will the wait be in vain?
According to leaks and multiple teasers, POCO will be introducing the next big thing for the POCO X series’ last year. As usual, the POCO X5 Pro is the device that POCO fans have been waiting for. However, the big question that remains is whether it was worth the wait.
POCO X3 Pro legacy
The POCO X series was introduced in 2020 with the POCO X2. However, it was the POCO X3 that put the series among the big stars in the smartphone industry. In September of the same year, POCO presented the POCO X3 NFC with very attractive specifications. In 2020, it is rare to see a mid-range smartphone with a high refresh rate screen, fast charging and even NFC. POCO has decided to create a “jack of all trades” with the POCO X3 NFC. This device has a 120Hz panel, a 5,160mAh battery with 33W fast charging, a 64MP camera, and more. It was one of the most attractive mid-range smartphones of its time. However, POCO wanted more for this particular device and a few months later introduced the POCO X3 Pro.
The POCO X3 Pro hits the market for $300 with the very attractive Snapdragon 860. This chipset is basically a revamped Snapdragon 855+, providing flagship levels of performance. That’s way above the Snapdragon 732 on the regular X3. Of course, POCO had to cut corners and downgrade the 64 megapixel camera to a 48 megapixel unit. Also, it lacks 5G connectivity. However, this was not enough to jeopardize sales. POCO X3 Pro has been affected.
POCO X4 Pro’s performance doesn’t outperform its predecessor, but the phone still makes some improvements
Last year, expectations were high for the POCO X4 Pro. However, the device failed to outperform its predecessor in terms of performance. POCO had to deliver 5G, and to keep the price attractive decided to go with the Snapdragon 695. It’s a good chipset, but the performance isn’t quite up to par with the Snapdragon 8xx series. To make the smartphone more attractive, POCO has brought a 108MP camera to the handset.
This year, expectations were high for the POCO X5 Pro, but the big question that remains is, will it be better than the POCO X5 Pro? We will find out through this comparison article.
POCO X4 Pro vs POCO X5 Pro
One thing is certain, the POCO X5 Pro will not have the same appeal as the POCO X3 Pro series. Apparently, in these troubled times, it’s difficult for a brand to offer a flagship-level SoC at a mid-range price. Thus, POCO X5 Pro will not aim at the Snapdragon 8x series. However, improvements will still be important.
We will start this comparison with performance, and I will give a spoiler, yes POCO X5 Pro will be above POCO X4 Pro. Last year’s model featured the Qualcomm Snapdragon 695 5G (6nm) SoC. This is a mid-range chip with 2 Cortex-Ayu cores clocked at up to 2.2 GHz and 6 ARM Cortex-A55 cores clocked up to 1.7 GHz. For the GPU it uses Adreno 619.
POCO X5 Pro will ship Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G. The chipset is getting old at this point but still efficient and fast enough for the mid-range segment. The chipset has 1 ARM Cortex-A78 core up to 2.42 GHz, 3 ARM Cortex-A78 cores up to 2.2 GHz and 4 ARM Cortex-A55 cores up to 1.9 GHz. Performance here is better because the chipset has bigger cores with higher clock speed. This has to be important, especially in games. Apart from that, the Adreno 642L of this SoC far surpasses the 619. With this chipset, you will get better performance in games and overall tasks.
In terms of performance, the POCO X5 Pro will definitely win the game. This is great for newcomers, but maybe for the POCO X4 Pro, it’s not enough for an upgrade. It all depends on what you do with your smartphone. If you like gaming, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G is much better.
RAM and storage
POCO X4 Pro has up to 8GB of RAM and up to 256GB of internal storage. Also, you can easily increase this amount with a micro SD card. POCO X5 Pro will get a higher variant with 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage. Unlike its predecessors, this phone can ditch the micro SD card slot. None of the Redmi Note 12 series phones have it, so we assume that the POCO X5 Pro will also get rid of this distinctive feature.
It should be noted that we don’t know exactly which variant of the Redmi Note 12 Pro Speed will come as the POCO X5 Pro. Therefore, the arrival of a higher variant cannot be confirmed. That would put the POCO X5 Pro in the same territory as the X4 Pro, and the lack of a micro SD card might be considered a downside for some.
