Do you remember back in the late 1990s when mobile phones were all the rage, and Nokia ruled the roost, while the likes of Motorola and Sony Ericsson were jockeying for the rest of the crumbs that fell from the table? There were also upstarts from South Korea – namely Samsung and LG which churned out handsets of their own, although those did not really impress all that much, with these models being made up of cheap looking plastic that acted the part as well. Fast forward to today, and Samsung is the top smartphone manufacturer in the world, while regular dumb phones have been relegated to being sold in developing countries and emerging markets. The competition in the smartphone industry is intense, and now happens to be the time where Chinese brands start to make a name for themselves – Xiaomi, Oppo, as well as Oukitel. I managed to get hold of an Oukitel K6000, where as its name suggests, comes with a massive 6,000mAh battery which will be able to last the distance even for the busiest of executives out there. Best of all is, it will retail for a mere US$130.
If you are in the market for something that is svelte and light, then you might want to give the Oukitel K6000 a pass, taking into consideration how it measures a rather chunky 154mm x 77mm x 9.9mm, while tipping the scales at 205 grams. Of course, this is because it houses a gargantuan 6000mAh battery within that will be able to keep you going throughout the whole day – and the next as well without the need to juice it up halfway. The volume rocker is on the right side of the handset, while right below it would be the power button. The dual SIM tray is located on the left side, where you will need a pin to eject it. Three capacitive are located at the bottom of the handset, which means you are unable to swap their positions as they are not software-driven. A light sensor and 2MP front facing camera is located at the top, while an 8MP shooter is located behind accompanied by a dual LED flash. The Micro-USB charging port will be at the bottom, while the 3.5mm headphone jack is located at the top. Overall the handset looks good on the outside, although the metal back is rather prone to scratches, so you might want to make sure you do not mix your keys with the Oukitel K6000.
The 16GB of internal memory can be complemented by a microSD memory card of up to 32GB, although that would mean sacrificing one of your SIM card slots. The 5.5” IPS display works well even under direct sunlight, and Oukitel has decided to throw in a 2.5D curved glass to the top which ensures that the handset feels more comfortable when you are holding it in the hand. Sporting a High Definition display at 1280 x 720 pixels, it is on par with numerous budget Android-powered handsets.
As for its processor, it will rely on the MediaTek MTK6735P chipset that delivers a quad-core processor clocked at a mere 1GHz, which should offer a level of performance that will not scream out loud. I found this to be true, and generally speaking, one should not run too many apps at any one time, and it would bode you well to kill off apps once you’re done with them to free up memory. So far, I have had to reboot the handset three times during the 1 month plus of use as it hung on me. 2GB of RAM and an ARM Mali-T720 MP2 400MHz graphics chipset will also keep the MediaTek chipset company. Definitely ideal for day-to-day use, but if you would like to settle for something that is a mobile powerhouse, then you should look elsewhere.
The dual SIM slot works just fine, although switching from one SIM card to another in terms of its data use can take up to a minute. This is a great handset to have if you would like to maximise your mobile data usage with multiple SIM cards, as you can use one mobile data plan up and then switch the data line over to the other SIM card seamlessly without having to tote around two smartphones. Tethering it as a Wi-Fi hotspot is also not an issue, especially when you take its long battery life into consideration.
The rear 8MP camera in the Oukitel K6000 has software that upconverts shots to 13MP if required, and in front lies a 2MP shooter that can receive a boost to 5MP, although one should take note that this will not beat the actual 13MP and 5MP cameras, respectively. If videos are more your thing, then the Oukitel K6000 will be able to handle 1080p video as well. Overall, the camera works best in well lighted conditions – when dusk falls, or if you are in a restaurant that has candle light all over the place, it would be best to tuck away the Oukitel K6000 and make use of a dedicated digital camera instead.
While Oukitel has brazenly laid claim to a 10 day battery life with normal usage, that remains to be determined as everyone’s definition of ‘normal’ differs. To put things into context, I make use of the Oukitel K6000 for approximately 30 minutes a day talking on the phone, while an hour and a half is spent on Waze, with two microSIM cards being used simultaneously to take advantage of the dual SIM slots, and have Wi-Fi turned on whenever I am at home. Instant messaging via WhatsApp, LINE, WeChat, and Kakao take up around another half hour each day, while another half hour chunk or so is spent surfing on the handset with Chrome. I also spend around 20 minutes a day listening to music with my headphones, and it would take close to 72 hours of use before the battery hits the 10% level – meaning it is time to juice up the handset. Of course, if you were to make use of the Oukitel K6000 as a portable power bank thanks to the included cable, then your mileage would vary. Fast charging is also supported, and this is one feature that certainly comes in handy during those pressing moments.
Thankfully, the Oukitel K6000 does not come with plenty of bloatware – in fact, it is powered by a modified version of Android 5.1 Lollipop. The icons will be different from what you are used to, so it might take a while before you familiarise yourself with all of the icons. The usual suspects such as Twitter, Facebook and WhatsApp came pre-installed on the handset, which certainly saves you the trouble of actually downloading and installing the respective apps. The interface itself is not as intuitive as I would have liked, but I suppose that is because the designers themselves are still in the learning phase and it might take a couple more generations before the overall experience is more polished in nature.
If you are in the market for something that is able to help you stay in touch day to day via email and instant messaging, and to snap the occasional photo without running out of juice way too fast, then the Oukitel K6000 is the perfect handset for you as it has all that with the ability to double up as a powerbank without burning a hole in your pocket. However, if you are performance-oriented and see yourself as a power user, then it would be best to stick to the high end market where smartphones are concerned. Right now, the Oukitel K6000 looks good on the outside, but in terms of the user interface, it could surely do with some fair bit of polishing before it is able to stand on par with the other established players. All part of its growing pains, I suppose.