itel S12 Review: A Low Market Level Offering with an Excellent Selfie Camera

A 2017 report by online ecosystem of e-commerces, marketplaces and classifieds websites, Jumia indicated that affordable internet enabled smartphones have caused a spike in Uganda’s internet penetration.

The new itel S12 is one such smartphone that will give you a better experience both online and offline, at a very affordable price.

Infact, of all the three dual selfie phones that itel has released, the S12 offers good value at a budget price.

Removing the back cover, the device has a two simcard slots; (Micro and mini), an SD card slot and a red colored removable battery.

From its build, to its external features and later inner specifications, you will appreciate how far itel has gone to make the smartphone experience interesting.

After three weeks of extensive use and testing, here is a full review.

The device has a curved metal body with a smooth brushed texture which gives a firm grip to the user, a 5.0 inch IPS Display screen with 1280X720 pixels display resolution.

It has a special sunlight display feature in its settings which ensures good readability in bright sunlight and bears a dual selfie camera lens and a led flash at its fore, a single lens and a finger print sensor at its rear side.

The screen is further designed with a sight protection blue light filter in the display settings. This will block harmful blue light to reduce eye strain when viewing S12 in the dark and help you sleep well at night.

The device only has two dedicated keys on the right side; the power and the volume buttons. The left side is smooth.

Software and Memory
The itel S12 has a quad core processor with a processing speed of 1.3Ghz, a mediate SoC chipset and runs on Android OS 7 Nougat.

It has 1GB of RAM and 8GB of internal memory for storage of files which can be boosted by an SD card.

From the time we used, we would recommend you buy an SD card so as to store many files and documents while leaving internal space for downloaded apps.

Battery and Camera
The itel S12 has a removable 2400mAh Li-ion battery with a limited charge voltage of 4.35V.

We liked the fast charging feature about this device and with full battery, the batter can last up to 10 hours of continuous use.

Like its cousins, itel S32 and the itel S32 LTE, the device has a triple camera setup.

At the front, it has front camera lens (2MP and 5MP); one with a 63º normal view angle, which is made for solo selfie and the other one has a 86º wide angle, which is perfect for group selfie respectively.

Its 8MP rear camera, with Auto focus and the support of a LED flash can produce sharper images both during day and night.

It can capture pictures with blurred backgrounds and with live filters which are inbuilt within the device, image clarity can be improved further.

Finger Print Sensor
We like the responsiveness of the finger print sensor, located at the rear end of phone below the camera lens.

You don’t need to turn your neck while trying to unlock a phone, the scanner lies in line with where the index finger rests.

With one simple tap on the finger print sensor, you can take photo or video, answer phone call, quick launch apps and unlock the device.

The device allows one to add a maximum of 5 different fingerprints to make your smartphone experience truly personal.

Drop Test
After being dropped from a table’s height, the phone’s screen didn’t break. But for more safety, we recommend that you use the phone cover which comes with in the box pack.

Summary of full Specifications.

  1. Screen – 5.0 inch, 720×1280 pixels.
  2. Processor – Quad Core, 1.3 GHz speed
  3. Memory – 1GB RAM and 8GB ROM (can be upgraded with an SD card)
  4. Operating System – Android OS, v7.0 (Nougat)
  5. Camera – 2MP and 5MP from cameras, 8MP rear camera
  6. Connectivity – Wifi 802.11, Wifi Direct, Bluetooth, Wifi Hotspot, A-GPS, micro USB v2.0
  7. Battery – 2400mAh Li-ion removable battery

What we liked

  1. We liked the soft light while taking a selfie and the two lenses on the front side make the selfie experience worthwhile.
  2. We also liked the sunlight display feature and the sight protection blue light filter. These give a better experience while protecting one’s eyes.
  3. The speed at which the finger print sensor responds is impressive while the fact that it can recognize the finger in any angle comes as an added advantage.

What we didn’t like

  1. The Phone’s storage memory (8GB) is small especially for people who want to store music and videos on their phones. We recommend you aquire an SD card to boost the memory.
  2. The screen tends to become less responsive if you use it while charging. We would recommend you let the phone charge and then use it later.

The device is currently on sale and goes for between 285,000 UGX to 300,000 UGX.


Paul Mugume

Paul Mugume is a Tech writer with a bias toward startups, telcos, and digital marketing. Connect with Paul via. Twitter: Email:
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