Need a new cell phone? Then take a look at the potent POCO F4 GT 5G with 12/256 GB at the Proshop for €449. You have the choice between Stealth Black and Cyber Yellow.
Four reasons for the POCO F4 GT:
- Faster Snapdragon 8 Gen 1
- 120 Hz refresh rate for smooth animations
- Mechanical shoulder buttons for gaming
- Ultra-fast battery charging with 120W
POCO – the four letters stand for either inexpensive furniture or a very good price-performance ratio. The fourth generation of the F series culminates in the most powerful POCO smartphone to date: the POCO F4 GT 5G. The “epitome of power” is a gaming smartphone – or is it?
POCO F4 GT 5G (12/256 GB) Reviews, Specs, Photos, Video & Price
- POCO F4 GT (8/128GB)
- POCO F4 GT (12/256GB)
- Specifications of the POCO F4 GT 5g
|screen||6.67 inch AMOLED, 120Hz, 2400 x 1080 pixels, 394 PPI|
|processor||Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 Octa Core @ 2.84+2.5+1.80GHz|
|graphics chip||Qualcomm Adreno 730|
|Random Access Memory (RAM)||8GB/12GB LPDDR5|
|mass storage||128GB / 256GB UFS 3.1|
|camera||64 MP main camera Sony IMX686|
8 MP ultra wide angle camera
2 MP macro camera
|battery pack||4,700 mAh, 120 watts per cable,|
|connectivity||Wi-Fi 5 & 6 (ac/ax), BT 5.2, aptX HD, NFC, Dual GPS/Galileo, GLONASS/ BDS, 5G|
|features||Face Unlock, Quad Speakers, USB-C|
|operating system||Android 12 with MIUI 13 interface|
|Colors||Black, Silver, Yellow|
|Mass weight||162.5 x 76.7 x 8.5mm / 210g|
The fact that the POCO F4 GT 5G is supposed to be a gaming smartphone is not only evident from the name suffix, but also from the design. The F4 GT is available in three colors: black, silver or yellow, with the POCO Yellow naturally fitting the brand well.
A kind of gaming pattern can be seen on the back, with a triangular design element pointing from the left and right to the middle. The tips of the respective triangles are in a slightly different color and the flash on the back is even the LED flash. So overall it’s the most eye-catching POCO smartphone so far, but a rather inconspicuous gaming smartphone.
The positioning of the volume buttons is unusual, they are on the left, which is untypical for Xiaomi. Why? So that there is room on the right for the shoulder buttons. As in the Xiaomi Black Shark 4, the manufacturer integrates mechanical shoulder buttons! These require a slider that sits next to it on the inside, bringing the shoulder buttons out of the case.
This should create a real controller feeling. This not only has an advantage when gambling, but also in everyday life. Xiaomi allows a “free” assignment of the two buttons for double pressing and holding. For example, you can use it to start the camera or flashlight. The operating system also allows one of four sounds and a screen animation.
In everyday life, the shoulder buttons turn out to be quite helpful, although I initially found the positioning to be too far out. If you are right-handed, you can easily press the lower button with your palm, for example to start the camera or the flashlight. Since this key only reacts to double-clicking or holding it down, incorrect entries are rare, but can occur.
As a left-hander, the buttons are actually easier to reach. The range of functions is okay with flashlight, camera, silent & vibration mode, audio and screen recording, but the free choice of apps would also be very practical.
How is the POCO F4 GT processed?
Do you have to make concessions in the processing quality with a relatively cheap “flagship”? Yes. Like the big brothers from Xiaomi, there is no official IP rating, so the POCO F4 GT is not officially protected against water. The SIM slot is sealed with rubber, but the mechanical shoulder buttons should make water protection more difficult.
But you don’t skimp on the quality of the material. The 210g smartphone seems a bit more robust than its direct predecessor, after all, it also uses a glass back, aluminum frame and even Gorilla Glass Victus to protect the screen panel. The transitions between these components are clean, the frame is even slightly embedded in the back in the middle.
The mechanical shoulder buttons including sliders are also well-solved, I like the feel and even have a slight fidget toy character. Due to the higher weight and the unfortunately thicker design, the POCO F4 GT looks much higher quality and reminds me more of the POCO F2 Pro.
