Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review: Lucky Eight

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2

INTRODUCTION:

When MediaTek released its true octa-core chipset, we all know that it would only take a matter of months before we see local mobile brands to adapt this kind of SoC and last February 4, Cherry Mobile announced their first ever MT6592 device - the Cosmos Z2.

I was lucky to be one of the first owners of the Cherry Mobile's flagship, actually really lucky because I won it via raffle during their launching event. It sports a 5-inch full HD touchscreen display powered by a 1.7GHz octa-core processor coupled with 2GB of RAM.

It currently runs on Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean, but CM promised that they will bring the latest iteration of Android to the Cosmos Z2 this month. If their schedule is intact, we might have this software update in a few days time.

For unboxing, hardware, design, display, sensors and benchmarks, please kindly click the link below.

>>Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Unboxing And Initial Impression
 

INTERFACE:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review E-warranty
E-warranty

Like most of the Cherry Mobile Android devices, the Z2 will prompt you to do the e-warranty registration upon first boot, but you can skip anytime and do it at a later time. This process gives you an additional 3 months warranty on top of the 12-month guarantee which gives you a total of 15-month assurance.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Lockscreen
Lockscreen

When I first got hold of this phone during the "We Are On Fire" event, I was amazed with the new interface CM is implementing. The lockscreen is composed of two arcs with a shape similar to an extended letter C, you need to press the inner arc and drag it to any direction to unlock the device.

One thing I missed though is the ability to go directly to a message or missed call from the lockscreen. The Z2 does NOT support it, if you drag the notification on the arcs, it will simply unlock your phone.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Homescreen
Homescreen

The homescreen is pretty much the same with other Android phones, except for the icons. There are five shortcuts docked at the bottom of the screen, the middle one always opens the app drawer while the four remaining shortcuts can be customized depending on your taste.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Apps, Widgets and Wallpaper
Apps, Widgets and Wallpaper

The homescreen supports multiple pages, minimum of 3 and maximum of 9. To add or remove a page, simply press and hold the homescreen and you will see something similar on the above screenshots. Here, you can add your favorite apps and widgets as well as change the type of wallpaper.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Default Apps
Default Apps

There are 41 applications installed by default, they are arranged alphabetically with 4x5 layout. There is no means to re-arrange them, but there is an option to hide, just press menu while in the app drawer and select Hide Application. Sadly, none can be uninstalled without the root access.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Notification Area and Quick Toggle Settings
Notification Area and Quick Toggle Settings

The notification area is accessible by swiping one finger from the top of the screen while you need to fingers to access the quick toggle settings. The former displays any kind of notification and the option/s on how you can interact with it. Example, a missed call gives you the ability to return the call or send a message right from the notification panel. The latter, gives you the convenience of turning on or off some of the most commonly used settings with just one push.


DUAL SIM FUNCTIONALITY:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review SIM Management
SIM Management

The Z2 has dual SIM slots, one for regular and one for micro. If you are using two SIM cards, you can manage them by going to Settings>All>SIM Management. Here, you can disable or enable each SIM and change the default settings for voice call, messaging and data connection.


TELEPHONY:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Telephony
Telephony

The dial pad supports smart dialing, which means it can detect and match contacts based on your inputs. If you did not choose your default SIM for calling, it will ask you which SIM you will use for every call you will make.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Incoming Call
Incoming Call

If you have an incoming call, the name, number and picture of the caller will be displayed on the screen as well as in which SIM the call is coming. A handset icon inside the circle is the starting point on how you can respond from a call, swiping it left will cancel the call, doing the opposite will answer it while dragging it upward gives you the option to cancel the call with a message.

The call quality is good enough, you can hear both ends clearly even in a loud environment.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Call Log
Call Log

The call log is where you can find all your calls made in and out from your phone. You can filter from which SIM and the type of calls you want to be displayed. If you have a long list of logs, you can use the search function found at the lower left corner of the screen.


PHONEBOOK:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Contacts
Contacts
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Groups
Groups

The phonebook has two main components, the contacts and groups, both are listed alphabetically. If you have a long list, you can use the scroll bar on the right side or use the search option on the lower right corner to easily find the one you are looking.

A single contact can hold as much information you want, name, number, email, address, etc. The groups on the other hand, gives you the option to organize your contacts based on their classification. You can choose which account you want to be displayed, in the same manner, creating a new one will also give you the option on which account you want it to be saved.


