Reviews

Conquest S8 Review: Smartphone with Power Armor

Today we have received the Conquest S8, a smartphone that is water and dust resistant, in addition to withstanding pressure, scratches, freezing, and high temperatures like a champ. Not only does its body absorb impacts, but its screen has two metal strips on both sides, strengthened with titanium screws. Of course, all these protection layers add up to a smartphone that we can definitely call – thick as a brick.

Conquest S8 back side of the smartphone while being leaned on the box

The market for rugged smartphones is not even nearly as saturated as the one for feeble, scratching, bending, scuffing, but arguably much prettier handsets. This makes each newcomer in the category an impressive sight, especially as Caterpillar has the de-facto monopoly and undisputed authority on the niche – at least in the Western world. On the Eastern side of the globe, we’ve got products like Conquest S8. With all the workings of a rugged, borderline-indestructible smartphone – just look at this thing. It’s like a power armor!

In order to understand how good this smartphone actually is, we have prepared a detailed review, so let’s start.

Specifications

Before we start with the review, please take a look at the Conquest S8 smartphone specs table:

Display

5-inch 1280 x 720 FHD IPS Capacitive multi-touch with Gorilla Glass 2

CPU

MSM8916 Quad-Core 1.2 GHz

RAM

2GB DDR 3

Storage Capacity

16 GB (can be extended up to 64 GB)

OS

Android 4.4 KitKat

SIM

Dual SIM, dual standby

4G Network

4G: FDD-LTE B1/3/7/20 MHz (2600 / 2100 / 1800 / 800 MHz)

3G Network

GSM 1900 / 1800 / 900 / 800

2G Network

GSM 1900 / 1800 / 900 / 850

Wi-Fi

802.11 b/g/n

GPS

A-GPS, GPS support

Language

Multi-language support

Sensors

Ambient light sensor, Gravity sensor, Gyroscope, Pressure sensor

Primary camera

13 Megapixels

Secondary camera

5 Megapixels

Battery type

Li-polymer

Battery capacity

6000 mAh

Dimensions

160 x 84 x 18 mm

Weight

305 g

Highlights

MSM8916 Quad Core Android 4.4 CONQUEST S8, rugged Waterproof phone, GPS Shockproof smartphone, 2GB, 16GB, 4G, LTE, 6000mAh

Packaging

Unboxing your Conquest S8, you will find following things inside:

1X Conquest S8 Smartphone

1X Battery

1X Earphone

1X USB cable

1X Charger

Beautiful packaging of the Conquest S8 smartphone covered with the wooden texture

The company did really an excellent job with the Conquest S8 packaging. Your smartphone will safely arrive in a beautiful hard cardboard box covered with wooden texture, with engraved company logo on top of it. Unlike many other companies, in your Conquest S8 packaging you will find one set of earphones. Not many companies are giving away earphones in their packaging content, so this is a big plus to the Conquest S8 Company.

Design & Ruggedness

The trim around the display is made of pure metal, and the screws that are holding it down are precision screws made from titanium. The Conquest S8 smartphone satisfies all the requirements of IP68 safety standard, so basically it can suffer many drops from a 3-5 meter height, and you will still be able to make a call without any problems at all. Also, it is a water-resistant smartphone; it can endure around 30 minutes in as deep as 100 cm of water.

Successfully tested waterproof feature of the Conquest S8 smartphone

The Conquest S8 comes together with the 3rd generation of Gorilla Glass protection so the screen is really resilient against not only the shock in getting dropped but from scratches as well. The slot for the optional memory card and SIM cards are well protected behind a screw-down plate on the rear side of this device. The battery is also encased internally, and it is removable only with the partial deconstruction of the smartphone. The only parts covered with rubber are the micro-USB dock, and the 3.5mm I/O headphone/microphone jack.

Side view of the Conquest S8 smartphone, with waterproof-protected slots

Conquest S8 Display

The Conquest S8 comes with a 5-inch 1280 x 720 FHD IPS capacitive multi-touch screen which has a 300 PPI. The display is just the right size for any type usage. Sunlight readability and viewing angles are almost perfect.

Holding Conquest S8 in hand while checking out its display

Processor & RAM

The Conquest S8 is geared with the MSM8916 Quad-Core processor, a low-class processing unit that is running at 1.2 GHz. MTK, or MediaTek, is Taiwan-based micro CPU developer/manufacturer and they’re taking the user electronics stores by storm with their relatively affordable but highly capable chips. The MSM8916 is one of these chips; it’s a quad-core processor based on its larger predecessor, the MT8735, which is an Octa-Core CPU. Combined with the 2GB of DDR 3 RAM, the MSM8916 processes nearly all functions of the phone so no matter if you are a business type of person or a gamer, this smartphone will run without any problems at all.

