When I think about POCO smartphones, I equate that to powerful smartphones that won’t necessarily break the bank. So, if the flagship phones are out of your reach, POCO devices are always a good option. Does that hold for the POCO X4 GT? That’s what we’re trying to answer in this hands-on story. So read on to find out.
POCO X4 GT’s mobile gaming-friendly specs
As with other POCO devices, gaming seems to be top of mind with the POCO X4 GT. It gets a tagline of “No speed limited,” promising fast performance sans limitations. An enticing spiel for a phone that’s supposed to boost your gaming experience.
How did it fare with through my own gaming sessions? As expected, the POCO X4 GT handles this swimmingly. There’s a Performance boost option that assures it doesn’t fail on me while I play. Casual gamers will be extremely happy with performance, while the more demanding gamers can be satisfied, too.
Lately, I’m really into the game Disney Mirrorverse, a gacha game that’s also a team-based RPG and combat-heavy. While it doesn’t seem to be too taxing on graphics, it needs a phone that can keep up, because a missed tap or a frame rate drop can cause damage to my character. And the POCO X4 GT handles this without any complaints.
I probably have to thank the combo of specs it works with. The MediaTek Dimensity 8100 chipset promises high-performance and low power consumption, capable of handling high-frame-rate gaming. POCO pairs that with 8GB of LPDDR5 RAM and up to 256GB of non-expandable UFS 3.1 storage. According to the brand, the memory and storage combo is one of the fastest it offers in its lineup.
Like its predecessor, the POCO X4 GT is armed with LiquidCool Technology 2.0. But it gets a 32% larger vapor chamber than the X3 GT and upgraded seven-layer graphite, promising to efficiently dissipate heat from the screen and keep the CPU cool. I didn’t feel any heating issues during my use. Understandably, it’ll heat up a bit when charging, but otherwise, this smartphone keeps a cooler head than me.
The 6.6-inch LCD makes it enjoyable to game, too. It gets a refresh rate boost up to 144Hz and a 7-stage Dynamic Switch. POCO says this feature optimizes the refresh rate for longer battery life and a smoother display. This technology is designed to adjust the refresh rate depending on what’s being displayed on the screen so you can save battery even with the high refresh rate. POCO pairs this refresh rate with a touch sampling rate at a decent 270Hz. It’s been pretty responsive for gaming I’ve done on the POCO X4 GT.
LiTT Tip #1: Game Turbo is a handy MIUI feature that helps you get better gaming performance on the POCO X4 GT. I’m not sure if it’s my unit, but I couldn’t find it in the app drawer or settings. If you’re like me, the easiest way to find it is to head to Settings. Tap on the Search bar and then type Games. It’ll bring you into the Demos section of screen casting, but if you scroll down to Games, there is an option to Turn on Game Turbo. You can add the installed games to pull up the settings while playing easily. You can swipe left or right of the screen to pull it up.
Mobile worker’s best friend
Since this device works well for gaming, the POCO X4 GT will be capable of handling work on the go, too. It can handle multiple app switches with ease. I could edit 4K videos on CapCut without it hanging on me and then update our social media accounts when needed.
Its greatest asset to help out a mobile working professional or busy student is its long-lasting battery. It’s one of the recent devices I’ve tested that is pretty power efficient. POCO claims the X4 GT can last up to two days on a single charge. And on the busy days when I mainly use it for social media and some light content consumption, it could last that long. It gets a full day if I’m full-on using the phone with some gaming thrown in.
Even if you’re a pretty demanding user, the POCO X4 GT can get you through your work day. And recharging won’t take you too long either. The 5,080mAh battery recharges in around 50 minutes for me, slightly over the 46 minutes POCO claims you can achieve. That’s possible with this phone’s support for 67W turbo charging, which you get with the included charger in the box. What is missing is wireless charging. That still isn’t available on the POCO X4 GT. It’s a missed opportunity, if you ask me.
The unit itself is on the slightly hefty side. It is a tall and narrow phone, but it has a bit of thickness. It doesn’t make it uncomfortable to use, but you should know it isn’t as slim and light as phones like the Xiaomi 11 Lite 5G NE, which is one of the slimmest ones I’ve used. Color choices are a bit on the muted side. The POCO X4 GT comes in Blue, Silver, and Black.
POCO didn’t mention any Ingress Protection rating for this phone, and instead of Corning Gorilla Glass Victus, the POCO X4 GT opts for Gorilla Glass 5. So, if you’re clumsy, you might need to be a bit careful with this unit.
It runs on Android 12-based MIUI 13 for POCO. I’ve said before that I like the MIUI skin, but I feel my opinion changing recently. I appreciate the customizability, and it certainly differentiates itself from what other companies are doing. However, it still gets many pre-installed apps I don’t need. And it just feels a bit cluttered.
