Xiaomi’s quest to become the leading smartphone vendor in the world has seen the company adopt various strategies in the recent past. We saw the launch of a new-name gaming-focused device in Xiaomi Black Shark a while back and now we have another new sub-brand dubbed Poco by Xiaomi.
Poco by Xiaomi was in India on August 22 to unveil its first-ever smartphone known as Xiaomi Poco F1. The sole aim of Poco is to disrupt the strong presence that OnePlus and Huawei’s Honor have established in the premium midrange segment in the Indian market by providing low-cost devices with flagship specs and features. Now, the Poco F1 is official and begins selling on August 29 in India, but that’s not the only market the F1 will be sold.
To find out if the Poco F1 will be sold in your local market alongside other details of the Poco F1, let’s dig in and see what Xiaomi has in store for us.
- Download Pocophone F1 Launcher APK
Xiaomi Poco F1 specs
- 6.18-inch 19:9 FHD+ (2248×1080) LCD display
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor
- 6GB or 8GB RAM
- 64GB, 128GB or 256GB expandable storage
- Dual 12MP + 5MP main camera
- 20MP front camera
- 4000mAh battery
- Android 8.1 Oreo, upgradable to Pie
A quick look at the Poco F1 specs and you’ll know what Xiaomi wants with this phone. The F1 is a performance beast, just like the so-called flagship killers, the OnePlus 6 and Asus ZenFone 5Z. The device promises incredible performance at an unbeatable price, but to achieve such a low price for a device that is as powerful as the Galaxy Note 9, Xiaomi had to cut some corners, especially on design matters.
Unlike other Snapdragon 845-totting devices, the Poco F1 has a cheap, rugged polycarbonate build instead of a glass finish, but this is a trade most will be willing to make just to get an extremely powerful device with a long-lasting battery. Yes, the Snapdragon 845 is a fast processor, but Poco wants you to have a device that maintains optimum performance all day long, hence the inclusion of LiquidCool technology. Face Unlock has been creating all the fuss lately, but Poco wants it to deliver the same results regardless of the lighting conditions, hence the choice to go with infrared. The back camera has Dual pixel AF technology for super fast autofocusing regardless of the condition and to ensure there’s nothing to worry about during the day despite managing high speeds, the Poco F1 has a massive 4000mAh battery.
Related: The best $300 Android phones
Like many other phones from the Chinese maker, the Poco F1 is also equipped with a USB-C port, Quick Charge 3.0 technology for fast charging, the much-loved 3.5mm audio jack, a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner, face unlock, dual-SIM support, Dirac HD Sound, dual stereo speakers, the latest Bluetooth 5.0, and what the company calls LiquidCool technology that helps with heat dissipation during gaming and other resource-intensive activities, among other perks.
In terms of software, there’s Android 8.1 Oreo out of the box with MIUI 9 on top. Xiaomi says MIUI for Poco F1 is “deeply customized for a lighter, faster, and smoother experience.” With the help of a feature known as “turbocharged engine”, the Poco F1 promises faster app launch, gaming performance, and navigation thanks to “enhancements in the screen response and animation frame rate.” Even more interesting is that unlike the typical MIUI, you’ll come across an app drawer on the Poco F1. At the launch event, the company also promised that Android Pie update will arrive in Q4 2018 and has already opened up the Poco Beta Testing Program.
Poco F1 price and availability
Update [Oct 18]: Those who have been eying the Poco F1 from the U.S. can now grab one of these via B&H Photo Video beginning at $370 for the base model and $400 for the high-end 6/128GB variant. B&H is already accepting pre-orders, but it doesn’t give a specific shipping date, but be sure to submit your interest early enough to be considered first when the device is available.
B&H is accompanying this purchase with a full year of warranty, but note that this phone won’t work on the likes of Verizon and Sprint.
The Poco F1 has been launched in India and starts selling on August 29 through Flipkart and Xiaomi’s official stores. At the same event, the company also confirmed that the F1 will be made official in three more markets – France, Hong Kong and Indonesia- beginning August 27th.
What remains unclear is whether the Poco F1 will command the same price in these markets as in India. Here, the base model of 6GB RAM and 64GB storage goes for INR 20,999, the best you can get for a Snapdragon 845-powered smartphone in the country. The midrange version can be yours for INR 23,999 while the premium variant of 8/256GB can be had for INR 28,999.
The Poco F1 comes in four color variants of Black, Blue, Red, and Kevlar, with the latter specific to the special edition model dubbed Armored Edition. This model has a Kevlar aramid fiber on the back and is exclusive to the 8GB/256GB variant and has a slightly steeper price tag of INR 29,999, which is still under $450. Amazing, isn’t it?
Related: The best Xiaomi phones in 2018
One of Huawei’s latest additions to the Indian market is the Honor Play. This is a good phone powered by the high-end Kirin 970 chipset akin to the premium Huawei P20 and Mate 10, but it’s a 2017 processor. With the newly launched Poco F1, Xiaomi has definitely undercut its fiercest rival with an even more powerful device that features a 2018 flagship processor and more RAM at just about the same price. As for the OnePlus 6 and Asus ZenFone 5Z, they are nowhere near the price of the Poco F1, which is exactly what Xiaomi wants with the Poco brand.
The other stuff
Apart from specs, features, price and availability, there is a whole lot of other stuff that you should know about the Xiaomi Poco F1. We’ve done our best to cover a great deal of information about the F1, be it software updates, rooting, custom ROMs, where to buy the phone, tips and tricks, and whatnot, all of which are linked to below.
Do you think Poco by Xiaomi has your attention with the new $300 Poco F1 smartphone? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.