With most people these days completely immersed in their smartphones – many without any other computing device – it’s completely understandable that there’s a huge demand for devices with large screens. Work tool, portable console, mini cinema, a mobile today fills these roles at the same time. However, there are a few who would like to buy a compact model in this phablet dump, the Cubot Pocket is for them. The brand claims that despite its size, this 4-inch, 12.5mm mini cell phone fits in the palm of your hand but has all the essential functions of a modern smartphone… That’s what we’re going to check in this test with the observation of the design, the characteristics and the implementation of the practical tests.
- Cubot Pocket: Packaging, accessories and design
- Cubot Pocket: Design
- Cubot Pocket: Features
- Cubot Pocket: Practical test
- Cubot Pocket: The FAQ
- Cubot Pocket: Our opinion
Cubot Pocket: Packaging, accessories and design
This Cubot Pocket arrives in a small, no-frills box. The design is sober, with a color, the name of the model and the brand logo and on the back, the characteristics of the product, as is often done with the competition.
Once opened, the packaging contains the phone well, as well as two slots reserved for documentation and accessories.
A protective shell is provided and pre-installed on the phone as well as a screen protector.
On the reading side, you will find a quick guide, a certification leaflet and a thank you for buying the phone.
Finally, in terms of accessories, note the presence of a charger, which is now rather rare, especially in this price range (≃ 150 €). A USB-A to USB-C cable is also present, as well as a rod for extracting the dual SIM / MicroSD drawer.
Cubot Pocket: Design
Let’s start with the main feature that interests us the most, its size. The Cubot Pocket is a phone that has a 4 inch screen. So it’s a really compact phone, closer to an iPhone SE than a normal phone. It’s touted as an attractive option for those looking for a device that fits in the smallest of pockets. This is an interesting step on the part of the brand, which goes against the current of the market, where we see that mobile screens are getting bigger and bigger.
The Cubot Pocket measures 119 x 58 x 12.5 mm, which is a much smaller dimension for a complete smartphone than what is currently on the market. By way of comparison, the iPhone 13 mini remains larger (131.5 x 64.2 mm) although less thick (7.65 mm), for a price displayed up to 5 times more expensive.
The image below will give you a better idea of the 3 current smartphone form factors.
On the design side, this Cubot Pocket has a button on each side of the terminal. You will find on the right side a power button.
And on the left side a button to adjust the volume.
You will have noticed on this same side a drawer to accommodate the SIM card. This allows you to insert a second SIM or expand the storage capacity via a MicroSD card.
The back looks like what you see on some luxury phone, who remembers Lamborghini phones? However, you will not find any metal here, the set is 100% plastic and its weight on the scale is 149 grams.
On the finish, we have nothing to complain about in particular, the whole is well assembled and does not emit any creaking. We just have a note about the screen protector showing air bubbles on our copy at the bottom of it. Perhaps an inerrant problem with our copy. Anyway this protection changes like any stick-on, dedicated to this phone.
If you want a more eye-catching design, this Cubot Pocket, in addition to black, is available in 2 different additional colors, red and green.
Cubot Pocket: Features
This compact mobile features a 4″ capacitive multi-touch screen that has an HD resolution of 1080 x 540 pixels with a refresh rate of 60 Hertz.
With such a resolution on such a diagonal, the definition of the image is fine and you will not see pixels at a normal reading distance. The colors are good thanks to the IPS panel, the contrast too, only the brightness could be a little weak in direct sunlight.
On the performance side, Cubot has chosen to use a Unisoc Tiger T310 as a processor and combines a single Cortex A75 (2 GHz) with three Cortex A55 cores (1.8 Ghz). The performance will be sufficient for web browsing, but you shouldn’t expect a thunderbolt of war for the game (GPU PowerVR GT7200), which is not its objective.
At the level of the main memory the Cubot Pocket has 4GB of Ram, and, concerning the storage, you will find 64GB which can be extended by an additional 128GB thanks to the insertion of a MicroSD in the SIM drawer. This feature will only be possible if you are not using a second SIM, as this second card slot is designed as a handset port.
