Notebookcheck

Cubot King Kong Smartphone Review

Florian Wimmer (translated by Katherine Bodner), 06/21/2018

As strong as a gorilla? Affordable and robust, that is how the Cubot King Kong presents itself. It is a 5-inch smartphone with an averagely fast SoC in a weighty, water and dust-protected case. Is this enough for the tough reality of everyday life?

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Cubot King Kong

A famous name is always a good bet. Until now, the Chinese manufacturer Cubot has been more or less unknown in the western hemisphere. But the unusual names of their smartphones - Cubot Dinosaur or Cubot Magic, for example - might be about to change this.

The manufacturer's rugged smartphone is named after King Kong, the most famous ape in film history. The enormous animal had its first debut in 1933 and is still known among young cinema-enthusiasts today thanks to Peter Jackson. Here we have a robust mobile phone named King Kong - which, naturally, promises strength and resilience. The manufacturer has even had the device IP68-certified for dust and water-protection and wrapped it in a heavy and bulky plastic case.

But the Cubot King Kong must also compete with other outdoor smartphones such as the Cat S31, the Samsung Galaxy XCover 4, the Ulefone Armor X and the Oukitel WP5000. It already has one clear advantage: Its retail price of $120 is unbeatable for a tough smartphone. Let us find out whether the low price has an influence on the device's quality.

Cubot King Kong
Graphics adapter
Memory
2048 MB 
Display
5 inch 16:9, 1280 x 720 pixel 294 PPI, capacitive touchscreen, IPS, glossy: yes
Storage
16 GB eMMC Flash, 16 GB 
, 11 GB free
Connections
1 USB 2.0, Audio Connections: 3.5-inch combined audio jack, Card Reader: microSD up to 64 GB, Brightness Sensor, Sensors: accelerometer, proximity sensor, compass
Networking
802.11 b/g/n (b/g/n), Bluetooth 4.0, GSM (850/​900/​1800/​1900), UMTS (850/​1700/​1900/​2100), Dual SIM, GPS
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 14.85 x 153 x 80.2 ( = 0.58 x 6.02 x 3.16 in)
Battery
16.7 Wh, 4400 mAh Lithium-Polymer
Operating System
Android 7.0 Nougat
Camera
Primary Camera: 13 MPix f/​2.2, contrast AF, LED flash, videos @720p
Secondary Camera: 8 MPix
Additional features
Speakers: single speaker on the back, Keyboard: virtual keyboard, power supply, USB cable, mini screwdriver, SAR values: 0.72 W/kg (body), 0.31 W/kg (head); IP68 certified, fanless, ruggedized
Weight
246 g ( = 8.68 oz / 0.54 pounds), Power Supply: 52 g ( = 1.83 oz / 0.11 pounds)
Price
119 Euro

 

Similar to other robust smartphones, the Cubot King Kong has a very different appearance to beauties such as the Galaxy S9 or the OnePlus 6: As outdoor smartphones are aimed at people who spend a lot of time in difficult environments with dust, water or dirt that are not ideal for mobile phones, the case often looks a little rougher in order to underline this toughness. The cases of the Samsung Galaxy XCover 4 and the Cat S31 look a lot simpler but still have large hardware buttons and cases that offer a good grip.

The Cubot King Kong is a lot more "in-your-face": Like the Oukitel WP5000, it does everything to make it quite clear that it is a robust phone: visible screws, metal elements on the rims and a heavy weight. The device also features yellow decorative borders above and below the screen. The back of the device is not flat but becomes thicker towards the middle. The device is comfortable to hold but is quite large for a 5-inch smartphone.

According to the manufacturer, the case can resist pressure of up to one ton and temperatures between -35 °C and 60 °C. The screen, however, seems to be rather unprotected. It is not sunk into the case as it often is on other rugged smartphones. Users have already reported their screens breaking after being dropped for the first time.

The smartphone really is water-resistant and can be used under water thanks to the rubber parts that cover the port openings. Just make sure that these are always closed tight. Not so good: The Cubot King Kong does not offer any hardware buttons to access the menu. Users will have to rely on touch buttons, which might sometimes be difficult to use, for example if you are wearing gloves.

The SIM slots are only accessible after removing two screws. We would recommend using your own screwdriver to unscrew these, as the included tool is a little fiddly to work with.

