Poco has launched its second smartphone of 2020, the Poco M2 Pro in India. Let’s get a few things out of the way right at the outset. Poco M2 Pro = Redmi Note 9 Pro + 33W Fast Charging – Ads. Secondly, even we hate Poco’s strategy of just rebranding Redmi phones and launching them. We firmly believe that this strategy is tainting the legacy of the legendary Poco F1. And finally, even we believe that there was no real need for Poco M2 Pro with the Redmi Note 9 Pro & Redmi Note 9 Pro Max already available in India.
All said and done though, the simple fact is that the Poco M2 Pro is now available in the Indian market. And leaving aside the rebranding thing, it does seem to be a pretty sweet deal for the price. So from hereon, this review is going to be focused solely on the phone, without taking into consideration the rebranding. We intend to judge the phone on its own merit. As a refresher, the Poco M2 Pro starts at Rs. 13,999 for the 4GB + 64GB variant.
Build & Design
The Poco M2 Pro follows the design of the Redmi Note 9 Pro series. You get a glass-backed phone with a plastic frame. The phone is protected by Gorilla Glass 5 both at the front at the back. The back also houses the squarish quad-camera array arranged in a 2*2 matrix. The back glass is actually split into 2 distinct patterns. The top pattern is smooth and glossy glass while the bottom glass has a diagonal pattern. At the front, there is a punch-hole display in the center of the screen.
The phone is available in 3 colors, Green & Greener, Two Shades of Black & Out of the Blue. The distinct color and the symmetrical design give the phone a very premium and pleasing look. People would be hard-pressed to guess that the phone costs under Rs. 15,000. The phone though is definitely a 2 handed phone. The huge 6.7-inch screen and the 209g weight (thank the huge 5000 mAh battery and the glass build) ensure that the phone is hefty.
The Poco M2 Pro is adorned by a 6.7 inch Full HD+ IPS LCD screen at the top. The screen is only blighted by the punch hole in the top dead center of the screen which houses the front camera. The aspect ratio is a long 20:9. The screen though is a standard 60Hz display. With Realme offering a 90Hz screen at this price, we really feel Poco missed out here. A 90Hz screen is going to be the standard within the next year or so and so a 60Hz display feels like an oversight from a brand that claims to champion its users. That said, the IPS screen is as good as it gets in this price segment with ample brightness and sharpness. We really don’t have any complaints from the display apart from the lack of a high refresh rate.
The Poco M2 Pro is well endowed on the performance front. It is powered by the new Snapdragon 720G processor. This is a very capable new chip from Qualcomm that competes with its elder sibling, the Snapdragon 720G head-on. The MediaTek Helio G90T still beats it in pure performance but the 720G is much more battery efficient. Coupling that with the Adreno 618 GPU and UFS 2.1 storage, the Poco M2 Pro should feel very snappy for day to day use and should hold up pretty well even for moderately graphic-intensive games. The performance here is near the very best available in this segment. The phone comes with up to 6GB of RAM and up to 128GB of UFS 2.1 storage.
The Poco M2 Pro runs on MIUI 11 built on top of Android 10. While there has been no official announcement, we should expect MIUI 12 for the device too. MIUI 11 by now, is a known beast. The OS sidesteps the aesthetics of Stock Android and follows its own design. There are a truckload of additional features as well as theming options thrown in for good measure too. But one constant problem in MIUI has been the Ads strewn across the interface on Xiaomi’s mid-range phones.
poco m2 pro = redmi note 9 pro + 33w charging – ads
This is the ace up the Poco M2 Pro’s sleeve. Even though the phone runs on MIUI 11, there are no ads in the interface. You may still face some spammy notifications from some apps but they can be disabled. Similarly, there are some bloat apps preinstalled but they can be uninstalled. While this is not ideal, this behavior is actually consistent with most phones, especially in this price segment. The no ads thing on the other hand immediately sets it apart from all the Redmi & Realme phones in this price range.
As is the case with most phones upwards of Rs. 10K nowadays, the Poco M2 Pro sports a quad-camera setup at the back. The primary is a 48MP Samsung GM2 sensor. This is Samsung’s second 48MP sensor after last year’s GM1. While still not as good as the Sony IMX586, the picture quality should hold up more than fine. The phone has a good dynamic range and contrast, especially under bright lights. The secondary is an 8MP ultra-wide sensor with a 119-degree FOV.
The tertiary sensor is a 5MP Macro camera. While the 2MP macro sensor on most smartphones is practically useless, the 5MP resolution here ensures that the images are very pleasant and that the camera is a useful addition in providing a different perspective. The phone even allows you to record FullHD macro videos which is a nifty little addition. The fourth sensor is a standard 2MP depth sensor to aid in portraits. The punch hole on the front houses the 16MP selfie camera.
While the camera is mostly standard for this price range, Poco has made a few useful software additions to the camera. Firstly, you can shoot in RAW which would appeal a lot to photographers. Then there are features like Vlog mode (which crops the video to a 21:9 cinematic resolution), Pro color mode (a mode which boosts contrast & colors in photos), and Exposure Verification. Overall, the software features are a nice value addition to the standard quad camera setup.
The Poco M2 Pro has a big beefy 5000 mAh battery. This, coupled with the standard 60Hz display and the power-efficient Snapdragon 720G should make this an easy 1.5-day phone even for heavy users. On top of that, Poco is supplying a 33W fast charger in the box. With such a big battery, fast charging is more of a necessity than a luxury. The phone tops up in 0-100 in about 80 mins which is very good for a battery of this size. The battery is one area where we have absolutely no complaints with the Poco M2 Pro.
The Poco M2 Pro is available in 3 variants. The base model is a 4GB + 64GB variant with the next one being a 6GB + 64GB model. The top-end variant is a 6GB + 128GB variant. The prices for all the 3 variants are Rs. 14K, 15K, and 17K respectively. The phone comes with a triple card slot, which means you can use Dual SIM & an SD card. There’s the good old headphone jack. And finally, there’s also an IR blaster, which is something you really start to appreciate once you get used to it.
The Rs. 15,000 to 20,000 is a very hot segment of the Indian smartphone market. There are a whole lot of options from various manufacturers in this price range. Talking first about its own brethren, we really feel that the Poco M2 Pro is a better value proposition than both the Redmi Note 9 Pro and the Redmi Note 9 Pro Max. With the fast charging and the no ads interface, we recommend everyone to pick the Poco M2 Pro over its Redmi cousins.
But the Achilles heel of the Poco M2 Pro is the same phone that has been ruling the roost with regards to being the best phone under 15K. Yes, we are talking about Realme 6. The phone boasts of a 90Hz display and a 64MP primary camera. The Helio G90T should also be a better fit for most gaming needs. On the other hand, the Poco M2 Pro does come with a better build, a bigger battery and slightly faster charging. So for someone looking for a more reliable phone, the Poco M2 Pro should be a good fit. For the ones of you looking for a non-Chinese option, the Samsung Galaxy M30s and the Galaxy M31 are great options.
Also Check out Top Smartphones Under 15000
We’ll say it again. The Poco M2 Pro is a rebranded Redmi Note 9 Pro. But fortunately, it is a better Redmi Note 9 Pro. Putting aside the rebranding, the Poco M2 Pro is a pretty sweet deal. If for whatever reason you don’t like the Realme 6, the Poco M2 Pro is probably the best option under 15000. The Redmi Note 9 series should definitely be worried.
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