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Coolpad Cool 12A Review: An Stylish Entry-Level Option

Pros

  • Great design
  • Good display
  • Great Battery Life
  • Decent performance

Cons

  • Below Average Camera
  • Bugs Here and There

Coolpad launched the Coolpad Cool 12A earlier this month focusing on budget-centric users.

Coolpad Cool 12A Review
Coolpad Cool 12A

Coolpad Cool 12A price in Nepal is Rs. 13,495 and like the Coolpad Cool 10A, this also has a great design for the price.

I have been using this phone for a while, and I’ll tell you all about it in my review of the Cool 12A.

Coolpad Cool 12A Specifications

  • Body: 157.7 x 75.3 x 8.9 mm, 202.5g
  • SIM: Dual Nano-SIM
  • Display: 6.217 inches HD+ IPS LCD Panel, 720 x 1520 pixels
  • Chipset: Unisoc Tiger T310
  • CPU: Quad-core (1×2.0 GHz Cortex-A75 & 3×1.8 GHz Cortex-A55)
  • GPU: PowerVR GE8300
  • Memory: 32GB 3GB RAM
  • OS: Android 11
  • Rear Camera: 13MP
  • Front Camera: 5 MP
  • Battery: Non-removable Li-Po 4000 mAh battery, 10W Charging
  • USB: Type-C
  • Misc: Fingerprint (side-mounted), accelerometer, proximity, 3.5mm headphone jack

Coolpad Cool 12A Price in Nepal: Rs. 13,495 (3/32GB)

Coolpad Cool 12A Review

Great Design

  • 57.7 x 75.3 x 8.9 mm
  • Dual Nano SIM
  • Shiny two-tone plastic back

The design of the Coolpad Cool 12A is very eye-catching. The two-tone shiny and reflective design gives it a good look.

Even though the back is made out of plastic, it does a great job at giving a glass-like some-what premium look.

Coolpad Cool 12A Review
Cool 12A Design

As I said, the back is very clean and shiny, this time with no fingerprint sensor on the back. There is only a square camera bump and a Coolpad branding.

The phone is very slippery and also a fingerprint-magnet, so I suggest you use this with a case.

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On the right side of the phone, there is a volume rocker and a textured power button. I love the texture design choice here. On the left, there is a triple-slot tray that houses two Nano SIM card slots and a Micro-SD card slot.

Beneath that tray is a separate space for a fingerprint sensor. Initially, I hated that placement and preferred the sensor to be on the power button itself.

With time I got used to it and I realized my left thumb and right index finger naturally rests on that fingerprint sensor. At times, I fail to navigate the sensor with my finger and I end up resting the finger in the wrong place but that’s not a deal-breaker.

I still prefer the power button doubling as a fingerprint sensor though. But compared to a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor, this is also a better option as it provides a clean rear panel.

On the bottom side, there is a mic, USB Type-C, and a mono speaker grill. And on the top, there is a 3.5mm headphone jack.

Overall I really like its design, especially when considering its price.

Display

  • 6.217” LCD Panel
  • HD+ Resolution

Coolpad Cool 12A comes with a 720p LCD Display.

On paper, it might not sound great but in real life, I am overall happy with the display it offers for an entry-level smartphone.

Coolpad cool 12a review
Cool 12A Display

The display here is not the sharpest, but normal users won’t notice it. The display gets very bright, using it outdoors has not been a problem for me.

The viewing angles are also excellent. It’s surprising how good the cheap phones are getting.

Camera

Coolpad Cool 12A comes with a rear square-camera bump. Inside that square, there is a triple camera array and a flash.

I am skeptical about that triple camera array though. I feel like one of them is just for a decorative purpose.

Upon reaching out to the company regarding the camera, a company spokesperson said the phone needs a software update for the camera to work. I doubt that.

It has a 13MP main camera and a 0.3MP secondary camera. The purpose of the secondary camera is still not clear.