MESSAGING:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Messaging
Messaging

By default,  a message box will pop-up on the screen whenever you have a new one, you can turn off this option by accessing the settings. The messages are arranged alphabetically based on the latest sent/received item. In a particular conversation, your message will appear on the right side while his/her message is on the left. Any message will have a date stamped plus the SIM card used where it was transmitted.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review New Message
New Message

When you want to create a new message, simply press the "+" icon. The recipient input allows you to enter either name or number, to send a message to multiple persons, just include a semi-colon after each contact. You can also attach almost anything on a message by pressing the attachment icon located just above the letter "Q" and once you do, it will be converted to MMS.


EMAIL:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Email
Email

For people who usually checks email on the go, you can use the generic email app or the Gmail app. Both email clients are very useful and easy to setup, all you need is just your username and password. Aside from the usual send/receive function, they can also contain multiple accounts, customize their sync intervals, include email signature and much more.


MULTIMEDIA:

Gallery:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Gallery
Gallery

The gallery displays all the photos and videos on your device, you can filter it based on albums, locations or times. You can also choose from either filmstrip or grid view when you want to check your collections, or use the slideshow functions to display pictures automatically.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Gallery Options
Gallery Options
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Photo Editor
Photo Editor

Viewing a single photo or video gives you lots of options, you can share it locally via Bluetooth or online using your social accounts like Facebook and Twitter. If you want to enhance any picture from the gallery, you can use the edit functions which will bring up the Photo Editor app which is hidden from the app drawer.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Video Trim
Video Trim
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Movie Studio
Movie Studio

You can also use the trim function in order to remove unwanted parts from the beginning or the end of your video. If you want to do more than that, you can use the Movie Studio application.

Video Player:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Video Player
Video Player

The video player automatically locates all the supported files on your device and display them accordingly, including their title, thumbnail, length and file size. It can decode 1080p videos of almost any file type, .avi, .3gp, .mp4, .flv and .mkv, however those with AC3 audio will be played without a sound.

Watching your favorite movie or TV series is very entertaining because of its full HD screen and nice audio output through its loudspeaker.

Music Player:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Music Player
Music Player

The music player will list all the audio files available from your device, you can view them by artist, albums, songs or playlist. The interface is simple, the album art is displayed at the upper portion followed by its artist, albums and its title then the controls. The music will continue to run on the background after you minimize the player, a small player will be available in the notification area to control it.

FM Radio:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review FM Radio
FM Radio

The FM radio requires a wired headset to work, it searches all the available stations or you can do it manually. The broadcast can be played on through the headset or through the loud speaker, there is also a record function to save your favorite music.

Camera and Video:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Camera and Video
Camera and Video

The camera department includes a BSI 18MP shooter on the back and an 8MP in the front. I do not know if this is just interpolated resolution or the actual sensor capability. Until now, I still cannot find a way on how to determine the actual sensor size, its resolution and its manufacturer, hopefully someone will help me.

The video and camera share the same interface, to capture a video simply use the record button on the lower right corner, to capture a photo press the shutter key found at the lower-middle part. The upper right corner is for the settings, followed by the flash options, then the shooting modes and lastly the front/rear camera toggle.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Camera Object Tracking
Camera Object Tracking

One cool function of the camera is the object tracking, when you press and hold the screen on a certain subject, it will focus on that subject even if it moves or you do.

The video details are as follows:

Quality: Fine - 1920x1080 at 25fps
Audio -  mp4a: MPEG-4 AAC LC 24000Hz  128 kb/s tot , stereo (2/0)
Video - avc1 H.264/MPEG-4 AVC

Quality: High - 1280x720 at 25fps
Audio -  mp4a: MPEG-4 AAC LC 48000Hz  128 kb/s tot , stereo (2/0)
Video - avc1 H.264/MPEG-4 AVC

Quality: Medium - 640x480 at 25fps
Audio -  mp4a: MPEG-4 AAC LC 48000Hz  128 kb/s tot , stereo (2/0)
Video - avc1 H.264/MPEG-4 AVC

Quality: Low - 176x144 at 25fps
Audio -  mp4a: MPEG-4 AAC LC 48000Hz  64 kb/s tot , stereo (2/0)
Video - avc1 H.264/MPEG-4 AVC

Sample Shots:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Sample Shot - 18MP
18MP
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Sample Shot - 13MP
13MP
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Sample Shot - 8MP
8MP
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Sample Shot - Before Video Capture
Before Video Capture
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Sample Shot - Simultaneous
Simultaneous
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Sample Shot - Without Flash
Without Flash
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Sample Shot - With Flash
With Flash
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Sample Shot - Closeup
Closeup

In general, the camera can produce good quality photos both when there is a good lighting condition and when the LED flash is used. However, the camera has a hard time focusing on a subject near it, I tried using auto mode, auto detect scenes and touch to focus, but the result is still the same, blurred image same as above.

