We use cookies on our websites. Information about cookies and how you can object to the use of cookies at any time or end their use can be found in our privacy policy.

3 min read 9 comments

Xiaomi Pocophone F1 display: there's always a catch!

Xiaomi is shaking up the smartphone market with its outrageously cheap Pocophone F1. So it makes sense to take a closer look at this new candidate in the race for smartphone of the year. To get the price this cheap, the Chinese brand must have been cutting corners somewhere. Could it perhaps have been on the display?

First, let’s get to the key data for the Pocophone F1’s display: the screen has an LCD panel with a 6.18-inch diagonal and a fairly wide notch at the top. The new smartphone has a screen resolution of 2246 x 1080 pixels, which results in a pixel density of 403 ppi. There’s more to it than that, but on paper, that’s not bad.

But the results from our test speak for themselves, and they’re less generous. The maximum brightness is 454 cd/m², which isn’t very high and makes the device difficult to read in bright sunshine. The deviations in color representation and grayscales, which are expressed in Delta E values, are too high. That’s especially the case with the grayscales, which have an average of 8.11. The colors are too far from ideal, especially with cyan, magenta and white.

xiaomi pocophone display test 4
There are noticeable gaps in the color representation. / © AndroidPIT

You’ll notice the issues with your own eyes

You’ll notice the display’s shortcoming with your eyes when you take a closer look at the Pocophone F1 display. The colors don’t shine like on an OLED panel, and the blacks aren’t quite deep enough; they seem slightly gray. The viewing angle stability is also a bit shaky, as the display darkens relatively quickly when you view it from a sharp angle. The panel also doesn’t evenly illuminate, and clear halos can be seen at the lower end.

xiaomi pocophone display test 3
Reds, greens and blues are quite balanced. / © AndroidPIT

The Pocophone F1 is well on its way in terms of contrasts: 1,302:1 is a good value for an LCD screen. In the standard setting, red and blue are also pretty close to the 100% mark, and green is exactly on it. That speaks for a balanced display.

Saving money on the display is dangerous

The settings options offered by Xiaomi on the Pocophone F1 display are quite good. Not only can you freely set the basic color temperature, the contrasts can also be adjusted in three stages (normal, increased and automatic according to ambient light). The owner of a Pocophone F1 can configure the night and reading modes in terms of intensity and also define periods during which the display switches automatically.

The bottom line is the Xiaomi Pocophone F1’s display isn’t good enough to compete in the luxury class. The weaknesses aren’t all that serious, but they run through all the major components ranging from brightness to viewing angle to color display: there’s room for improvement in all facets. But it should be noted: the Pocophone F1 can compete with top-range devices in many aspects of the equipment, but costs only $349. The smartphone’s performance is alright for this price class. Nevertheless, if you’re looking for a caveat in the Pocophone F1’s amazing value for money, you’ll find it in the display.

How important is a smartphone’s display to you?

9 comments

Write new comment:
All changes will be saved. No drafts are saved when editing

  • I don't know what he's talking about. I think the screen is fantastic and I would compare it favourably with a Samsung galaxy S8. A work colleague has that and while it is better, it's pretty marginal. Yes, more colourful but not a real issue at all. On every other score, the pocophone F1 obliterates the S8 including battery life.


  • I hoped I had read this review earlier! I'm happy with the Pocophone so far, after 3 days use. Today I mounted the phone on my car, put on my sunglasses and was shocked to realise the screen is 0% visible in bright sunlight. This never happened in my OP3. I turned the brightness to Full and still can't see anything. So for navigation, I need to use another device, maybe my old OP3.....


    • Thats because you have polarized glasses, rotate the glasses or your phone and notice the magic.


      • I did not have to change my sunglass with my previous phone. If this is packaged as a flagship killer, it's not complete. The screen is an important element for smartphones. Its a great phone for now, but my personal experience is that the screen disappoints with respect to how i normally use the phone for daily navigation functions.


      • You have no clue what you're talking about. AMOLED/OLED screens are easily visible when seen through polarised glasses, LCD not so much.

        Source: Tried this on my Oneplus X and Oneplus 3T vs HTC 10 and Pocophone F1.


  • I don't give a flip about the screen. Give me fast performance and a nice camera and I'm happy.


  • My first choice is for manufacturers to cut costs on the camera. I agree with both Steve and Albin, the screen is important and it really needs to be optimized for black. Having gray, which is a battery waster, seems a foolish design choice.


  • Screen's the number one battery eater. I've never read a battery drain comparison of decent LCD versus AMOLED, including one optimized with black - no power - interface and apps, which are becoming more popular for that reason.


  • Steve 2 months ago Link to comment

    To me the screen is the main feature that I look for then everything else if good is a bonus. Manufacturers will always have to make cuts of some description to get the costs down but tech reviewers on YouTube have been waxing lyrical about this device since they got their hands on it and it's all been fairly positive for now.

Recommended articles