Cubot King Kong
Cubot King Kong
Cubot King Kong
Cubot King Kong
Cubot King Kong
Cubot King Kong
Cubot King Kong

Size Comparison

Connectivity – a microSD slot and dual SIM

The Cubot King Kong has two SIM slots and also offers a separate microSD card reader. Inserting a microSD card means restarting the phone, as the card will not be recognized otherwise. On top of that, the smartphone did not get along with our reference card Toshiba Exceria Pro M501. Luckily, it worked with a different 32-GB microSD card.

Apart from this, the connectivity is representative for the device's price. At least Cubot has included a geomagnetic sensor that can be used as a compass.

Software – pure Android 7 in the Cubot King Kong

We appreciate that the Cubot offers pure Android 7 instead of being equipped with a separate version of Android. Do not expect a newer version of Android to become available. The security patch from November 2017 is also rather dated. The device does not have any additional apps and users are free to set their device up the way they like it. Be aware that due to the limitations of the SoC and graphics unit, not all apps on Google Play are available for this phone. Google does not even display incompatible apps in your search. Some affected apps are the 3D components of the AnTuTu benchmarks or other apps that use modern graphic interfaces.

Software Cubot King Kong
Software Cubot King Kong
Software Cubot King Kong
Software Cubot King Kong
Software Cubot King Kong
Software Cubot King Kong

Communication and GPS – no LTE

The Cubot King Kong has one rather big disadvantage that is very rare even for smartphones that cost $120: It does not support LTE. However, it does support all the necessary GSM and UMTS networks and reception is decent even indoors.

The Wi-Fi is not ideal either, but this is more common in this price range. For example, the phone does not support the 5-GHz Wi-Fi networks. The significantly more expensive Cat S31 does not support this rare, and therefore faster, band either. The fastest supported protocol is 802.11 n. Our test unit did quite well in the Wi-Fi test with our reference router Linksys EA8500. It is significantly faster than the Cat S31 or the Samsung Galaxy XCover 4.

Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Average of class Smartphone
  (30.5 - 939, n=243)
189 MBit/s ∼100% +247%
Oukitel WP5000
Mali-T880 MP2, Helio P25, 64 GB eMMC Flash
114 MBit/s ∼60% +110%
Ulefone Armor X
PowerVR GE8100, MT6739, 16 GB eMMC Flash
98.3 MBit/s ∼52% +81%
Cubot King Kong
Mali-400 MP2, MT6580M, 16 GB eMMC Flash
54.4 MBit/s ∼29%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
Mali-T720, 7570 Quad, 16 GB eMMC Flash
49.2 MBit/s ∼26% -10%
CAT S31
Adreno 304, 210 MSM8909, 16 GB eMMC Flash
41.6 MBit/s ∼22% -24%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Average of class Smartphone
  (44.3 - 703, n=243)
185 MBit/s ∼100% +221%
Oukitel WP5000
Mali-T880 MP2, Helio P25, 64 GB eMMC Flash
109 MBit/s ∼59% +89%
Ulefone Armor X
PowerVR GE8100, MT6739, 16 GB eMMC Flash
103 MBit/s ∼56% +79%
Cubot King Kong
Mali-400 MP2, MT6580M, 16 GB eMMC Flash
57.7 MBit/s ∼31%
CAT S31
Adreno 304, 210 MSM8909, 16 GB eMMC Flash
39.3 MBit/s ∼21% -32%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
Mali-T720, 7570 Quad, 16 GB eMMC Flash
37.9 MBit/s ∼20% -34%
GPS test indoors
GPS test indoors
GPS test outdoors
GPS test outdoors

The smartphone was not able to locate us indoors. It needed a while outdoors, but then located us within seven meters, which is fine.

In our practical test, we took the Cubot King Kong on a bike ride together with the professional navigator Garmin Edge 520 and compared the results. The professional device is a lot more precise and you can even tell on which side of the road we were on while the Cubot King Kong is less exact. However, its performance should be sufficient for occasional use. The Cubot smartphone also has a compass, which is good for this price range.

GPS Cubot King Kong – overview
GPS Cubot King Kong – overview
GPS Cubot King Kong – woods
GPS Cubot King Kong – woods
GPS Cubot King Kong – bridge
GPS Cubot King Kong – bridge
GPS Garmin Edge 520 – overview
GPS Garmin Edge 520 – overview
GPS Garmin Edge 520 – woods
GPS Garmin Edge 520 – woods
GPS Garmin Edge 520 – bridge
GPS Garmin Edge 520 – bridge

Telephone and Call Quality – good

The manufacturer has used Android's own, easy-to-use telephone app. 