Camera

For a rugged smartphone with 13 megapixels lens, Conquest S8 is an excellent performer in the camera department. It is nothing spectacular from a hardware standpoint, but software algorithms draw the best that the Conquest S8 camera has to offer. There are a standard set of features like face and smile detection, panorama, HDR and many other interesting features that can be found in the camera interface. Photos have a little noise, but they will provide a lot of details and good dynamic range. Conquest S8 can also record videos of up to 1080p, and you will be glad to hear that they are rich in details also.

Here are some of the image samples that were taken by Conquest S8 camera so you can decide for yourselves:

click for a larger image

Internal Storage Capacity

Conquest S8 has 16GB of storage which is really nice. After the initial setup, you are left with around 12GB of memory. If you find it too little and if it doesn’t fulfill your requirements, you can always expand it via micro SD card of up to 64 GB (so in total you would have 80 GB of storage on your smartphone).

Operating System

The Conquest S8 is powered by 4.4 KitKat OS. What we have here is an incremental enhancement in rugged smartphones industry with detailed visual upgrades that enhance the experience without being glaringly obvious. This installment of the OS brought many advantages in the past, and it might sound outdated compared with the current smartphones, but it’s a fresh surprise in a rugged smartphone like this.

Conquest S8 is being powered by the KitKat 4.4 OS

Connectivity

Thanks to the two micro SIM card slots, each opted with 4G cellular connectivity, you will be provided with the access to the faster mobile data communications. With speeds that are faster than a typical broadband connection, you can even stream HD movies and enjoy unparalleled data speeds.

With these upload speeds, you can take HD videos of your extreme adventures and upload them directly to the web without any delays at all. When it is cold outside you do not even have to get your hands cold as the camera has its own dedicated button, so you can keep your gloves on and still get great images and videos.

Available networks:

4G Network

4G: FDD-LTE B1/3/7/20 MHz (2600 / 2100 / 1800 / 800 MHz)

3G Network

GSM 1900 / 1800 / 900 / 800

2G Network

GSM 1900 / 1800 / 900 / 850

Dual SIM, dual standby is available. Dual standby means that you are only able to use one of the SIM cards for calls while the other one is on standby. Wi-Fi supports 802.11 b/g/n networks. We did not have a difficulty connecting to a Wi-Fi network at the office or a public network in the city. The device has Bluetooth 4.0 onboard which is a regular these days, and it offers quick transactions between devices and works on low power.

Conquest S8 Battery

Conquest S8 is equipped with a giant 6000 mAh Li-Polymer battery. In every possible situation that we tested it, the battery still managed to last at least two days. The battery will last even more if you are using Conquest S8 for SMS, calls, and occasional internet browsing. Of course, some users can deplete it in a matter of hours, but that is only in case of playing HD games and watching videos at 100% brightness.

Additional Features

Compass feature of the Conquest S8 smartphone

Conquest S8 comes with a lot of interesting features, and here are some of them:

  • The UHF walkie talkie feature will keep you connected with the world even if there is no mobile network. Using UHF from 400 MHz to 470MHz frequencies, Conquest S8 will allow you to have a conversation with other people as far as 5 kilometers away. A valuable tool when you are off the beaten path and the perfect way to keep in touch with other members of your group when trekking, skiing or while you are at the mall.
  • The Conquest S8 Pro is a chief of the outside environment not only that it stands up to hard conditions, but it can also help you to find your path easier. The Compass and GPS features will keep you on the right track guaranteeing you don’t get lost. On top of this, the Conquest S8 can give you atmospheric pressure and altimeter readings so you can predict the weather and it will let you know the temperature. This feature is everything you need for keeping safe in the great outdoors.
  • IR transmitter – With Conquest S8 in your home, you won’t need several remote controls as it has a IR transmitter built-in that will let you change the channels on your TV, turn on the Air condition and even play your DVDs. What more could you need in a phone?

Pros & Cons

After we have spent some time with the Conquest S8, we have concluded a bunch of things that we like and things that are not so great:

PROS

  • Better than its predecessor in every possible hardware aspect.
  • 6000 mAh capacity battery for even the most demanding users.
  • Great camera with many interesting functions.
  • Great design by any standards.

