Poco X2 Review: This is the budget phone for gamers4 min read . Updated: 18 Feb 2020, 12:53 PM IST
- At ₹15,999, Poco X2 costs slightly less than Realme X2 ( ₹16,999)
- Poco X2's bigger-than-usual 6.7-inch LCD display is great for gaming
After Oppo created Realme, Chinese counterparts Xiaomi and Vivo have launched new brands named Poco and iQOO, respectively. While it helps create a buzz in a market that is going through a rough patch, Poco's launch seems a bit rushed and this explains why the company made its debut with a handset without any unique characteristics of its own. As of now, it just feels like a rebranded version of Redmi K30, which is yet to launch in India.
Maybe, over time, the new brand will assert itself and show more creativity.
In terms of pricing of the new phone, Poco has hit the bull’s-eye. At ₹15,999, Poco X2 costs slightly less than Realme X2 ( ₹16,999), which is going to be its main nemesis on account of having comparable hardware.
Design: A fine balance
A few changes here and there apart, most budget phones regardless of brand look similar these days. But it is these little changes that can make a lot of difference to users. For instance, the flat matte finish on the side panel of Poco X2 offers better grip quality than phones with curved side with glossy finish, like last year's Redmi K20 Pro. In terms of overall looks, Poco X2 leaves a positive impression. The shiny glass back design complemented by the eye catching colours (Atlantis Blue, Phoenix Red and Matrix Purple) lift the overall look and feel and will make many want to use the phone without a case.
The only niggle in the design is the protruded camera setup, which kind of makes you a bit uncomfortable when you put down the phone on a hard surface. At 208 g, Poco X2 weighs more than Realme X2, yet doesn’t feel hefty. However, using it with one hand won’t be easy.
The side facing fingerprint sensor is a nice touch and though it feels small it is as accurate and dependable as any of the in-display or back-facing fingerprint sensor. The phone doesn't have a separate microSD slot and uses one of the SIM slots for it. So if you are a dual SIM user you can’t expand the memory, which is a bit of a letdown.
Display: Large screen with a touch of 120Hz
Poco X2's bigger-than-usual 6.7-inch LCD display is great for gaming. While it is a crisp and good looking screen that holds well even in outdoor conditions, it doesn’t feel as vibrant as Realme X2’s 6.4-inch AMOLED screen that offers better contrast and black levels.
What gives Poco X2 an edge is the 120Hz refresh rate, which is usually seen in premium or mid-premium phones like Asus ROG Phone 2. Most phones in this price including Realme X2 offer refresh rate of 60Hz at most. Higher refresh rate means a smoother experience, especially in terms of gaming and with the growing ecosystem of games supporting high refresh rates it makes sense. Many of the popular games like Alto's Adventure and Dead Trigger 2 also support 120Hz screens.
Performance: A more than capable mid-range smartphone
The Poco X2 runs on the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 730G processor that has been used in Realme X2, putting the duo on par with each other. However, Xiaomi has coupled it with 6 GB RAM and 64 GB on-board storage in the starting variant offering up to 8 GB RAM on higher with 128 GB storage. Realme X2’s entry variant offers just 4 GB RAM with 64 GB internal storage.
The Snapdragon 730G is a pretty capable chipset designed for mid-range smartphones and optimised for games. Overall performance is surprisingly impressive for a mid-range smartphone as it handles everything from switching between apps to recording videos or running games likes PES 2020, Asphalt 9 and Dead Trigger 2 with ease.
Battery backup is another strong suit of the Poco X2. It packs in a 4,500 mAh battery that lasts a whole work day involving calls, messaging, a bit of gaming and an hour long music playback on way to office and back home.
Camera: Covers all scenarios but don’t expect too much
The four camera setup on the back includes a 64MP Sony IMX 686 sensor, a 2MP depth sensor, an 8MP ultra wide angle camera and a 2MP macro camera for taking close-up shots. The 64MP camera is not enabled by default and has to be switched on. The camera interface is neat and easy to navigate. The macro mode shows on the main screen and is quickly accessible. It also lets users tap to focus. The close-up shots look really impressive and are great for taking shots of drops or items that are too small. The AI mode livens up photos that might have looked a bit dull otherwise. So an image of a brownish food will be automatically tweaked to golden yellowish, making the food look good on social media posts. Regular photos look sharp with ample amount of detailing, but colours look a bit off. Low light shots are slightly disappointing. The two front cameras are good closeups but don’t expect to be bowled over by it.
The Poco X2 is a formidable rival to the likes of Realme X2. However, it isn’t the only smartphone that does that. The recently launched Honor 9x, which starts at ₹13,999, has a lot going for it too. For instance, unlike the Poco X2, which has two punch holes in the screen, the Honor smartphone has a bezel-less screen with the front camera parked at the top. It also has a large 6.6-inch LCD screen but runs on Huawei’s mid-range HiSilicon Kirin 710F processor, which as per benchmarks, is slightly inferior to the Snapdragon 730G.