Good news, in addition to Bluetooth 5.0, NFC is also included, a feature I use regularly to make my purchases.
Wi-Fi is dual band (2.4 and 5 GHz) and the following 4G network frequencies are covered and ensure good network coverage in Europe:
- 2G : GSM 850/900/1800/1900MHz
- 3G : UMTS 900/2100MHz
- 4G : FDD : 1/3/5/7/8/19/20 – TDD : B40
A dual GPS is present (GLONASS + Galileo), as well as facial recognition and an FM radio receiver.
The photo part of this Cubot Pocket is composed of two photo lenses. The main one, on the back side has a resolution of 13 MP (4160 x 3120 pixels) while the front (selfie) uses a 5 MP sensor.
The non-removable 3000mAh Li-Ion battery provides sufficient power for the mobile phone. This is a low maintenance battery, no periodic discharge is required, and charging may be random.
The Cubot Pocket smartphone works with Android OS v11.0 out of the box, which is not the most recent system, and this is reflected in the design of the interface. However, the Pocket’s system can upgrade to a newer version of the operating system.
Cubot Pocket: Practical test
In use, navigation on the mobile is fluid, whether in terms of animations or the launch of applications, we have nothing to complain about at this level. Playing youtube video in 1080p and taking a photo until sharing it by email showed no problem with fluidity. For basic use the phone is doing very well.
On the other hand, if you are looking to do heavier tasks on the Cubot Pocket, the task will be more complicated for two reasons. The size of its screen on the one hand, which is not suitable for photo or video editing as well as its maximum power which places it in the entry level (which is the price target of this model, ≃ €150).
In order to compare its real application performance, we have launched a series of benchmarks to see where the smartphone is compared to other mobiles of the moment.
On the results of the Geekbench benchmarks in single-core are correct (between a Xiaomi Redmi Note 7 (Snapdragon 660) and a Poco F1 (Snapdragon 845). In multi-core, however, the phone does not stand the comparison.
Regarding 3D games, the game will be tougher, but 2D games will not show any problem.
On the photo side, given the data sheet of the sensors on board the front and rear, we understand that taking a photo will not be the first use of the phone. However, in good light, images and video (1080p/30fs) are perfectly acceptable for such a cheap phone. Colors look natural and reasonably well saturated with a good amount of detail. The autofocus does its job quickly and reliably, although the delay between touching the shutter and shooting is a little too long for my taste.
According to our measurements, the recharge takes place at an average of 8 Watts, which allows the battery to be charged from 0 to 100% in approximately 1h30.
After several tests, this Cubot Pocket easily holds a day’s charge with normal phone use (calling, surfing the internet, youtube).
Cubot Pocket: The FAQ
- Does it have wireless charging?Does not support wireless charging.
- Is it IP68?Does not support water resistance.
- Does it have NFC?And Cubot Pocket with NFC.
- Does it have 5G?5G is not available on the Cubot Pocket.
- Does it have fast charging?Does not support fast charging.
- Does it have an extension by microSD card?The Cubot Pocket supports microSD cards.
- Does it have infrared?The Cubot Pocket does not have infrared (IR), so you cannot use it as a remote control.
Cubot Pocket: Our opinion
Overall, the Cubot Pocket is a very interesting concept. The phone is held well in hand and quickly forgotten in a pocket at the sight of its size. We couldn’t find anything wrong with the finish and the charger supplied as well as the protective shell are still a little extra today in view of the competition, especially in this price range.
Navigation on this mobile phone is fluid, as well as navigation between applications. However, this smartphone will not be suitable for heavy operations or 3D gaming… Which is not suitable for such a screen size.
The version 11 of Android installed by default on the phone works well, but is starting to show a certain age in terms of the graphic style and some very rare display bugs can be encountered.
The photo part was correct but should not be its main use and the autonomy is also adapted to the size of the phone.
We welcome the fact that smaller smartphones are also being used again. Since Cubot also wants to bring smaller smartphones to market with the Pocket series in the long term, you can probably expect other compact smartphones from the brand in the future.
- Smooth system navigation
- Android version 11
- Not suitable for gaming
- Performance multi-core.