Straight Talk Huawei Ascend Y Model H866C Full Review
Release Date December 2012
Carrier: Straight Talk
Huawei Ascend Y Specifications
Gingerbread Android version 2.3.6
Plastic body with plastic screen.
4.5" x 2.4" x 0.5"
3.5" Touch Screen
Screen Size and Resolution:
3.5" 320 x 480 pixels
3g CDMA on Verizon
7 hrs talk time, Up to 12 days stand by
Micro SD card
Yes with 4gb included
Huawei Ascend Y Features
Compact and attractive design, Google play apps, Full HTML browser, Video recording, 3mp Camera, Bluetooth, Voice commands, Micro SD card, GPS , Youtube, mp3 player, Swipe Keyboard
At first glance, we find a fairly compact body in an attractive design. The phone is all plastic construction including the screen. A metallic look bezel surrounds the 3.5" screen. On the back, we find an attractive metal look trim with a rubberized battery cover. Of note here is the fact that the battery cover only goes half way up the phone so it's quite easy to remove, the cover is rubberized by the way.
One of the first things to point out is that this is essentially an upgraded CDMA version of the popular Straight Talk Ascend 2. The main thing that differentiates Ascend Y from the 2 is the fact that it gives us a more powerful 800mhz cpu, so for 20 bucks, you get 200 more mhz on the Y. Interestingly, they took away 2 megapixels from the Y so this phone gives us 3.2 mp instead of the 5 found on the Ascend 2. Given a choice, we would take more processor than camera. The other difference of course is the fact that the Ascend Y is CDMA instead of GSM.
Browsing around the phone, we find a fairly simple design. To the left, we find the usual volume button, the lock button is located on the top left and the charge/data port on the bottom. Finally, we find a 3 button Android design instead of the 4 which is now typical on the lower end phones. Note that there is no dedicated camera button on this phone but it does allow us the ability to jump straight into camera mode when unlocking the phone. This is done by sliding the onscreen unlock icon towards a camera icon. Additionally, one can slide unlock straight into text messaging or phone keypad. While slick, it does take some getting used to so expect to slide into camera mode often at first.
Usability and Features
Usability is quite good. The design is quite simple and the screen is bright and crisp. Additionally, it's quite responsive to touches. Navigating from screen to screen is surprisingly smooth and not at all herky jerky as in some lower end phones. The only negative on the usability department is the fact that the lock button is on the left which is unlike just about every other phone we've ever encountered. Lefties will find it particularly awkward to unlock at first. Another strike in the usability category is the lack of dedicated camera button but we are getting more used to seeing this on the lower level phones such as this.
Don't expect to watch Netflix on this device because the Netflix App minimum seems to be 1ghz or it plays with out of sync audio and choppy video. Keep in mind that this is only an 800mhz phone.
Moving on to features, other than the standard Google play, Youtube, Google Maps, MP3, etc , we find a couple cool little features on the phone. For starters, it's got a physical FM tuner that's not an app so will work even in emergency situations. Finally, the Ascend Y has a forward facing speaker which sounds really good for a phone. It uses the same speaker you put to your ear instead of the crappy speaker found on the back of the phone that's used by so many other phones. The sound quality on the Ascend Y is one of the best we've heard, iPhone included. The phone actually has a DTS mode. We wouldn't tell the difference with it on/off but it's clear Huawei made it a point to put a quality speaker on this phone. It works great when playing Youtube!
The Huawei Ascend Y is a good device that's notably better than the Ascend 2 and comparable to other Straight Talks in this category. The phone is affordable and quite functional. We really could not find many faults other than a few minor things here and there.