The Poco F2 Pro is a budget flagship that thrills the Android community. And rightly so, because it comes on paper with strong specifications in exchange for your money. Here you can read our Poco F2 Pro first impressions.
Poco F2 Pro
The Poco F2 Pro is a budget flagship that faces a difficult task because, after the hype that the first Pocophone F1 managed to create, there was a period of silence. In those two years, a lot has indeed happened because Poco has now become an independent smartphone brand and with the Poco X2, the first mid-range phone of the brand has also appeared.
However, the brand new Poco F2 Pro also knows how to attract attention because of its low price tag and specifications that resemble paper. “The cheapest phone with Qualcomm Snapdragon 865”, that title is already to his name, because the Poco F2 Pro has a suggested retail price of 499 euros. is this F2 Pro the ultimate flagship killer?
Dimensions: 163.3 X 75.4 X 8.9 mm
Screen: 6.67 inch FHD, 2400 x 1080p Super AMOLED, 60 Hz
Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 865
RAM: 6 GB RAM
Storage: 128 GB not expandable
Selfie camera: 20 MP with f / 2.2
Main camera: 64 MP with f / 1.9, 5 MP Tele macro camera with f / 2.2, 13 MP wide-angle camera with f / 2.4 and 2 Mp depth camera
Battery: 4700 mAh
Software version: MIUI 11, based on Android 10
Extra: Fingerprint scanner under the screen, 30-watt fast charger, 5G, UFS 3.1 storage, pop-up camera
Screen and design
With the testing of the Poco F2 Pro first impressions, we actually hit two birds with one stone at once, because the Poco F2 Pro is in fact in many areas an almost exact copy of the Xiaomi Redmi K30 Pro. That is no coincidence because although Poco as an independent brand itself makes the decisions, it continues to stir in the pot of Xiaomi in the field of Research & Development (R&D). That is one of the reasons why Poco can keep the price low with this F2 Pro.
You can hardly call it original, but fortunately, Poco does come with its own design accents and colors and its own start screen launcher. You can also hardly complain about the originality, because this phone is all about price-quality, and the F2 Pro makes a step forward in terms of design and build quality compared to the first Pocophone F1. There is a metal housing, an aluminum frame, and metal buttons in place of the plastic back on the first Pocophone.
The Poco F2 Pro gives a modern impression thanks to the borderless screen with a pop-up camera and the beautiful round camera module on the back. Nice detail, the pop-up camera also shines a colored light when it appears, just like with the Xiaomi Mi 9T Pro, only this time it is a blue light instead of red. For example, Poco tries to place small accents here and there, but it remains with accents.
The glass back of the Poco F2 Pro has a matte finish similar to what we saw on the Xiaomi Mi 10 Pro that costs 999 euros, and while that feels nice and makes fingerprints a little less noticeable, we’ve also seen manufacturers do better. Google, for example, with the Pixels.
So you still notice the differences with the more expensive flagships like the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra or Find X2 Pro from OPPO, because there are no curved screen edges and there is a plastic edge between the screen and the frame of the phone.
Is that disturbing? Not at all, because that makes sense. This Poco F2 Pro has a great design and material choice considering the price of 499 euros and the phone especially wants to stand out with its specifications.
Xiaomi often works with Samsung parts for the screens of his phones, just like the camera sensors, and this is no different for this Poco F2 Pro. The phone has a rimless Super AMOLED screen with a size of 6.67 inches.
In general, I am very satisfied with the quality of the panel, partly because with its brightness of 500 nits it is exactly as bright as the screen of the MI 10 Pro for which Xiaomi charges twice as much. That is not only the case on paper, because I also put both devices side by side to compare them.
Furthermore, the readability at oblique viewing angles is the same, they support HDR10 content and both screens are protected with Corning Gorilla Glass 5. Where the main difference lies between the Poco F2 Pro and this phone that costs twice as much, the refresh rate of 90 Hz that the Mi 10 Pro has. The Poco F2 Pro does it with a standard refresh rate of 60 Hz. The Poco also lacks the curved screen edges, but it does not have a screen notch.
Given the price range of the Poco F2 Pro, you can say that the phone comes with a good screen. Admittedly, we saw Xiaomi already apply curved screen edges to another budget flagship such as the Mi Note 10, but the suggested retail price of this Poco F2 Pro is still 100 euros lower than the Mi Note 10 that appeared for 599 euros.
Performance and battery
The cheapest phone that comes with the latest high-end chipset from Qualcomm. That already attracted a lot of attention in 2018, but this year with the Snapdragon 865 it really wants to say something special.
Some manufacturers offer the Snapdragon 865 this year are left as the price of this chipset that comes with X55 5G modem is higher than before. Others, including Xiaomi, release phones that are 100 euros more expensive than their predecessors. Poco shows that it is possible.
If we look further at the specifications, we also find 6 GB RAM and 128 GB storage, but there is also a variant with 8 GB RAM and 256 GB storage. The original Pocophone F1 also had 6 GB two years ago, and most manufacturers are using at least 8 GB of RAM this year.