The call quality is good: The internal earpiece reproduces our caller's voice quite clearly and our voice is picked up nicely by the microphone, even when talking quietly. On speakerphone, sounds continue to be transmitted clearly, although the microphone had some difficulties when we were speaking quietly. We could still hear our caller clearly.

Cameras – bleak prospects

Photo taken with front camera
Photo taken with front camera

A 13MP lens on the back and an 8MP front camera sound quite good considering the device's price. However, the image quality is mediocre at best: The main camera takes washed-out, grainy photos. Light areas are overemphasized, and the colors have a distinct blue cast. You can hardly recognize anything when the photos are taken in low lighting and sharpness could be better too. The main camera records videos at 720p, but these are also often blurred.

Photos taken with the main camera have similar issues.

Image Comparison

Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.

Scene 1Scene 2Scene 3
click to load images

The grainy image display does not improve under controlled lighting in our lab. Text on red background lacks contrast, areas of color appear pixelated and the edges are not clearly defined.

Surprisingly, colors are reproduced quite accurately, but then the images are so blurry and grainy that it is hard to recognize the real color shade.

ColorChecker: The reference color is in the bottom half of each field.
ColorChecker: The reference color is in the bottom half of each field.
Photo of test chart
Photo of test chart
Detail of test chart
Detail of test chart

Accessories and Warranty – available despite phone coming from China

Apart from a power supply and a USB cable, you will get a quick-start guide as well as a tool to open the screws of the SIM cover with the phone.

Warranty is often an issue when importing Chinese smartphones if the manufacturer is not yet represented outside of the country, as is the case with Cubot. However, the smartphone can easily be purchased via large dealers, so you should be protected by their warranty.

Input Devices & Handling – screen protector limits gliding capacity

The touchscreen of the Cubot phone already comes with a screen protector that is difficult to remove. It might not look particularly good but does offer additional protection. Unfortunately, it also influences the gliding capacity and you can feel some resistance when moving your finger over the screen.

The large hardware buttons on the right side of the case adjust the volume and turn the smartphone to standby. They are easy to find and have a good pressure point. However, the only way to control the operating system is by using touch buttons, which could pose some difficulties when wearing gloves.

The Cubot King does not have a fingerprint reader.

Keyboard landscape mode
Keyboard landscape mode
Keyboard portrait mode
Keyboard portrait mode

Display – a 720p screen

Subpixel array
Subpixel array

You cannot expect a resolution over 1280x720 pixels from a device in this price range. The Cubot King Kong uses the 16:9 display format, which could almost be called outdated nowadays, and it is five inches large. Despite the weighty case, the display itself is not very large.

The brightness of the screen is average at 449 cd/m². This cannot compare with the extremely bright display that can be found in the CAT S31 and is made particularly with outdoor use in mind. The brightness distribution is quite good at 90% and large areas of color appear uniform.

Excuse us for the blurry photo of the subpixel array - this is probably due to the screen protector.

454
cd/m²
443
cd/m²
450
cd/m²
461
cd/m²
466
cd/m²
431
cd/m²
459
cd/m²
457
cd/m²
419
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 466 cd/m² Average: 448.9 cd/m² Minimum: 18.25 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 90 %
Center on Battery: 466 cd/m²
Contrast: 1864:1 (Black: 0.25 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 7.03 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.3
ΔE Greyscale 7.1 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
91.8% sRGB (Calman 2D)
Gamma: 2.26
Cubot King Kong
IPS, 1280x720, 5
Oukitel WP5000
IPS, 1440x720, 5.7
CAT S31
IPS, 1280x720, 4.7
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
IPS, 1280x720, 5
Ulefone Armor X
IPS, 1440x720, 5.5
Screen
-60%
19%
-25%
9%
Brightness middle
466
506
9%
784
68%
445
-5%
564
21%
Brightness
449
503
12%
750
67%
437
-3%
541
20%
Brightness Distribution
90
86
-4%
92
2%
88
-2%
91
1%
Black Level *
0.25
0.97
-288%
0.45
-80%
0.67
-168%
0.37
-48%
Contrast
1864
522
-72%
1742
-7%
664
-64%
1524
-18%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
7.03
9.4
-34%
4.28
39%
6.5
8%
5.1
27%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
16.25
19.9
-22%
8.75
46%
10.6
35%
9.6
41%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
7.1
13
-83%
6.1
14%
7.2
-1%
5.4
24%
Gamma
2.26 106%
2.59 93%
2.49 96%
2.53 95%
2.1 114%
CCT
7244 90%
10219 64%
7175 91%
8274 79%
7755 84%

* ... smaller is better

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 54 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 8895 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

The slow response rates make the screen unsuitable for gamers - apart from the fact that the device's performance could hardly keep up anyway, as we will see below. The black value is quite low at 0.25 cd/m² and black surfaces appear deep and dark. The resulting contrast ratio is the best of all comparison devices (1864:1).