MAIN SENSOR

This is an entry-level smartphone, so don’t expect the camera to be great. Like the majority of other phones in this price range, this phone also lacks a good camera.

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The photos taken from this phone, lack sharpness and clarity. The dynamic range is also not that good.

The photos here are okay for this budget. It gets the job done. But yeah, it’s not that great.

FRONT SENSOR

Coolpad Cool 12A has a 5MP front-facing camera.

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On a bright day, it takes decent photos but in low-light conditions, it’s really bad. It lacks details and clarity.

By default, the phone smooths the photo giving you even softer images. By disabling it, the photos come out a little clearer but still are far from perfect.

But we have to remember that this is an entry-level phone, so for that, it’s okay.

VIDEO

Coolpad Cool 12A can shoot up to 1080p at 30FPS from both front and rear cameras. As you would expect, the video quality is also bad. It looks grainy with very low details.

Performance

  • Unisoc Tiger T310
  • Quad-core (1×2.0 GHz Cortex-A75 & 3×1.8 GHz Cortex-A55)
  • PowerVR GE8300 GPU
  • 32GB 3GB RAM

Coolpad Cool 12A comes with a 3GB+32GB configuration in Nepal and is equipped with a Unisoc Tiger T310 chipset. This is a quad-core SoC. It would have been better if they had gone for an octa-core configuration. But on the bright side, instead of having just energy-efficient cores—which are common for phones in this budgetit has a performance core as well.

So, it has one downside and one upside. What does that mean in real-life performance?

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I have tested this phone and here is what I found. For a normal day-to-day task, the phone runs smoothly, you can easily multi-task with slight lags here and there but not that drastic.

Using social media apps, playing music and videos, going through system UIs—they all work really great. You will not have a problem when using this phone for such day-to-day tasks.

When it comes to gaming, light games can be played without any issue. Also, graphically demanding games such as PUBG can be played but will not be a pleasant experience.

I tried PUBG, PUBG Lite, Call of Duty, and Free Fire, it handled all of them but was not a smooth experience yet playable. So, yeah it can give playable FPS when playing these games but will not recommend for heavy gaming purposes.

Battery

  • Non-removable Li-Po 4000mAh battery
  • 10W charging
  • USB Type-C

Given the 4000mAh battery with a 720p display and an entry-level chipset, the battery life is as expected. It’s really good. This phone can easily last a full day on a single charge.

It takes a little more than 2 hours to fully charge from zero percent.

Software

  • Android 11

Coolpad Cool 12A comes with Android 11 out-of-the-box. It comes with a clean UI, with no bloatware or ads. It’s very smooth. But there are a few problems and bugs I encountered. The first one being the unexpected closing of the app. Especially when it’s a new app.

When I booted the device for the first time, every single app I opened, closed unexpectedly with a message saying “Miss required Phone permission, please apply for permission first.

I don’t know what permission this is talking about because it just closes before even asking for any permissions. And even after manually granting the required permissions, I still have encountered the same problems multiple times. Fortunately, this problem seems to show up less frequently with the old apps, but still is very annoying when it happens.

The second one I found is weird. When you turn on or off the mobile data from a pull-down quick toggle, it just doesn’t work.

When you tap on the icon, it changes its color indicating that it’s enabled or disabled, but in actuality, it just doesn’t work. You have to manually go to the settings to either turn it on or off. I hope it will be fixed with an update.

Should you buy Coolpad Cool 12A?

For Rs. 13,495, Coolpad Cool 12A is a good budget smartphone under Rs. 15,000. It has a great design, the display is very good for the price. The battery life is also awesome.

And if you are a light user, the performance should also not be an issue since it can run day-to-day tasks without major lags.

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However, the camera performance is not satisfactory. So, if you do not care about the camera—which is very unlikely—Coolpad Cool 12A is a good choice.

What do you think about the Coolpad Cool 12A? Let us know in the comments!


Also, watch our review of the Samsung F22 in Nepali.

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