Looking for a budget phone? This AT&T Calypso (U318AA) review might have the model you’re looking for. It’s affordable and packs everything you need.
AT&T Calypso smartphone was released in August 2020. A budget phone always has a place in the heart of the customers. They are simple and without any complicated features. This model is one of the examples.
It comes with a 5.5-inch display and a 1.5GHz processor. No dual-camera, but the 5MP single camera on this phone seems to do the job well. AT&T Calypso supports 4G too.
All of those features conclude with an affordable price. The manufacturer knows that buyers interested in this phone will have a certain low budget in mind.
No more about this phone, we present the AT&T Calypso (U318AA) review. Let’s see the good and bad of this phone so you have a comprehensive idea about what you will buy.
AT&T Calypso (U318AA) specifications:
- Weight: 170g
- Dimensions: 150 x 72.88 x 9.95mm
- OS: Android 10 (Go Edition)
- Screen size: 5.5-inch
- Resolution: 960 x 480
- CPU: 1.5GHz Quad-core, MediaTek MT6739
- RAM: 1GB
- Storage: 16GB
- Battery: 2,500mAh, Removable
- Rear camera: 5MP
- Front camera: 5MP
AT&T Calypso (U318AA) is a petite Android smartphone with a dimension of 150 x 72.88 x 9.95mm. This measurement allows holding and storing the device in a convenient way. You can put it in your tight jeans pocket and the phone will just sneak in fine. It is also easy to operate with one hand.
This ergonomic design is further enhanced with the phone’s curved background. Anti-slip back cover adds friction to prevent accidental drops when your hand is sweaty. We got blue color here and it looks unique on AT&T Calypso. On the same back cover, you’ll see the camera and AT&T’s logo.
The front area reminds us of phones before the infinity display started flooding the market. There’s no notch to be spotted here. Bezels are quite thick above and below the screen. The phone looks like an older iPhone model only without any physical Home button.
The front frame has a black color, in contrast with the purple back. The whole casing is made from plastic, with a glass coating on the screen. It looks appropriately designed based on its price range. Don’t hope for something flashy that turns heads. However, you will still get a nice-looking device to proudly carry around.
All in all, the phone’s advantage comes in the form of small and ergonomic size. For some buyers who are intentionally looking for something small and simple, AT&T Calypso is the way to go.
Read also: AT&T Calypso (U318AA) User Manual
AT&T Calypso comes with a 5.5-inch display. If you are accustomed to phones with big screens, AT&T Calypso will feel small. However, not everyone is a fan of gigantic displays. This is why the phone is trying to enter a specific niche where customers prefer small screens.
Although small, AT&T Calypso is not by any means uncomfortable to use. In fact, this size is quite normal, as it used to be the popular size a few years ago. Nowadays, it provides a nice middle ground too. This display is not too big, but big enough for you to do things comfortably.
The screen provides ample space for users to watch movies with an immersive experience. It does not feel like you see it on a full-screen bezel-less phone, but that’s the phone’s limit. You can do gaming, editing documents, and reading books with enjoyment too.
When it comes to multitasking, the phone falls short in this area. Stacking two apps at once will only leave you small rooms on the screen for each. It’s not recommended to do that here.
When it comes to quality AT&T Calypso gives us a 960 x 480 pixel in display resolution. It’s nothing much, as this means no HD on this phone. As a result, you might find little oddities like rough edges on apps icons. The phone doesn’t have good contrasts too, which shows when you use it outdoors. After all, there must be something to sacrifice in specs when buying a budget phone like this.
For the purpose of taking pictures, this phone equips you with two 5MP cameras, each is located in the front and in the back. don’t wish for fancy features like a dual camera because you won’t find them here. Additionally, there’s an LED flash to help take photos in the dark.
About the picture quality, they are good enough for social media. For most people that is the purpose of taking pictures nowadays. AT&T Calypso will assist you well in this matter. The color reproduction accurately represents how it looks like in the real object. There’s good clarity and contrasts in the picture.
Just don’t expect it to produce jaw-dropping results. This phone struggles during certain conditions such as when the lightning isn’t bright enough. Sometimes the picture also appears washed out and objects’ colors aren’t as popping up as we wished them to be.
