Elephone U Pro review: great 5.99-inch Phablet with exceptional performance

Elephone U Pro Review, elder brother of the Elephone U has taken the eyes of the public as an alternative to the Samsung Galaxy S9.

It is surprising how quickly Chinese companies adopt the trends, dominating them and adding them to their new devices. Some time ago, certain features were only available on high-end phones, and currently, these features can be found on any type of device. Two of these characteristics, being the most relevant, is the dual cameras and the screens without bezels. Regarding the latter, a large number of manufacturers have implemented this in their devices, one being the Elephone U Pro,this phone was originally slated to be called the S9 before a last-minute name change.

When it comes to Chinese manufacturers we usually have in mind the undisputed champion Xiaomi, who apart from bringing us literally everything in technology, has a sublime quality, although we will not leave aside other brands that come from the same house and from among we have Elephone, a company that has a smaller repertoire in terms of devices, but still offers us products that have what it takes to scale high in the market, and a clear example of this is the Elephone S8, a smartphone that brings together both elegance and performance, but this is not all, as we have for this section the Elephone U Pro, a device that combines style and power, so we urge you to stay with us and finish this article to the end.

Elephone U Pro

Elephone U Pro: Box

Elephone U Pro

The Elephone U Pro comes in a box with the following dimensions: 19.00 x 14.60 x 3.60 cm and a weight of 0.568 kg, showing only a slight difference in this last aspect if you compare it with its standard version, the Elephone U and finally, within this package you will find the following:

  • 1x Elephone U Pro
  • 1x Headphone adapter
  • 1x Power adapter
  • 1x screen protector
  • 1x SIM needle
  • 1x USB cable
  • 1x User manual in English

Elephone U Pro

Elephone U Pro: Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Striking design
  • Double sensor camera.
  • Camera with functionalities.
  • Battery with good performance.

Cons

  • Too similar to Samsung phones, it need a little more identity on the outside.

Elephone U PRO Technical Specifications

screen AMOLED 5.99-inch 2K to 2160 × 1080p
Protection Corning Gorilla Glass 5
Processor Snapdragon 660
GPU Adreno 512
RAM 6GB
Storage 128GB of internal memory
MicroSD card Yes, Up to 128GB
Rear camera Dual 13 megapixels with dual LED flash
Selfies camera 8 Megapixels
Fingerprint reader Yes
Dual SIM Yes
4G FDD-LTE (800/1800/2100/2600) MHz
3G WCDMA (900/2100) MHz
2 G GSM (850/900/1800/1900) MHz
Battery 3550mAh
Charger USB Type-C
Connectivity WiFi, Bluetooth 4.1, GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, OTG, FM Radio
Body Aluminum and Polycarbonate
Dimensions 15.40 x 7.25 x 0.84 cm
Weight 0.166 kg
System Android 8.0 Oreo

The technical specifications rub the excellent, especially if we remember the price of the terminal. But as always on a smartphone, the important thing is to see how it works, how it behaves in daily use, so we started with the review.

Elephone U Pro

Elephone U Pro: Design

I think you can say without question that the Elephone U Pro is the most beautiful smartphones on the market in 2018!

Elephone U Pro

The Elephone U Pro brings us a design that stays in the standard, being refined and at the same time simple, becoming the ideal option for many users looking for a discreet device for all kinds of occasions, whether working or casual. It is made of metal and plastic, a very common combination in this type of Smartphones, in other words, it will be relatively resistant against bumps, falls and scratches, although without reaching the degree of ruggedness. This device is available in 4 colors; black, blue, red and gray, a wide variety of options that suit all tastes.

On the other hand, it has dimensions of 15.40 x 7.25 x 0.84 cm and a weight of 0.166 kg, being perhaps a little big for some, but fortunately light for holding with one hand.

LG also uses a borderless display in its G6, but if you want to talk in superlatives, the Elephone U Pro is the even bezel-less phone.

