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POCO M4 Pro 5G Unboxing, Quick Review: Breaking The Mold

by John Nieves  November 9, 2021

Initial verdict: The POCO M4 Pro 5G is cracking good deal as we found in our quick review despite predictable shortcomings with its camera and a whole lot of bloatware

Pros

  • Good set of cameras on paper
  • Dual 5G capability
  • Fast refresh rate and touch sampling
  • Fast 33W charging

Cons

  • Low-light performance is lacking
  • Tons of bloatware

POCO M4 Pro 5G Specs

  • Dimensity 810 processor
  • 4GB/6GB RAM
  • 64GB/128GB storage
  • 6.6-inch Full HD+ LCD display, 90hz refresh rate
  • 50-megapixel f/1.8 main camera with PDAF, 8-megapixel f/2.2 ultra-wide-angle camera
  • 16-megapixel f/2.25 selfie camera
  • 4G, 5G
  • WiFi, Bluetooth 5.1, side-mounted fingerprint scanner
  • Stereo speakers
  • 5000mAh battery
  • 33w wired charging
  • Android 11, MIUI 12.5 for POCO

POCO has officially launched the M4 Pro 5G, and the Philippines is one of the countries the new affordable smartphone is showing up in. The new phone brings plenty of excellent features for the price point, but should it really be the phone you get this Christmas?

Packaging and contents

You’re never going to mistake the POCO M4 Pro 5G’s box for anything else since the phone’s name is clearly seen on the front. Opening the box, you’ll see the usual suspects as far as the phone’s box contents go: the 33W fast charging brick, Type-C USB cable, silicone case, and documentation.

Design

If there was an award we could give to the phone that had the busiest-looking back, the POCO M4 Pro 5G would definitely get it. The camera module looks incredibly crowded despite having only two cameras inside of it. We’re not exactly sure why POCO decided to go with this particular design for the module on the POCO M4 Pro 5G, but we’re hoping their next phones won’t be this clunky-looking (gigantic logo on the back notwithstanding).

The phone comes in three colorways, specifically Power Black, Cool Blue, and POCO Yellow. As with most phones in its price range, the phone uses a mostly plastic construction, though despite this the POCO M4 Pro 5G feels pretty solid in the hands. POCO’s phones are very well made despite their budget price points and material choice.

As far as ergonomics go, the POCO M4 Pro 5G feels good in the hands. The phone is easy to use one-handed, though people with daintier digits might have trouble with one-handed use. Just like most phones in the market today, the POCO M4 Pro 5G has a fingerprint scanner embedded in the power button on the side.

Going around the chassis, you’ll see the speaker grille along with the 3.5mm jack on the bottom. The SIM slot is on the left, and interestingly, the POCO M4 Pro 5G also has dual 5G standby capability, meaning both SIM slots can accommodate 5G-capable SIMs. Unfortunately, the SIM slot doesn’t allow the use of two SIMs and a microSD slot at the same time.

Display and sound

The POCO M4 Pro 5G has a 6.6-inch full HD+ display with a 2400 x 1080 resolution, and a refresh rate of 90Hz. The advertised maximum brightness tops out at 450 nits, and the phone also has a touch sampling rate of 240Hz.

The phone felt really smooth while we were using it, thanks to its higher sampling and refresh rates. Swiping through apps like Facebook, Instagram and TikTok felt very fluid.

The phone also has WideVine L1 capability so you can watch HD content on Netflix and other streaming apps as well.

The phone also uses dynamic switch tech that switches the display from 50 to 60 to 90Hz depending on what’s showing on the screen to save power.

The screen is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 3 and has a selfie camera housed in a small halo notch at the top, near the middle.

As far as sound goes, it’s not great. Sound is acceptable until you go past 60 percent – anything over that and all you’re getting is a tinny mess.

Camera

Despite that huge, busy camera module, the POCO M4 Pro 5G only has two cameras on the rear. The main camera is a 50-megapixel f/1.8 deal, while the second one is an 8-megapixel ultra-wide sensor that has an f/2.2 lens and an overall FOV of 119 degrees.

Two cameras on a phone aren’t bad, and honestly, we prefer this setup over three or even four cameras if that means you’re getting better image quality overall.

Unfortunately, this might not be the case – while outdoor shots were pretty good, indoor shots looked very sub-par, despite being shot at 10 AM in the morning.

We’re hoping that this is something that can be fixed with a software update in the future.

Performance, software, battery

The POCO M4 Pro 5G uses Mediatek’s Dimensity 810 5G chipset, which is a solid upgrade from the one on the POCO M3 Pro 5G. The Dimensity 810 is an octa-core CPU, running two ARM Cortex-A76 cores that run up to 2.4GHz and six ARM Cortex-A55 cores that run up to 2.0GHz. The GPU is a Mali-G57. There will be two variants of the phone available for the Philippine market: one that has 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage, and another that has 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage.

As far as performance goes, the Dimensity 810 checks all the boxes: it’s relatively powerful for the price, has decent 5G performance, and isn’t that taxing in the battery.

Like most other POCO phones, the POCO M4 Pro 5G uses MIUI 12.5 that’s based on Android 11.

One thing that we don’t like though is the bloatware. The POCO M4 Pro 5G is absolutely filled with it, and it’s something that POCO still hasn’t addressed it. Bloatware is a problem especially on the lower capacity 64GB variant as the pre-installed apps eat up the already scant storage space that users get.

As for the battery, the phone has a 5000mAh battery, along with 33W of fast charging.

Wrap-up and early verdict

The POCO M4 Pro 5G looks to be a fantastic option based on our quick review of the phone for the Philippines, though there is a clear tradeoff. If you’re the type that prioritizes overall performance and displays VS image quality (and don’t mind dealing with bloatware) then the POCO M4 Pro 5G might just be the budget phone for you.

POCO M4 Pro 5G Price Philippines

The POCO M4 Pro 5G featured in this quick review is priced at Php 11,990 for the 4GB/64GB variant and Php 12,990 for the 6GB/128GB variant in the Philippines. Both variants will be available via Shopee on November 11 with a promo price of Php 10,990 for the 4GB/64GB variant and Php 11,990 for the 6GB/128GB variant. 

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