Coolpad recently launched the “Cool 1 Dual “in India. The Cool 1 has got Dual Rear Camera setup which is a combination of two 13MP sensors with a f/2.0 aperture and Dual LED flash. The device has two variants to choose from i.e. 3GB/4GB ram with 32GB ROM each. Both are priced at INR 13,999.The 4GB variant is already available exclusively on Amazon starting from 5th January 2017, while the 3GB version will be available later for offline customers. The phone will compete against the likes the Moto G4 Plus, Xiaomi Mi Max and Xiaomi Note 3, to name a few. Does the Cool 1 Dual manage to strike a good balance between pricing and features? Let’s find out.

Design and Build

The device does have a sturdy and premium look. Although the design is not particularly original but it is still very appealing. The metal chassis is quite strong itself. Build quality is nice and placement of buttons and sensor is nice for ergonomic handling. The device is quite heavy, weighing around 173 grams and is not much sleek owing to its thickness of 8.2mm.The phone has a screen to body ratio of around 73.3% which is decent itself. The Cool 1 has also got an IR Blaster on the top next to the 3.5mm audio jack. There is a dual SIM tray on the tray which is not a hybrid SIM slot. At the bottom, the phone features a USB Type-C port along with speaker grille which gives it a premium look. There’s a mirror finished fingerprint sensor at the back which is quick to authenticate. The device has a metal back plate with plastic end caps at the top and bottom. The rear panel is non-removable. The dual camera is setup on a raised platform. All in all, we are pretty much satisfied with the build quality and design of Cool 1.

Software

Unlike other Coolpad phones which run Cool UI, Cool 1 runs EUI. The smartphone has Android 6.0 marshmallow out of the box which is expected to be upgraded to Android 7 (Nougat) soon. The current EUI version is 5.8. One of the very cool features of Cool 1 is the one-handed operation mode. The UI is snappy enough to use but it lacks a separate app drawer. It is complex for starters but after some time they will eventually get used to it. The UI features a recent menu which is quite similar to that of Apple’s control center, it has music control, quick settings, and shortcuts etc.

Display

The Cool 1 features a IPS Full HD 5.5” Display panel which has got a resolution of 1920×1080 pixels. The panel is still able to produce 403 pixel per inch, which leads to a crisp display. The color contrast is quite good and good colors are rendered. The brightness is decent enough and the adaptive brightness does its work quite well. The IPS has very good viewing angles. Even in heavy sunlight, the display doesn’t seem to wash away. The screen is well protected against scratches owing to Corning Gorilla Glass.

Performance

Coming to the performance of Cool 1, when we see the hardware specs the device sure does packs a punch. The monstrous Octa-core SoC and 4 GB Ram ensure that there are no slowdowns or delays when we try to launch any application, and it sure does handle multitasking very well due to 8 number of cores out of which 4 are A-72(for high demanding applications) and other are A-53(for low performance and battery saving). Even demanding games like Mortal Combat 5 and Asphalt 8 ran smoothly without any FPS drops. The Cool 1 features Snapdragon 652 SoC which is new and performs very effectively.

One of the main plus points of this phone is that there were absolutely no heating issues. The Media playback is good and the device is capable of producing decent loud sounds for alerts but the audio quality is not great. The combination of Adreno 510 and Snapdragon 652 along with 4 GB ram handled intensive applications with no hiccups. We were able to open more than 10 apps at the same time and still there was no lag and it handled everything smooth as cheese spread on a bagel. Battery With the 4000 mAH battery and snapdragon 652 SoC, the battery backup is awesome. With light – moderate usage, you can easily get a day and a half of standby time. Though the SD 652 supports fast charging, you don’t get a fast charger out of the box. The charging time is still very good. You can go 0-100 in about one and a half hour. Another interesting feature which the Cool 1 has is it’s reverse charging capabilities. With the 4000 mAH battery its has, this thing can work as a power bank, enabling you to charge small devices.

Camera

With growing trends of camera smartphones, companies are trying to incorporate good cameras in cheap smartphones. The Cool 1 is an example. It features a dual-camera setup at the back, each being a 13 MP sensor. One of them captures in RGB, and the other in monochrome. The software merges both images, resulting in a better-looking photo. With f/2.0 aperture, 4k and slow mo recording capabilities and dual-tone LED flash, the Cool 1 has everything a budget smartphone can have. There is also a 8 MP selfie shooter at the front.

The camera UI is easy to use and doesn’t require much of an effort. At the top, you get toggles to trigger the flash, SLR mode, HDR mode, switch cameras and add filters. At the bottom, it has buttons to switch on the night, video, photo, panorama, and pro modes.

In the default mode, the camera performed pretty impressively in outdoor conditions. The images had plenty of detail, color reproduction was good and f/2.0 aperture didn’t hurt either. Indoors, the photos were of typical budget camera type. They were grainy, noisy, but good enough for a camera of this price.

The unique selling point of this device is it’s SLR mode. This mode basically allows you to the so-called DSLR-like photos. You can make the object shine through the blurred out background. If you manage to have some patience, you can really get some good images with this camera. We have included one of what we captured here.

SLR Mode

The 8 MP selfie shooter is again, like any other smartphone in this segment. In fact it is better. With the beauty mode on, you can some really good selfies. The selfies came out to be well illuminated and smooth.

Conclusion

So the Coolpad Cool 1 performs well, given the price. It is indeed a well-built phone. With features like IR Blaster, Dual camera, and 4GB ram, the daily performance is very snappy. The lack of expandable storage and sound quality are the only major drawbacks of this device. Given a choice the 4GB ram variant (available exclusively online), it is quite a bang for the buck.

Coolpad Cool 1 Dual Review - The Best Budget Smartphone?
DisplayPerformanceDual Camera
Low Light PhotographsLack Of Expandable StorageLacks Fast Charging
8Bang For The Buck
Design7
Display8
Software7
Performance8
Battery9
Value For Money8
Camera8