Indian smartphone brand Lava has released its first 5G phone, which it marketed as #ProudlyIndian to appeal to our patriotism. On paper, the specs of the Lava Agni 5G look promising for its price of Rs 19,999, but can it withstand the heat of its Chinese counterparts? Let’s find out in this full device review.
The Agni 5G has the potential to be a good choice for users looking for a smartphone under Rs 20,000, but only if Lava can promise software updates and make improvements to the camera department. That aside, the phone scores high in aspects like performance and battery life, which is worth a closer look.
The Lava Agni 5G gets a polycarbonate unibody design with a two-tone gradient finish. The back refracts light when viewed from different angles and I love the blue-silver color combo. In terms of feel in the hand, the Agni 5G is thicker than most phones in the same price range and also heavy, which is surprising since its battery capacity is comparable to that of 5,000mAh. A vertically arranged four-camera setup is visible on the back of the phone, top left, and protrudes from the chassis is slight but sufficient to make the device wobble on a flat surface. The fingerprint sensor is built into the power button on the side while the volume rocker is on the opposite edge. Finally, the bottom of the phone contains the usual USB C, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and a speaker grille. Overall, the design language is good, but it doesn’t stand out like the Redmi Note 10 Pro Max does in the same price segment. In terms of display, the Agni 5G has a 6.78-inch FHD + LCD panel with a 90Hz refresh rate and a top center punch hole for the selfie shooter. As a measure of pure visual quality, the device’s screen delivers punchy colors with a saturated look and decent viewing angles. The light levels are acceptable enough to work in sunny conditions outdoors. There is WideVine L1 certification for HD content on OTT platforms, while the 90Hz refresh rate works quite well in most cases with a slight stutter here and there.
As for optics, the phone’s main camera is a 64-megapixel shooter, while the support cast includes a 5-megapixel ultra-wide sensor, 2-megapixel macro, and depth sensors. of 2 megapixels. The selfie camera housed in the punch hole at the top can click 16MP photos while the main sensor’s video capabilities include clips up to 2K @ 30fps. Daylight images from the main camera are above average with a decent amount of detail, but at times the shots can look like an oil painting. Exposure management is satisfactory although the dynamic range across the frame is inconsistent. The ultra-wide sensor distorts the photo at the edges while having a smooth focusing plane. The macro sensor serves little purpose other than padding the camera system, although the depth sensor can help with decent output when it comes to portraits. In low light, shots lack clear detail with a lot of noise while AI-enabled Night Mode does very little to rectify shots, unless assisted by a ton of lighting. external. Camera capability is definitely an area where the Lava Agni 5G could be greatly improved.
The flagship act of the device is the MediaTek Dimensity 810 5G chipset which is responsible for the processing capabilities of the device. The Agni 5G is adept at handling heavy CPU tasks, such as running multiple apps at the same time, opening multiple Chrome tabs, or switching between apps. With 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, you are mostly covered in terms of memory requirements. GPU-intensive tasks like PUBG New State and BGMI can be set with medium graphics settings and the game can achieve stable 45 fps for an extended period of time.
From a software point of view, the Lava Agni 5G uses a skin similar to that of Android 11. It is free of bloatware and easy to use. The general design elements on icons, quick settings, drop-down menu, and themes, however, appear to have changed slightly. Unfortunately, the 5G capabilities of the phone cannot be tested because the necessary telecom infrastructure is not present in the country. The device’s 5,000mAh battery is quite adequate in terms of providing a full day of use with up to 40 percent charge remaining in the tank afterwards. Inside the box there is a 30W fast charger that recharges the battery in about 90 minutes.
The Lava Agni 5G is a bit cumbersome, and there might be questions as to whether Lava can deliver software updates in a timely manner. Most importantly, the optics of the phone definitely need some improvement. Therefore, it would be safe to say that at the same price you are better off with a POCO, Xiaomi or Realme device, some of which may offer a more complete experience. That said, the Lava Agni 5G certainly has a few pluses, including decent performance and a good amount of RAM. The battery can last over a day and its software is pretty much stock Android. If these are aspects that interest you, the Agni might be worth considering.
Editor’s rating: 3.5 / 5
- Decent performance
- Good battery life
- Near stock Android
- Cameras need to be improved
- Bulky design