Phone review: Fero Iris 4G LTE with a remarkable Iris scanner

The Fero Iris is one of the most affordable 4G LTE mid-range smartphones that entered the market with new security features that is mainly highlighted by the iris scanner. Just as the name implies, it comes with IRIS technology that provides you with an additional form of authentication to reinforce security instead of the regular fingerprint scanner that most phones have in the market at the moment.

Apart from the Iris scanner, the gadget has other features that are quite standard considering the fact that it targets mid-range users on a budget.

Some of the other Fero Iris features are:

Design

At first glance, the back panel appears to be made of a metal casing which makes it look heavy, but the phone is really light it’s almost feather weight because of its smartly crafted rear. It’s also light enough to slide into your pocket and carry on with your day, but it also makes it a bit tricky for the easily distracted people like me to forget at the office or in a restaurant.

The top part is quite busy, it contains the selfie camera, the Iris scanner, the light sensor, proximity sensor and the earpiece.

The device comes in Gold and Space Grey colours and it also comes packed in a 5-inch IPS capacitive touchscreen with a HD resolution of 280x 720 pixels. The images in the Iris are crisp and clear thanks to the use of the In-Plane switching technology making it a very pretty phone to whip out during meetings.

The rear cover is removable to reveal a battery, two micro-sized sim card slots and a memory card slot. The battery is also removable which is good news when it comes to replacements or cases where the device might accidentally lag.

Camera

The camera in the Fero Iris did not excite me as much. It comes with an 8MP camera embedded on the rear with an LED flash with a 2MP camera which is also not good news for the growing number of selfie enthusiasts in Nairobi, but it’s certainly a good phone for its price range.

As compared to other feature phones that have recently entered the market, the Iris isn’t as up to par in its camera’s resolution. It’s also not as ideal when taking pictures at night because they appear grainy but it does the job during the day. However, activating HDR does helps a bit.

Another fact that I came to discover is that focus and lighting are everything when taking photos with this gadget.

The selfie camera isn’t as good considering that its only two megapixels. During the recently concluded Safaricom Jazz festival, I also tried out its video recording capabilities which are capped at 720 HD but I realized after a couple of videos taken that the videos required me to continuously tap on the subject to have it on focus. Having this knowledge a bit too late, I ended up with low quality footage.

Performance

The Fero Iris has a quad-core processor that clocks up to 1.3GHz of fast processing speeds. The system runs on Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow that offers a user friendly interface. The device packs 1 GB RAM which will be sufficient for handling a number of tasks such as playing music, videos and playing of games – but not heavy ones that can lag your phone behind.

Storage includes 8GB built-in which is barely enough considering the fact that the OS and other applications take almost half of the space. It is however expendable to 32 GB by use of a MicroSD memory card and the device supports 2G, 3G and 4G networks.

Battery

The 2500 mAh Li-Ion non-removable battery packed in the device offers some plenty of battery usage time to take you through the day before it runs dry. Sometimes it took me almost a full day to notice that the battery was going down which is a very good quality of the phone.

Iris scanner

The primary feature for this phone is the Iris scanner. The scanner works really well and one can opt to use it as their primary method of unlocking the device. I also discovered it works really exceptionally in the dark.

It literally takes micro seconds to scan your eyes and unlock your device. The key to getting it to recognize you is to put the phone at the recommended distance (at least 20cm away from your face). Another advantage is it also works when you’re wearing sun glasses so you don’t have to remove your shades in the sun to unlock your phone. Pretty sweet, huh?

The beauty about the Iris scanner is that once you set it as your main point of security, nothing can crack it other than your eyes being scanned. In comparison to a fingerprint sensor, the Iris scanner has a far better advantage which makes the main feature of this device a very big win.

Conclusion

If you are looking for a phone based on security considerations the Fero Iris is definitely a phone worth considering especially since it is a mid-range affordable smartphone. It packs decent features to offer a reliable performance with the very reliable Iris scanner as its main feature. I, however, wouldn’t recommend it to people who love taking photos.

All in all, the 4G enabled device is a good recommendation retailing at Kshs 8,999.

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