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Smartphones made by Vivo’s subsidiary iQOO are known for how good they look and how well they work. The company started this year with the same motto by launching the iQOO 11, which is India’s first smartphone with a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor. It also has a 144Hz 2K display, 16GB of LPDDR5x RAM, and UFS 4.0 storage. , among other things. So yes, this is arguably the most powerful Android phone in India right now, at least until new phones like OnePlus 11 and Xiaomi 13 come out. I have been using the Alpha version of the iQOO 11 for over a week and here’s my full review of iQOO’s latest flagship smartphone.
iQOO 11 review with key specs
The iQOO 11 comes in two different versions. The Legend version has BMW M-series branding, and the Alpha version, which is black, has a matte finish with some texture. The black iQOO 11 is made of glass, while the white one is made of synthetic leather. I’ve been testing the Alpha version, which has little branding and looks like a high-end phone from the back due to the large camera bump and 3D curved finish.
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Although the Alpha iQOO 11 does not show fingerprints, it is very slippery. Although I didn’t want to, I ended up using the phone with the case that came with it. Like other phones in this price range, the frame of the phone is made of aluminum. Also, keep in mind that this is a large phone that cannot be used with one hand. Most of the front of the iQOO 11 is taken up by the display, which is a flat panel with slim bezels on all four sides. Screen protectors are easy to put on a flat screen, but a curved screen would have made this phone feel even more luxurious. Overall, the iQOO 11 is a well-built, premium-looking smartphone with pretty much all the bells and whistles one would expect from a 2023 performance-focused flagship smartphone.
As I said before, the design and placement of the iQOO 11 would have been even better if it had a curved screen. The iQOO 11 has a screen made with the first generation of Corning Gorilla Glass Victus, like all modern iPhones. The company gives you a smooth screen protector with the phone, but I’ve been using it without it. As of now, there are no scratches to be seen on the screen. But I would definitely recommend that users put a 2D tempered screen protector on their phone to prevent scratches and other damage over time.
The iQOO 11 packs a massive 6.78-inch 10-bit AMOLED E6 display with 1440x3200p resolution, 144Hz refresh rate, and 1800 nits peak brightness. In terms of specs, this is the most advanced display on a smartphone right now. It’s also a great display for mobile gamers because it has features like 300Hz touch sampling rate and 1200Hz instant touch.
The display colors are bold and bright, and easy to see from the outside. Although the phone can play HDR videos on YouTube, it doesn’t support the Dolby Vision format, taking a few points off what would otherwise be a near-perfect smartphone display.
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Whether you’re gaming or watching movies on an OTT platform (1080p content can be streamed across all apps), the content just pops out, especially if you turn on the visual enhancement option in the display settings menu. Please note that the screen resolution is already set to FHD+ and the refresh rate is set to smart switch. From the settings menu, you can change the resolution to QHD and the refresh rate to 144Hz. Overall, the iQOO 11 has a top-of-the-line display that works well for gamers, consumers, content creators, and the general public.
Unlike other flagship phones that focus on performance, iQOO didn’t skimp on the cameras. The phone has a 50MP GN5 wide-angle lens with a 1.88 aperture, a 13MP telephoto lens with a 2.46 aperture, and an 8MP ultra-wide lens with a 2.2 aperture. The iQOO 11’s 50 MP main camera was the one that surprised me the most.
When it was daylight, photos taken with the main camera were clear, bright, and full of detail. What’s even more surprising is how well it worked in night mode. Images taken with the telephoto and ultra-wide angle, on the other hand, weren’t as sharp as images taken with the main camera.
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I also liked that there is no shutter lag and that the phone takes photos quickly, which makes it easy to take photos of things that are moving. With its wide-angle and telephoto lenses, this phone can also shoot up to 8K video at up to 30 frames per second. There’s also a 16MP front-facing camera that does a good job of taking pictures in most lighting situations. While the iQOO 11 may not be the best smartphone camera for this price range, it’s not bad either. With a telephoto lens, it gives you a lot more options.
This phone is all about performance, and the company calls it the world’s most powerful phone because it packs a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 SoC, 16GB of LPDDR5x RAM, and 256GB of UFS 4.0 storage. In our test, the device scored 1,24,0651 points in the AnTuTu test. Similarly, the iQOO 11 scored 1,472 points in the Geekbench 5 single-core CPU test and 4,720 points in the multi-core CPU test. According to these numbers, the iQOO 11 is the most powerful smartphone ever launched in India. We can expect phones like the OnePlus 11 and Samsung Galaxy S23 to perform similarly.
