|Cherry Mobile Ultra Unboxing, Preview And Initial Impression|
It was November last year when Cherry Mobile released their first ever 4G-capable phone, the W900 LTE. However, it was a bit expensive back then for Php11,499 which was the major hindrance to its success.
The price of the W900 at that time is hard to swallow for local consumers, especially that global brands like HTC and Sony have something similar to offer.
Lesson learned from them and they used that experience to come back stronger with their second LTE smartphone - the Cherry Mobile Ultra. It was released late last month and sports a 5-inch HD screen powered by a 1.2GHz quad-core Qualcomm MSM8926 processor coupled with 1GB of RAM.
This chipset is the same thing under the hood of LG G2 Mini LTE and Galaxy Grand 2. The main difference with the two Korean giants offering is the price, the Ultra will only cost you Php8,999 which is almost half of the global competitor's SRP.
The retail package consists of the unit, 2000mAh battery, charger, USB cable, wired headset and user's manual. The screen is not scratch-resistant so better install it with plastic film for protection.
The bezels are black, but there is about one centimeter white portion at the lower part of the device's front. At the upper left portion are the hidden sensors followed by the earpiece grill then the secondary camera. Below the screen you will find the capacitive menu, home and back keys, they light up when pressed.
The back is resistant to fingerprints and smudges, here you can find the 13MP main camera, flanked by an LED flash to its right. The loudspeaker grill is located just below the Cherry Mobile logo.
|Battery, micro SD and micro SIM slots|
Removing the back cover will reveal the battery, the micro SD slot and the micro SIM slot.
The 3.5mm audio jack is located at the top of the device while the micro USB port along with the microphone pinhole are both located at the bottom.
On the left side, we have the volume controls while on the right side you can find the power/lock key.
The overall design is quite similar to other CM phones like the Titan Pro, bar type with some rounded edges. It is made of mostly plastic, but there is a bit heft on it, about 162 grams when I placed it on a weighing scale.
In terms of build quality it is OK, the hardware controls are tactile and you would not hear any creaks while using it. Handling wise, it fits comfortably in my one hand, but I do recommend you use both of your hands for most tasks since the back plate is a bit slippery.
The Ultra has a 5-inch HD (1280x720) display, it is made of IPS panel which gives you great viewing angles on all sides. Cherry Mobile did not say if it is OGS, but the screen is pretty much near the glass surface. It is multi-touch which supports up to 5 fingers.
This LTE phablet has several bunches of sensors which includes accelerometer, light, orientation, proximity, gyroscope, sound and magnetic. All of them work fine when tested using Android Sensor Box as well in actual usage, e.g. light sensor for auto brightness.
|Antutu - 17467|
|Quadrant - 8335|
|NenaMark2 - 56.9 fps|
|Vellamo HTML - 1669 & Metal - 553|
The Qualcomm MSM8926 inside the CM Ultra has 1.2GHz quad-core Cortex-A7 CPU, Adreno 305 GPU and based on 28nm semiconductor manufacturing process. I run the usual benchmarks I used during review and surprisingly, it scored pretty high in Quadrant, higher than any MediaTek MT6589/MT6582 device.
The Cherry Mobile Ultra is the first Snapdragon 400 phone from local mobile brand, it is also my first device to have that chipset. It has a nice sets of specifications plus LTE capability at a very reasonable price of just Php8,999.
- LTE B1(2100)/B3(1800)/B7(2600)/B20(800)
- 5-inch HD (1280x720) IPS capacitive touchscreen display
- Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, Upgradable to Android 4.4 KitKat
- 1.2GHz Quad Core Cortex-A7 CPU, Adreno 305 GPU, Qualcomm MSM8926 Snapdragon 400 chipset
- 1GB of RAM
- 8GB internal, expandable up to 64GB via microSD
- 13MP auto focus main camera with LED Flash,
- 5MP secondary camera
- 1080p video recording
- Multimedia Player
- FM Radio
- 3.5 Audio Jack
- GPS with A-GPS support
- WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, WiFi Direct, Wi-Fi Hotspot
- Micro USB 2.0
- Bluetooth v4.0
- Sensors: Accelerometer, Gyroscope, Light, Proximity, Magnetic
- 2000mAh battery
- Price: Php8,999