While testing with the spectrophotometer and CalMAN software, we measured a significant purple cast. Particularly blue tones are very inaccurate.

CalMAN color accuracy
CalMAN color accuracy
CalMAN color space
CalMAN color space
CalMAN grayscales
CalMAN grayscales
CalMAN saturation
CalMAN saturation

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
59 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 43 ms rise
↘ 16 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 100 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (25.9 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
52 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 25 ms rise
↘ 27 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 87 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (41.4 ms).

While the Cubot King Kong can be used outdoors, you might want to look further if you rely on reading the screen in bright sunlight. 

The viewing angles are stable even when looking at the device from the side and we did not notice any changes in color or contrast.

Outdoor use
Outdoor use
Viewing angles
Viewing angles

Performance – the Cubot does not have a lot of power

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The MediaTek MT6580M is an SoC made for simple smartphones and tablets and can be found in our test unit. It will not award the Cubot King Kong any points in the area of performance but should suffice for smooth navigating through the system. However, we did encounter occasional freezes and dropped frames. Our device's performance capacity can be compared with that of the CAT S31. Both are positioned in the bottom half of our comparison table. If you are looking for significantly higher performance, you should take a look at the Oukitel WP5000.

The graphics unit is no better: The ARM Mali-400 MP2 no longer supports many of the current graphic interfaces and certain apps or benchmarks are not even displayed in the Google Play store as they would not work on the phone anyway. For example, the device does not support Open GL 3.0 or above, nor Vulcan. In the benchmarks that we were able to run, the device remains one of the slower competitors.

