Design and Screen
For San Diego-based manufacturer Verykool, it is the premium model. At its price, the Black Pearl is a great value for what you get. It has a crisp screen, fast processor, dual-SIM capability, and a few software extras that make it more than just another budget Android handset. The Black Pearl beats the Verykool Vortex in every way. Though it is the company\'s most expensive model, at $280, and has a water-resistant, rugged exterior, the Vortex is plagued by an out-of-date operating system and an inferior screen. One can be really impressed by the screen; it looks sharp, crisp, and bright.
Display and Power Buttons
The power button is up top, and is built into the back cover. Next to that is the headphone jack. On the bottom, there is a Micro-USB port for charging. There is a volume rocker on the left side. The volume rocker is on the left side and have two raised nubs for volume up and down, making it easy to press without looking at the phone. The Black Pearl sports a 4.7-inch diagonal HD IPS 1,280x720-pixel-resolution (312 ppi) screen, which is on par with other smart phones with similarly sized displays.
Smooth polycarbonate back cover
The smooth polycarbonate back cover wraps around the sides of the phone and there\'s a speaker grille near the bottom. Remove the cover to reveal the battery, two SIM slots, and a micro SD card slot. You need to pull out the battery to access either card slot, which is a pain. The dual SIM slots are stacked one on top of the other, with SIM 1 behind SIM 2. The Black Pearl uses full-size SIM cards, which, compared with today\'s standard micro-SIM, is outdated. One can easily fit the phone into a pocket. Though overall the phone feels solid, the back cover feels flimsy in places.
Despite its name, nothing about the design of the Black Pearl reminds me of an actual pearl. It has a slightly curved rounded body and slick matte back cover, and comes in two colors, black and white.
OS and features
Though it looks as though the Black Pearl is running a vanilla version of Android Jelly Bean 4.2, there are a few modifications. Verykool included a handful of apps, such as a file manager, a notepad app called Note Book, a setup guide, and an app called OOBE.
Lastly, there is a stock Android browser preinstalled which has an extra feature; you can pop out a Web page into a smaller window that hangs out on top of the home screen or other apps. You cannot resize the window, which is a bummer, but you can move the view around to see every part of the page. This a neat feature that you can find on Samsung and LG phones as well. It is useful for when you need to reference a tidbit of information from Web site.
Camera and video
There is an 8-megapixel main camera on the back of the phone, which protrudes slightly above the back cover. There is also an LED flash right below the lens. Overall, it takes decent photos, with a few caveats. In most of my test photos, the Black Pearl\'s camera struggled to take clear, well-lit shots. Though the camera has an autofocus, with an option to tap the screen to manually focus, close-up shots did not always turn out sharp. That led to photos with very small focus areas with anything not in focus looking blurry. Also, the camera had a hard time capturing color variations in close-ups as well.
Size wise, it is nearly identical to the Samsung Galaxy S4, just thicker. Officially, the phone measures 5.4 inches tall, 2.7 inches wide and 0.4 inch deep. It weighs 5.6 ounces, which makes it feel hefty and solid in my hands.
The Verykool s470 Black Pearl smart phone is a great value at only $230 off-contract and it has a sharp screen.
The phone\'s camera takes mediocre shots and there is no support for LTE.
Verykool\'s premium Black Pearl is far from high-end, but its unique features, like the dual-SIM setup, make it one of the better unlocked low-cost smart phones out there.