Most importantly, the device looks great too, offering a much more ‘high-end’ appearance than the majority of budget Android phones available today. It’s also a nicely compact device. At 123x63x11.2mm it’s by no means as skinny as the Iphone 5, but it’s small enough to squeeze into a skinny jean pocket. Inside this casing there’s a 4in 480×800 LCD touchscreen, but this is not very amazing on paper, given the fierce competition available on the market. However, considering the phone’s £100 price tag, this screen is plenty bright enough and responsive, thanks to the dual-core 1GHz Qualcomm processor under the bonnet.
There are three capacitive keys underneath the screen – Back, Home and Menu – which have proven responsive thus far. In terms of software, the Ascend G330 comes running Google’s Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS) mobile operating system, but Huawei was unable to say whether it will be upgraded to Android 4.x Jelly Bean. However with ICS on board the phone looks up-to-date and has all of the usual Android features.
Huawei has skinned the phone in a light custom interface, which is much less obtrusive than HTC and Samsung’s Sense and Touchwiz UIs, respectively. This custom UI gives the phone a reworked lockscreen, fancy gestures when scrolling through apps and a number of apps added to the home screen.
Huawei has furnished the phone with some pre-loaded apps too, the most notable being BBC Iplayer. According to the Chinese firm, most Android phones of this calibre are unable to run apps such as BBC Iplayer, so it is using this as one of the main selling points of the Ascend G330. We gave the app a quick spin and it does work smoothly on the Huawei handset, even if the picture is a little bit blurry. Huawei has also inked a deal with EA to bring a bundle of free games to the Ascend G330, which include SIMs Freeplay, Dead Space and Plants vs Zombies. We had a go on the SIMs, which fired up within seconds and looked good on the 480×800 screen.
The Huawei Ascend G330 also arrives touting a 5MP rear-facing camera with LED flash, a VGA front-facing camera, HSDPA and WiFi internet connectivity, and a 1,500mAh battery.
The G330 runs Android 4.0 — which is the newest-but-one version of Google’s mobile OS. Having ICS means you can download Google’s Chrome for Android browser and enjoy additional Android features that Gingerbread blowers don’t have — such as full device encryption and Face Unlock.
As with other phones in Huawei’s Ascend range, the Ice Cream Sandwich base is skinned with a wrapper of its own software. Huawei’s Android skin has typically been a fairly lightweight addition that doesn’t bog the OS down too much
Huawei has lodged a 1GHz dual-core chip inside the G300, along with 512MB of RAM and 4GB of storage — which should be enough power for basic mobile tasks. It should also hopefully mean you can browse most websites without too much stuttering and lag. Like the G300, the G330 has a 4-inch screen — so it’s not a huge pane but will be large enough for many people’s mobile needs. It has a 480×800-pixel resolution. The phone has a 5-megapixel camera. There’s also a front-facing camera for video calls.