AnTuTu v6 - Total Score (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
23540 Points ∼33%
Oukitel WP5000
57489 Points ∼81% +144%
CAT S31
24865 Points ∼35% +6%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
35379 Points ∼50% +50%
Ulefone Armor X
37586 Points ∼53% +60%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (15185 - 25237, n=9)
22287 Points ∼31% -5%
Average of class Smartphone (23275 - 230642, n=336)
70824 Points ∼100% +201%
AnTuTu v7 - Total Score (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
21088 Points ∼20%
Oukitel WP5000
78088 Points ∼76% +270%
Ulefone Armor X
46435 Points ∼45% +120%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (19465 - 21088, n=3)
20045 Points ∼19% -5%
Average of class Smartphone (0 - 290397, n=113)
103239 Points ∼100% +390%
PCMark for Android
Work 2.0 performance score (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
0 Points ∼0%
Oukitel WP5000
4174 Points ∼94%
CAT S31
2300 Points ∼52%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
3446 Points ∼77%
Ulefone Armor X
3184 Points ∼72%
Average Mediatek MT6580M
0 Points ∼0%
Average of class Smartphone (3138 - 8601, n=201)
4453 Points ∼100%
Work performance score (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
3041 Points ∼61%
Oukitel WP5000
4947 Points ∼100% +63%
CAT S31
3080 Points ∼62% +1%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
4508 Points ∼91% +48%
Ulefone Armor X
4298 Points ∼87% +41%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (2516 - 3041, n=9)
2740 Points ∼55% -10%
Average of class Smartphone (2516 - 10264, n=365)
4677 Points ∼95% +54%
BaseMark OS II
Web (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
567 Points ∼64%
Oukitel WP5000
888 Points ∼100% +57%
CAT S31
10 Points ∼1% -98%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
661 Points ∼74% +17%
Ulefone Armor X
7 Points ∼1% -99%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (9 - 640, n=9)
448 Points ∼50% -21%
Average of class Smartphone (7 - 1682, n=441)
672 Points ∼76% +19%
Graphics (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
138 Points ∼9%
Oukitel WP5000
1120 Points ∼74% +712%
CAT S31
256 Points ∼17% +86%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
253 Points ∼17% +83%
Ulefone Armor X
188 Points ∼12% +36%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (136 - 145, n=9)
139 Points ∼9% +1%
Average of class Smartphone (18 - 9248, n=441)
1505 Points ∼100% +991%
Memory (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
403 Points ∼33%
Oukitel WP5000
1229 Points ∼100% +205%
CAT S31
328 Points ∼27% -19%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
1066 Points ∼87% +165%
Ulefone Armor X
900 Points ∼73% +123%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (189 - 404, n=9)
328 Points ∼27% -19%
Average of class Smartphone (21 - 4798, n=441)
1124 Points ∼91% +179%
System (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
985 Points ∼31%
Oukitel WP5000
3225 Points ∼100% +227%
CAT S31
899 Points ∼28% -9%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
1396 Points ∼43% +42%
Ulefone Armor X
1491 Points ∼46% +51%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (958 - 1011, n=9)
982 Points ∼30% 0%
Average of class Smartphone (369 - 10281, n=441)
2244 Points ∼70% +128%
Overall (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
420 Points ∼30%
Oukitel WP5000
1409 Points ∼100% +235%
CAT S31
1 Points ∼0% -100%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
706 Points ∼50% +68%
Ulefone Armor X
206 Points ∼15% -51%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (144 - 432, n=9)
342 Points ∼24% -19%
Average of class Smartphone (1 - 4308, n=444)
1134 Points ∼80% +170%
Geekbench 4.1/4.2
Compute RenderScript Score (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
773 Points ∼20%
Oukitel WP5000
2663 Points ∼70% +245%
Ulefone Armor X
1416 Points ∼37% +83%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (773 - 858, n=3)
822 Points ∼21% +6%
Average of class Smartphone (836 - 14362, n=138)
3831 Points ∼100% +396%
64 Bit Multi-Core Score (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
1237 Points ∼31%
Oukitel WP5000
3943 Points ∼99% +219%
CAT S31
1135 Points ∼29% -8%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
1855 Points ∼47% +50%
Ulefone Armor X
1847 Points ∼47% +49%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (1131 - 1237, n=3)
1176 Points ∼30% -5%
Average of class Smartphone (1131 - 10558, n=185)
3970 Points ∼100% +221%
64 Bit Single-Core Score (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
425 Points ∼36%
Oukitel WP5000
863 Points ∼73% +103%
CAT S31
437 Points ∼37% +3%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
629 Points ∼54% +48%
Ulefone Armor X
662 Points ∼56% +56%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (394 - 427, n=3)
415 Points ∼35% -2%
Average of class Smartphone (394 - 4265, n=186)
1175 Points ∼100% +176%
3DMark
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Physics (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
8112 Points ∼67%
Oukitel WP5000
Points ∼0% -100%
CAT S31
6396 Points ∼53% -21%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
11459 Points ∼94% +41%
Ulefone Armor X
10195 Points ∼84% +26%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (7498 - 8913, n=9)
7991 Points ∼66% -1%
Average of class Smartphone (5462 - 36494, n=476)
12164 Points ∼100% +50%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Graphics Score (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
2396 Points ∼15%
Oukitel WP5000
Points ∼0% -100%
CAT S31
5042 Points ∼32% +110%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
3985 Points ∼26% +66%
Ulefone Armor X
3585 Points ∼23% +50%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (2396 - 2485, n=9)
2463 Points ∼16% +3%
Average of class Smartphone (2396 - 113380, n=476)
15585 Points ∼100% +550%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Score (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
2841 Points ∼21%
Oukitel WP5000
Points ∼0% -100%
CAT S31
5291 Points ∼39% +86%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
4661 Points ∼35% +64%
Ulefone Armor X
4188 Points ∼31% +47%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (2841 - 2946, n=9)
2910 Points ∼22% +2%
Average of class Smartphone (2841 - 64405, n=477)
13472 Points ∼100% +374%
GFXBench (DX / GLBenchmark) 2.7
1920x1080 T-Rex HD Offscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
4.2 fps ∼16%
Oukitel WP5000
24 fps ∼89% +471%
CAT S31
5.6 fps ∼21% +33%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
6.8 fps ∼25% +62%
Ulefone Armor X
5.9 fps ∼22% +40%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (4.1 - 11, n=9)
5.07 fps ∼19% +21%
Average of class Smartphone (4.1 - 177, n=502)
27 fps ∼100% +543%
T-Rex HD Onscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
Cubot King Kong
7.5 fps ∼24%
Oukitel WP5000
31 fps ∼100% +313%
CAT S31
9.8 fps ∼32% +31%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
11 fps ∼35% +47%
Ulefone Armor X
9.2 fps ∼30% +23%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (4.4 - 11, n=9)
8.19 fps ∼26% +9%
Average of class Smartphone (6.9 - 120, n=505)
23.5 fps ∼76% +213%

