Sunday, 23 October 2016

Lenovo Zuk Z2 Plus: One More Joins the League

Zuk Z2 Plus was recently launched by Lenovo in India. The phone comes with powerful hardware configuration and sports a competitive price tag of Rs 17,999/- for the base variant and Rs 19,999/- for the premium variant. The phone is likely to compete with the Xiaomi Mi 5,One Plus 3 and Asus Zenfone 3 which come with similar specs but are relatively expensive when compared with Zuk Z2 Plus. The Chinese manufacturers have launched quite a number of phones in the mid range segment, providing Customers ample of options to chose from which may become confusing for some when it comes to choosing the right phone.

Let’s find out more about the device:

Build and Display: The phone does looks a bit hefty due to the fact that it sports a 3500 mah battery but fibre glass back does keep the weight manageable at 150 gms. The phone sports 5 inch display which does make it a favourite among buyers looking for a compact device. Single hand use is possible on this device and rectangular design does not look bad at all. The fingerprint scanner is placed below the screen and is equipped to perform multiple functions. The build and design is decent for the pricing. However, the back being fibre glass may be vulnerable should it fall from steep heights.
The device has a full HD display, Lenovo has put a very good screen on this device with viewing angles being decent. The color reproduction is true and images appear crisp. However, the Display does not have the Corning Gorilla Glass protection.

Battery Life: The phone has a massive 3500 mah battery which can easily last you a day even with very heavy use. The device does support Qualcomm quick charging, so Lenovo has not compromised on this aspect. However, the adapter provided with this phone does not support fast charging. 

Hardware Specifications: The best part about Lenovo Zuk Z2 Plus is that it is powered by the flagship Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chipset which makes this device very powerful. It is one of the very few devices priced below Rs 20k to sport flagship chipset.
We have two variant of this device available, one comes with 3GB Ram and 32 GB storage while the other variant comes with 4GB Ram and 64 GB storage. For normal users the former will suffice while for heavy gamers the latter variant is recommended. The hardware packed on this device is something we find on flagship devices and hence the performance on this device is top notch.
Adreno 530 is a powerful GPU which will give a smooth gaming experience even with graphic intensive games.
The phone does tend to heat up a little but I feel Lenovo should be able to handle the same with a software update.

Software and Features: The phone runs on the Lenovo customized skin which is very close to the stock Android with some bloatwares. It runs on the latest Android 6.0 and is expected to receive the Android N update as well.
The phone has the fingerprint scanner placed just below the display and it is a customisable button which may be used to simplify navigation.
It has a single color LED notification light which I feel is done to cut down the cost.
The device does not have any memory management issue and seems to be well optimized.

Camera: The one area where the Zuk Z2 disappoints is the camera. The rear and front camera is decent but not the very best in this price segment. The outdoor shots come out to be decent but indoor and shots under artificial lights come out to be pretty ordinary.
The Video Quality is also very mediocre on this device in my opinion.
The front camera too is just about average.

Service Support: Lenovo is providing after sales support through 3rd party vendors which is pretty ordinary and requires improvement in my opinion. But over the years Lenovo has improved the quality of devices it manufactures and individuals do get 10 day replacement option when purchased online in case of any defects.

Overall Verdict: The device is pretty impressive for the price and offers good value for money. It is the only device priced below Rs 20,000/- which uses the Snapdragon 820 chipset. Although, Xiaomi Mi5 and Le Max 2 is also sold on some portals for less than 20k which again in my opinion is an incredible device at that price point.
Lenovo Zuk Z2 Plus is recommended for individuals who are looking for powerful device with good battery life in the mid range price segment. The Camera is pretty average on this phone and some may not like the design of the phone. But overall, it is a value for money performance device.

Xiaomi Mi5: The Much Awaited Flagship

Asus Zenfone 3: Latest Launch

One Plus 3: The Affordable Flagship

Key Specifications are given below:-

Quad Core Kyro Processor clocked @ 2.15 ghz, Snapdragon 820 chipset
32/64 GB (No SD Card Support)
Operating System
Android Marshmallow 6.0
Rear Camera
13 mp/4K Video Recording
Front Camera
8mp /HD Video Recording
3/4 GB
Adreno 530
3500 Mah
5 inch
Type Sim
Dual Sim (Nano)/GSM 4G Support
Touchscreen Type
141.6 x 68.9x 8.5 mm/150

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Inflation Softens in September as Food Prices Go Down, Industry Output Still Sluggish