Browser:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Browser
Browser
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Opera Mini
Opera Mini

There are two browsers installed in the Z2, the stock Android and the Opera Mini. The websites load quickly, even those pages with heavy scripting and have lots of images. The texts can be read clearly even if you are viewing the page on its desktop version.

Gaming:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Asphalt 7
Asphalt 7
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Modern Combat 4
Modern Combat 4

The octa-core processor, mali-450 GPU and the 2GB RAM combination, is more than sufficient to run high definition games like Asphalt 7 and Modern Combat 4 smoothly and lag free.


SETTINGS and SPECIAL FUNCTIONS:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Settings and Special Functions
Settings and Special Functions

The settings are grouped into 3 tabs - General, Special Functions and All. The special functions allow you to enable features like flip to mute (when somebody is calling, just put your phone face down and it will mute the ringtone,) glove mode, smart ring and smart wake.

The last function will give you the ability to wake up the phone by drawing a letter on the screen. You can also open the camera by swiping upward, access the notification by swiping downward while the left/right swipe can switch the songs being played by the music player.


CONNECTIVITY:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review 3G and Tethering
3G and Tethering

This octa-core phablet supports dual 3G, it means you can assign on which SIM card you want to have a high speed mobile data connectivity which you can share via WiFi hotspot, USB or Bluetooth tethering.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Dual Band WiFi
Dual Band WiFi

The Z2 uses dual band (2.4GHz & 5GHz) Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, it means that you can do two different things at the same time via WiFi. For example, you can connect to the internet and view your phone's content on your TV (via wireless display) at the same time. The signal reception is quite good on both bands.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review USB Connection and OTG
USB Connection and OTG

When you connect it to your computer, it will ask you which type of connection you want - USB storage, MTP, etc. The micro USB port also supports OTG functions, external flash drive and wireless mouse worked OK during the review. The Bluetooth 4.0 and 3.5mm audio jack complete the connectivity list.


PRODUCTIVITY:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Calculator
Calculator
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Calendar
Calendar
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Clock
Clock
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review File Manager
File Manager
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Sound Recorder
Sound Recorder
Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review To Do
To Do

The productivity and organizing tools are all stock Android apps, they may be different in appearance, but they have the same functions with those found on other Android smartphones. What is missing though is the document viewer/editor app, but you can simply download them for free on the Play Store.


GPS:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review GPS
GPS

The Z2 comes with a GPS receiver with A-GPS, the easiest way to turn it on is via the quick toggle settings. I got a satellite in almost an instant, which is by far one of the fastest connection I had and it is pretty accurate too.


BATTERY:

I used it as my primary driver for about two weeks and the battery is sufficient enough to last for a day. My usage pattern includes - data connection always on, 4 email accounts with 15-minute sync intervals, a few calls, several texts and about 30 minutes of web browsing.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Battery Stats - Video Playback
Video Playback

During our video playback test, it lasted 3 hours and 24 minutes before the battery percentage drops from 100% to 15%.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Battery Stats - HD Gaming
HD Gaming

On HD gaming test, it just lasted 2 hours and 3 minutes before the 15% battery warning popped out.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Battery Stats - Charging Time
Charging Time

Charging the battery from 15% (phone is turned on) using the stock 1000mAh charger, took 2 hours and 15 minutes while charging from a dead battery (phone turned off) took 2 hours and 19 minutes.

The 2000mAh battery might seems to be small for an octa-core device with a full HD display, but it is quite enough for normal usage. However, if you are planning to use it as your gaming and movie player companion, you better have a powerbank.


CHERRY MOBILE APPS:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review OTA
OTA

The Z2 has an app for over the air software update, it means that you do not need to go to the service center for updating your device. Hopefully, Cherry Mobile will use this option when they rollout the Android 4.4 KitKat update.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Cherry Fun Club
Cherry Fun Club

The Fun Club is where you can subscribe for local news, entertainment, etc. via SMS for a minimum fee of Php2.50 per instance.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Cherry Play
Cherry Play

The Cherry Play is the company's own version of Google Play, you can earn "Gollar" after installing free applications, which in turn can be use to purchase paid apps in the future.


