Getting started with the Crosscall Stellar-X5: the bet on sustainability

Estimated read time 5 min read

Getting started with the Crosscall Stellar-X5: the bet on sustainability

Crosscall Photo

For the French smartphone brand Crosscall, attracting new customers obviously involves a small slimming diet. How do I know that? Well because I took in hand the latest smartphone from the Aix company, the top-of-the-range model named Stellar-X5.

It is thinner and lighter than the cador Core-Z5, the rugged smartphone intended primarily for professionals working on difficult terrain. It weighs about thirty grams less while its stretched format screen (20:9) is larger, 6.5’ versus 6.1’. But it is still a little heavier than the 220 g of the iPhone 15 Pro Max (with a 6.7″ screen).

On the design side, the Stellar-X5 however remains well and truly an Android device, apart from its optical unit (and we’ll come back to that).

He is the first representative of a new range that Crosscall is launching at the beginning of October.

As a reminder, Crosscall offers the Action range, for outdoor activity enthusiasts, the Core range which equips, among others, French law enforcement agencies and firefighters. The Stellar range, for its part, is aimed at professionals looking for a smartphone with a good technical level, but also resistant and durable over time.

An undeniable need for aesthetics and storage issues

We are used to seeing Crosscall smartphones adorned with large buttons. Large buttons that allow quick access to dedicated functions. On the Core-Z5, for example, there are seven, four of which are customizable.

From this point of view, the Stellar-X5 is a refinement. There are four thin buttons, two of which are programmable. The trick to maintain a fairly wide range of functions accessible directly is that these programmable buttons are activated either by a long press or a triple press.

On the port side, Crosscall has taken the plunge and has also removed the audio Jack. With the Stellar-X5, the brand also says ciao to the micro-SD card slot. For the moment, this smartphone is only offered with a 128 GB storage (backed by an 8 GB RAM). This choice of Crosscall can interrogate … The followers of photo and video shooting could quickly run out of space.

Crosscall Stellar-X5 and Apple iPhone 15 Pro Max. Photo Moctar KANE/ZDNet France

Photographer’s questions

On the photo side, precisely, a striking difference of the Crosscall Stellar-X5 with the high-end smartphones of the competition is its optical block of very modest size. No x3 zoom (let’s not even talk about the x5), here there are only two optics. That of the main sensor (a 50 Mpx) and the wide angle of 120 ° associated with a 16 Mpx sensor.

We did take some photos using the Stellar-X5, and the quality seemed good. But the device taken in hand did not, we were told, have a definitive version of its system.

However, having tested several smartphones of the brand, we can tell you that generally the quality of the photos of the Crosscall is not high.
The Stellar-X5 being presented by the brand as a high-end model, we will have to check this during a less brief test.

It has become obvious, a requirement imposed by the competition: a high-end smartphone must be a good photophone.
Namely, on the video side, the capture is possible in 4K but it is limited to only 30 images / sec (against at least 60 images / sec elsewhere).

X-Link and X-Space: the two great arguments

But Crosscall smartphones have a feature that we particularly appreciate. This is their X-Link fastening system. It allows you to associate them with various accessories, from the bike or motorcycle adapter to the harness, including the charging dock. The attachment is made by magnetism and can be reinforced in some cases by the addition of a fixative (for intense activities). It’s very convenient.

And as with the Core-Z5, the Stellar-X5 can also be used as a simplified computer. Simply connect it via a USB-C cable to a monitor and associate it with a keyboard and a mouse. This is the X-Space desktop mode, very convincing, reminiscent of the DeX solution proposed by Samsung several years ago with its Galaxy smartphones.

Ad vitam aeternam (or almost)

Of course, we have not yet been able to experience the great resistance of the Stellar-X5 to time. But it is designed to withstand a hundred falls from a height of 1.5 m on concrete. The device would also withstand a stay under 2 m of water for half an hour. And unlike other IP68 smartphones, it would also not be afraid of seawater, if soapy water.

We have already checked the resistance of other Crosscall devices several times. This is the expertise of this company. So it should roll on this point for the Stellar-X5. Especially since this device is covered against other risks.

Crosscall continues indeed with this Stellar-X5 its promise of five-year warranty! And a repairability for ten years, as well as three major Android updates. Given that the impact of a smartphone on the environment is mainly related to its manufacture, this service proposal is not trivial.

And this is undoubtedly one of the weighty arguments of the Stellar-X5, sold for the tidy sum of € 900. Currently, there is no more expensive at Croscall, Core-Z5 included (850 €).

Crosscall is studying the possibility of also launching various color versions of the Stellar-X5. Photo Moctar KANE/ZDNet France

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