Legend

 
Cubot King Kong Mediatek MT6580M, ARM Mali-400 MP2, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Oukitel WP5000 Mediatek Helio P25, ARM Mali-T880 MP2, 64 GB eMMC Flash
 
CAT S31 Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 MSM8909, Qualcomm Adreno 304, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4 Samsung Exynos 7570 Quad, ARM Mali-T720, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Ulefone Armor X Mediatek MT6739, PowerVR GE8100, 16 GB eMMC Flash

The Cubot King Kong requires some patience while surfing the web: It takes quite some time to load websites and images often need even longer to appear. Our benchmarks confirm this impression and place the smartphone towards the bottom of our comparison table.

JetStream 1.1 - 1.1 Total Score
Average of class Smartphone (11.4 - 224, n=360)
33.7 Points ∼100% +164%
Oukitel WP5000 (Chrome 66)
26.91 Points ∼80% +110%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4 (Chrome 58)
20.988 Points ∼62% +64%
Ulefone Armor X (Chrome 66)
18.148 Points ∼54% +42%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (11.4 - 14.5, n=9)
13.4 Points ∼40% +5%
Cubot King Kong (Chrome 66)
12.789 Points ∼38%
CAT S31
12.442 Points ∼37% -3%
Octane V2 - Total Score
Oukitel WP5000 (Chrome 66)
5132 Points ∼100% +132%
Average of class Smartphone (1506 - 35255, n=496)
5011 Points ∼98% +127%
Ulefone Armor X (Chrome 66)
3151 Points ∼61% +43%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4 (Chrome 58)
3133 Points ∼61% +42%
Cubot King Kong (Chrome 66)
2208 Points ∼43%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (1769 - 2280, n=9)
2113 Points ∼41% -4%
CAT S31
2010 Points ∼39% -9%
Mozilla Kraken 1.1 - Total Score
Cubot King Kong (Chrome 66)
18388.4 ms * ∼100%
CAT S31
17827.9 ms * ∼97% +3%
Average Mediatek MT6580M (14579 - 21257, n=9)
16475 ms * ∼90% +10%
Ulefone Armor X (Chrome 66)
15875.7 ms * ∼86% +14%
Average of class Smartphone (718 - 59466, n=515)
11883 ms * ∼65% +35%
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4 (Chrome 58)
11130 ms * ∼61% +39%
Oukitel WP5000 (Chrome 66)
10209.2 ms * ∼56% +44%

* ... smaller is better

As mentioned above, our reference card Toshiba Exceria Pro M501 does not work in this device, which forced us to use a simple 32-GB card. The results might therefore not be 100% comparable, but they do show that, again, the Cubot King Kong is rather slow when reading and writing microSD cards. Accessing internal storage is no different.

Cubot King KongOukitel WP5000CAT S31Samsung Galaxy XCover 4Ulefone Armor XAverage 16 GB eMMC FlashAverage of class Smartphone
AndroBench 3-5
177%
159%
172%
203%
95%
169%
Sequential Write 256KB SDCard
10.3 (Kingston 32GB)
20.5 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
99%
59.5
478%
55.66 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M401)
440%
62.57 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
507%
36.9 (6.38 - 65.4, n=103)
258%
43.8 (6.38 - 87.1, n=270)
325%
Sequential Read 256KB SDCard
20.6 (Kingston 32GB)
21.11 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
2%
81.8
297%
68.97 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M401)
235%
81.54 (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501)
296%
55.3 (10.8 - 87.7, n=103)
168%
62.1 (10.8 - 96.5, n=270)
201%
Random Write 4KB
7
9.89
41%
14.81
112%
11.9
70%
10.17
45%
7.24 (0.49 - 37.9, n=217)
3%
13.5 (0.14 - 164, n=549)
93%
Random Read 4KB
17.2
66.88
289%
14.28
-17%
21.8
27%
14.7
-15%
19.7 (2.49 - 61.7, n=217)
15%
34.5 (1.59 - 173, n=549)
101%
Sequential Write 256KB
32.6
162.14
397%
62.13
91%
73.6
126%
82.85
154%
40.8 (8.74 - 97.6, n=217)
25%
71.7 (2.99 - 228, n=549)
120%
Sequential Read 256KB
77.3
257.52
233%
71.06
-8%
181.6
135%
255.34
230%
156 (9.66 - 294, n=217)
102%
211 (12.1 - 832, n=549)
173%

Games – simple games are OK

Simple games such as Angry Birds are displayed smoothly and even 3D games such as Dead Trigger 2 can be played, although you will have to forego certain effects as the graphics card does not support modern interfaces. Even more-demanding games can be played thanks, in part, to the low screen resolution. Hardcore mobile gamers will not be pleased with this weak device as it is not possible to avoid occasional hiccups and frame drops. 

