iQoo Neo 6 Review: Mighty Performance at a Great Price

iQoo has brought its Neo series to India with the launch of the Neo 6 in the super-competitive sub-Rs. 30,000 price segment. To give the phone a fighting chance, iQoo has equipped it with powerful hardware such as Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 SoC, and has enhanced its features by giving it 80W fast charging and a 120Hz AMOLED screen. In particular, the charging speed is much higher than what you generally get in this price range. But does this make the iQoo Neo 6 invincible? My first impression of this phone has been quite positive and now it’s time to see if it’s actually as good as it looks.

iQoo Neo 6 price in India

iQoo Neo 6 is priced at Rs. 29,999 for the basic variant which comes with 8 GB RAM and 128 GB storage space. The higher variant with 12 GB RAM and 256 GB storage space, which is the one I have, is priced at Rs. 33,999. iQoo Neo 6 is offered in two colors, Dark Nova and Cyber ​​Rage.

iQoo Neo 6 design

iQoo Neo 6 is a rebranded iQoo Neo 6 SE, which was launched in China earlier this year. Neo 6 is a large smartphone and weighs 190g. It has a 6.62-inch AMOLED screen with a hole in the top for the selfie camera. It has quite thin frames all around. The frame of the phone is made of plastic and is flat at the top and bottom.

iQoo has added an IR (infrared) emitter on the Neo 6, which sits on top next to the secondary microphone. The bottom of the frame has the USB Type-C port, the speaker and the SIM tray slot. The back panel is also made of plastic and has curved sides, which makes the phone comfortable to hold. The right side of the frame is narrow and has sleek power and volume buttons.

iqoo neo 6 back panel gadgets360 iQoo Neo 6 review

This dark Nova color on the iQoo Neo 6 looks elegant

The Dark Nova clothing on the iQoo Neo 6 looks classic in my opinion. It has a gradient finish with mixed shades of dark blue and light blue-green. This latter shade shines through when light hits it at certain angles. If you prefer something more flashy, the Cyber ​​Rage color might be to your liking. The camera module of the iQoo Neo 6 will also catch your attention. It has a two-step design with a prominent Neo branding on.

iQoo ships the Neo 6 with a transparent case in the box. The back of the phone has a matte finish, so fingerprints are not really an issue, but the cover should provide some extra protection. You also get a USB Type-C to 3.5mm audio adapter, which is a nice addition.

iQoo Neo 6 specifications and software

iQoo Neo 6 is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 SoC, which is one of the most powerful SoCs in this price range. The Mi 11X (review), which competes directly with this phone, is also powered by the same SoC. iQoo says it has used a liquid cooling system to keep the SoC cool.

Neo 6 has a full HD + E4 AMOLED screen with a 120Hz refresh rate. It has a 360Hz touch sampling rate that can boost up to 1,200Hz in a few games. The panel is also HDR10 + certified and has a brightness of 800 nits. iQoo has also added stereo speakers to the Neo 6, but it misses an IP rating.

The phone supports Bluetooth 5.2, dual-band Wi-Fi, four 5G bands, dual-4G VoLTE and five satellite navigation systems. There is no NFC. The iQoo Neo 6 packs a 4,700mAh battery and supports up to 80W fast charging. iQoo also comes with a compatible charger in the box.

iqoo neo 6 bloatware gadgets360 iQoo Neo 6 review

iQoo Neo 6 has quite a few bloatware apps pre-installed

On the software side, the iQoo Neo 6 Funtouch OS 12 runs on top of Android 12. iQoo promises two years of Android OS updates and three years of security updates. The user interface is almost identical to the Vivo X80 that I recently reviewed as both use Funtouch OS 12. Unfortunately, I faced the same issue with bloatware as I did on the Vivo X80 as there is simply too much of it. You can uninstall most of these apps to regain some storage space. On the iQoo Neo 6, I found that the browser app pushed unwanted notifications during the day, which became annoying very quickly.

iQoo Neo 6 performance and battery life

iQoo Neo 6 uses a powerful SoC and delivers consistent performance with no signs of slowing down. I had the 12 GB variant, which comfortably allowed me to multitask without having to kill any open apps in the background. I could switch between different apps and games and I never noticed that the phone had to reload an app. iQoo also has an expanded RAM feature that allowed me to allocate 4GB of system storage space as virtual RAM.

