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POCO F1 vs. OnePlus 6: Which should you buy?

POCO F1

POCO F1

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There isn't a phone in the market today that can hold up to the POCO F1 when it comes to value. By offering a Snapdragon 845-powered phone for just $300, POCO has made every player in the smartphone industry stand up and take notice.

POCO F1

Our pick

Incredible value
Flagship-level performance
Outstanding battery life
Notched display
No NFC
Limited availability

OnePlus 6

OnePlus 6

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The OnePlus 6 continues to be a great choice in the $500 segment, but it does end up looking expensive next to the POCO F1. OnePlus has steadily hiked the price of its phones over the last four years, and while the $529 figure is still around half what you pay for a Note 9, there are plenty of phones in this segment that offer a similar package.

When we're talking about phones in this segment, we primarily focus on value. And right now, no device does that better than the POCO F1. The F1 fundamentally changes how we view phones in this category, and sets a new standard for affordable flagships.

POCO F1 redefines value in this category

In a lot of ways, the POCO F1 is like the OnePlus One. When OnePlus launched its first phone back in 2014, it took the industry by storm thanks to a combination of robust hardware and low price.

POCO is following the same formula with the F1. The phone has a basic polycarbonate chassis and a decent display, but that sets it apart is the fact that it costs just $300 and is powered by the Snapdragon 845 and has LPDDR4X RAM and UFS 2.1 storage as standard.

POCO F1OnePlus 6
Operating systemAndroid 8.1 Oreo
MIUI for POCO
Android 8.1 Oreo
OxygenOS 5.1.11
Display6.18-inch IPS LCD, 2248x1080 (19:9)
Gorilla Glass 3
6-inch Optic AMOLED, 2160x1080 (18:9)
Gorilla Glass 5
ChipsetOcta-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
4x2.80GHz Kryo 385 + 4x1.70 Kryo 385
Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
4x2.80GHz Kryo 385 + 4x1.70 Kryo 385
GPUAdreno 630Adreno 630
RAM6GB/8GB LPDDR4X6/8GB LPDDR4X
Storage64GB/128GB/256GB (UFS 2.1)64GB/128GB/256GB (UFS 2.1)
Rear camera 112MP, 1.4μm, f/1.9
Dual PDAF
16MP, 1.22μm, f/1.7
OIS, EIS
Dual LED flash
4K@60FPS, 720p@480FPS
Rear camera 25MP, 1.12μm, f/2.020MP, 1.0μm, ƒ/1.7
Front camera20MP, 0.9μm, f/2.016MP, 1.0μm, ƒ/2.0
Battery4000mAh3300mAh
ChargingUSB-C
Quick Charge 3.0
USB-C
Dash Charge (5V 4A)
Water resistanceNoSplash resistant (no IP rating)
SecurityFingerprint sensor
Face unlock
Fingerprint sensor
Face unlock
Dimensions155.5 x 75.3 x 8.8mm
180g
155.7 x 75.4 x 7.8mm
177g
VariantsBlack, Blue, Red, KevlarMirror Black, Midnight Black, Silk White, Amber Red

The hardware on offer has allowed POCO to stand out in an increasingly crowded market, and take the fight to established players like OnePlus. The POCO F1 is by no means as refined as the OnePlus 6, nor does it have as many features. The lack of NFC in particular makes the F1 a dealbreaker in many Western markets, but there's no arguing that it offers the best value in the handset space today.

The POCO F1 isn't as refined as the OnePlus 6, but it doesn't need to be.

Where the F1 truly excels is at battery life. With a 4000mAh battery under the hood, the phone delivers two days' worth of usage consistently. Xiaomi has led the way in this category for some time now, and the F1 continues that tradition. If you're in the market for a flagship that offers two-day battery life, look no further.

Nothing comes close at $300

By undercutting the OnePlus 6 by over $200, POCO has managed to offer a phone that breaks new ground when it comes to value. The phone will be making its debut in the UK and other Western markets over the course of 2018, but it will not be heading to the U.S. That's a shame, because the F1 is the best example yet that you don't need to shell out over $300 to get a flagship-tier phone.

Harish Jonnalagadda is a Senior Editor overseeing Asia at Android Central. He leads the site's coverage of Chinese phone brands, contributing to reviews, features, and buying guides. He also writes about storage servers, audio products, and the semiconductor industry. Contact him on Twitter at @chunkynerd.