There's no doubt that Ulefone has made quite a splash with its latest launch; the Ulefone Future. But is this phone really the future? Priced above the $200 mark, the Ulefone Future carries out the specs of a high end smartphone delivered at a low end price. That said, it's hard to criticize a phone that offers so much for so little but that's exactly what we're gonna do today.
With a bezel-less display, a curiously placed fingerprint sensor, and enough RAM to power and entry level laptop, today we're gonna take a crack at reviewing the pros and cons of the Ulefone Future and see if it holds up or if it's mostly just another hyped-out product.
Ulefone Future Pros and Cons you can't miss
The Cons of the Ulefone Future
Limited Storage or Limited SIM cards
As it so happens with most new smartphones that come from China, the Ulefone Future is a dual-SIM smartphone. However, there's a catch; if you use both SIM slots you can't expand storage. In-house storage on the Ulefone Future is 32 GB so perhaps this won't pose much of a problem for many users but the more media-intensive group could find 32 GB to be a bit limiting and if they also want to carry around two numbers they'll be forced to make a choice.
To be fair, this issue is hardly new and in fact it's present in most new smartphones. Is it really that hard to build a separate SD card slot? We'll chalk it up to our list of Ulefone Future cons but it could be extended to a very wide array of smartphones.
Again, this is a tendency in the market that isn't specific to Ulefone's new flagship. As a device with a more "premium-build", the Ulefone Future has a unibody design that forbids the user from manually removing the battery whenever it suits him best.
The problem arrives when you consider that this phone has a 3000 mAh battery that has to power up a gorgeous 5.5 inch Full HD display. This means that you'll get about a day's worth of battery but don't expect much beyond that.
No native NFC support
NFC is quickly becoming the standard for mobile payments all over the world. However, some manufacturers still don't feel it's a must and launch their phones sans an NFC chip. This sucks because NFC isn't limited to mobile payments, you can also use it to transfer data between NFC phones in a much quicker fashion than you could through Bluetooth.
Overall, we're not gonna crucify Ulefone for not placing an NFC chip but it does go to show that the company doesn't really have plans for its phone to be used for payments.
USB Type-C is hardly convenient
It seems odd that in one point we state the lack of advance as a con and on the second we state the progress as a con as well but sometimes that's simply the way things work out in consumer tech. To my point, while having a USB Type-C port might seem like a good idea you should probably remember that USB type-C still isn't a standard so buying compatible accessories for the Ulefone Future might prove challenging.
Accessories aside, you should also consider the fact that you're going to need a USB Type-C charger to charge the phone and chances are you don't have many of those lying around your house, do you? Sure, this is mostly a hassle more than a con of the Ulefone Future but it's still something worth noting.
Ulefone Future Pros
You can't get into the advantages of the Ulefone Future and not mention it's exquisite design. Hell, if it wasn't for it's beautiful design most of us wouldn't even care about the phone (no that it's bad). However, its display is surely one of the most attractive displays on a low cost smartphone.
With a 5.5 inch diagonal and a bezel-less form factor, Ulefone's latest launch takes a page out of Samsung's book and presents us with what could very well be a clone to the Galaxy Edge with a more realistic price. It's simply beautiful in all it's Full HD glory.
Aside from the display, we've also gotta congratulate Ulefone on the placement of the fingerprint sensor which is very conveniently placed on the right side of the phone. Sure, this alienates roughly 10% of the world's population (left-handed people) but for the remaining 90% of the population it's awfully convenient.
Enough Power to run a laptop
As if presenting itself with a stunning design wasn't enough, the Ulefone Future also packs quite a punch. With 4 GB of RAM multitasking will be a breeze and if you also consider the fact that it's packing a Helio P10 octa core processor working at 1.95 GHz, it's clear that this phone is up and ready for everything we can throw at it.
Couple that with the latest version of Android, 32 GB of in-house storage and the possibility to upgrade storage with another 128 GB and you're looking at a phone that's ready not just for the challenges of today but also for the challenges of tomorrow.
Get a Full charge in an hour
While we mentioned the non-removable battery as a con, there's also good things to be said in regards to its supercharger which delivers a full charge in just one hour connected to a power outlet. Battery life stops being a big issue once you're able to charge the phone up to 50% in 30 minutes. This is definitely a pro of the Ulefone Future that should be more widely extended amongst manufacturers.
An extremely competitive price
Finally, the biggest advantage of this phone has got to be its price. Let's not forget that these are the pros and cons of a phone that costs just about as much as a low-level smartphone made by any big name brand. Having it priced at a little over $200 means this is a viciously competitive phone that should not be taken lightly since it stands to take over the market without much trouble.
Hell, give Ulefone a little bit of a marketing budget and I can see this smartphone being an international smash hit that would leave the Moto G and other similar smartphones to bite the dust.
In closing: Is this smartphone worth it?
Sure, it has its drawbacks but overall, after reviewing the Ulefone Future pros and cons we can honestly say that the benefits greatly exceed its minor faults. The USB type-C thing could be an issue but it's mostly just a hassle if you lose your charger and the lack of NFC support will be irrelevant to most users who don't feel all that comfortable with mobile payments to begin with.
All in all, as we stated previously, we believe this to be an awesome smartphone and one that would surely make it to be an international bestseller if Ulefone had the budget to really market it like it deserves.