Skip to main content

Can a $400 phone last for four years? The Teracube phone is up for the challenge

With phone manufacturers putting out a new entry in phone ranges at least once a year (twice a year in certain cases), it’s fair to say the turnover rate for phones can be fairly high. As such, the phone industry creates a lot of electronic waste from unrecycled older phones and devices. The Teracube phone is hoping to put an end to some of that waste with its four-year warranty and free replacements program on a phone that costs less than $400.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

With the average lifespan of a smartphone being around two years, claiming your smartphone is built to last twice that is certainly a heady boast. As smartphones age, battery life tends to drop as the battery cell ages, while the sleek and snappy performance you got straight out of the box tends to be blunted as the processor ages. Teracube is hoping to sidestep these problems with a free battery replacement, as well as a warranty and performance guarantee for four years. That’s a four-times longer than most flagship phones, and while we have seen free battery replacements for certain phones, it’s certainly not a common selling point.

Key Specs

  • CPU: MediaTek Helio P60
  • Memory: 6GB
  • Storage: 128GB
  • MicroSD storage: Yes, up to 256GB
  • Screen size: 6.2 inches
  • Resolution: 2280 x 1080
  • Connectivity: USB-C, headphone jack, Bluetooth 5.0
  • Battery: 3,400mAh
  • Size: 157 x 75.5 x 7.7 mm
  • Weight: 176g (6.2oz)
  • Operating system: Android 9.0 Pie

That doesn’t mean it’s a low-powered phone though. The Teracube is powered by the midrange octa-core MediaTek Helio P60, and comes with 6GB of RAM, a hefty 128GB of storage, and a space for further expansion through a MicroSD card. That hardware is powered by a 3,400mAh battery, which Teracube claims will last all day with the midrange hardware — but we have concerns that 3,400mAh is on the lower side for battery capacity these days, and could impact on the phone’s longevity in the future. There’s quick charging support with the charger supplied, though there’s no wireless charging.

Teracube

Durability is a huge concern for Tearcube, and it’s fitting the phone has really been put through its paces. The metal alloyed frame has been rigorously tested by drops up to 3 feet, while the buttons have been tested over 150,000 times. The 6.2-inch notched display runs a 2280 x 1080 resolution (it’s been drop-tested too), and the touchscreen capabilities have been similarly put to the test over 100,000 times. The USB-C port and headphone jack were subjected to insertion tests up to 3,500 times too. It’s clear that durability is a huge concern, and while there’s no water-resistance, it’s fair to assume the Teracube should go the distance.

There’s a fingerprint sensor around the back, and a dual-lens camera system too. It comprises a 12-megapixel main lens with a secondary 5-megapixel lens used for capturing depth data for portrait mode shots. Around the front you’ll find an 8-megapixel selfie lens.

There’s no use having a phone if it’s not going to get the software support though, and Teracube is well aware of that. The Teracube will get three years of updates, both major Android OS updates and security patches. Most Samsung flagships only get two years of support for major Android updates, so this is a big bonus. The Teracube will ship with Android 9.0 Pie, but has been promised to receive Android 10 by the spring of 2020.

Interested in investing in the Teracube for the next four years? The Teracube phone is currently only available through a Kickstarter campaign, and early bird backers can get the phone for just $199 — saving $150 on the eventual RRP. If those run out, there’s also a tier to get the phone for $249, saving $100. When the phone releases, it will be available from Teracube’s website for $349. It ships unlocked, and works with AT&T, T-Mobile, and Google Fi. There’s no support for Sprint’s network, though Teracube does insist its phone will work with Verizon’s network, it’s not part of Verizon’s Bring Your Own Device program, so it can’t list itself as being supported by Verizon.

Mark Jansen
Mark Jansen is an avid follower of everything that beeps, bloops, or makes pretty lights. He has a degree in Ancient &…
This tiny patch could be the future of wearable technology
Sweat analysis smart patch.

Over the past couple of years, the wearable segment -- think smartwatches and fitness bands -- seems to have grown stagnant in bringing newer biosensing capabilities on board. Yes, engineering in its miniaturized form isn’t easy, but at the same time, we have seen some startling advancements targeted at wearables.

The latest one comes courtesy of experts at the ​​Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. The team has developed a plaster that looks like a Band-Aid, capable of analyzing sweat and finding biomarkers. In the field of microfluidics, sweat is being seen as a goldmine of health-sensing data and as the next great avenue for wearable technology.

Read more
I’ve already discovered the best thing about the Galaxy Z Fold 6
A person taking the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 6 out of a pocket.

Ready for a surprise? The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 6 is pocket-friendly. Before now, it was only just about suitable to carry around in your pocket all day, provided you didn’t mind it being a bit bulky and heavy.

Now, it’s more agreeable than my Apple iPhone 15 Pro Max in a case, and that should tell you everything you need to know about the engineering advances Samsung has made with the latest big-screen foldable.
I'm pleased to see the Z Fold 6
Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 6 Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

Read more
The Xiaomi Mix Fold 4 just raised the bar for folding phones
Xiaomi Mix Fold 4 blue foldable phone.

The foldable phone category is overspilling with options beyond Samsung's Galaxy Z Fold and Flip devices. The newest entries are two foldables from Xiaomi, including the book-style Xiaomi Mix Fold 4, which raises the bar for foldables across the board.

The Mix Fold 4 is Xiaomi's fourth foldable and also the thinnest and lightest one to date. It measures 4.59mm in thickness when unfolded and 9.47mm rolled back. Xiaomi says the hinge has been shrunk significantly without compromising its strength, while the internals are reinforced with carbon fiber plates to make the overall build lighter than previous generations. The curved edges on the screen and the back make the phone much more ergonomic and easier to hold.

Read more