Budget Android gets a facelift

The Huawei Ascend Y530 is one of the company's cheapest phones. It is out to win over a few first-time smartphone users, and those who aren't willing to shell out hundreds for a new mobile.

Its specs won't wow you, but Huawei has upped its design game to offer an all-round better-looking _phone_ than last year's models. We checked the _phone_ out at MWC 2014, where it was first shown-off.

Huawei Ascend Y530 – Design and Features

The Huawei Ascend Y530 is the follow-up to last year's Ascend G510. As the G series classes its act up with the Ascend G6, the Y series is graced with this new – also pretty classy – model.

Huawei has worked on a new shell for the Y530, and it's sleeker and slimmer than last year's phones. I looked at the white version, and was pleased with the aesthetic upgrades Huawei has made. Smooth curves and a neat two-tone screen surround give this phone a bit of style, where the G510 was a bit of a dumpy, style-free zone.

It's not a real beauty – the soft keys in particular let the side down with their pure prosaic-ness. But the Ascend Y530 looks better than the phone it follows.

Huawei Ascend Y530 – Screen

However, one of our most serious criticisms of the G510 remains – the screen. Its specs are OK for a budget model, at 4.5 inches and 854 x 480-pixel resolution. However, the display is highly reflective.

Screens lose reflectiveness by applying anti-reflective coatings and cutting out layers in the screen's architecture. To my eyes, the Huawei Ascend Y530 must have more layers than a Vienetta. And from an angle, you can clearly see that the actual display layer is significantly recessed from the surface.

This is something Huawei needs to work on – especially as the underlying panel seems to be a perfectly serviceable IPS display.

Huawei Ascend Y530 – Specs

Other specs don't see any real upgrade from last year's G510. You get an entry-level Snapdragon 200 MSM8210 dual-core 1.2GHz processor, 512MB of RAM and 4GB internal storage. This is not a supremely fast phone, and if you like your apps and games you should consider that higher-performance phones like the Motorola Moto G aren't all that much more expensive these days.

The Y530's rear camera uses a 5-megapixel sensor with flash while the front one has a very basic VGA sensor.

First Impressions

The Huawei Ascend Y530 looks a good deal better than last year's low-cost Huawei phones. However, screen and performance issues are still present so make sure you're buying at the right price as seems to be a lesser phone than something like the Motorola Moto G or Nokia Lumia 520.

Next, check out our round-up of the best mobile phones