The smartphone space has become accustomed to affordable but high-performing devices. This is what has driven the market to key innovations and OEM offshoots that have waged war to traditional and established players that always have, and still do charge a premium for their high-end offerings.
Chinese companies realized that they would easily make a killing from this development. To this end, we have seen the likes of OPPO, Xiaomi and vivo make equally impressive devices, with the difference being that they sell them at a markedly reduced sticker price. And what has resulted from this rivalry? Well, the customer is benefiting. at least for the most part.
In 2018, Xiaomi released the POCO F1. The phone was equipped with flagship internals and was priced just about right. It even made its way to Kenya, and a lot of locals were amazed by their purchases. Unfortunately, a successor was not released in a timely manner, and over that grey period, Xiaomi made Redmi a sub-brand, a move that preceded a POCO spun in the same direction.
Redmi, admittedly, is filled to the brim with tens of phones that are sold to emerging markets. POCO is said to target the same demographic but equips its devices with near flagship-level specifications. Of course, we already knew that, but the F1 had been released back in 2018, and the sub-brand took a long hiatus prior to today’s POCO X2 announcement.
This should not be confusing at all because if you have a firm grasp of what the recently announced Redmi K30 offers, then the X2 is the same phone, save for geographical distribution and a single minor omission: the latter does not have NFC.
See, Xiaomi has been selling the K30 and its 5G brother in China. No global releases were announced, so we quickly deduced that whatever POCO was developing would serve as the global model of the K30, and guess what, we were right.
Here are some of the specs of the X2:
Weight: 208 g
Screen: 6.67-inch FHD+, 120 Hz refresh rate with GG5 and HDR10 support
Storage: 6/8GB RAM, 128/256 GB internal
Battery: 4500 mAh, 27W fast charging
Main Camera: Quad – 64 MP main, 8 MP wide-angle, 2 MP depth sensor and 2MP macro sensor
Selfie: Dual, 20 MP and 2 MP depth sensor, all punched in the display
Headphone jack: Yes
Platform: Android 10 on top of MIUI 11
The phone charges plenty fast, and the cell is massive, which is traditional of Xiaomi phones. The selfie shooters are inside the screen, so there is no screen-cutout here.
A fingerprint reader is embedded in the power button on the phone’s side.
Lastly, the device’s high point is the high refresh screen, which should make touch responses and navigation a fluid experience. However, we are sad the X2 does not ship with the S855, as was the case with the F1 that was equipped with a high-end SoC of that time.
Price and availability
The device will hit Kenyan store shelves very soon in the following configurations:
6 + 64 GB for KES 22,000
6 + 128 GB for KES 24,000
8 + 128 GB for KES 28,000