I also ran a CPU throttle test and the iQOO 11 was able to maintain 90% of its maximum performance for 15 minutes without getting too hot or slowing down. I played games like COD: Mobile for hours with high graphics quality and maximum frame rate. Even after playing for over an hour straight, I didn’t notice any frame drops. At the moment, there is no Android game that iQOO 11 cannot run, which makes it even better than Android phones that are just for gaming.
The iQOO 11 is likely to remain one of the best Android phones this year, both in terms of benchmarks and real-world usage. Features like faster LPDDR5x RAM, fast storage, and even a V2 chip for image processing help the device perform at its best when gaming and switching tasks.
iQOO 11 Specifications
- Body: 164.9 × 77.1 × 8.4mm, 205g; aluminium frame; glass back or vegan leather.
- Show: 6.78″ LTPO4 AMOLED, 1B colors, 144Hz, HDR10+, 1800 nits (peak), 1440x3200px resolution, 20:9 aspect ratio, 518ppi.
- Chipset: Qualcomm SM8550 Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 (4 nm): Octa-core (1 × 3.2 GHz Cortex-X3 and 2 × 2.8 GHz Cortex-A715 and 2 × 2.8 GHz Cortex-A710 and 3 × 2.0 GHz Cortex-A510); Adreno 740.
- Memory: 128GB 8GB RAM, 256GB 8GB RAM, 256GB 12GB RAM, 256GB 16GB RAM, 512GB 16GB RAM; UFS 3.1 – 128 GB, UFS 4.0 – 256/512 GB.
- OS/Software: Android 13, Funtouch 13 (International), Origin OS 3 (China).
- Rear camera: Wide (main): 50 MP, f/1.9, 23mm, 1/1.57″, 1.0µm, PDAF, OIS; Telephoto: 13 MP, f/2.5, 50mm, PDAF, 2x optical zoom; Ultra wide angle: 8 MP, f/2.2, 16mm.
- Frontal camera: 16MP, f/2.5, (wide angle).
- video capture: Rear camera: 8K@30fps, 4K@30/60fps, 1080p@30/60/120/240fps, EIS gyroscope; Front camera: 1080p@30fps, EIS gyroscope.
- Battery: 5000mAh; 120W wired, PD3.0.
- Several: Fingerprint reader (under the screen, optical); NFC; infrared port; stereo speakers.
Information source: gsmarena.com
The iQOO 11 comes with the most up-to-date Android 13 OS and FunTouch 13 OS, each of which has its own pros and cons. Although the software works well and doesn’t lag, I didn’t like that it came with a lot of third-party apps. Some of them are easy to remove, but others like Browser, V-Store, iManager, and EasyShare cannot be removed or disabled.
Although bloatware may be fine on low-end and mid-range phones, having a lot of third-party apps on a high-end phone like an iQOO 11 is a bad idea. I have also missed some notifications from apps like WhatsApp and Instagram. In some apps, you need to manually turn on notifications.
Battery life and connectivity
The iQOO 11 has a large 5000 mAh battery and a 120W fast charger is included in the box that can charge the battery to 50% in just 8 minutes. I’m really concerned about battery life, but the 120W fast charging on this device made me feel better. If you don’t game and just use the iQOO 11 for social media, calls, and a bit of content consumption, the phone can easily last more than a day and give you 7 hours of screen time, even with the screen resolution set to 1440p at a 144Hz refresh rate. At the end of the day, gamers who play a lot may need to use the charger.
I used the iQOO 11 on the Airtel and Jio networks and was able to connect to the 5G network on both. It was easy for the device to connect to WiFi and Bluetooth devices. But the USB Type-C port can only send and receive data at USB 2.0 speeds, which is a bummer.
As a top model, the iQOO 11 is good at a few things. It has a large screen, high-quality design and a powerful processor. In the same way, it has a better-than-average camera, a large battery, and technology that allows it to charge quickly. As a high-end device that starts at Rs 59,999, it does not have features like water and dust resistance (IP rating) or wireless charging. But I don’t think this is a deal breaker. Overall, the iQOO 11 is a great smartphone for people who want Qualcomm’s latest and most powerful processor in a high-performance phone. Still, you might want to wait and see how other high-end devices perform this year before deciding to buy the iQoo.
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