Think for example of the OnePlus 8 which costs 699 euros. You may wonder if 8 GB is really necessary because just like two years ago, I still have a strong feeling today that 6 GB guarantees fast performance, while at 4 GB you can look up the limits of your phone faster.
Poco also opts for UFS 3.1 storage, which must guarantee excellent performance. In my short test time with the Poco F2 Pro, I can only say that the phone performs flawlessly, and in the extensive review, I hope to be able to say more about this.
If we look at the battery, we find a relatively large 4700 mAh battery, and such a battery capacity should in principle be enough to get through the day smoothly. Whether that is really the case, I will also be able to tell in my full review. The phone also has a 30-watt fast charger, but it does not support wireless charging. That is certainly no shame in this price range, and the 30-watt fast charger sounds promising.
Here at Tech largest, we write relatively little about it, but can I still say something about a small detail such as the vibration motor? With its launch, Poco already went big with a high-quality Z-axis vibration motor that should provide more natural haptic feedback when using the phone.
When I used it, I immediately noticed that Poco makes the phone vibrate in many situations. For example, when unlocking with the in-screen fingerprint scanner or even when you are scrolling through the settings at the very bottom of the page.
Unlike with iPhones, Android devices often have very bad vibration motors and I usually turn off the function with a new phone first and certainly vibrate for the keyboard. However, I immediately notice the difference with the vibration motor of the Poco F2 Pro, and although I am not yet completely convinced of the great added value, I am very curious whether I will enjoy the haptic feedback at the end of the ride with this phone find.
The Poco F2 Pro has four rear cameras: a 64MP main camera, a 5MP Tele macro camera, a 13MP wide-angle camera, and a 2MP depth camera. Especially the Tele macro camera catches the eye because we have never seen that before. The camera sensor actually enables 2x optical zoom with your photos, but it also ensures that you can take sharp photos even closer to an object by zooming in.
Below you can see a comparison with the Xiaomi Mi 10 Pro’s macro function, and it’s a detail shot of the eye of AWY, our techlargest mascot. The first photo was taken with the Poco F2 Pro’s Tele macro camera, followed by two photos of the Mi 10 where I first take a photo at 1x zoom and then at 2x zoom.
The last photo is also of the Mi 10 Pro and here you can see the distance at which the macro function of the phone can take a sharp photo. The Poco F2 Pro is clearly doing better, and I am convinced that you can shoot nice pictures in good lighting conditions.
As for the other camera performance, I got to work with the main camera Tele camera and a wide-angle camera. The Poco F2 Pro seems to have a harder time with the wide-angle camera to keep the noise in the photo low. That could indicate that it performs less well in less ideal lighting conditions, but a more extensive camera comparison in the full review should provide a definite answer.
Below you see the photos taken with the Poco F2 Pro on the left and the photos of the Mi 10 Pro on the right. First, you see a photo of the wide-angle camera, followed by the main camera, the Tele camera at 2x zoom, and finally 5x hybrid zoom.
The Poco F2 Pro runs on the MIUI 10 shell from Xiaomi, but the MIUI launcher is exchanged for the Poco Launcher 2.0. I’m really excited about those software choices because that’s how the Poco F2 Pro seems to have the best of two swirls. MIUI comes with nice personalization options like the many options for the always-on screen, but at the same time, you have a bare Android experience with the launcher that is very similar to Google’s Pixel Launcher.
A screenshot of the Poco F2 Pro home screen
Unlike MIUI, Poco Launcher comes standard with the app drawer and there are many other things you can adjust. You can organize the app drawer and all your apps into their own categories, you can add notification badges to icons or change the number of rows and columns of apps on your home screen.
Furthermore, the brand comes with only its own accents that it lays in the software. Poco’s phone cannot count on monthly security updates, for example, my Poco F2 Pro runs on the April security patch. Although there are also still more expensive devices that do not offer monthly updates.
The Poco F2 Pro takes a lightning-fast start and my first impression of the device is very positive. In terms of design, Poco takes a big step forward, the screen is decent for its price, and in terms of performance, the phone looks promising.
Although a series of benchmarks and a little more test time will have to confirm that. We are also still asking questions about camera performance, especially in more difficult lighting conditions, and we will have to investigate that in a more extensive review.
Where Poco is also strong is in the software field. With a phone with a relatively low price for its specifications, you are more likely to question the quality of the software, but this is not necessary with this Poco F2 Pro first impressions. I look forward to testing this potential ‘flagship killer’ more extensively and then writing more in our full review.
Buy Poco F2 Pro
The Poco F2 Pro has a suggested retail price of 499 euros for the model with 6 GB RAM and 128 GB storage. The variant with 8 GB RAM and 256 GB storage can be found from 599 euros. You can find it in the colors Neon Blue Blue, Phantom White, Electric Purple, and Cyber Gray.