Technophile

Poco X2: First impressions of a long-awaited smartphone

Mala Bhargava | Updated on February 06, 2020 Published on February 05, 2020

It’s been a long time coming. Xiaomi’s Poco F1 was launched way back in August 2018 and for a while was the only other phone apart from a OnePlus to be called a flagship killer. For months afterwards users couldn’t believe the flagship processor Snapdragon 845 was available at an affordable price and even today consider it to be a good buy at its current cost of Rs 15,999. But the Poco F1 was a different beast and the new Poco X2 is quite another kettle of fish.

For these past one and a half years there was no news about an upcoming successor to the Poco F1. Users clamoured for it but it looked for all the world as if Xiaomi all but gave up on it. But suddenly they revived it and took what should be the successor to also popular K20, the K30 and designated it the Poco X2. It doesn’t have a flagship processor as it uses the Snapdragon 730G, which is no slouch. With the launch of the Poco X2 Xiaomi has also spun off Poco as a totally separate brand with its own separate team, though of course it will share resources for now. With the F1 and X2 being so different, you’d wonder what the strategy is for Poco phones. Well, it’s to bring out phones that have ‘one good thing’ about them. Meaning one really good thing. This time it’s a 120Hz refresh rate screen — at a killer price.

The Poco X2 also looks very different from the Poco F1 which is a practical, sturdy chunk of a phone. The X2 goes in for a glossy glitzy look in interesting colours — red, purple, blue. The back is supposed to be Gorilla Glass 5. There’s no way we can tell, actually. It’s not a small phone by any standards. The screen is a 6.67 inch one and the handset feels every bit as big and broad as it is. I’ve already sent the slippery device down to the floor a few times but it’s quite tough so doesn’t seem to have noticed. The back has a large circular area to house a vertical strip of cameras. I don’t mind the look at all but everyone is likely to feel differently about this element. Strangely it says Designed by Poco on it which is odd considering it should be if it’s a Poco phone, but also because the Redmi K30 (not launched in India) has the exact identical element and even the same colours, so who designed who? Well, no matter, a phone is a phone is a phone.

The Poco X2 has a side mounted fingerprint sensor and not an under-display one. I don’t find that too disappointing as the physical ones work faster and are quite convenient. Being part of the power button makes it easy to wake and unlock in two taps in the same place, which is nice enough, and does indeed happen quite fast. Left-handlers will however have to figure it out, though they have to use the power button on the right side anyway.

But let’s get to the crowning glory or the one good thing on the Poco X2 which is its 120Hz screen. It’s a bright Full HD+ IPS LCD display — not an AMOLED one. Its high refresh rate, still a rarity on phones, makes things faster and more fluid. The screen has shed the unforgettably big broad notch of the F1 and now has two camera punch holes instead.

The 730G processor is tuned for gaming and on this phone is coupled with ‘LiquidCool’ technology to keep the thermals under control when pushing performance. There are three variants with the top one coming with 8GB of LPDDR4X RAM, POCO X2 is geared for serious multi-tasking as well as gaming. POCO X2 features UFS2.1 storage, up to 256GB in capacity, along with a hybrid slot for storage expansion. The other variants include 6GB/64GB and 8GB/128GB.

Despite the phone being about one good thing, there is a lot else to like. It is becomes the first phone in the India to feature the Sony IMX686 64MP wide-angle sensor as part of its quad-camera setup. In tow is an 8MP sensor with an ultra-wide angle lens; a 2MP macro shooter with autofocus than can handle subjects between 10cm and 2cm, and a 2MP depth sensor to deliver accurate info for the portrait shots. It also has dual in-screen front camera setup for selfie portraits. It combines a 2MP depth sensor with a 20MP main camera.

The Poco X2 can also boast of a large-capacity 4500mAh battery and 27W fast charging out of the box.

Prices: 6GB/64GB Rs 15,999, 8GB/128GB Rs 16,999, 8GB/256GB Rs 19,999

Published on February 05, 2020
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