The “Knight Silver” colorway of our test device is very susceptible to fingerprints, but this can be solved with a case. In comparison to the POCO F3, the integration of the camera module into the back is not quite as smooth, just like with the Xiaomi 12, it looks like it was glued on afterwards. But these are only minor criticisms of an otherwise very well-made smartphone.
Darker display than in the predecessor
In terms of the display, the basic specs of the popular predecessor remain true. A 6.67″ AMOLED screen with a 120 Hz refresh rate , FullHD+ resolution in a 20:9 aspect ratio was also available in the POCO F3. The touch sampling rate has been increased to 480 Hz, but the brightness (HBM) has been reduced from 900 nits to 800 nits.
In contrast to the predecessor, there is now also a 10-bit display, so that the screen can display a billion colors – now standard. However, the fingerprint sensor is still disguised as a power button instead of being positioned under the screen as in the Xiaomi 12. In addition, the LTPO technology that allows dynamic adjustment is missing here.
In practical use, the difference between the displays in terms of brightness can hardly be determined. Only in a direct comparison is the old panel slightly brighter at medium settings. Even in strong sunlight, the brightness is sufficient to still be able to read the information.
But what is noticeable is the different viewing angle stability. The panel of the F3 offers a strong bluish color shift, while the F4 GT is easier to read even from acute viewing angles. Since the sharpness has not changed, the POCO F4 GT 5g display has a high enough resolution to display icons and fonts crisply.
In the settings of the MIUI for POCO operating system you can adjust the refresh rate between 60 and 120 Hz, but the OS can also adjust this setting automatically. In addition, Xiaomi leaves many options as usual, for example the color scheme can be completely customized, and there are also adaptive colors.
The AI image engine can artificially improve the screen content, but in practice the settings have not yet prevailed for me. Thanks to AMOLED technology, an always-on display is also possible, which is in fact always on. Alternatively, the many motifs can also be scheduled and changed in terms of font and display.
The cheapest smartphone with THE processor
With the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, you want to live up to the claim of being the “embodiment of power”. Interestingly, this returns to the original line and uses the current top processor, in the POCO F3 there was “only” the Snapdragon 870 instead of the 888.
The chip, manufactured in 4nm, offers a clock frequency of up to 3 GHz and is also used in significantly more expensive smartphones such as the OPPO Find X5 Pro or OnePlus 10 Pro. There is also 8 or 12 GB of LPDDR5 RAM and 128 or 256 GB of UFS 3.1 mass storage that cannot be expanded.
This only makes sense if you are committed to making a gaming smartphone. No question: The performance of the POCO F4 GT leaves nothing to be desired. Is it noticeably faster than other 8 Gen 1 smartphones? No. Is it one of the fastest smartphones on the market?
Yes. You play in the top league. Apps open instantly and close at the same speed, multitasking is of course not a problem thanks to up to 12 GB of RAM, and gaming performance is also at the top level. The Gaming Turbo pre-installed by Xiaomi does not bring any significant change in this regard.
The heat development is also limited, the Wild Life Stress Test from 3D Mark documents a temperature of up to 43°C, starting from 31°C. This corresponds to our measured values with the FLIR thermal imaging camera, where the POCO F4 GT remains significantly cooler in a direct comparison with the Samsung S22 with the same benchmark. The POCO F4 GT 5g also achieves the expected values in other benchmarks and joins the current leaderboard with the other flagships with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1.
POCO F4 GT charges in just 17 minutes!
With a 4,700 mAh battery, the capacity of the predecessor is surpassed by just 180 mAh. It is interesting that the POCO F4 GT offers a larger battery than, for example, the Redmi Note 11 Pro+, which also offers fast 120W charging. The battery life is only average in our test.
In the benchmark, the F4 GT barely reaches 10 hours, unusual for POCO. In practice, that’s easily enough for a day of extensive use , with moderate use even up to a day and a half. But you have to be careful to close apps overnight. The standby drain was extraordinarily high on some days, but we haven’t been able to trace that back to a specific application yet.
However, the runtime could be secondary, because the POCO F4 GT also deserves the suffix “GT” in the loading speed. 120W charging is possible! This makes it the fourth smartphone in Xiaomi’s global portfolio that can be charged in just 17 minutes.