Through these narrow edges, Elephone could accommodate a 6.0-inches display in a comparatively “small” case. However, Elephone uses an 18: 9 form factor, so the display is quite long and narrow.

In addition, the 6.0 inches are more theoretical, since the edges of the display are bent. 6.0 inches would be the size of the display in the smooth layout, in practice, this is more like a 5.5-inch device.

In the hand, the Elephone U Pro just feels great! For my black U Pro also uses a special paint on the aluminum frame, which feels very smooth and supple, so slightly different than the usual aluminum.

With regard to other exterior elements, nothing has changed. On the right side, you will find the lock button and volume rocker.

Elephone U Pro

On the left side, you will find nothing. The top sports the removable tray for a couple of SIM cards and the memory card. It is a hybrid, so the user can choose to place an additional memory or a second SIM.

And now moving to its peripherals and interfaces we have the following:

  • 1x Slot for 2 Nano SIM cards
  • 1x Micro SD card slot
  • 1x Microphone
  • 1x Speaker
  • 1x Micro USB port type C

The only detail we have in mind would be the lack of a 3.5mm headphone jack, and although the adapter is added to replace it, it may not be as comfortable and easy to use for some users, the latter being point to a personal decision that everyone should make.

Elephone U Pro: Screen

What draws more attention to this device is its screen, which does not have bezels, which is more than striking. In addition to the visual component, we have to say that it looks very impressive thanks to the large size it has. This feature can be used as an opportunity to make the phone compact, retained an incredible 5.99-inch screen.

Elephone U Pro

Elephone U Pro is a pretty bold clone of the Samsung Galaxy S9, the U Pro does a remarkable job in recreating not only the slim bezels and rounded corners of the screen, but also the beautiful dual curves of the screen. Even for trained eyes, it is very difficult to distinguish the difference between the U Pro and the Samsung Galaxy S8 or S9 simply by looking straight ahead.

Elephone U Pro

Unless you completely can’t stand copycats, the U Pro’s outline will inspire. It is a dazzling smartphone – in all honesty, it is astonishing that a little, generally obscure organization can make something that approximates the look, feel and craftsmanship of a lead item from an organization with such limitlessly predominant assets.

The Elephone U Pro comes with a large AMOLED screen of 5.99 inches with a resolution of  2160 × 1080 in 18: 9 aspect ration. The latter is of course somewhat unusual, so expect in videos and apps with small black bars on the edges. It has a density of 403 pixels per inch (PPI), so we are dealing with a Full HD 1080P quality.

Elephone U Pro

Although there are slight differences in brightness around the edge when viewed from different angles, I would still consider the U Pro’s display the best I’ve ever seen in a smartphone.

We should also add that thanks to the AMOLED technology that will make it much lighter, apart from consuming less energy, being a point in favor of the battery and presents a better contrast compared to LCD panels. Although this is not all, since a screen of such proportions is more fragile, that is why the manufacturer has included the Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection, which gives it a special resistance against falls, scratches, and impacts in general.

 

A key feature of this screen is that it covers 83.2% of the front, eliminating the side bevels and therefore, gets the refined appearance, getting positioned in the club without bevels and for final has a curvature of 2.5D, that although it does not offer any technical improvement, if it compensates for its style, making it look more aesthetic.

Elephone U Pro: Hardware & Performance

The Elephone U Pro comes with a technical section that can be cataloged in the range of medium-high range depending on the version that you choose, getting to offer fairly smooth performance. First of all, we have the processor, this being a Qualcomm, exactly the Snapdragon 660 that works with four cores at a frequency of 2.2GHz and four more at a frequency of 1.84GHz, rather than the significantly less expensive MediaTek processors that all other spending Chinese brands and Elephone beforehand utilized, so we are dealing with an Octa-Core processor. Presently, the 660 chipset is Qualcomm’s mid-level SoC (framework on chip), yet the way that Elephone is working with Qualcomm (which requires permitting charges from makers) is another sign the organization is making a push to go genuine as opposed to depending on MediaTek like most spending brands.