OTHERS:

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review NQ Security
NQ Security

The NQ Mobile Security, protects your phone from virus, malware, spam, etc. Aside from that, you can also enable the anti-theft feature to safeguard your phone (and its data) when you lost it.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Pinoy App Shop
Pinoy App Shop

The Pinoy App Shop is another 3rd party App store.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Torch
Torch

The torch application uses the LED as a flashlight, there is also an "SOS" option available.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Google Apps
Google Apps

All the usual Google applications are pre-installed, except for the Google+.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review KakaoTalk
KakaoTalk

The KakaoTalk apps, is also installed by default, which makes me believe that Cherry Mobile made a deal with them.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review News and Weather
News and Weather

The news and weather app is also present, however, it cannot find your location properly. I set the app to use my location, I am in NCR but it fetches weather data from Romblon. The news are also NOT localize, contents are coming from somewhere.

Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 Review Backup and Restore
Backup and Restore

The backup and restore app needs an inserted SD card on your phone to work. It allows you to backup personal data and applications, then saved it to your SD card for future use.


CONCLUSION:

The Cherry Mobile Cosmos Z2 is definitely the best local flagship smartphone you can find to date. The combination of killer specs, premium look and thin profile makes it outstanding both inside and out.

PROS:

Octa-core chipset
Full HD display
2GB of RAM
Thin profile

CONS:

Camera unable to focus on a near subject

Specifications:

  • Dual SIM , Dual Standby
  • Quad Band GSM/EDGE/GPRS, Dual Band HSPA+
  • 5.0" capacitive Full HD IPS OGS touchscreen display (1920x1080), Asahi Dragontrail Glass Protection
  • Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean, upgradable to Android 4.4 Kit Kat
  • 1.7GHz Octa Core CPU, 700MHz Mali-450MP GPU, MediaTek MT6592 chipset
  • 2GB of RAM
  • 16GB internal storage (13.41GB available), expandable up to 64GB via micro SD
  • 18MP auto focus BSI main camera with LED Flash, 1080p Video Recording @ 30fps
  • 8MP secondary camera
  • GPS with A-GPS
  • WiFi 802.11 b/g/n Dual Band 2.4GHz/5GHz, WiFi Direct, WiFi Hotspot, Miracast
  • 3.5 Audio Jack
  • Stereo FM Radio
  • Multi Media Player
  • Micro USB 2.0 with OTG support
  • Bluetooth v4.0
  • Sensors: Accelerometer, Light, Proximity, Sound, Magnetic, Gravity, Gyroscope
  • Special Functions: Flip to mute, Glove mode, Smart ring, Smart wake
  • 2000mAh Battery
  • Price: Php12,999

17 comments:

  1. please kindly visit the link stated just above the interface section...
    thanks a lot

    ReplyDelete
  2. Elfeds Elevazo IIIMarch 12, 2014 at 11:55 AM

    18MP BSI Camera isn't AutoFocus??

    ReplyDelete
  3. auto focus po...

    ReplyDelete
  4. Elfeds Elevazo IIIMarch 13, 2014 at 12:20 PM

    eh bakit po hindi nya mafocus ung 5peso coin??

    ReplyDelete
  5. Congratulations on your very comprehensive review, Anjie! Kudos to TeknoGadyet.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks a lot Sir Gian of GadgetPilipinas

    ReplyDelete
  7. Very nice review maam, im actually waiting for a review like this and i am planning to buy a new one... thanks a lot

    ReplyDelete
  8. That's not how cameras work. It's not about the auto-focus, it's about the minimum shooting distance it can shoot. Just like DSLR lenses, cameras require specific optics to achieve what you call the Macro effect, which means shooting a subject closer than less a foot from the sensor of the camera.

    ReplyDelete
  9. hey:) can you try using the 18 mp main camera on beauty face mode because mine makes the face blurry with some green colored lines.. but the front cam beauty face mode does not have this problem:)

    ReplyDelete
  10. hi just wondering how to fix the fb problem kasi nag auto close sya every 10 seconds e

    ReplyDelete
  11. Ganyan din problema ng cosmos z2 ko, nag auto close ang fb. Any solutions po?

    ReplyDelete
  12. ako dn.. hindi ko magamit un fb.. nfoforce close lage.. ilan beses ko na nireinstall gnun pdin..:(

    ReplyDelete
  13. Mas maganda parin yung Telego W980 ko kahit Quadcore 8MP maganda parin ang takbo hahahaha

    ReplyDelete
  14. Pwede naman mag autofocus kahit ganun kalapit ang distance. ZzZzz Pangit lang talaga ang cam nya kasi kahit 8MP dapat parang HD na ang labas na eh 18 na yan nakakahira parin. ZZZz

    ReplyDelete

Giveaway

___________________________________________
If you want to win an EXCITING GADGET/PRIZE just visit TeknoGadyet Giveaway section.
a Rafflecopter giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway