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Xiaomi is doing a “OnePlus” with a new no frills smartphone brand

A few years ago, OnePlus used to be the “flagship killer” but now that title seems to go to Xiaomi for its super affordable flagship offering. The Mi MIX 2S that offers a “bezel-less” screen with a Snapdragon 845 processor is priced under RM2,000 and their latest Mi 8 is going for as low as RM1,599, which is insanely good value for money.

If the Mi 8 is still too expensive, Xiaomi has just introduced a new sub-brand and their new device could be the most affordable Snapdragon 845 smartphone ever.

The new smartphone brand is called POCO and from its introduction, the brand focuses on the basics and it’s all about delivering real world speed. Unlike OnePlus which doesn’t openly mentions its ties to its parent company, POCO introduced themselves a small outfit under Xiaomi and they have full freedom to start something entirely from scratch. To ensure the highest quality of products, POCO will be tapping into Xiaomi’s existing supply chain, operations and infrastructure.

The first device is called the Pocophone F1 and it is expected to be a flagship device that runs on Qualcomm’s top of the line processor. Photos of the device have surfaced online and already it looks better speced than the Xiaomi Mi 8.

As seen above, the device is powered by a Snapdragon 845 processor and it uses a liquid cooling system for better thermal management. Like any new Xiaomi device, it also gets a dual-camera setup with AI-powered features.

Over at the rear, it appears to have a curved metal back and the dual-cameras are vertically aligned with a fingerprint sensor placed underneath it. Another detail that’s confirmed is that it gets a 4,000mAh battery which suppports Quick Charge 3.0 via USB-C. Word has it that it still retains a 3.5mm headphone jack, a feature that’s hard to find on the latest crop of Xiaomi smartphones. There are no details about its OS but hopefully it runs on a stock-like interface similar to OxygenOS.

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The Pocophone F1 was recently spotted on our Malaysian SIRIM database alongside the Mi 8 and this is a sign that a local launch is just around the corner. At the moment, the most affordable “flagship” is the honor play that offers a Kirin 970 processor, a large 6.3” FullHD+ display and a 3,750mAh battery for RM1,249. Will the Pocophone beat that? Let us know in the comments down below.

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Alexander Wong