Poco F6 Review: New Mid-range Champ?

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Whenever I hear the name of the Poco F series, it piques my interest. The reason behind my interest has been the lasting impression that the original Poco F1 by Xiaomi left on me. It was one of the best examples of value-for-money devices, packed with top-of-the-line SoC, memory, storage, a decent set of cameras, and ad—and bloat-free software.

Sucess of Poco F1 made Xiaomi spin off the POCO as a separate brand. Since then, Poco’s journey has been clumsy. After a couple of directionless years, Poco consolidated its position in the Indian market in 2023 with a few excellent offerings. In 2024, Poco decided to launch the Poco F6, which the brand hopes will turn out a rockstar like the Poco F1. Will the Poco F6 be a new king in the ring under Rs 30,000? Let’s answer that and more in this Poco F6 review.

Poco F6 Price & Availability

The Poco F6 comes in four RAM and storage configurations:

  • 8 GB RAM + 256 GB storage – ₹29,999
  • 12 GB RAM + 256 GB storage – ₹31,999
  • 12 GB RAM + 512 GB storage – ₹33,999

It can be purchased via Flipkart. It is available in two shades: titanium and black.

Poco F6 Review

Pros

  • Excellent performance
  • Bright and crisp AMOLED display
  • Good battery life
  • Fast charger included

Cons

  • Plastic build
  • Bloatware and adware
  • No expandable storage

Poco F6 ReviewDesign & Build

In my view, the Poco F6 design looks a bit underwhelming compared to the original Poco F1. Since design is subjective, you may or may not agree with my view. The phone comes with two finishes – Black and Titanium. The phone is primarily made of polycarbonate, including side frames. The PV back panel has a shimmering finish, so it doesn’t easily gather finger smudges. However, it’s prone to scratches like any other plastic phone. Like most Poco phones, this one also comes with a protective case in the box, which you can use to protect your phone from scratching PV back.

At the back are two large rings featuring wide-angle and ultra-wide cameras. There’s also a third ring featuring a circular dual LED flash. The camera rings protrude from the frame, which might cause the phone to wobble when lying flat on a surface. The back panel has two clear markings. One of them is the 50MP OIS, which refers to the camera sensor. 

The Poco F6 feels light, especially considering its big 5000mAh battery. Poco has curved the edges nicely, so it fits comfortably in your hand. For the ports, you’ve got a USB Type-C at the bottom for charging and data transfer, right between the SIM tray and the speaker grille. The earpiece also acts as a secondary speaker, giving you stereo sound with clear audio. Plus, an IR blaster controls all your compatible home appliances.

For security, it has an in-display fingerprint scanner. Compared to Poco F5’s power button, Poco has placed an optical sensor underneath the display. The headphone jack found in the F5 is gone on the Poco F6.

Is Poco F6 waterproof? Well, the phone is definitely splash-proof, as it has IP64 certification. You should keep in mind that even if a phone has an IP68 rating for water and dust protection, no brand covers water damage under warranty.

Poco F6 ReviewDisplay and Speakers

The Poco F6 has one of the best displays you’ll find at this price. It features a 6.78-inch 1.5K AMOLED screen with an adaptive refresh rate ranging from 1 to 120 Hz and a sharp 446 pixels per inch. With a peak brightness of 2400 nits and the ability to display 68 billion colors, it delivers stunning visuals. The slim bezels provide a 94 percent screen-to-body ratio, making it look even more impressive. For HDR content, it supports HDR10 and HDR10+ on YouTube and Amazon Prime Video, and it even includes Dolby Vision right out of the box, unlike the Realme GT6T.

The display’s refresh rate adjusts between 1 and 120 Hz depending on what you’re watching. 

Okay, but what about the colors?  By default, it comes with the Original Color Pro mode, which is accurate and realistic. You can switch to Vivid or Saturated modes if you prefer more vibrant colors. The Advanced mode offers more control for those who know their way around color settings. The display also features 2160 Hz high-frequency PWM dimming, sleep mode, ambient color adaptation, and DC dimming to protect your eyes.

The Poco F6 has a hybrid dual-speaker setup, with the earpiece serving as the second speaker. While the audio quality is decent, it does lack bass and isn’t particularly loud.

Realme GT 6T Review - Software and Performance

The POCO F6 comes with the new Xiaomi HyperOS out of the box. It runs on Android 14-based HyperOS and promises 3 years of upgrades and 4 system updates. The UI has tons of customization options, similar to what you’d find on other Xiaomi and Poco phones. If you’re used to MIUI 14, HyperOS won’t feel too different—it’s just smoother, with better animations and transitions.

Does the Poco F6 software have bloatware?

Yes, the POCO F6 does come with some bloatware. We found 18 pre-installed apps, including Fitbit, LinkedIn, Jewels Blast, Netflix, Spotify, Facebook, Amazon, Snapchat, and more. Some are useful, others not so much, but the good news is you can uninstall all of them.

