Poco F2 / Pocophone F2: Snapdragon 855, popup selfie camera, in-display fingerprint scanner and other things we know so far

NOTICE: We’ve created an archive of all major developments related to the Pocophone F1 smartphone. We are continuously updating that page with latest Poco F1 news so that you don’t need to search for information related to the device on daily basis. Head here to access that page.

New updates are being added at the bottom of this story…….

Releasing a budget flagship device is the prime example of an unsolvable paradox. The vendor has to cut some corners in order to make the phone pocket friendly, while retaining the flagship grade functionalities as well as the appeals to the consumers.

Pretty tough job, eh?

Asian OEMs, such as Asus, ZTE, Huawei/Honor or Xiaomi tried their luck in this tough game in past. The Indian smartphone market is one of the most lucrative zone for smartphone makers, thus Xiaomi’s Mi or ZTE’s Nubia range of budget flagships did appear in India.

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Mi 5 was last Mi series flagship officially released in India

Well, they did not survey the nature of the market properly. Although Xiaomi was doing good with their Redmi series, the Mi 5 did not meet the expectations. Other OEMs faced similar downfall against dominant brands such as OnePlus.

However, with the introduction of Poco F1, Xiaomi corrected most of their prior mistakes and filled the void. Pocophone, an independent subsidiary of Xiaomi, targeted the youths as well as the smartphone fanatic community.

Bang for the bucks configuration, frequent software updates, rich user community, third party development support – they cracked the code of success.

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Pocophone F1

Although Pocophone operates as an independent entity, they do share the R&D department with Xiaomi. That’s how it is theoretically possible to speculate the development of the successor to the Poco F1 from the development status of Xiaomi devices.

In one of our previous articles, we highlighted some of the popular fan-made theories about Pocophone F2. The hype around the next Poco phone is skyrocketing in India, which is the primary target market for the brand.

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Source

Interestingly, the Chinese OEM also separated the Redmi sub-brand from their portfolio and converted it into a discrete brand itself. While the initial Redmi phones were following the previous design patterns, rumors about a flagship grade Redmi started to surface.

Xiaomi’s product director Wang Teng hinted that the OEM was evaluating the idea of including a motorized selfie camera in their future phones. Since then, we have seen a number of leaks originated from Chinese social media Weibo.

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Source

Judging the credibility of these leaks is a complicated task. Meanwhile, Franesco Tescari aka XDA member franztesca found out references of  popup camera in an unknown Xiaomi phone powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 SoC.

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Franesco is known for digging out secret Xiaomi stuffs. He single-handedly reverse engineered a number of Xiaomi related tools, such as the proprietary bootloader unlock tool.

Besides ‘davinci’, Franesco also spotted the existence of yet another Snapdragon 855 powered device with the codename ‘raphael’. The guys over XDA Developers got their hands on early firmware builds, which also included India specific firmware for both phones.

While no camera related info could be extracted, they confirmed (from the codebase references) that these two phones should feature in-display optical fingerprint scanners.

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Source

Simultaneously, new leaks about the yet unknown Redmi SD855 phone were emerging on social media – like the above. Some of the configurations looks feasible enough to be included in the upcoming Poco F2, but it’s too soon to predict anything concrete.

According to Yan Liu, Country Manager at Xiaomi France, the OEM is still assessing the viability of the next Poco phone.

The Pocophone F1 was an attempt last year to directly touch the techies. We also look at whether it is relevant to continue with this brand this year. Nothing is decided yet.

Perhaps the most significant development came into light with the release of Avengers: Endgame. The official Weibo account of Redmi shared an Endgame themed video snippet, where they clearly shown an allusion of an upcoming Redmi branded ‘flagship’ phone with popup front camera.

redmi_flagship_avengers_endgame_weibo

In terms of flagship launching, Xiaomi skipped Mi MIX series (with the exception of Mi MIX 2) as well as the mainstream Mi series from launching in India. To continue the legacy of the Poco F1, it’s more likely that at least one of the SD855 powered device would be launched as Poco F2.

Will the Redmi branded flagship also heading to India? Are we going to see two variants of Pocophone F2 (Lite and Pro)? Comment below.

Update (May 15)

Xiaomi officials have started to tease an upcoming Snapdragon 855 powered phone as the “Flagship Killer 2.0”. Are we looking at the Poco F2?

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Kingshuk De

I came from a mixed background of Statistics and Computer Science. My research domains included embedded computer systems, mobile computing and delay tolerant networks in post-disaster scenarios. Apart from tinkering with gadgets or building hackintosh, I like to hop on various subreddits and forums like MyDigitalLife and XDA.