Chinese device maker Coolpad has launched Note 3, a sub-Rs 10,000 smartphone that brings features like fingerprint sensor to the budget phone segment.
We went hands-on with the Coolpad Note 3 to find out if it lives up to the company’s promise of offering a feature packed device at an affordable price.
Read on to check out our first impressions of the phone…
Coolpad Note 3 sports a 5.5-inch display that offers vibrant colours and decent viewing angles. It offers HD (720x1280p) resolution, delivering pixel density of 267ppi. While the display doesn’t pack a lot of pixels (per inch), we didn’t notice a lot of pixilation. The panel offers good brightness levels and is very responsive to touch.
Coolpad Note 3 doesn’t really stand out amongst the crowd when it comes to design. Having said that it doesn’t look too shabby either. It’s got curved edges at the back and a soft matte finish that Coolpad calls Baby Skin.
As per the company the finish prevents staining. The back cover is removable and hides the sealed battery, a stacked micro-sim+microSD card and a secondary micro-sim card slot. The fingerprint sensor is also at the back, slightly recessed just below the 13MP camera lens and LED flash. The speaker grill is towards the bottom on the same side.
There’s a chrome finish rim around the front panel that reminds you of older Samsung phones. The front panel also sports some matte finish and features capacitive touch navigation keys that are not backlit. The display gives the illusion of being bezel-free till you turn on the backlight; you’ll notice black-coloured borders that don’t really look good but remember that it’s a budget device.
The power button is on the right edge while the volume rocker sits at the left. The 3.5mm headset jack and micro-USB port are placed at the top and bottom edges, respectively. The keys offer decent tactile feedback but don’t have much travel. The phone isn’t very large despite the big screen and isn’t difficult to use with one hand.
Coolpad Note 3 runs Android 5.1 Lollipop with the company’s Cool UI 6.0 skin running on top. It features unified app launcher-homescreen navigation and a highly customised interface that supports themes. It comes with customized system apps and some third party apps are also preloaded.
4. Hardware & performance
Coolpad Note 3 is powered by a 1.3GHz 64-bit Mediatek MT6753 octa-core processor, the phone is the only one in this price range to come with 3GB of RAM. It offers 16GB storage expandable up to 64GB via microSD card.
The Note 3 is also the only device available under Rs 10,000 to sport a fingerprint sensor at the back that supports authentication and gesture functions to launch apps and perform functions like activating the camera shutter.
In terms of connectivity, the dual-sim phone comes with support for 4G LTE, 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS. Both sim slots support 4G LTE. The Coolpad Note 3 is backed by a 3,000mAh battery.
In our brief time with the phone we did not experience any lag or stutter while opening and switching between apps and playing casual games. Setting up the fingerprint sensor was also very simple and we found it to be pretty responsive. We’ll have a detailed look at the performance in our full review.
Coolpad Note 3 has a 13MP rear camera with a 5 piece lens arrangement, f2.0 aperture and 1.4 micron pixel size. The camera is accompanied by an LED flash and supports full-HD 1080p video recording. The phone has a 5MP front camera for clicking selfies. In our short handson time with the phone, we observed that there was no shutter lag and the camera was able to quickly focus on objects. We’ll have a full verdict on the phone’s camera in our full review.
6. Price and rivals
Coolpad Note 3 is priced at Rs 8,999. It’s hard to find rivals in the same price range that offer features that match up to the Coolpad Note 3 but the YU Yureka, Lenovo K3 Note and the Asus Zenfone 2 Laser are capable phones you may consider. Also, the Note 3 will be available only via flash sale so it may be a little difficult to get your hands on one initially.
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