Coolpad Max Review

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Coolpad has been one of the Chinese brands doing better in the Indian market foir the last few months. Its Note 3 has been a hit in the online space and the company has built over it with the note 3 Lite and Plus. With the Coolpad Max, it is Coolpad’s first step into the sub 25k segment. There are a lot of good smartphones in this price range today, so, let’s see if the Max is worth it or not.

The Coolpad Max follows a metallic-angular unibody design that hasn’t been done by Coolpad but looks quite familiar otherwise. The front is covered with 2.5D glass, which curves just enough on the sides to give a smoother swiping experience. The 5.5-inch full HD screen has three physical touch keys — Menu, Home, and Back — on the bottom, and sensors, 5 MP front-facing camera and ear-speaker grille above it. One the left you have the separated volume rockers that are tactile same as the Power/ Lock key that’s on the right side. The sides are slightly chemfored towards the back. On the back, other than the two antenna lines, you have the 13 MP camera with an LED flash, fingerprint scanner below it followed by the Coolpad logo towards the bottom. At the bottom, you have the loudspeaker, microUSB port, while the 3m5mm headset jack sits at the top. The phone feels and looks pretty nice, obviously much premium than anything Coolpad has launched here before, but is quite heavy and definitely slippery for daily use.

The phone is equipped with a 5.5-inch full HD IPS LCD that doesn’t get a lot of smudges and fingerprints thanks to a coating over it. The screen itself has a high contrast level, usable under direct sunlight, though not the best screen at Rs. 24,99 for viewing HD content, but still not really bad.

Coolpad Max

Coming to the 13 MP (AF) camera, here are a few sample images:
The camera on the Coolpad Max takes detailed but average shots most of the times. It can oversharpen and capture grainy shots in low-light conditions. Though the camera app itself is smooth and convenient to use, result images aren’t very impressive.

The loudspeaker at the bottom isn’t much of a performer for videos or games andit might be something put you off especially since it’s at the bottom of the device. Call quality and network reception on the phone are on par and there wasn’t much of a downside. You can have 4G SIM cards on both the slots, but can only use 4G LTE from one at a time. The device has a 2,800 mAh abtetry unit that cannot be accessed by the user. I found its battery life to be the best thing about the Max. More often than not it lasted me a day with moderate to some high usage, and I didn’t really have to worry about this. Charging from 0 to full takes a little less than 2 hours of time (supports Quick Charge).

The Coolpad Max runs on Android 5.1.1 with CoolUI 8 on top. There’s Snapdragon 617 SoC inside (1.5 GHz octa-core processor + Adreno 405 GPU) along with 4 GB of RAM. I found the phone to heat up quite a lot on having played a few games or downloading or uploading something with the charging switched on. It heated up to such a level that you might want to keep it off for a few minutes, so that’s an issue here. Scrolling and swiping is a smooth experience, but the phone struggles a bit to handle graphic intensive games. CoolUi has taken a bit if a revamp — icons have a more Material Design look, are of similar size; grammatical mistakes in pop-up messages have been fixed. You now have Touchpal;s keyboard pre-loaded, which is much better than what was previously bundled. Pop-up messages now appear from the bottom and are in all White. The whole look and felt much nicer to me, but yes, a lot of work on the design front still needs to be done and it would have been had the phone been running Android 6.0 out of the box. On the other hand, memory management issue, which got fixed with the Note 3 Plus, seems to have made a comeback – casing sync issues and switching between apps, too. The fingerprint scanner seems same as the Coolpad Note Plus; meaning it is accurate quite fast, but yes, there are quicker fingerprint scanner mechanisms on phones out there today. Dual Space is one feature Coolpad highlights with the Max. What this does is give you a separate storage space and Homescreen set up for personal and work use. You can have some apps in one space and others in the other, and there’s also an option to have an app in both spaces. Similarly, storage is also partition in this manner where you can also share a file from one space to another.

All in all, the Coolpad Max leaves quite a few corners – while it has great battery life and premium look, it lacks in terms of competing with general performance, software updates that most competitors are better at in this price range.

Student. I also write a bit about phones, apps, and stuff here and there. Almost nobody.

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