Chinese smartphone maker Coolpad entered the Indian market in May with two phones, in partnership with another Chinese brand Dazen. However, its latest Android smartphone, the Coolpad Note 3, is a solo effort priced at 8,999. It offers a big display, and a cool fingerprint-scanner feature. But does this mean it is better than the Lenovo K3 Note ( 9,999) and the YU Yureka Plus ( 8,999)?

Design: well built and stylish

Design is the strong point of most Chinese smartphone makers and Coolpad is no exception. Even though it weighs 168g and is 9.3mm thick, it doesn’t feel unwieldy. That is because of the soft matte finish on the back panel which offers a better grip than a glossy or glass finish would, and nicely rounded edges. The fingerprint scanner is placed on the back panel, inside a square-shaped metal frame.

The K3 Note has a slab-like appearance in comparison, but it has a slight advantage over the Coolpad Note 3 in terms of thickness (8mm) and weight (150g). The Yureka Plus also has ordinary looks in comparison to the Coolpad phone, but matches it all the way in terms of ergonomics. It weighs 155g and is 8.5mm thick. The Coolpad Note 3 is the best-looking of the three. Neither the K3 Note nor the Yureka Plus has a fingerprint scanner.

Display: big but not sharp enough

Software: colourful but complicated

The K3 Note also runs a custom UI, but it looks much more sophisticated than the Cool UI. The Yureka Plus has an edge over both of them, though, as it runs the plain Android interface.

Camera: average, struggles indoor

Performance: smooth but inconsistent

Powered by MediaTek’s 64-bit octa-core processor, and paired with 3 GB RAM, the Coolpad Note 3 handled apps and games such as Real Racing 3 with ease. However, we noticed a slight lag while switching between apps and heating up on the back panel during gaming. It is a dual-SIM device with 4G network in both SIMs. With 16 GB internal storage, and a slot for a microSD card, the storage is well taken care of. The Coolpad Note 3 has a large but inconsistent 3,000 mAh battery. It lasts a full day, but gaming drains the battery considerably faster. While the Yureka Plus had to be charged twice a day, the K3 Note’s battery life is on a par with the Note 3’s.

Verdict

The Coolpad Note 3’s highlights are its good looks, the fingerprint scanner to secure data on the phone, and the big screen. But, if you don’t take the fingerprint scanner into account, the Lenovo K3 Note does everything else better, and even the Yu Yureka does a few things better. All in all, we really cannot recommend the Note over its two rivals, even though it is a rather competent smartphone.

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