As for AI, it’s a big buzzword these days, but we didn’t find much AI integration in the F6 at the time of review. The only notable AI feature is the AI editor plugin in the gallery. Once downloaded, you can use it for AI image expansion, the “Magic Eraser,” and adding bokeh to photos. We tried the Magic Eraser and Add Bokeh features, and they worked well.

During the launch, Poco also discussed cool features like Smart Lock Detection, Smart Always-on Display, Smart Rotating Screen, and AON Air Gestures for apps like Netflix. Unfortunately, we couldn’t test these out as they weren’t available yet, but Poco says they’ll come in a future update.

How does the Snapdragon 8s Gen 3 perform?

The POCO F6 is all about the Snapdragon 8s Gen 3 processor, which is getting a lot of buzz. This chip features one Cortex X4 core running up to 3.0GHz, four 2.8GHz A720 cores for handling performance tasks, and three 2.0GHz A520 cores for efficiency.

The POCO F6 is the first phone in India to rock the SD8s Gen 3. It comes with up to 12 GB of LPDDR5X RAM and up to 512 GB of UFS 4.0 storage. POCO has also included its Wildboost 3.0 technology to boost frame rates during gaming and the Iceloop cooling system with a larger 4800mm² heat dissipation area.

In real-world use, the POCO F6 is smooth and responsive. It handles heavy multitasking and demanding games like BGMI, Call of Duty, and Real Racing 3 without a hitch. Genshin Impact runs smoothly on medium graphics settings. Still, it does show some throttling in high settings, which is common even for top-tier phones. COD: Mobile runs great at Very High Graphics with Max frame rate and Low graphics with Ultra frame rate.

In synthetic benchmarks, the POCO F6 scores around 1.4 million on Antutu, similar to the Realme GT6T with Snapdragon 7 Gen 3, but a bit behind the iQOO Neo 9 Pro’s 1,614,674 points. On Geekbench 6, it scores 1735 in single-core and 4488 in multi-core tests. It also does well in the PC Mark Work 3.0 performance test, scoring 15,991, which is better than the iQOO Neo 9 Pro.

Poco F6 ReviewCameras

The POCO F6’s camera setup marks a significant upgrade over its predecessor. The primary camera now features a Sony IMX882 sensor with both OIS and EIS support, a notable improvement from the 64 MP Omnivision sensor on the POCO F5. Additionally, there’s an 8 MP ultrawide lens. In comparison, the previously included 2 MP macro lens has been dropped—a move that won’t disappoint many, given the limited utility of such low-resolution cameras. A new 20 MP Omnivision selfie camera has been introduced on the front.

The camera interface is still the same, with all the usual toggles and settings in their familiar spots. The exciting new addition is the ability to shoot 4K video at 60fps. POCO had held back on this feature for a long time, so it’s awesome that video recording is no longer limited.

In terms of photo quality, the Poco F6 primary camera captures good-looking photos with decent dynamic range and detail retention. At times, it struggles with color vibrancy and handling tricky lighting situations. Indoor photos, while slightly softer in detail, still images are useable.

The shots from the ultra-wide-angle sensor suffer in detail and dynamic range compared to the primary sensor. The EDGE distortion in Wide-Angle shots is also noticeable.

The 20 MP selfie camera performs well in daylight, delivering good-quality photos. However, it struggles in low-light conditions, where the quality noticeably degrades.

Poco F6 ReviewBattery

The POCO F6 impresses with its large 5,000 mAh battery and 90 W fast charging support. Its excellent battery performance can be partially attributed to the power-efficient Snapdragon 8s Gen 3 processor. 

Even under heavy use, such as extensive benchmarking, photography, and gaming, the POCO F6 lasts a whole day. The PCMark battery test delivered a score of 8 hours and 17 minutes with the brightness set to maximum. The 90W charger can rapidly recharge the battery from 20% to 100% in about 30 minutes. 

Review Verdict: Should You Buy the Poco F6?

Smartprix Rating: 3.9/5

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
Poco F6

Design and Build

Display and Speakers

Software and Haptics

Performance

Camera

Battery Life and Charging

Network and Connectivity

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Setting aside its aesthetics, the POCO F6 boasts significant upgrades over its predecessor. Improvements in the processor, display, charging, camera, and software lead to exceptional everyday performance, making it an excellent choice for gamers too. Both battery life and charging speeds are impressive. Although the lack of expandable storage and some bloatware in HyperOS are minor drawbacks, they scarcely detract from the device’s overall appeal.

If you’re seeking a well-rounded phone under ₹30K and can overlook minor software issues, the POCO F6 is a compelling option worth considering.

First reviewed in May 2024.


Aryan VyasAryan Vyas
Aryan is the youngest tech enthusiast at Smartprix, with a deep passion for technology, automobiles, cricket, and Bollywood. He is a meticulous researcher and writer who write on a wide range of tech topics, including smartphones, laptops, wearables, and smart home device.


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