Chinese smartphone maker Gionee is often credited with starting the inflow of Chinese phone makers into India. The company’s foray into India brought it big success and others from its homeland followed soon. Unlike Xiaomi, Lenovo, OnePlus and others, Gionee doesn’t just sell online, it puts the major portion of its resources into brick and mortar stores, especially in tier II and tier III cities. The Gionee Elife S7 is the company's latest premium smartphone for the Indian market.
A slim phone is essentially eye candy, something that looks really good in your hand. In fact, the Elife S5.1 is one of the best examples of a good looking and slim smartphone. Gionee got the looks part of that phone right, but got just about everything else wrong. Which is why the Elife S7 didn’t really inspire confidence in me when I first heard about it.
It runs Android Lollipop though, which is good, because the superior memory management is something that such a phone really needs. I wonder if 3GB RAM wouldn’t have been a safer, if not better, choice though. I can’t quite comment on the performance till I’ve actually reviewed it though, so theory is all I have for now. It is important to mention though that Gionee says this phone will heat up much less than competitors and that its battery will run for two whole days. Both of these are hard to believe and shall be put to the test in the review.
Looks are subjective, but if I had to choose, I’m going with the Elife S5.1’s looks over this one. The parallel bar design is not as sophisticated, for the lack of a better word, as the rounded edges of the S5.1. The rounded edges gave the S5.1 a very premium look and feel, which the parallel bars don’t.
With all of the above in mind, I can still see a user buying this phone, simply because it’s available in retail outlets. That is, until we talk about the mere 16GB of internal storage with no slot for a memory card. Better phones than the Elife S7 have disappointed because of this one shortcoming. The Moto X (2nd Gen) 16GB and Apple iPhone 6 16GB come to mind. The lack of a memory card is not what bothers me, but the lack of storage does. The OS takes up about 5GB, which means 10-11 GB is all you’ll ever have on this phone.