Xiaomi Black Shark 4 Pro ditches massive display and shoulder buttons vs Black Shark 3 Pro

I enjoyed both the Black Shark 3 and Black Shark 3 Pro. The first offered affordable flagship gaming (and being one of the first SD865 phones out). The later offered a gigantic 7.1 inch AMOLED display with physical pop up shoulder triggers, giving a truly gaming focussed phone. So it is a little disappointing to … Read more

Xiaomi finally confirms Mi 11 Pro, Mi 11 Ultra & Lite launching 29th of March but China only, for now

I had hoped Xiaomi would have launched the Mi 11 Pro and Mi 11 Ultra during their Global launch back in February with a plan to possibly buy one if the price was right. Not only didn’t they launch the new phones, but the UK launch was delayed and will only be available to buy … Read more

Xiaomi POCO F3 vs POCO X3 Pro Compared – F3 aka Redmi K40 star of the show at £329 while X3 Pro is a bargain at £199

Today, Xiaomi affordable sub-brand launched their latest two phones, the POCO F3 and POCO X3 Pro.

Xiaomi likes to capitalise POCO, but I can't cope with writing that in an entire article, so from now on, it is Poco.

Xiaomi Poco F3 vs Xiaomi Redmi K40

Poco F3

First up, and the stand out option from the two new devices is the, however, it has technically already been launched under the name Redmi K40.

The Redmi K40 was launched in February with an official release on the 4th of March. The base model launched for CNY 1999 or £221 (UK price is higher).

Poco F3 vs Poco X3 Pro – Kinda the same but not

Poco X3 Pro

The naming convention of these phones seems a little off because they feel like they should be under the same model series with one being Pro and the other standard.

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Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 vs Snapdragon 860/855+, SD888 & SD865+ Specification Compared – Qualcomm re-release old chipsets for new affordable phones

Several phones are tipped to feature two new Qualcomm 800 series chipsets. Two of them should be launching very soon.

Qualcomm is effectively reusing old tech to allow companies to launch high-performance phones at a low price. It may seem like a strange decision, effectively diluting their flagship 800 series brand with old tech, but it is likely Qualcomm are doing this due to the increased competition they will face from MediaTek this year.

MediaTek have the Dimensity 1200 and Dimensity 1100 which should be used on phones launching in the UK soon.

So how do these two chipsets compare with each other, and what similarities do they have with their older siblings?

Qualcomm Snapdragon 855+/860 Mobile Platform

Looking at the Snapdragon 860 first, Qualcomm has put no effort in and are just re-releasing the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855+ under a new name. Even the product page states Qualcomm Snapdragon 855+/860 Mobile Platform.

So clearly, this is just a marketing gimmick. Last year, Realme launched the Realme X3 SuperZoom using the SD855+ and I thought it was a great idea to reuse older flagships for new affordable offerings.

Obviously, Qualcomm feels like advertising a new phone with a 2-year-old chipset is not as marketable as rebranding it as something new.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 vs Snapdragon 865+

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Xiaomi Mi 11 UK Price from £749 but with £100 off via Amazon – RRP £100 more expensive vs Europe

Better late than never, the Xiaomi Mi 11 finally gets a UK launch. UK pricing and deals The Mi 11 will be available in 128GB and 256GB and retail for £749 and £799, respectively. However, if you order through Amazon, you will receive £100 off the official retail price. Xiaomi is not clear how long … Read more

Realme 8 Pro Preview – Realme’s latest budget camera phone competes with the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro with its massive 108MP camera

My full review of the Realme 8 Pro is now live.

The Realme 7 Pro was one of my favourite phones of last year. Launching at £279 on Amazon, it offered a fantastic balance of affordability and performance. While it may have been outclassed in terms of chipset performance, what it offered was a beautiful AMOLED display and a 64MP Sony IMX682, which provided significantly superior performance than the 64MP Samsung sensors found on other Realme phones.

I know some people don’t mind LCD displays or even prefer them, but I am a big fan of AMOLED. In particular, it offers much better visibility outdoors. This may seem like a minor detail, but if I have a phone with a good camera, it is highly likely I will want to use it outdoors on sunny days.

Realme 8 Pro launch event will be on the 24th of March at 2 PM UK time

Realme will be launching its successor on the 24th of March at 2 PM UK time. I don’t have links yet, but it will be via the usual channels on YouTube, Twitter and Facebook.

They have kindly sent me the Realme 8 Pro to review, which will go live at the end of the launch event, but for now, I am permitted to show a few titbits about the phone.  

Realme 8 Pro Preview

I did a quick YouTube video. It is my first ever, so a bit crap. Things will improve with time.

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OnePlus 9 Pro vs Oppo Find X3 Pro – How does the Sony IMX 789 compare to IMX 766?

[Update] The OnePlus 9 Pro has launched for £829 and the camera does have a different spec to the IMX 766 using a larger sensor.

It has already been revealed the new OnePlus 9 Pro will feature cameras co-developed with Hasselblad, and the OnePlus CEO Pete Lau has now revealed more specifics about the camera.

Via Twitter, he posted two shots, one from the main lens the other from the ultra-wide, claiming they are two equally powerful cameras with countless possibilities.

Lau has also officially announced the 50MP Sony IMX789 sensor that will be exclusive for the company then the ultra-wide will be the 50MP Sony IMX766 sensor which is also used on the Oppo Find X3 Pro for both of its sensors.

