Cubot Manito Preview : A Worthy Rival To Uhans A101

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I guess you remember the Uhans A101 and our question ‘What can you afford for $60?’ This question simply hints at the budget nature of the device making many customers think on whether a budget smartphone can be useful these days. Before you answer we have found another affordable smartphone with a decent specs list. It’s dubbed as the Cubot Manito.

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Honestly, I don’t know why the company has chosen this name for its new smartphone, because Manito is used to address siblings or friends. Probably the manufacturer wants to say the Cubot Manito can become your best friend for a penny. But let’s don’t focus on the name, because I am sure there are many more interesting features that can become a selling point for this handset.

We have already taken a glance at different products of this brand including smartwatches like the V1 and V2 and smartphones like the Cubot Max, Cubot Z100 or Cubot Rainbow. Commonly, this brand is very popular in the Chinese market thanks to it’s a large range of products. And it turns out the manufacturer wants to complicate lives of those companies that are known for their budget smartphones packed with respectable features. But we’ll not compare the Cubot Manito with many devices from this niche and we’ll limit by comparing it with the Uhans A101.

Cubot Manito Design

Though the Cubot Manito is a budget smartphone, the manufacturer decided to pay a lot of attention to its design. Yes, it comes with a plastic housing, but it has a metal frame. Thus no one can complain on its build quality. On the other hand, the metal body should increase the pricing and affect the antenna functionality. I mean, probably it’s a justified decision to make it of ABS. Moreover, the back panel is texturized, which makes the phone pleasant when handling. Commonly, looking at the phone will cause a feeling we are dealing with a top-notch smartphone. The 3D rear shell, the 2.5D display and the overall design talks the Cubot Manito hides many secrets and users have to explore them.

Well, the front side of the Cubot Manito carries a 5-inch IPS screen at a resolution of 1280×720 pixels and pixel density of 294 ppi. Though the screen doesn’t packed with a Gorilla Glass technology, it is still scratch-resistant. The front panel also comes with a front camera, a speaker located next to it, a notification led and a standard set of sensors, while the touch buttons are placed below the screen.

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As I said above, the Cubot Manito comes with a texturized back panel. This lineament along with the 2.5D curvy design screen brings silky-smooth contact feeling. Especially, this gimmick is made to ease the handling by one hand and making it very convenient when using the phone on the go. However, these is also a rear camera paired with a flash light and a speaker on the bottom side.

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The top of this device carries a micro USB port, a 3.5mm audio jack, and an antenna separation gap on the frame.  The bottom side is blank and there are only two other antenna separation gaps. The unlock button and volume rockers are on the right side, while the SIM card and TF card slots are located under the back cover. As you guess, the latter can be removed, thus the battery is removable as well. It is a rarity for current handsets.

The overall design of the Cubot Manito looks similar to the iPhone 6S, but as this is an Android smartphone and as it’s a Chinese handset, there are a few differences. Moreover, the Cubot Manito looks identical to the iPhone only when looking at its front side, the back is what we have used to see on other budget handsets. In this sense, the Uhans A101 copies the Samsung Galaxy S7 design, but its back differs as well.

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The Cubot Manito comes at dimensions of 14.20 x 7.30 x 0.90 cm and weighs 137 grams. Thus it’s a bit bulkier than what we have been expected to see. But it still is very light if compared with many other devices at this size available in the market. There are three color options you can choose from – black, white, and gold.

Cubot Manito Performance

The Cubot Manito is packed with a MTK 6737 quad-core processor clocked at 1.3GHz. Though this CPU is 20% better than the old MTK 6735, I guess the CPU of this handset is the weakest feature that can become a deal-breaker. Who uses a quad-core processor on smartphones currently? On the other hand, one of the actual rivals of the Manito is considered to be the Uhans A101, which is packed with the same processor. But if you wish I can repeat the question one more time ‘who uses a quad-core processors on smartphones currently?’ honestly, there are many beloved smartphones with this chipset onboard like the Homtom HT20 with an IP68 certificate, OUKITEL U7 Plus, or the Zopo Color F2. But it can’t absolve the company as it could power this handset with a better CPU.

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Anyway, the Cubot Manito’s CPU is paired with an ARM-Mali T720 MP2 GPU running on 550MHz. Thus the GPU performance of MTK 6737 is 20- 34% more optimized than what we can find on the MTK 6735. There are also a 3GB of RAM and a 16GB of ROM, which can be expanded up to 256GB due to a TF card slot. 3GB of RAM is respectable, and I guess many problems will be solved thanks to this feature. On other words, the slow CPU will compensate its low performance with the RAM.

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As for cameras, the Cubot Manito sports a 1.3MP front camera that can be interpolated to 5MP, and an 8MP camera, which is capable of taking photos like 13MP cameras. It comes with an autofocus, 5P lens, f/2.0 aperture, and a led flashlight.

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This handset is good in terms of connectivity, as it supports 4G LTE as well as OTG. The latter is absent in many smartphones. So I guess it can play a role when choosing a new budget smartphone.

One of the most attractive features in this handset is the battery. The Cubot Manito is packed with a 2350mAh battery powered with MediaTek PumpExpress 2.0 technology allowing users to charge the battery faster and keep it charged for a long time. In comparison to the MTK 6735, this handset is capable of saving up to 25% battery power with the same capacity.

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The phone runs on Android 6.0, and though it’s great to see this version of Android on the Cubot Manito, we can’t say it’s the latest version anywhere. I am despaired, because we can’t be sure the company will launch updates for this handset. Though Cubot is known for many products, do not forget we are dealing with a budget handset. Moreover, this is not Xiaomi that wants to bring all the latest and innovative technologies to its handsets.

The Bottom Line

Seems the Chinese company, Cubot wants everything at once. A couple of its latest products dubbed as the Dinosaur and Cheetah were stylish and memorable, but they were overpriced. However, they have managed to succeed. Probably, the sales number of those models make the company come in with another attractive handset. But Cubot has made a serious marketing move making the Cubot Manito more affordable. The Manito is available for only $110 and this is a great handset with such a list of specs. Though it costs two times more than the Uhans A101, I guess it can become a bestseller for the company.

(xiaomitoday.com, https://goo.gl/TQqvuQ)

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