In addition to the processor, another parallel to Xiaomi’s flagship, the Xiaomi 12 Pro. Not only is the charger integrated, but also a USB-C cable with an L connector, which makes charging easier while gaming.
The fact that the loading animation shows the second decimal place is a cool detail that we have known since the Mi 10 Ultra. In just under five minutes, the battery level already exceeds the 50% limit – that changes your own charging behavior! Charging at night would waste electricity, it is enough to plug the POCO F4 GT into the socket while showering in the morning.
The biggest surprise for us is still that Xiaomi consistently uses USB-A chargers for this technology instead of using USB-C and possibly even Power Delivery 3.1. The topic of Qi charging is also backward-looking: you cannot charge the POCO F4 GT wirelessly.
The L-connector is a sensible idea, when gaming via cable this arrangement is really handier. In addition, the F4 GT can be loaded relatively quickly even when gaming.
Same camera as in the POCO F2 Pro
In terms of the camera setup, the POCO F4 GT is more reminiscent of the POCO F2 Pro than its direct predecessor. After all, the Sony IMX686 uses the same main camera sensor as the F2 Pro, the ƒ/1.9 aperture is not quite as bright as many modern sensors with the 64 megapixel resolution.
There is also an 8 MP ultra wide-angle camera with a 120° recording angle and a 2 MP macro camera – unfortunately not the 5 MP sensor that was used at the time. A 20 MP camera with ƒ/2.4 aperture takes care of selfies, this is the Sony IMX596 sensor.
So much in advance: The POCO F4 GT takes better photos than the F3, which sometimes took pictures that were too dark and a little too grainy for me. The F4 GT shoots slightly better exposed photos with a sufficient degree of sharpness so that there is enough detail. At least when there is enough light.
In the twilight, the camera has to turn up the ISO and shutter speed so much that the shots blur even in the viewfinder. The already somewhat plastic color representation becomes a bit more artificial, green tones are sometimes a bit too bright.
On the other hand, I like the sharpness overall, the autofocus has worked reliably and quickly so far. Skin tones can still look a bit too saturated with artificial lighting, but I like the natural bokeh of the photos. Overall, the photos are good enough for a smartphone under €500, but the NORD 2 is better equipped with the Sony IMX766.
Ultra Wide & Macro Camera
Considering that the POCO F4 GT is the “flagship” of the Xiaomi sub-brand, the camera setup is not on par with a OnePlus 10 Pro or Find X5 Pro from OPPO, even in the second and third sensor. The ultra wide-angle photos get a different color treatment than the main camera, so the color matching between the sensors is suboptimal.
The ultra-wide-angle camera produces fainter photos and lacks the saturation of the main sensor. There is also a lack of detail, but of course the images offer the desired fish-eye effect.
The macro camera can safely be ignored. The resolution is too low, the close-up limit too high to take useful macro photos. Focusing is difficult, there are too few details. The 5 MP telephoto macro camera should be standard on Xiaomi.
If the lighting conditions are right, the front camera of the POCO F4 GT knows how to please. In natural light, the real representation surprises me, in portrait mode, in my opinion, you even play at the top. Thanks to 20 MP, the selfies are big enough to be able to print them out well.
In artificial lighting, the richness of detail decreases a bit, in low-light conditions it is even quite strong. Photos become blurry relatively quickly, but this is usually the case even with more expensive smartphones.
MIUI for POCO for gaming?
Ever since the first Pocophone, people have relied on the POCO Launcher , which turns MIUI into “MIUI for POCO”. It is MIUI 13 based on Android 12 including all Google services, German language, Widevine Level 1 and certified Play Store. In addition to Xiaomi’s own services such as MiCloud or the remote control, this OS is also equipped with bloatware.
Bloatware includes pre-installed third-party software such as Netflix, Facebook, TikTok, or shopping apps such as Amazon and AliExpress. We also find that on the POCO F4 GT, but the apps can also be uninstalled if desired. Actually, there are also various games there, not on this POCO. The cooperation with Genshin Impact is not only evident in the POCO Buds Pro Genshin Impact Edition, but also here, after all it is the only pre-installed game.