We had no issues controlling the device with the gyroscope and the touchscreen.

Angry Birds
Angry Birds
Dead Trigger 2
Dead Trigger 2

Emissions – low temperatures, tolerable speaker

Temperature

The case heats up to a maximum of 36.9 °C under strong load. This is noticeable but not a problem. This hot spot is limited to the top area on the back of the phone. Maximum temperatures are a few degrees lower while idling.

Max. Load
 34 °C
93 F
32.5 °C
91 F
33.1 °C
92 F
 
 34.9 °C
95 F
32.4 °C
90 F
33.6 °C
92 F
 
 34.7 °C
94 F
32.5 °C
91 F
33 °C
91 F
 
Maximum: 34.9 °C = 95 F
Average: 33.4 °C = 92 F
31.4 °C
89 F
31.6 °C
89 F
34.9 °C
95 F
31.3 °C
88 F
31.7 °C
89 F
36.9 °C
98 F
31.7 °C
89 F
32.1 °C
90 F
35.4 °C
96 F
Maximum: 36.9 °C = 98 F
Average: 33 °C = 91 F
Power Supply (max.)  35.6 °C = 96 F | Room Temperature 21.7 °C = 71 F | Voltcraft IR-260
Heat map front
Heat map front
Heat map back
Heat map back

Speakers

Speaker test Pink Noise
Speaker test Pink Noise

The single speaker on the back of the Cubot King Kong is not particularly loud and therefore cannot be used in loud surroundings. Due to the weighty case, you can place the smartphone on the table without affecting the sound. Low mids are slightly too weak at maximum volume. At least the very high highs are not very pronounced either, which makes the overall sound passable. Demanding music lovers, however, would be better off using headphones or external speakers. Connecting these via Bluetooth is easy and works well with sound being transmitted very nicely. The same can be said for the 3.5-mm audio jack.

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2040.740.5253537.63135.637.24033.128.4503430.66332.328.58019.823.510019.222.612517.821.916014.121.720014.82525012.630.331511.339.240010.847.650010.252.76309.459.1800964.110008.364.712508.363.216008.262.62000861.925008.162.33150863.74000864.750007.964.66300860.880008.353.4100008.349.7125008.343.7160008.326.8SPL68.32174.4N21.60.331.4median 8.3Cubot King Kongmedian 53.4Delta1.814.231.634.125.433.425.332.332.927.633.628.131.634.428.430.12736.520.833.42241.221.347.620.852.121.255.219.457.419.560.317.765.417.968.617.87017.370.617.47216.771.317.269.718.27117.972.417.666.317.761.417.857.917.95818.149.218.246.63080.41.347.4median 17.9Samsung Galaxy XCover 4median 60.31.310.7hearing rangehide median Pink Noise
Frequency diagram (checkboxes can be checked and unchecked to compare devices)
Cubot King Kong audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (74.4 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 26.6% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (7.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 7.7% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (7.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 7.6% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (5.7% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(-) | overall sound is not linear (30% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 78% of all tested devices in this class were better, 8% similar, 14% worse
» The best had a delta of 14%, average was 25%, worst was 44%
Compared to all devices tested
» 87% of all tested devices were better, 4% similar, 9% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Samsung Galaxy XCover 4 audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (80.4 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 15.9% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (12.3% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 7.4% higher than median
(+) | mids are linear (5.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 6.3% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (6.3% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (22.9% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 31% of all tested devices in this class were better, 11% similar, 58% worse
» The best had a delta of 14%, average was 25%, worst was 44%
Compared to all devices tested
» 60% of all tested devices were better, 7% similar, 33% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Battery Runtime

