in the Landvo S6 is last years quad-core MT6582 chipset. This processor is a 32bit chip running at 1.3Ghz, and while it’s a good performer it is a little off the mark for 2015 due to the lack of LTE support.
RAM is just 1GB, which would normally be fine on such an affordable phone, but the Landvo S6 has so much crammed in to the faux Touchwhizz ROM, it really needs more RAM to be smooth. A stock ROM option could really help.
Mentioned above is the fact there is a heart rate monitor built in to the rear of the phone. Try as I might I simply cannot get the thing to work. It sees that I have touched the sensor, but fails to give me an accurate reading. It either tells me my heart isn’t beating, or it is beating so fast I should be on the way to the hospital.
The last piece of hardware is the 2550mAh battery. Now that really is a nice size battery for a slim alloy phone with low power processor, just 1GB RAM and and no LTE, but its not true. The actual battery size of the phone is closer to 1600mAh good for about a day of normal use.
Landvo S6 Review: ROM
Android 4.4.2 comes as standard on the Landvo S6 not Lollipop, and really that doesn’t matter as the interface has been so completely changed and customised. Landvo have created a complete copy of Samsung’s own Touchwhizz ROM which is both impressive and confusing.
What is impressive is the sheer amount of features the ROM has. It really does look like Landvo simply uploaded a genuine Samsung ROM to their phone. It’s confusing because why would anyone want Touchwhizz? It is by far one of the most terrible looking ROMs on the planet and it is so full of bloat and junk it is unbelievable.
Remember this phone has just 1GB RAM and last years quad-core chip, it simply cannot handle everything that the ROM is asking of it. Even the lock screen is laggy and slow! Scrolling in the menus is slow, and even worse when visiting sites.
A stock Android Kitkat installation would have been a much better way to go.
Landvo S6 Review: Camera
The camera app in the Landvo S6 has features for panorama, auto, beauty mode and “shot & more” . Like anything on the phone switching between these modes takes a good second to register.
The focus speed is just as we expect from a low-cost phone, and the lens allows for some really very close up photos. Taking photos is pretty fast too, but the shutter sounds coupled with the poor external speaker quality is just terrible. If I had to describe the sound it is what I imagine an 8bit cat would sound like if it were recorded sneezing on a NES.
Photos sample taken with the phone are below. Take a look and let us know what you think.
Landvo S6 Review: Conclusion
I don’t quite understand what Landvo are trying to do here. They have made a $110 phone with some nice details like the alloy frame and HD display, but then based it on a design of a premium phone and its features, plus been a little dishonest in their specifications and marketing.
Its clear from the frame that Landvo have the capabilities to build a decent alloy phone, and the fact that they have HD panels at this cost means they have a supply chain. Why not then just build their own device using their own design and build their own brand reputation?
I would much prefer to buy a $110 phone with stock Android, simpler design and honest specifications than this wannabe device. If you are looking at a $110 phone then look at one of the new Siswoo phones, or even a last generation JiaYu S4 in the sales, the Landvo S6 is simply not worth it.