Poco F5 5G review: Flagship experience at an affordable price
Image credits- Business Insider India
- Poco F5 5G offers a flagship-level performance at a budget price.
- The phone only has the 256GB variant for sale.
- The device features Snapdragon 7+ Gen 2 chipset and 120Hz AMOLED panel.
AdvertisementBack in 2018, Poco took the smartphone market by surprise with the launch of the Poco F1, which boasted top-tier performance in the mid-range price segment. Since then, Poco's F-series phones have become synonymous with performance-centric smartphones that don’t cost as much as the flagships. With the release of the Poco F5 5G, the company is looking to return to its roots of providing high-end performance at an affordable price point.
This mid-range smartphone exceeds expectations with its exceptional performance, impressive camera, and sleek design, which are in line with its predecessors. With a starting price of ₹29,999, is the Poco F5 5G a wise investment? In this review, we will help you make that decision.
- Great display for the price
- Аudio quality is on point
- Stellar battery life
- Quick and accurate fingerprint sensor
- Powerful chipset
- 67W fast charging
- Software needs bug fixes
What’s new about the device
- Snapdragon 7+ Gen 2 processor
- Only 256GB storage option
- 16 MP selfie camera
- Audio jack
- Bluetooth 5.3
- 5000 mAh battery
Poco F5 specs
|Size & weight
|161.1 x 75 x 7.9mm | 181g
|6.67 AMOLED display, 120Hz, 1000 nits peak brightness
|Snapdragon 7+ Gen 2
|MIUI 14 | Android 13
|64 + 8 + 2MP | 16MP front
Design & display
The Poco F5 boasts a modern and sophisticated design featuring the popular flat-edged look that has recently gained popularity. Its sleek and lightweight design contributes to its overall attractiveness, ensuring that it is comfortable to hold and easy to carry. Also, the rear panel is now made of plastic, not glass, but the frame is made of aluminum. As a result, the smartphone is about 10 grams lighter than the Neo 7, tipping the scales at 182 grams.
The device's front comprises a 6.67-inch display with a centrally located hole-punch cutout, providing users an almost bezel-less viewing experience. The phone's rear design is simple yet elegant, with a neatly arranged triple camera array and the Poco logo. The minimalist look on the back enhances the device's overall clean appearance. Although the back is polycarbonate, it still feels sturdy and well-built, albeit less premium than some of its competitors. The volume rocker is on the right side of the device, and a USB-C port for charging and data transfer and a SIM tray can be found at the bottom.
Overall, the Poco F5 offers a blend of style and functionality that appeals to many smartphone users. The pattern on the back gives it a distinct identity and its done neatly making the design look high-end and impressive.
The POCO F5 boasts a 6.67-inch Full HD+ AMOLED display with a refresh rate of 120Hz, making it one of the best displays on the market. According to POCO, the screen can reach a peak brightness of up to 1000 nits.
The display of the Poco F5 is quite impressive and really brings alive the gaming and OTT experience. With a refresh rate of 120Hz, the display feels smooth and has that premium feel to it. I streamed various shows like Office, Modern Family, and others on various OTT apps and the content really looked refined. Even under the direct sunlight, I could use the phone comfortably by turning up the brightness to the maximum level possible.
AdvertisementWhen it comes to performance, the Poco F5 5G is a top scorer. The phone is available in only 8+256GB and 12+256 GB storage variants. It debuts Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 7+ Gen 2 processor in India, which has garnered a lot of excitement around its performance. After using the phone for a few days, I can confidently say that it provides one of the best performance in its price segment.
Be it multitasking or running heavy apps and games, the phone doesn’t disappoint. I used it as my primary phone doing daily chores like checking emails, running Slack, Maps on Android Auto, games, camera and music alongside the usual social media scanning and calls. So far, the performance has been doing justice to the price and there are only a few phones in its price range that can pull off everything with such ease.
I tested multiple apps on the phone, and it didn't falter even once. While gaming, I was able to switch from one game to another effortlessly without facing any lag. The phone feels incredibly fast right from the moment you unbox it and begin setting it up. The browsing experience is delightful, and there are no hiccups while handling more intense tasks like gaming or running multiple apps simultaneously.
Even while gaming or taking pictures in the scorching heat, I did not experience any heating issues with the phone.
Battery & charging
The Poco F5 is equipped with a 5,000mAh battery, which despite not being the largest in its class, delivers reliable performance throughout the day. Its lower-resolution display allows the phone to last a full day for most moderate users, and potentially even longer for those with lighter usage patterns. Even, I felt completely at ease knowing that my phone wouldn't die on me during a long walk or a night out.
The Poco F5 boasts 67W wired charging support, allowing the device to fully charge from 0 to 100% in just over an hour and it reached from 0% to 20% in just 5 minutes.
The Poco F5 has a triple camera setup consisting of a 64-megapixel main camera, an 8-megapixel ultrawide camera, and a 2-megapixel macro camera. While the inclusion of three cameras is impressive, the macro camera's quality is subpar and adds little value to the device.
However, the main and ultrawide cameras capture detailed and vibrant images in well-lit environments, but struggle in low-light scenarios.
The front-facing camera is suitable for selfies and video calls, but also faces challenges in low-light conditions.
The phone's video recording capabilities are decent, with the ability to record 4K video at 30 frames per second and 1080p video at 60 frames per second with optical image stabilization. Overall, the Poco F5's camera system is satisfactory for most casual users looking for a mid-range smartphone.
In these few days of my usage, I tested a variety of games, from the classic Subway Surfers to Call of Duty Mobile, and I was impressed with the overall experience. The speakers were sufficiently loud and produced clear and crisp audio.
The phone did not experience any lag while playing these games, and even Call of Duty Mobile and Asphalt 9: Legends were playable at the highest graphics settings. Also, despite intense gaming for an hour, the phone did not overheat.
During gameplay, I was able to access the Game Turbo menu by swiping right on the top left edge of the screen. This menu provides customization options, such as boosting FPS levels by pressing the 'Boost' button, recording gameplay sessions, adjusting brightness, and setting timers.
Furthermore, the battery life was not significantly affected while playing games. After playing for 40 minutes, the battery level decreased by only 12 percent, which is reasonable.
The POCO F5 excels in three key areas that matter most to gaming enthusiasts: performance, display, battery life, all at an attractive price of ₹29,999. Despite its flaws, such as bloatware, plastic built, low IP rating, and slow charging, the POCO F5 manages to keep them under the radar, thanks to its aggressive pricing strategy. While the phone lacks a premium design but lighter weight gives a better in-hand feel, the iQOO Neo 7 offers a more sophisticated design for those who prioritize aesthetics.
Ultimately, the POCO F5 is an excellent choice for anyone seeking ample storage, robust performance, a superb camera, and design. However, if fast charging is your top priority, the iQOO Neo 7 is a better option.
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