Monsters from Asia: the Coolpad Note 5 is easily the most affordable 4GB RAM phone we've ever seen


Let us ask you a dead-easy question - what's the absolute highest price you see yourself paying for a 4GB RAM phone? Done already? Okay, now let's do the opposite - think of the lowest but still a realistic price you'd be willing to spend on such a device. Is it $300? Is it $200? Well, if you went even lower and claimed something along the lines of roughly $160, then stop whatever you're doing and read carefully. 

One of the fairly large yet mostly unknown China-based smartphone makers, Coolpad, might have just redefined what we regard as exceptional value for money, or as we like to call it, top-notch 'bounce for the ounce'. Introducing the Coolpad Note 5, a device that was just announced and definitely lowers the pricing bar as low as possible. How low exactly? Well, we know for a fact that it will hardly ever be available in the West or the USA for that matter, but the phone will start at Rs 10,999 in India and will be exclusively available on Amazon India. How much is that in dollarydoos? Well, that'd be $165!


So, what do you get for that price? First of all, you get a metal phone that reminds us of Xiaomi's Redmi Note 3 design-wise, and is definitely intended as a rival to that one, all things considered. There's a fingerprint scanner at the back, as well as a rear-blasting loudspeaker - nothing exciting going on in the design department. Initially, the phone will come in two color versions - Royal Gold and Space Gray ones.

Hardware-wise, the true highlight of the phone are the 4 gigs of RAM we already mentioned. There's a Snapdragon 617 also running the show, as well as 32 gigs of native storage, but thanks to the hybrid SIM card slot it has, the Note 5 lets you either throw in a microSD card inside or another nanoSIM card. Oh, and did we mention that the phone boasts a 5.5-inch full HD, IPS LCD display? Well, it does. 

Additionally, the Indian equivalent of $165 gets us a 13MP rear camera with an f/2.2 aperture, a dual LED flash, and a 5-element lens.The 8MP selfie snapper at the front also features an f/2.2 aperture and has an LED flash sidekick as well. 

At the back, we find a large 4,010mAh battery that will probably keep the lights on for more than a day. Finally, we've got Android Marshmallow with Coolpad's own CoolUI 8.0 on top running the whole show. 

That's exactly what the fresh new Coolpad Note 5 is - a device that sounds like an excellent deal on paper, but sadly, getting one will most definitely require you resort to third-party online retailers. What's more, while the Coolpad Note 5 is an LTE-enabled device, we are not exactly sure what LTE bands it supports yet, so this should be one of your main concerns if you're willing to grab this affordable monster from Asia in the future.

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14 Comments

1. NonFanBoy

Posts: 180; Member since: May 28, 2015

Redmi Note 3 is a much better buy.

14. ShaikhJGI

Posts: 361; Member since: Jan 10, 2014

Agreed for the same price of $165 in India you get Note 3 with SD 650, 32GB Memory & expandable upto 128GB. But You will get 3GB ram only which I will readily sacrifice for SD 650.. :) Also you will get 16MP Cam with F2.0 in Redmi so hands down I will take that :)

2. Zylam

Posts: 1823; Member since: Oct 20, 2010

Why does only India/China get all these crazy inexpensive highend-ish phones? What's going on in their region? Why can't these Chinese starts up release a stock Android phone for those Sub 200 prices in the west?

3. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

We get cheap phones in the U.S. to, you just have to know where to look and most of them end up being an exclusive for some carrier. There isn't a huge variety but most of them that we do have are decent phones for the price.

4. trojan_horse

Posts: 5868; Member since: May 06, 2016

"There isn't a huge variety but most of them that we do have are decent phones for the price" But the West doesn't have phones with absolute ahigh-end specs for $250.

9. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

No one has a phone with absolute high-end specs for $250.

5. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

yeah, just like ZTE ZMax Pro.. its cheaper but still better than Redmi 3

6. splus

Posts: 166; Member since: Nov 26, 2011

Meh, it has an old and power inefficient S617 CPU. Xiaomi Note 3 has S650 and LeEco Le 2 has S652 for same money, and both feature better f2.0 camera than this one. The ONLY good thing about this phone over the competition is 4 GB of RAM. Nothing else.

10. xondk

Posts: 1904; Member since: Mar 25, 2014

here's the thing 'old and power inefficient' compared to what? i bet it could still do most things a high end model can in terms of games and performance, sure it won't have as good as performance, but lets face it, mobile apps and games aren't really graphical and cpu power hogs of late.

12. mahima

Posts: 743; Member since: Nov 20, 2014

compared to the competition at similar price, redmi note 3 and leEco(both with 3gb ram)

13. xondk

Posts: 1904; Member since: Mar 25, 2014

Well huh, true, my bad good eye.

7. ebubekir26

Posts: 337; Member since: Dec 21, 2012

Peter, you should add 'RAM' in the title, it's kind of misleading...

8. Settings

Posts: 2943; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

All of these RAMs and nothing still beats my wife's memory.

11. lakki369

Posts: 114; Member since: Apr 10, 2015

No so much of a monster when you compare this with Redmi Note 3 and LeEco Le2... For the same price you would get a real monster with much better processing power..!!

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