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POCO M4 Pro 5G Review Philippines: Bringing 5G to the Mainstream

by Duey Guison  November 21, 2021

Review Verdict: Despite being more expensive than its predecessor, the POCO M4 Pro 5G still offers great value for money for those wanting to jump onto 5G in the Philippines without breaking the bank

Pros:

  • Decent camera performance
  • Excellent battery life

Cons:

  • Lots of preinstalled bloatware
  • Dimensity 810 is not great for some games

POCO M4 Pro 5G Review Philippines 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 is back with another affordable 5G device in the form of the M4 Pro 5G. The M4 Pro 5G comes with several upgrades that make it a very compelling budget 5G device in the Philippines, despite being slightly more than the previous iteration.

Design

The POCO M4 Pro 5G mixes the design language of the POCO M3 Pro 5G and M3. It has the extended POCO branding found on the POCO M3, while keeping that area flat like on the POCO M3 Pro 5G.

The bump has two sections: the upper portion is home to the new 50-megapixel main camera, while the lower portion has the 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera, LED flash, and two decorative circles. Unlike its predecessor, the POCO M4 Pro 5G sticks to a dual rear camera setup, which isn’t something you see on phones nowadays.

The button and port layout of the POCO M4 Pro 5G is the same as its predecessor, so you still get a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, USB-C port, headphone jack, and an IR blaster in case you intend to use it as a remote via the Mi Remote app. Instead of a glossy finish, the POCO M4 Pro 5G opts for a frosted finish for both the back panel and frame, which does a good job in repelling smudges.

 

Display and sound

While the panel looks similar to the one used on the POCO M3 Pro 5G, it is a smidge bigger at 6.6-inches. It also comes with Gorilla Glass 3 protection, a 90hz refresh rate, and a centrally-placed punch-hole for a higher-resolution 16-megapixel selfie shooter.

The display is good for an IPS panel, as it is very readable in direct sunlight without compromising on color accuracy. It has Widevine L1, allowing you to watch Netflix videos in Full HD.

As for audio, the POCO M4 Pro 5G rocks stereo speakers–which was missing from its predecessor (the vanilla POCO M3 came with stereo speakers). Overall audio fidelity is decent for a budget phone–provided that you don’t go beyond 70% volume. Go beyond that, and you will notice distortion with the audio.

Cameras

The POCO M4 Pro 5G takes a “less is more” approach with its camera module, as its imaging package only has two snappers: a 50-megapixel main camera and an 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera. It is rare to see phones with “only” a dual rear camera setup these days, and we appreciate that POCO chose to NOT put any stat-stuffing 2-megapixel cameras on the M4 Pro 5G.

The main camera delivered a good amount of detail in all lighting conditions and has balanced color saturation. The ultra-wide-angle camera manages to keep colors consistent with the main camera in daylight shooting but struggles in low-light conditions. That’s not bad, as the POCO M4 Pro 5G uses the same 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera found on a variety of mid-range phones.

The POCO M4 Pro 5G can shoot Full HD videos at up to 60FPS, and while it does not come with any form of stabilization, it is possible to shoot stable footage handheld. Check out our sample video below:

Internals and battery life

The POCO M4 Pro 5G is powered by a Dimensity 810 processor, and comes in two variants: 4GB/64GB and 6GB/128GB. We recommend going for the 6GB/128GB variant unless you have budget constraints since 64GB of storage is considered small for a phone in 2021 even if the POCO M4 Pro 5G has a MicroSD card slot.

Despite its namee, the Dimensity 810 is NOT a successor to the Dimensity 800U. Instead, it succeeds the entry-level Dimensity 700 found on its predecessor. Synthetic benchmarks show that the Dimensity 810 is a big improvement over the Dimensity 700 used on the POCO M3 Pro 5G though it trails behind the older Dimensity 800U in GPU benchmarks like Geekbench Compute and 3DMark.

While you can certainly use the POCO M4 Pro 5G for gaming, the Dimensity 810’s lower GPU performance vs the Dimensity 800U means that some games will work better in lower graphics settings. Games like Call of Duty: Mobile limited us to medium graphics settings, while more demanding games like Genshin Impact default at the lowest graphics settings.

Our GameBench results verify this, as running Genshin Impact at Low graphics proved to be not as stable compared to a phone using a Dimensity 800U or a Snapdragon 480 processor.

Like every POCO phone, you get a custom version of MIUI 12.5 that has a glut of bloatware pre-installed out of the box. This is an issue especially if you opt for the 64GB variant, but you can delete most of these apps from the phone to gain back that much-needed storage space.

You still get a 5000mAh like its predecessor, but POCO upgraded the charging speeds on the M4 Pro 5G to 33w. We got 18.5 hours on our video loop test, which is very impressive considering we set the refresh rate at 90hz. The POCO M4 Pro 5G’s excellent battery life can be credited to the 6nm process used on the Dimensity 810.

Topping up the 5000mAh battery from 20% to 100% takes a little over an hour, and its 33w wired charging can also be used with any USB-PD charger that has a power output of 45w and above.

Wrap up and conclusions

Our review shows that the POCO M4 Pro 5G is THE budget phone that will bring 5G to the mainstream in the Philippines. It improves on a number of aspects over its predecessor, especially with faster-charging speeds and a simplified (yet versatile) camera setup.

The M4 Pro 5G refines all the good things the M3 Pro 5G had to offer, making it one of the best budget 5G phones you can buy with minimal compromises.

POCO M4 Pro 5G Review Price Philippines

The POCO M4 Pro 5G is priced at Php 11,990 for the 4GB/64GB variant and Php 12,990 for the 6GB/128GB variant in the Philippines and is available exclusively on Shopee.

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