The SD 660 is more than sufficiently intense to deal with all phone assignments and recreations, just not at the speed of the 835 that forces Samsung and LG devices. Besides, it has two versions, RAM 4GB+ROM 64GB internal storage and RAM 6GB+ROM 128GB one. But we have got the 128GB storage version directly from a trusted ecormmerce site, Gearbest.

Meanwhile Graphics card (GPU) is handled by an Adreno 512 which is combined with a ROM of 64GB / 128GB that can be expandable by a micro SD card of up to 128GB.

If you are interested in the performance points, I ran the U Pro through GeekBench and AnTuTu Benchmark v7 and got a respectable score in both: 1,629 / 5,746 in single / multi-core respectively for GeekBench and 138,370 in AnTuTu. The 6GB of RAM and the Android 8.0 really helped overcome Snapdragon 660.

Elephone U Pro: Sound

Unfortunately, the Elephone U Pro has only a single speaker on the bottom. This sounds okay but can not compete with the “special experience” of a Huawei P10 Plus or iPhone 7 Plus.

Here is similar to the LG G6. The speaker is as good as a single speaker on the bottom of a smartphone can be.

Elephone U Pro

In direct comparison, the LG G6 is a bit clearer and cleaner, the phone U Pro for fuller and a bit louder.

Practically, both smartphones are what the speakers are on a good but unspectacular level in 2018.

Elephone U Pro: Operating system

Elephone U Pro, shockingly, ships with the most recent form of Android 8.0. This is another irregularity in the shoddy Shenzhen phone showcase, where models typically ship with more seasoned Android OS since they are less demanding to source in China without experiencing Google (and paying its expenses) authoritatively.

The Elephone U Pro has an Android 8.0 operating system, commonly known as Oreo, in honor of the exquisite cookie that we all love. This software comes without any tint of customization by the manufacturer, so we will be in a 100% Android environment, which will delight us with a light and fluid operation. In terms of its features we can mention the Smart text selection, which serves to write faster and more conveniently, we will also have the multi-window function, allowing us to run 2 applications simultaneously with the screen divided into 2 and finally the Google Store and Daydream will remain available to meet all the tastes of each user.

What’s more, the software experience is actually pretty good. Elephone’s Android skin is lean, and its biggest addition is a welcome one: the U Pro lets users do away with the traditional Android navigation buttons in favour of swiping gestures from the bottom of the screen.

So far I have received two awesome OTA updates: 7th February, 2018 (384MB) and 12th February, 2018 (97MB).

Elephone U Pro: Battery

The Elephone U Pro comes equipped with a non-removable lithium-ion polymer battery with a capacity of 3550mAh. With 7 hours and 15 minutes in the benchmark with a 3550 mAh battery with AMOLED Full HD Plus display is not really intoxicating.

Elephone U Pro

In use test, it came with good use 1 day make the rounds and had to be connected in the evening to the charger. But thanks to the Qualcomm processor for the fast loading technology 3.0.

The phone was used to watch movies on repeat with 50% brightness and 50% volume, lasted 8h 34mins while still having 47% of battery remaining.

Elephone U Pro: Camera

Elephone U Pro

The photographic qualities of the U Pro are quite striking, it come with a dual main camera of 13 megapixels each that are combined with a dual-tone LED flash that will improve the quality of both photos and videos and allows a good Bokeh effect of blurring in the image. It should be noted that the photos during the day will be exceptional or in general while we have good lighting because without it you will notice something different but nothing that is alarming.

Among its characteristics we can mention the following:

  • Autofocus
  • Touch focus
  • Digital Zoom
  • Panoramic photos
  • High dynamic range (HDR) mode
  • Face detection
  • Selection of scenes

Photos with the rear camera of the Elephone U Pro

It is a good quality camera that takes very nice pictures. Not at the level of the high range, but similar or even superior to other models of similar prices.