The next department is the camera. Overall, we think there will be a lot in common between the two phones. The global version of the POCO X4 Pro features a main camera of 108 megapixels f/1.9, ultrawide 8 megapixels f/1.8 and a macro camera 2 megapixels f/2.4. The phone also has a 16-megapixel selfie snapper.
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According to the leaks, the camera setup of the POCO X5 Pro will be nearly identical. It has a 108-megapixel shooter with f/1.9 aperture, an 8-megapixel ultrawide, and a 2-megapixel macro camera. It will also carry a 16-megapixel selfie snapper.
In terms of cameras, we have a tie. Unfortunately, the Redmi Note 12 Pro Speed, which is the basis for the POCO X5 Pro, does not feature OIS. This is the only Pro in the Redmi Note 12 series that misses OIS. It will be a nice upgrade over POCO X4 Pro. Without OIS, the camera settings are basically the same. We can see a few improvements here and there, but don’t expect miracles.
Either way, things should be looking up for the Indian market. The POCO X4 Pro that arrives there has a smaller 64 MP camera. So, if indeed the POCO X5 Pro comes with a 108MP unit, it will be an upgrade from its predecessor.
At the display level, it seems that the POCO X4 Pro has several advantages. The POCO X5 Pro isn’t official yet, so it’s based on the Redmi Note 12 Pro, but considering the specs, the X4 Pro has a better display.
POCO X4 Pro offers a 6.67-inch Super AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate. The panel has a brightness of 700 nits and a peak brightness of 1200 nits. It carries Full HD+ resolution and a layer of Gorilla Glass 5.
The POCO X5 Pro’s display is described as ‘OLED’, so it might not be from Samsung. The brightness is lower with 500 nits brightness and 900 peak brightness. Also, there is no mention of Gorilla Glass there. Apart from these differences, we also get a 6.67-inch panel with a 120Hz refresh rate.
In terms of appearance, the POCO X5 Pro seems to be a downgrade from its predecessor. So we have to compare the two units.
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POCO X4 Pro features Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.1, IR Blaster, NFC, USB Type C and FM radio. The phone has a side-mounted fingerprint reader. It is powered by a 5000mAh battery with 67W fast charging. The phone also has stereo speakers.
POCO X5 Pro will bring Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.2, NFC, IR Blaster and a USB Tpe-C port. We don’t know if it will carry FM radio or not. The device has a side-mounted fingerprint scanner. Apart from that, it draws power from the same 5,000 mAh battery with the same 67W charging.
We’ll appreciate the 120W fast charging and 5,000 mAh battery on the new smartphone. This set of specs is available with the Redmi Note 12 Pro+, but won’t make way for the POCO X5 Pro.
The two smartphones are very similar, with gradual upgrades for the POCO X5 Pro. Wi-Fi 6 is probably the most notable upgrade here. However, for some users, upgrading may not be enough.
The POCO X4 Pro costs around $267 or INR 17,999 for India. At the moment, we don’t know how much the POCO X5 Pro will cost, but we don’t think it will cost much more. POCO will likely aim for the same price. Prices can range from $270~ to $300. We honestly don’t recommend paying more than $300 for these specs.
Conclusion – is the POCO X5 Pro really an upgrade?
Well, considering everything we’ve seen, we don’t think the POCO X5 Pro isn’t a real upgrade if you’re looking for anything other than performance. The Snapdragon 778G is better than the Snapdragon 695, but this smartphone is identical to its predecessor in other aspects. The POCO X4 Pro leads the way in the display department and its camera setup is not out of date compared to the newer models. POCO X5 Pro is mostly an incremental upgrade with newer technology.
Whether the POCO X5 Pro is worth the wait is up to you, but it looks like it’s mostly a incremental update. We can only dream of a new smartphone to match the POCO X3 Pro for its time. The new smartphone will be a much better upgrade if POCO chooses a mix between Redmi Note 12 Pro+ and Redmi Note 12 Pro Speed. The Snapdragon 778G with the same specifications as the Pro+ (200MP camera, 120W fast charging) will make a significant difference here.