Wholesale Price Index (WPI) for the month of September, 2016 eased marginally to 3.57% as compared to 3.74% in the previous month. Softening of prices will provide some breathing space to the policy makers when they discuss the future policy roadmap. The moderation in food inflation has helped in keeping the inflation rates under check. The food inflation fell sharply to 5.75% as compared to 8.23% in the previous month. The softness in the wholesale vegetables and pulses basket is a welcome relief for the economy. In fuel and power segment, inflation rose by 5.58% as compared to 1.62% in the previous month, it is expected to rise further but nothing alarming atleast for now. Wholesale Inflation takes into account the prices paid by the manufacturers on the goods imported and used as inputs. Favourable Monsoon has really come as boon for the Government and Economy as it can now focus on steps to accelerate industrial growth. On month to month basis Primary articles fell to 4.8% as compared to 7.47% in the previous month while Manufactured products rose to 2.48% from 2.42%. The index provides Primary Articles with 20.11% weightage, 64.97% for manufactured products and power & fuel with 14.91%.
Wholesale Price Inflation for the month of July,’16 has been revised to 3.72% from 3.55%. The rise in prices of Manufactured Products shows improvement in bargaining powers of the producers primarily due to the onset of festive season and is expected to continue in the coming months.


Consumer Price Index (CPI) fell to a 13 month low in the month of September, ‘16 as it stood at 4.31% as compared to 5.05% in the previous month. As Food Inflation fell to 3.88% from 5.91% recorded in the previous month. Fall in prices of Vegetables is largely responsible for the slide. Consumer Food Inflation has 47% weightage in CPI Index. The downtrend shows that monsoon has been good for crops and resulted in prices being under control.
With Inflation in check, RBI will be encouraged to lower the lending rates immediately. Industrial Output is also pretty choppy as of now.
CPI falling, which is attributed to higher weightage being given to retail inflation, reflects the true impact of inflation on Common People. Going forward, stability in CPI will lead to strengthening of the economy and would call for changes in the monetary policy.


Index of Industrial Production (IIP) contracted by 0.7% in the month of August,’16 as compared to rise of 2.5% witnessed in July,2016. IIP figures have been fluctuating for quite some time now as they have failed to gain any momentum.
The fall is mainly contributed due to slowness in Manufacturing Sector. As manufacturing sector fell by 0.3%, whereas Mining sector fell by 5.6%, while the Electricity Sector grew by 0.1%. The Capital Goods fell steeply for the tenth month in a row by (-)22.2% while Consumer Durables Sector grew by 2.3%.  
The growth of factory output is essential for the economy. Industrial growth is mandatory for creation of jobs, however the turbulent European market and China slowing down is a cause of concern and one needs to be cautious going forward.
As I had mentioned previously, growth in Manufacturing Sector is the only way forward for the economy. Thus the rise in the core sectors along with few others will definitely help the Economy to move forward. Manufacturing Output also constitutes 75% of IIP data.


RBI has set a target of achieving CPI below 5% by March,2017 and seems on course to achieve it. The inflationary pressure is expected to ease in the coming months.  
RBI wants to ease Consumer Inflation to 4% by 2021 as against 2018 proposed earlier. However, for the time being if retail inflation remains within 4.5%-6%, RBI should be fairly satisfied.

RBI will look to revise Repo rates as the Industry outlook is weak and requires major boost. Rate cut was announced earlier in the month and one may expect another rate cut soon given the fact that the industry output is still sluggish.
The Wholesale inflation in positive may be good, as it indicates raise in demand, which in turn will lead to increase in productivity thereby leading to better wages and more job creation. However, the rise in food prices will negatively impact the consumers.
In the coming months demand is expected to increase due to festivity, improved agriculture yield and wage increments.

Exports have been decline for quite some time now which is impacting India’s inflow. The fall is mainly contributed to poor global demand and softening of crude prices. Global Economic slowdown has not helped India’s cause either.
India’s exports recorded a growth of 4.62% in September which is a positive sign as it is only the second time in 22 months that exports is in the positives. However, the export figures from other developing nations are not very promising either, suggesting stagnation. US Elections and other economic factors are contributing to the softness.

Global Sentiments are pretty reserved at this point of time with China slowing down. The major challenge at this point of time is to ensure economic stability and safeguard the Interests of developed and developing economies of the world.

India is emerging as the most preferred destination for the Investors and promises to bring in more and more investments which augurs well for the economy as well the as the population.