While for the front camera we have a resolution of 8 megapixels that will be ideal to take the best selfies, we must also add that the face recognition feature will be available, which will greatly facilitate the latter.

The camera handles very well, and although it suffers a little in low light environments, the experience is quite good. 

Photos with the front camera of the U Pro

To understand how Face ID actually works on Elephone U Pro just look at the new video released by the manufacturer: another short clip also shows the particular lighting effect on the screen when the phone rings

Elephone U Pro: Wireless connections

The Elephone U Pro has a section of the network that remains in the usual, without innovating in this aspect but it will not lose its charm since the stability of its connections is incredible.

The Elephone U Pro supports 2G, 3G and 4G networks, as well as includes connectivity options such as Bluetooth 5.0, USB Type-C, Wi-Fi, and GPS. It has fingerprint recognition and unlocking of the device through the same mechanism, has gravity sensors and proximity sensor, which in certain applications is very useful, and has FM Radio, a small detail that for some is very relevant, and surprisingly no longer seen on all devices.

Below we present all compatible connections, bands, and configurations:

  • WiFi:  802.11b / g / n
  • 2G: GSM 1800MHz, 1900MHz, 850MHz, 900MHz 
  • 3G: WCDMA B1 2100MHz, B8 900MHz
  • 4G LTE: FDD B1 2100MHz, B20 800MHz, B3 1800MHz, B7 2600MHz
  • Bluetooth version: 5.0
  • GPS

The Verdict

The Elephone U Pro gets a total score of 8.9 points out of 10.

Summary of the good and the bad, with my opinions of the Elephone U Pro after testing it for days.

The design is completely different to what the big brands offer, with a front almost without frames giving all the prominence to the screen. Even being so big, as it does not have frames it is comfortable to handle and it holds well. The quality of construction is very good, although the back is made of polycarbonate in other to make wireless charging work with the device.

The screen is spectacular, the best of the Elephone U Pro. It’s huge, 5.99 inches at 2K resolution with dual curve edges makes games immersive and action series brutal.

The performance is another of the best features, and is that this mobile has been made to enjoy multimedia content. The processor being a Qualcomm, exactly the Snapdragon 660 works with four cores at a frequency of 2.2GHz and four more at a frequency of 1.84GHz, rather than the significantly less expensive MediaTek processors, it is accompanied by 6 GB of RAM, a combination that achieves maximum fluidity possible.

The rear has a dual main camera of 13 megapixels, which today is considered a must for premium devices, but at the time they took high-end models. The photographic quality is good , far from the level of the Premium models, but even above other models of similar prices that I have tried.

The battery of 3550mAh, which at first glance may seem to give a range of more than 1 day, actually lasts about 1 and a half days. This is because of the AMOLED Full HD consumes low power.

Final Conclusions

The Elephone U Pro is a pleasant surprise that comes to the market, it is a good product with interesting features, its design is great although not very original, its performance is good and its camera is very entertaining, as well as it responds very well in stable conditions, its battery has good performance and its operating system remains at the height of the time they run, it is definitely a great acquisition for those who bet on it.

Where to buy Elephone U Pro?

The Elephone U Pro comes in two variants; 4GB+64GB version for $339.44 and the 6GB+128GB version for $ 396.99 on Gearbest right now.

You can click on the links below to view latest Elephone U Pro price & availability.

Buy 4GB+64GB version from Gearbest

Buy 6GB+128GB version from Gearbest

If you have never bought from Gearbest before, you can read how to shop from Gearbest easily in Nigeria using your normal ATM card.

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REVIEW OVERVIEW
Design and Construction
6
Screen
6.5
Performance and Hardware
7
Camera
8
Connectivity
7
Battery
7

2 COMMENTS

  1. Another massive one from Elephone! This smartphone by Elephone is just a very cool bae! So excellent and amazing! Nice indepth review by techlector team!

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