Power Consumption

The Cubot King Kong has decent power consumption. It consumes a maximum of 5.5 watts under maximum load, which is not the best result, but it is enough to score averagely compared to its competition. As the other consumption rates are quite low, its main competitor in the area of power consumption is the Samsung Galaxy XCover 4.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.05 / 0.2 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 0.7 / 1.6 / 1.8 Watt
Load midlight 3.8 / 5.5 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Cubot King Kong
4400 mAh
Oukitel WP5000
5200 mAh
CAT S31
4000 mAh
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
2800 mAh
Ulefone Armor X
5500 mAh
Average Mediatek MT6580M
 
Average of class Smartphone
 
Power Consumption
-28%
-4%
0%
-30%
-14%
-9%
Idle Minimum *
0.7
1.18
-69%
0.73
-4%
0.56
20%
1.22
-74%
0.796 (0.56 - 1.1, n=9)
-14%
0.866 (0.2 - 3.4, n=576)
-24%
Idle Average *
1.6
2.17
-36%
2.21
-38%
1.57
2%
2.07
-29%
1.789 (1.36 - 2.26, n=9)
-12%
1.697 (0.6 - 6.2, n=575)
-6%
Idle Maximum *
1.8
2.26
-26%
2.25
-25%
1.68
7%
2.14
-19%
2.08 (1.38 - 2.39, n=9)
-16%
1.945 (0.74 - 6.6, n=576)
-8%
Load Average *
3.8
3.68
3%
2.99
21%
4.6
-21%
4.92
-29%
4.83 (3.11 - 6.97, n=9)
-27%
3.97 (0.8 - 10.8, n=570)
-4%
Load Maximum *
5.5
6.06
-10%
4.12
25%
5.92
-8%
5.4
2%
5.62 (3.59 - 7.03, n=9)
-2%
5.6 (1.2 - 14.2, n=570)
-2%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Runtime

Thanks to the large battery capacity of 4400 mAh, we were not surprised that the Cubot King Kong offers great battery runtimes, such as 18:18 hours in the Wi-Fi test. This places it on par with the significantly more expensive CAT S31. However, you need to be patient while charging: The included power supply needs over four hours to fully recharge the device.

Battery Runtime
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
18h 18min
Cubot King Kong
4400 mAh
Oukitel WP5000
5200 mAh
CAT S31
4000 mAh
Samsung Galaxy XCover 4
2800 mAh
Ulefone Armor X
5500 mAh
Battery Runtime
8%
-2%
-39%
-23%
Reader / Idle
1388
WiFi v1.3
1098
1189
8%
1074
-2%
668
-39%
845
-23%
Load
205
H.264
681

Pros

+ very good battery runtimes
+ low power consumption
+ decent call quality
+ IP68 certification
+ affordable price
+ pure Android
+ high-contrast screen

Cons

- grainy, blurred photos
- long charging times
- no LTE
- relatively low performance
- screen is relatively unprotected
- only touch buttons for operation
- outdated software
- display has visible color cast

Verdict – low-cost and well-fortified but with weaknesses

Review: Cubot King Kong
Review: Cubot King Kong

Do not let the Cubot King Kong trick you: Despite its weighty case, the display is hardly protected, and the touch buttons make it difficult to use with gloves. It also offers low performance and is not ideal for use in bright surroundings. Other manufacturers offer devices that really deserve the name "outdoor smartphone". But do take into account that this device has an IP68 certification, long battery runtimes and pure Android.

This is where your expectations from this smartphone should end. The camera takes washed-out pictures at best and the speaker is not worthy of its name - it is very quiet, although the sound it produces is OK. The missing LTE support might be considered a no-go by many people.

Certain limitations cannot be avoided in this price range. Nonetheless, the Cubot King Kong offers very good battery runtimes and is water and dust-resistant.

If you are looking for a smartphone that you can use in rough surroundings, you might want to spend a little more money and get a more powerful device that can be used everywhere. However, if you are simply clumsy and the weighty design appeals to you, you will get a decent smartphone for little money.

Cubot King Kong - 06/19/2018 v6
Florian Wimmer

Chassis
84%
Keyboard
65 / 75 → 87%
Pointing Device
87%
Connectivity
31 / 60 → 51%
Weight
87%
Battery
100%
Display
82%
Games Performance
4 / 63 → 7%
Application Performance
24 / 70 → 34%
Temperature
91%
Noise
100%
Audio
61 / 91 → 67%
Camera
39%
Average
66%
76%
Smartphone - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Cubot King Kong Smartphone Review
Florian Wimmer, 2018-06-21 (Update: 2018-06-22)