Review: Coolpad Quattro 4G for MetroPCS
If you've never heard of Coolpad before, don't worry. Most Americans haven't. Coolpad is a Chinese device manufacturer, and the Quattro is the first smartphone from CoolPad to be offered state-side.
The front has a business-like appearance, with its deep black colors and conservative shape. Flip it over, though, and Coolpad has a unique battery cover protecting the Quattro's rear. It's a silver-colored piece of plastic that has lines and textures cross-crossing here and there at different angles. It's not a stunning achievement in design, but at least it's not a boring black battery cover.
The Quattro is a bit of a chunky thing. It's not too fat, but Coolpad could definitely learn a thing or two about slenderizing. It has a nice heft to it; not too heavy, but not too light, either. The rounded edges help it feel comfortable when gripped tightly. The materials are all plastics. They don't feel cheap, but they're not top-of-the-line polycarbonate, either. The Quattro has a solid feel, overall, and bests the quality of some Huawei and ZTE devices (also Chinese firms) that Phone Scoop has reviewed in recent months.
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The 4-inch display fills most of the front face, but there's still room for four capacitive buttons below the screen. The Quattro has the slightest of chins at the bottom, and a veil-thin lip that edges the entire front surface. (This protects the screen when placed face-down.)
All four edges of the device have buttons, ports, or controls of some sort. The volume toggle is on the left; the dedicated camera button is on the right; the power button and 3.5mm headset jack are on top; and the microUSB port is on the bottom. All the buttons have the same degree of travel and feedback, which is quite good. I like that the volume toggle, in particular, has a notch in the middle that makes it easy to determine which half of the button you are pressing.
The battery cover emcompasses the entire back surface of the Quattro. There's no notch for your thumbnail to remove the cover. Rather, the entire thing must be pressed in and slid down about 1 cm. The microSD card is accessible without removing the battery, but the battery must be pulled in order to access the SIM card.
To be quite honest, the Coolpad Quattro far surpassed my expectations with respect to build quality. It is a well-designed, well-built phone.
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Dec 3, 2012
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