Watching videos on the iQoo Neo 6 felt exciting on the crisp AMOLED screen. The stereo speakers also added to the viewing experience. The higher refresh rate made scrolling in apps and menus much smoother. iQoo has set the refresh rate to the Smart Switch by default, and with this setting, the Neo 6 ran at 120Hz most of the time.

iqoo neo 6 camera gadgets360 iQoo Neo 6 review

The triple camera setup on the iQoo Neo 6 sits in a large camera module on the back

The iQoo Neo 6 has an on-screen fingerprint scanner that was reliable and never failed to unlock the device when I tried. I had also set up face recognition, which worked just as well. The phone performed well in benchmarks. It managed 729,331 points in AnTuTu, which was higher than OnePlus Nord 2 (review). In Geekbench 5, Neo scored 6,983 and 3,074 points in single-core and multi-core tests. In GFXBench’s graphics benchmark, the iQoo Neo 6 managed 50 fps in the Car Chase test. Overall, the results were on the higher side in this segment, so those looking for good performance should be satisfied.

I played Call of Duty: Mobile on the iQoo Neo 6, which by default was set to ‘Very High’ graphics, while the frame rate was set to ‘High’ by default. I played the game for about 20 minutes, which resulted in a consumption of five percent of the battery level. The phone was not hot to the touch, which could be the result of the liquid cooling system doing its job.

I was happy with the battery performance of the iQoo Neo 6 as the phone easily held for more than a day and a half without any issues. In our HD video loop test, the phone ran for 21 hours, 17 minutes, which was impressive. The included 80W charger managed to charge the phone up to 83 percent in 30 minutes and was fully charged in under 50 minutes.

iQoo Neo 6 cameras

iQoo Neo 6 has a triple camera setup consisting of a 64-megapixel primary with OIS, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide with a 116-degree field of view and a 2-megapixel macro. For selfies, it has a 16 megapixel camera. The camera app is pretty easy to use and visually resembles the app on the Vivo X80, minus the Zeiss additions. The main camera collects images to 16 megapixels by default, but you can shoot at full resolution if needed.

Daylight landscape images from the primary camera were detailed, and objects at a distance were recognizable. Text about distant buildings was also legible. The phone has an AI scene optimization option, which occasionally increases the contrast of the output. The ultra-wide-angle camera offers a wider field of view and has a similar color profile to the primary camera. However, the exit was skewed along the edges of the frame.

iQoo Neo 6 primary camera (top) and ultra-wide-angle (bottom) camera samples (tap to view full size)

Close-ups looked sharp, and the iQoo Neo 6 managed to capture small details quite well. It also managed a soft, natural bokeh between the subject and the background. Footage taken in portrait mode had good edge recognition. The macro camera handled good extreme close-ups of subjects. However, the quality was limited by the resolution of the sensor.

iQoo Neo 6 close-up (top) and macro (bottom) camera previews (tap to view full size)

iQoo Neo 6 was quick to measure the scene in low light and automatically kept the shutter open for a long time. This resulted in a rather detailed picture. The phone also made me switch to night mode in very dark scenarios, which looked brighter and produced better details in the shadows.

iQoo Neo 6 camera samples with low light (top) and night mode (bottom) (tap to view full size)

Selfies taken with the iQoo Neo 6 were taken with the full resolution of the sensor. The app uses a beautification filter by default, but this can be adjusted or even disabled if necessary. Photos in daylight had accurate skin tones. In low light, the phone automatically activated the turn signal, which helped to get a better output. Selfies taken in portrait mode had good edge recognition, and I was able to fine-tune the level of background blur before taking the picture.

iQoo Neo 6 portrait selfies in daylight and low light (tap to view full size)

Video recording topped with 4K 60fps for the primary rear camera, as well as the selfie camera, which is not something we see so often. Video recordings were well stabilized in daylight, but low light recordings had visible glitter in the output as they went. The camera app also has a dual-video mode that allowed me to shoot with the primary and selfie camera at the same time.

Dom

If you want to buy a smartphone with a budget of around Rs. 30,000, the iQoo Neo 6 should definitely be high on your list. It has a very good performance that you would expect from an advanced Qualcomm SoC, along with excellent battery life and extremely fast charging. The promise of guaranteed Android OS and security updates makes the iQoo Neo 6 future-proof to some degree. In my opinion, the basic variant of the iQoo Neo 6 is the one to get as it provides better value than the 12GB variant.

I have no major complaints about the iQoo Neo 6 other than the pre-installed bloatware which is definitely a concern. Those looking for good video recording performance should note that iQoo Neo 6 does not perform well when recording videos in low light.

If you value clean software, then the newly launched Motorola Edge 30 (review) is something you should consider. But if you do not want to compromise on performance, then the Mi 11X (Review) and OnePlus Nord 2 (Review) are very good alternatives to look at in the same price range.


William

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