You can pick the picture size ratio and camera mode through the camera app. For the front camera, a beauty mode is available to hide any imperfections on the object’s face. The app also offers other options such as activating flash and video recording with modes.
To conclude this AT&T Calypso review for cameras, what they offer on this phone caters to most basic uses. There are some tradeoffs you need to compromise.
This phone is equipped with a bare minimum capacity for internal storage. There are only 16GB available for users to store their files. with this capacity, you can install a handful of apps, preferably essential ones. It’s not a capacity that can hold big games and large movie files.
you can use the available card slot to install an SD card. However, it’s important to note that some files can not be stored in this kind of storage. For example, streaming data from paid subscription services like Netflix. Due to security and privacy reasons, app developers are only allowed to store internal storage. At the end of the day, 16GB is not enough for entertainment use.
AT&T Calypso performance specs consist of a 1.5GHz processor from MediaTek and 1GB of RAM. Overall, this looks like basic specs in a budget phone. The manufacturer focuses on efficiency rather than high performance.
The 1GB RAM is too low for our liking. It’s not built for high-intensity smartphone activity. Heavy multitasking isn’t a good idea here as it can slow the phone greatly. Users have to make sure they clear out the RAM every now and then to ensure smooth operations.
Another performance limitation shows during gaming. There are limited titles you can run smoothly on AT&T Calypso. Almost all of them are 2D point-and-click games without too many actions. Intense 3D racing game? You can say goodbye with this phone.
On the other hand, AT&T Calypso machines show good tolerance toward streaming. Provided you don’t open many apps at once, you won’t have to deal with lags when watching a movie.
This phone uses Android 10 as its operating system. However, it’s not your typical Android 10 version. Specifically, it’s a Go edition. This version is interesting because it aims at entry-level phones with limited specs. Android Go packs the essentials but it gets rid of unnecessary features that would end up clogging the performance.
Although it’s basically the stripped-down version of Android 10, Android Go still comes with loads of apps from Google. They are pre-installed, such as Chrome, Drive, and Gmail. You can immediately use the phone from the get-go.
It will be great if this phone also comes with a fingerprint sensor. Sadly that’s not the case. By observing its back cover earlier, we can see that there is no reader available. A fingerprint reader adds privacy, security, and convenience. So it’s unfortunate that it’s not available on this phone.
This phone utilizes 4G LTE wireless technology for internet and calls. So, you can be sure you get fast connections that are readily available everywhere in the country. Apart from that, you can turn it off if you’d like to save data or battery. Instead, use Wi-Fi.
Yes, alongside the 4G LTE, here are some of the wireless features you can also use like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS. The latter is for navigation and finding locations. It works quite accurately though there are lags on the screen. It’s more of the performance than the GPS accuracy.
For connection to other devices, a MicroUSB port is available on the bottom of the phone. Plug your USB cable here and transfer data to/from a PC. MicroUSB is an older model, therefore transfer speed won’t be as fast as if it were a USB Type-C cable.
AT&T Calypso comes with a 2,500mAh battery. Our initial impression suggests that this is quite a decent capacity for a small smartphone. After all, this phone doesn’t need a lot due to its low performance demand. We consulted the spec sheet and found that it can handle up to 10 hours of talk time. Standby time is even more impressive at 500 hours.
The battery on this phone is removable, unlike most fun today unibody forms. For charging, we didn’t see any fast charger let alone a wireless charger coming with the phone. We assume the phone doesn’t need it. It’s relatively quick to charge its small capacity. Besides, that would make the phone more expensive which is against the purpose here.
Is the AT&T Calypso a good phone?
One of the most interesting findings in this AT&T Calypso (U318AA) review is how affordable the phone is. Retailers are selling this phone for only $40 per unit. It makes sense since you don’t get much in terms of specifications. However, for basic needs, this phone delivers what it promises to do.
Another advantage is its small size. It also provides a fast connection through 4G and has lots of functionalities from camera to GPS. On the other hand, the camera is of low quality and the internal storage has a small capacity. These are some of the compromises you need to make when purchasing this phone.
AT&T Calypso Pros
- Compact design
- Uses light Android Go
- Very cheap price
AT&T Calypso Cons
- Low-quality screen
- Low-quality camera
- Limited performance