Not much changes for Xiaomi fans, a slightly different icon pack and their own launcher with a preset app drawer and, for example, sorting by color. There is no specially adapted gaming look, basically MIUI for POCO looks like on the X4 Pro, which is not a gaming phone.
In order to still meet the requirement, settings for the shoulder buttons and (notification) LED are integrated on the back. As described, the shoulder buttons prove to be helpful in everyday life, the LED not so much for me due to the positioning. Here you can set, for example, when this should be active, but also whether it should be loaded and during the game turbo.
POCO fails to make an update promise for the F4 GT, while guaranteeing the Xiaomi 12 (X) and Pro three years of Android OS updates and one more year of security updates. That would also look good on POCO, so one can only guess how long the update supply will be guaranteed.
Since Xiaomi now has so many models on the market, the pace of updates has slowed down. However, we expect two Android system updates for the POCO F4 GT, as mentioned, there is no guarantee for this.
Four speakers for a Hallelujah
Thanks to the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, it is a 5G smartphone, with all frequency bands integrated. But LTE including Band 20 and Band 28 is also considered. Both slots of the dual SIM slot are suitable for 5G, but there is no space for a microSD card.
Local Internet can also be used with the current standard thanks to WiFi 6 & 6E. There is a USB-C port on the underside, but no jack connection. You can also look forward to Bluetooth 5.2, GPS and NFC.
We did not notice any connection problems in the E-Net during the test period, both mobile and local Internet worked without any problems. Hard to believe, but such a fully packed smartphone can also make calls. The micro quality still leaves some room for improvement, but my counterpart could still understand me at all times. Another parallel to the Xiaomi 12 Pro is the quad speaker setup.
Instead of the now usual two loudspeakers, there are now even four loudspeakers. In my opinion, you don’t hear that the speakers are doubled. The sound is not quite as finely tuned and sounds a bit dull, a nice effect for shooter games, but a bit unusual for music. The 12 Pro sounds more balanced there.
How well does the POCO F4 GT’s proximity sensor work?
One of the problems of the POCO F3 was the proximity sensor, which seems to have been faulty in some batches. We could not determine this with our test device, but there were enough indications from the community.
The test of the POCO F4 GT shows a working proximity sensor, which reacts immediately with WhatsApp voice messages and also in the sensor test when you hold the cell phone to your ear. In my opinion, the problem is only the low volume of the auricle, with poor recording conditions, the voice messages are sometimes not easy to understand.
Conclusion: Buy POCO F4 GT?
Even with the early bird price of €499, the POCO F4 GT is the most expensive POCO to date , with an RRP of €599. Funnily enough, as we already suspected, the smartphone is the global version of the Redmi K50 Gaming Edition.
But also the most powerful and at least one decides now for the top processor. POCO manages to keep the 8 Gen 1 relatively cool, and there is more than enough memory. The 120W charging is also an argument for the price, even if it is offered cheaper in the Redmi Note 11 Pro+. I like the L connector on the cable though.
Although the display has improved and does not require color shift, it is now slightly darker. Hardly noticeable in practice, but a step backwards on paper. It’s also a pity that a better camera setup isn’t installed, since the predecessor performed suboptimal here.
The photos are okay overall, but the POCO F4 GT isn’t a camera smartphone. But is it a gaming smartphone? Or a normal smartphone with gaming features?
The POCO F4 GT is likely to suffer from an identity crisis. Power and optics as well as the mechanical shoulder buttons in particular ensure a gaming feeling, and this feature in particular provides an advantage when gambling. On the other hand, the keys can be annoying in everyday use or you have to get used to them.
I find double occupancy relatively useful, but does it drastically improve my everyday life? Hardly likely. The software also doesn’t get enough gaming paintwork, I would have wished for an improved version of the game turbo.
I can’t imagine the F4 GT being as successful as the F3, I think the gaming approach puts off too many customers. For less than 500€ I would still like to recommend it, it is the strongest smartphone in the price range. The Samsung Galaxy S21 FE and the slightly more expensive realme GT 2 Pro are more interesting all-rounders, but also slightly more expensive. Xiaomi Poco F4 Gt 5g Review video below: