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The long wait for a true Poco F1 successor is finally over

Poco’s latest phones are hotly anticipated, especially with rumors abound that we could be looking at a proper successor to the sub-brand’s first phone, the Poco F1 with its incredible price-to-performance ratio. And today is finally the day Xiaomi is making good on that promise, though the latest entry to the line isn’t the F2 — we’re skipping straight ahead to the F3 and its slightly weaker sister model, the X3 Pro.

Poco F3

Like all recent Poco phones, the Poco F3 isn’t an original design. It’s mostly a carbon copy of the Redmi K40 and shares most of its hardware specifications. There’s an almost bezel-less 6.67-inch Samsung E4 AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate and a resolution of 2400 x 1080. You can find a 20MP dot selfie cam in the top middle. The back has one of three colors: Arctic White, Night Black, or Deep Ocean Blue. The latter sports a humongous POCO branding spread across the back that’s less prominent on the other colors, where it’s aligned with the camera array on the top left corner. That hump has the same signature prominent design that first appeared with the Mi 11, and it consists of three cameras: A 48MP primary shooter, an 8MP ultra-wide angle, and a 5MP telemacro.

On the right side, you’ll find the volume rocker and the side-mounted power button that doubles as a fingerprint reader, while the USB-C connector and a headphone jack are on the bottom. The phone also has NFC and an IR blaster, and there’s a dual-speaker setup — it could pan out to be a great multimedia machine.

The F3 comes with the brand-new high-end Snapdragon 870 5G, supported by LPDDR5 RAM and UFS 3.1 storage, starting with a 128GB plus 6GB variant. The battery is fairly big at 4520mAh and can charge at up to 33W — and luckily, Xiaomi provides a charger that reaches these speeds in the box.

Xiaomi will sell the F3 in two RAM and storage variants: There’s a 6+128GB version and an 8+256GB model, available at €349.90 and €399.90, respectively. In Europe, the company is kicking off sales with a limited inventory on po.co and Amazon at €299.90/€349.90 on March 30, bringing down the price as low as the original F1 for a limited time.

While the F3 doesn’t have the absolute top-of-the line processor that the F1 had, it’s coming as close as it gets, and it still sports high-end hardware at an affordable price. If you’re okay with MIUI 12 (based on Android 11 here), it could once again be among the best you can get for the price.

Poco X3 Pro

The Poco X3 Pro comes with a processor we haven’t heard of so far: The Snapdragon 860. Poco says it’s the first company to launch a phone with the new processor, but a look at Qualcomm’s website reveals that it’s apparently just a rebranded version of the 4G-only Snapdragon 855+, which is almost two years old by now — an odd decision, to say the least.

Other than that, the X3 Pro isn’t too different from the regular X3 and thus to the Redmi Note 9. It’s about the same size and weight, has the same 6.67-inch IPS 120Hz screen, and there’s the obnoxiously huge POCO branding on the back. The rounded, top-centered camera array also looks familiar. It’s equipped with different cameras, though. Instead of a 64MP primary shooter, there’s a 48MP camera accompanied by three more: An 8MP ultra-wide, a 2MP macro, and a 2MP depth sensor. The battery is also smaller than the 6,000mAh found in the X3 at 5160mAh, which should still last you two days according to Poco. Still, the phone’s focus clearly is the processor, though the question remains if the rebranded Snapdragon 855+ is that much better than the 732G other than in name.

The Poco X3 Pro will be available in Europe starting this month and comes in two variants: one with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage and another with 8 and 256GB. They’ll cost €249.90 and €299.90, respectively — Xiaomi’s usual incredibly aggressive pricing. There will be three colors to choose from: Phantom Black, Frost Blue, and Metal Bronze. An early bird sale on March 26 will allow customers in Europe to get the phone for only €199.90 or €249.90 on po.co and Amazon.

Poco also offers free screen replacements within the first six months of owning the phone.

The Indian Poco F3 and X3 Pro launch event is set for March 30, so we’ll likely only hear about pricing and possible local adjustments to the hardware then.

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