CONS

  • Low-class CPU that is running at 1.2 Ghz
  • There is no option for Dual-active SIM cards

Our opinion

We must say that the Conquest S8 surprised us pleasantly. As we said above, Conquest S8 is better than its predecessor in every possible hardware aspect, and we think that the company did an excellent job.

If you are interested in this smartphone, we have provided the best possible price for you in the link bellow:

Buy Conquest S8 from banggood.com for $443.99 USD / 2,896.90 CNY

Is it a good and affordable smartphone? Of course it is. Will it sell in the numbers that its manufacturer hoped? We certainly hope so because it is a good and strong device that can endure almost everything.

 

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5 Comments

  1. Hi great phone on specs. I want to contact the brand Conquest can some one help me please? The web page is in Chinese. Regards!

  2. I bought this phone in April, (unfortunately at Chinavision.com – which I do not recommend; will write about it at the end).

    The phone generally is ok: it is big but solid, it is very fast even with this CPU.
    Battery seems strong – that was my main motivator, charges long but lasts also loooong.
    The phone is huge, the screen size it’s smaller than iPhone 6s Plus but the phone is bit larger and 3 times fat 🙂 – But that’s the rugeddness.

    Unfortunetelly the one I have has a major problem with the GPS.
    The signal of the sattelites is way worse than on any other Android phone.
    Other phones put next to Conquest seen more sattelites (including GLONASS and with stronger signal).
    After getting the fix – it losses all the sattelites just after shaking the phone – so you can’t run or drive to have GPS – not good for an outdoor phone…
    Even when you have a fix the attitude is reported totally wrong and the phone shows that you’re moving with few km per secon when standing still.
    GLONASS support is a lie – the phone does not see any russian sattelite – maybe it’s related to the other GPS issue (but the manufacturer says it has fixed it).

    The other issue was when it got some humid inside, on the screen. One could see a nice small fingerprint at the
    very center of the screen FROM THE INSIDE 🙂 So the quality of manufacture is rather poor.
    There was also an issue with Walkie Talkie PTT button which was fortunatelly fixed with the OS update.
    With time the power button is getting loose, but haven’t felt out for those few months.

    Haven’t tested the IP-68 yet – with this quality I’m a bit scared to drown the phone but people online did it and seems fine.
    The OS seems to be the only reliable part of the phone – probably because it’s almost raw Android so it’s not manufactured by Conquest.

    It has QQ and few other chinese apps preinstalled, the ROM is in chinese so you might get into comms which you might need to use Translate with camera.
    Unfortunatelly after last system update Google Play Services started crashing so forget about App Store.

    It did fell once (no, the GPS issue appeared before that) and not broke, however it has shut down and I had to power it on manually.
    There are a few glitches which could work better (eg. handling of the home button) but one can live with that.

    The factory screen protector looks like if it was sticked by a child – it is uneven and skewed with dust under.
    The charger is a typical chinese low cost charger which actually stinks like if it was burning inside while charging – never gonna use it again.
    The stand charger, which they advertise, for powering the phone is a cheap piece of plastic which does not even fit the phone – the phone just jumps out of it and stops charing in seconds.
    The camera is “13Mpix” but it takes worse pictures than iPhone 4S with 5Mpix.
    One has to reboot the phone after inserting a SIM or a SD card – otherwise the phone does not see it. No hotplugging.
    Thermal sensor does not seem to work properly – shows rather the main board temperature that the external one.

    I have sent the phone for repair (via Chinavision) and it seems the manufacturer either can’t comprehend English or even a video tutorials with reproduction.
    I have sent the device twice with same issue and got it twice not fixed – just updated with new OS compilation by the manufacturer.
    So if you buy this and get unlucky as I you probably won’t have your issues fixed what does not show Conquest is a good light.

    And last, the Chinavision – I had to send the device twice, as at the first time they have send me back the device in exact same state.
    I have sent it again, after recording dozens of videos with the GPS issue and they have said they will send me a replacement – you guessed it – they have sent me back exactly same device,
    unfixed and did not even had slightiest decency for reimbursing for the costs of 1st return.
    Definately don’t use their service if you plan to buy this phone (or anything else maybe).
    Maybe the issue is that they rely on what the producer says, if the phone is repaired or not, but they state on their page they perform a Quality Control before sending back, which is a lie.
    This does not say much good about either Conquest or Chinavision.

    I think I would like the phone and buy the next model too – but after experiences with the GPS, way how Conquest did not fix anything and recent soft update, I will not risk in paying so much for so average quality.

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