Reviews

KAZAM Tornado 348 Phone Review

The Nokia Lumia 530, The IPhone 5c and the Kazam Tornado
The Nokia Lumia 530, The IPhone 5c and the Kazam Tornado

We had the luxury of testing the new KAZAM Tornado 348 – previously the worlds thinnest smart phone.

kazam_tornado_348_1

Who are Kazam?

Kazam formed in 2013, with a view to challenge the status quo of the “European mobile industry”. My knowledge of the European mobile phone industry isn’t great, but if Binatone, Alcatel and Telefunken are anything to go by, then the industry is certainly in need of a shake up if we’re to compete with the likes of South Korea’s Samsung, China’s ZTE and Apple from the USA.

Flagship

The Tornado 348 is Kazam’s flagship product. Visually, it resembles the iPhone 4, edged with champaign coloured metal border, housing the side volume and power buttons. The Tornado is available in white or black. It feels expensive – a luxury phone, but it doesn’t feel breakable like more recent additions to the iPhone family.

Screen

The Tornado 348 boasts an impressive, 4.8-inch 720p screen. It’s bright and colourful and watching video playback apps like Netflix and YouTube makes films and TV series look incredible. See below for a visual comparison for the sheer size of the screen against the iPhone 4.

The front and back of the phone are coated with Corning’s Gorilla Glass 3, which is “atomically formulated” to be tougher, more durable and damage resistant. When we first opened the phone, it had a temporary screen protector that gave the screen a duller, more rough feeling more akin to the kindle. Jay loved that, and would have kept the screen protector on, had it not “rolled up” when he tried to put it in his pocket. With the bare glass figure prints were more visible, and smears became more apparent.

 

Performance

The 1.7GHz octa-core processor and full-1GB of RAM meant that the phone handled multiple applications well, without slowing or lagging – much unlike Jay’s current Windows phone, or past experience with different iPhones. It was our first ever play with Android 4.4 (KitKat) and Jay liked many of the functions – however, it did not feel as intuitive as other mobile operating systems such as iOS and Windows 8 for mobile. Luckily there’s plenty of support online.

Storage

I would struggle to fill 16GB of internal storage – but I appreciate that other phones are able to store as much as 4 times the amount. I was a little gutted that the phone did not have a microSD card slot, but didn’t miss it once I got playing. Jay doesn’t keep music on his phone, so probably wouldn’t need that much storage either.

Twin Cameras

The 8MP rear camera, and 5MP front camera captured images well with sharp definition in all sorts of lighting conditions, despite having tiny lens. The best photos were taken in daylight, but the flash worked really well in low light and near-pitch-black conditions. If you’re like us though, and carry a digital camera around with you, you probably won’t use your phone camera too often. 8MP & 5MP is still impressive nonetheless.

Vital Statistics

kazam tornado thin

The phone weighs next to nothing, around 95g, so it won’t feel like you’re carrying a brick around in your pocket. This is a big selling point for my husband, who doesn’t like to feel too weighed down, but still likes much of his every day carry (EDC) to be in his pockets, and doesn’t want to feel like he’s carrying a lot.

Despite being thin (5.1mm) it is tall and wide (139.8mm x 67.5mm). It fit best in his shirt pocket, but did stick out the top still.  He found it impossible to sit down with the phone in his trouser pocket as it was just too big.

Sounds & Alerts

Jay keeps his phone on silent during office hours, so his one complaint was that there was no flashing light alert for notifications. We couldn’t work out how to make the screen light up with banners or pop up notifications either, so keeping the phone on vibrate was a reasonable, but not happy medium.

All sound on the phone was good – calls were clear, and sound from video, podcasts and apps was pretty crystal.

Protection

Kazam in its case.
Kazam in its case.

The phone came equipped with a nice rugged case, that offers some protection without compromising the size and performance of the phone. There was also a spare screen protector, but this was not like the afore mentioned matt “temporary one” and was more glossy. Application of the screen protector was almost impossible, as there was no plastic “smoother” to help push air bubbles out. I couldn’t find anything to help, and gave up in the end, wasting something that was supposed to help keep the touch screen scratch free.

Luckily, and this is a major selling point for any dad that has kids that like to play rough – Kazam offer an extended 3 year warranty as well as the Kazam “Pro” support package. This is perfect for those who also need their smartphone for work and offers Kazam Rescue (an app that allows support staff to take a look and assist) 3 free screen replacements, 1 complete refurbishment, extended battery warranty and cover for accidental damage.

Overall

We really liked the Tornado 348 by Kazam, and at £249 to buy the handset, it’s not at all unaffordable, and beats similar spec devices on price, whist retaining an upmarket aesthetic, without feeling like it’s going to break at the slightest knock.

kazam tornado 348 review

Hazel Newhouse

Hazel is a mum to 3 daughters and a son, she lives in Bedfordshire with her husband, kids and pets. Hazel has written for various publications, and regularly works alongside popular parenting and gardening brands.

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *