The Cosmos series from Cherry Mobile marks a very huge step for the company as it is very ambitious. We put the Cosmos S under the test. With a quad-core processor, a 5-inch 720p display, an 18MP camera, a 2,500mAh battery & Android 4.2 packed in a 6.98mm thin body, will it deliver?
To see what comes in the package, here’s our unboxing video:
Design and Construction
The Cosmos S is without a doubt a beautifully crafted device. It feels entirely premium & it even gives you an impression that it’s priced expensively, even when it’s not.
“People I handed the Cosmos S to wanted it from the moment they held it.”
People I handed the Cosmos S to wanted it from the moment they held it. Their only complaint with the build was the poorly printed 18MP label on the back, and they wanted a case to go along with it from day one.
On top you’ll find the 3.5mm audio jack and the micro USB port. On the left, you have the poorly placed volume rocker & the power button. Over to the right, you’ll find a bulging mini SIM card slot that you’ll mistake for the volume very often.
Overall, this is one thin phone that packs quite a punch – a solid and quite hefty one for that matter. All that it probably took was the removal of dual SIM capabilities and a micro SD card slot.
It’s true that its bigger brother, the Cosmos Z, packs the first 1080p display for the local market, but that doesn’t mean the rest of the Cosmos suck.
5-inches of 720p HD IPS goodness comes into play with the Cosmos S. It’s big, yes, but you might ignore that for the moment when you see it; it’s gorgeous beyond measure. At the lowest brightness level, it could outclass several IPS displays that I know of, and the colors just pop.
Go ahead; you won’t find any problems here, from viewing angles to responsiveness. A pixel density of 294ppi is also enough for most users, so what else are you looking for?
OS, Apps and UI
Android 4.2 Jellybean runs the show here, and glad to say it doesn’t run on top of any skin. The UI is top down vanilla Android, safe for the semi-transparent app drawer, a new wallpaper, a modified camera interface and some usual CM apps.
I wouldn’t have clapped my hands for this; I would have given CM a standing ovation – the live wallpaper is one of the best I’ve seen (including the image selections; I love how they showcase parts of the Philippines), everything felt very clean, and to be honest things would have been perfect if it weren’t for some hardware slow downs and still some CM bloatware. Nevertheless, it’s getting a lot better.
Sad to say though, CM is still inconsistent with its UI implementation. While the Cosmos S has to be applauded for this, the Cosmos X features different icons & some minor changes. It would have been a lot better if CM had finally decided on what road to take.
Multimedia & Camera
The speakers on the Cosmos S are pretty weak – to the extent that it became a deal breaker for some. On the other hand, video playback is a wonder on this 5-inch IPS display. We didn’t encounter any problems with playing any of our movies & recordings.
Now as for the camera, an 18 megapixel BSI sensor sounds so pleasing to the ears. However, just like how most people would have guessed – it’s basically an 18MP camera that takes 8MP-like images. It’s very obvious that all of the images were just stretched.
There certainly is a lot of processing going on behind the photos, as even the viewfinder is slow. In great lighting, expect sharp photos and less noise, while if you’re shooting in low-light, it’s a trade-off; you’re going to get bright shots, but extremely muddy & noisy ones for that matter. You won’t need to worry about auto-focus & everything else – they work very well.
For video recording purposes, it’s almost the same story, but you’re going to get less light. Also, expect a few dropped frames from time to time.
Performance & Battery Life
Powered by 1.5GHz quad-core CPU, the Cosmos S still stutters in day to day use, but glad to say it’s a lot better than CM’s past phones. The 1GB RAM helps a lot here, just as always, but what makes this faster than CM’s other phones is probably the lighter UI. Going through most of the basic stuff is a breeze.
- Antutu Benchmark – 16,662
- Quadrant Standard – 4,846
- Nenamark 2 – 50.6
Call Quality & Battery
We took a few calls on the Cosmos S, and everything sounded decent. It’s not entirely crisp & clear, but it wasn’t that bad and muffled either. To add, we didn’t experience inconveniences when connecting to wireless networks as well.
The Cosmos S packs the largest battery among its other space siblings; it’s non-removable at 2,500mAh. During our battery test (looping video at 50% brightness & 50% volume), we managed to squeeze out approximately 6 hours of video playback, which is very impressive for a phone this thin & of this caliber.
Cherry Mobile has made a lot compromises for the Cosmos S; it lacks dual-SIM capabilities, it has no micro SD card slot & it doesn’t have a removable battery. But even with that said, CM has managed to create an amazing device – one that has exceeded our expectations.
The Cosmos S packs a beautiful display, a solid build, a long-lasting battery & decent internals into one thin desirable design. CM’s hardware & software combinations are getting there, and while there are indeed drawbacks, they’re not much to rant about. After all, you’re paying an affordable price to go along with all of that.
Cherry Mobile Cosmos S specs:
5-inch IPS LCD 720 x 1280 HD display
1.5GHz quad-core processor
16GB internal storage
18MP BSI camera with LED flash
8MP BSI front-facing
Android 4.2 Jellybean
What we liked about it:
- Amazing display
- Affordable price tag
- Premium feel
- Extremely thin
- Improving CM Android experience
- Good low-light camera
What we didn’t like about it:
- Odd button layout
- Weak speakers
- Sub-par video recording capabilities
- Muddy image captures