Normally, companies like Sony, list the details of their technologies, for example, it is quite easy to find the specifics of the Samsung 108MP sensors, but the same isn’t true here.

OnePlus 9 Pro 5G (UK) SIM-Free Smartphone with Hasselblad...
  • 48MP Primary, 50MP Ultra-Wide, Telephoto and...
  • Perfection in Motion - 8K Video recording + 4K...
  • Fluid Display 2.0 - 6.7" Smart 120Hz AMOLED...
  • A day's power in 15 minutes - 4500 mAh Battery,...

Sony IMX 766 Specification

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OPPO Find X3 Pro launched with two 50MP cameras & SD888, making it the best alternative to the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra

The OPPO Find X3 Pro 5G was always going to be one of the best (and most expensive) phones of the year.

It has now been officially announced with a specification as impressive as you might expect.

While it was no surprise that this would use the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888, this makes it the first premium flagship to launch in the UK with it. From my testing of the Xiaomi MI 11 and Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra, the SD888 is still the best chipset to have.

Impressive Dual 50MP Sony IMX 766 sensors

This is the first phone to use the new Sony IMX 766 sensor, and it doubles up on this by offering the same sensor for both the main wide lens and ultra-wide lens. I prefer ultra wide shooting when travelling so it is great to see this lens get some love.

The sensor may not sound as impressive as the 108 MP Samsung lens but the sensor itself is physically larger at 1/1.56″ giving a  1.0µm pizel size vs 0.8µm of the Samsung/Xiaomi. Oddly the sensor is smaller than the 48 MP 1/1.43″ Sony sensor used on the X2 Pro and OnePlus 8 Pro. However, I assume other things will allow it ot offer superior performance.

Where the phone stumbles is the other cameras. The telephoto zoom lens is a standard 13MP 5x zoom affair, which is good but unremarkable, a far cry from the dual zoom lenses we saw with the S21 Ultra or the Huawei P40 Pro+.

Then, bizarrely, OPPO has added a new 3MP microlens. I have seen some of the microscope zoom shots carried out by reviewers, and to be fair, it is impressive, but how useful is it really?

Display

The display follows both Xiaomi and Samsung offering an AMOLED display running at 3216 x 1440 (QHD+) with 120Hz refresh rate. At 6.7-inches, it is a touch smaller than the other brands.

Battery

The battery is good, but nothing groundbreaking 4500 mAh with a 65W fast charge and 30W wireless. I had hoped to see the 125W charging Oppo announced in the middle of last year. It seems odd that the flagship device for 2021 wouldn’t feature this.

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Qualcomm Snapdragon 775/775G vs Snapdragon 765G Specifications Compared

Announced around 15 months ago, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G is starting to show its age. The Arm Cortex A76 cores are now two generations behind the Cortex A78 and X1 found on the latest flagship Qualcomm Snapdragon 888. Then the lower-priced Snapdragon 750G offers superior performance in many benchmarks thanks to its use of the … Read more

Realme GT launched in China – Is the Realme GT Pro held back for the global launch? Or maybe, so they don’t steal the thunder from the Find X3 Pro with its 125W charging? [Formerly Realme Race Pro]

Normally in the world of phones launches, a brand will hype up a product with small reveals, while various sites, YouTubers and social media users leak specs they somehow acquire. By the time of launch, we often know everything about a phone. At the end of January, Realme sent out a press release confirming Q1 … Read more

OnePlus 9 vs Xiaomi Mi 11 vs Samsung Galaxy S21 Compared – What to expect when the OnePlus 9 launches on the 8th of March

It has been a little quiet in the world of mobile launches recently, but March looks set to change that. The Realme GT 5G should launch today, and we already have the basic specification confirmed by Realme. Disappointingly this appears to be a Chinese launch event only, rather than global, but it should land on … Read more

Realme 8 Pro uses the Samsung 108MP ISOCELL HM2, a slightly lower specced sensor vs HM1 used on the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra or HMX on the Xiaomi Mi 11

We already knew the up and coming photography focussed flagship Realme 8 Pro would feature a 108MP camera sensor. This inevitably had to be a Samsung sensor, however, they have a growing number of these sensors, and Realme has officially announced that the Realme 8 Pro will use the Samsung 108MP HM2. Currently, Samsung now … Read more

Huawei AppGallery has 83% increase in app distribution and a 33% growth in monthly active users – How much growth in the UK, though?

Huawei regularly makes announcements that seem to defy predictions of their demise following regulations being imposed on them by the US. In the latest press announcement, Huawei state some impressive numbers. There has been an 83% increase in app distribution and a 33% growth in monthly active users marks a year of rapid growth for … Read more

Realme GT 5G with Snapdragon 888, 12GB RAM, 160Hz OLED display, and 125W charging to be launched on 4th March

We have only had two flagship phone launches this year, the Samsung Galaxy S21 series and the Xiaomi Mi 11. Realme will now be joining them with the Realme GT, formerly the Realme Race Pro, on 4th March. Their recent press release isn’t 100% clear what is and what is not being launched. They are … Read more

Huawei Mate X2 Announced – What should be a Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 killer is still hobbled by a lack of Google and unknown global availability

Huawei and Samsung announced their first flagship foldables around the same time. Both companies adopted a different approach, with Samsung using an inward-facing display and Huawei an outwards. Most people preferred the Huawei design, thanks to the large more usable display that would then provide a massive outer display. But this design also raised concerns … Read more