The extras I do appreciate POCO throwing in is its insistence on having things like an IR blaster. You don’t see many brands adding this feature in 2022. This phone also gets NFC (but that’s market-dependent), opening you up for payment options or even easy connectivity to other devices with NFC. (I love using it to connect to Bluetooth speakers like the Huawei Sound Joy.) The side-mounted fingerprint sensor is still my favorite implementation, and it works well on this phone.
LiTT Tip #2: 5G comes in handy when you’re out and about. But it can be a bit of a battery hog. POCO X4 GT offers a battery-saving option for 5G. Head to Settings > Battery > Settings (the cogwheel on the top right). Tap on 5G battery saver. It’ll ensure that 5G connectivity uses less power in certain situations.
An entertainment lover’s device, too
Gaming might not be a priority for you. But the POCO X4 GT is also a device designed to satisfy the needs of entertainment lovers.
The screen on this phone has a 20.5:9 aspect ratio, which is close to that cinematic aspect ratio (so the black bars on top and bottom of content filmed in 21:9 is nearly gone). It gets a punch-hole for the front-facing camera at the top center, which you can ignore while watching.
It has display tech like Dolby Vision and HDR10. This phone also supports Widevine L1, which means you can enjoy those display technologies in Full HD while watching on apps like Netflix. With support for DCI-P3 wide color gamut, you can expect to see ultra-vivid colors and details.
Brightness gets a slight improvement from its predecessor. It’s now at 500 nits instead of the X3 GT’s 400 nits. I can easily use this when I’m outdoors. POCO also adds features like DC Dimming and True Display that can adjust color temperature automatically based on the lighting conditions to help protect your peepers.
POCO pairs a good display with a dual speaker setup supporting Dolby Atmos. That makes it easier to game without blocking the speakers. And it means you can listen to or watch content without earphones nearby.
But if you do have earphones, you can finally use wired earphones with an X series phone again. POCO brings back the headphone jack for the POCO X4 GT.
LiTT Tip #3: If you spend time reading on your phone, switching the display to make it look like paper might be better for your eyes. Head to Display > Reading mode > Paper. The option is under the Mode section. You can tweak color temperature, texture, and even the colors you see (full, light, or black and white).
Bonus: Let’s talk about POCO X4 GT’s cameras
If you enjoy creating content over watching (or at least want that in your arsenal), POCO arms the X4 GT with a 64-megapixel primary camera, 8-megapixel ultra-wide, and 2-megapixel macro camera at the back.
You get a fair amount of detail in your photos. The color looks slightly more saturated than in real life, but that’s how typical smartphone photos look. The colors don’t seem too different when you switch from the primary and ultra-wide cameras, but you lose sharpness when you go wider (and you get that slight fish-eye look, too).
Outside of Portrait Mode, I find the POCO X4 GT can achieve that natural bokeh for certain situations, which is cool. Shooting in Portrait, though, will allow you to adjust bokeh or add some fun filters after the shot is taken. Focusing isn’t an issue when it’s bright out, but it will be a bit tougher once the lights dimmer. Night Mode and a place to prop up your camera will be your friends in this instance.
The selfie camera will do the job, but a filter still seems to be applied even when you turn off its Beauty mode. It’s not my first choice for taking selfies on. It can work in a pinch. But if I have this phone, I just might invest in the smartphone mirror to use the main lens more.
You can record up to 4K at 30 frames per second on this phone, which you can see a sample of below. (Here’s the TikTok version.) It also has a Steady Mode that’ll come in handy when you walk and record. It’s not foolproof, though. I have noticed there will still be some jittering in videos I’ve recorded while in motion. Despite that, you’ll still mostly get some decent, post-ready videos of your adventures.
What’s lit and what’s not?
What’s lit about it:
- Mobile gaming-ready performance (makes it ready for work, too)
- Gets one of the fastest memory and storage combo in POCO’s lineup
- Good heat management
- Refresh rate boost to 144Hz
- Responsive display for gaming
- Long-lasting battery
- 67W charging support
- Customizability of MIUI
- Extra features like an IR blaster and NFC
- Decent display for watching your favorite content
- Improved brightness for better readability outdoors
- Dual speaker setup
- Cameras & their various modes are ready to help you share your adventures
What needs the extra spark:
- No expandable storage option
- Missing wireless charging
- Looking for some fun colors
- No IP rating
- No longer has a Gorilla Glass Victus protection
- Needs fewer pre-installed apps
- Want a refresh to MIUI’s look
- Camera has trouble focusing in low light
- Not my favorite selfie camera
- Jittering while recording in 4K
The price-to-performance ratio on the POCO X4 GT is excellent. This handset upholds that POCO tradition of bringing as much value into a mid-range priced device. As someone who values a gadget’s looks, the POCO X4 GT isn’t the most exciting smartphone to test. It is missing some things I need in my phones, too, like IP rating and a less cluttered UI. But if performance trumps your need to have an eye-catching device and its shortcomings aren’t dealbreakers for you, you’ll find great value here.
The POCO X4 GT retails for EUR 379 / PHP 18,990 (128GB) and EUR 429 / PHP 19,990 (256GB).
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