iQoo has finally brought its Neo series to India with the launch of the Neo 6. Interestingly, this smartphone has already been launched in China as the iQoo Neo 6 SE. It seems as though iQoo has targeted this smartphone at gamers, but the specifications should also appeal to those looking for good all-round performance. The iQoo Neo 6 features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 SoC with liquid cooling, a 120Hz AMOLED display, a 4,700mAh battery, and 80W fast charging.
The iQoo Neo 6 is positioned in the sub-Rs. 30,000 price range which pits it against the Xiaomi MI 11X, OnePlus Nord 2, and the Motorola Edge 30. Here are my first impressions of it.
The iQoo Neo 6 is priced starting at Rs. 29,999 in India for the base variant which has 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. The other variant has 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage and is priced at Rs. 33,999. iQoo offers the Neo 6 in two colours, Cyber Rage and Dark Nova.
This is the first smartphone in the Neo series to launch in India, and that gives the company an opportunity to set the tone for what buyers should expect from future models. As I stated right at the start, the iQoo Neo 6 is a rebranded iQoo Neo 6 SE and this might have been a conscious decision by the company to keep the starting price of the Neo series relatively low in India in order to cater to a wider audience.
The Dark Nova colour option of the iQoo Neo 6 has a gradient finish
iQoo is leaning heavily towards performance with the Neo 6 and it certainly packs some premium hardware. Powering the iQoo Neo 6 is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 SoC which is clocked at 3.2GHz. This SoC is quite capable and is also seen in the similarly priced Xiaomi Mi 11X. Interestingly, the Neo 6 variant sold in China features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 SoC.
The body of the iQoo Neo 6 is primarily made out of plastic and weighs 190g. It isn't too bulky, and the curved sides make it relatively easy to hold. This phone sports a 6.62-inch full-HD+ AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate and a hole at the top for the 16-megapixel selfie camera. The display has fairly thin bezels but a slightly thicker chin. It supports HDR10+ playback, and has a peak brightness of 1,300 nits. You also get an in-display fingerprint scanner. The panel used for the iQoo Neo 6 has a 360Hz touch sampling rate, but can ramp up to 1,200Hz in select games such as Call of Duty: Mobile.
iQoo has added an Infrared emitter on the Neo 6
iQoo has put an infrared (IR) emitter on top top of the Neo 6, alongside the secondary microphone. There's a SIM tray on the bottom along with the primary mic, speaker, and the USB Type-C port. The sides of the frame are slim the power and the volume buttons are on the right. The iQoo Neo 6 has a triple camera setup at the back consisting of a 64-megapixel primary camera with optical stabilisation (OIS), an 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera, and a 2-megapixel macro camera. The module has a two-step design and features a Neo logo on it. My Dark Nova unit had a gradient pattern on the back which shifted colour depending on the angle I viewed it at.
The iQoo Neo 6 packs a 4,700mAh battery and supports 80W fast charging. iQoo bundles the required charger in the box. This phone supports Bluetooth 5.2, dual-band Wi-Fi, four 5G bands, and 4G VoLTE. You get two nano-SIM slots, but storage isn't expandable. If you tend to store a lot of your data locally, I would recommend taking a look at the higher storage variant.
The triple camera module has a Neo logo on it
In terms of software, the iQoo Neo 6 runs Funtouch OS 12 on top of Android 12. iQoo has committed to delivering two years of Android OS updates and three years of security updates, which is a welcome move. My unit was running the April 2022 Android security patch. The UI does have a lot of bloatware preinstalled, but you should be able to remove most of it in order to reclaim storage. The UI is identical to what you'll see on other recent Vivo smartphones and is easy to use.
The iQoo Neo 6 sets the tone for future smartphones in the Neo lineup. It faces pretty stiff competition but has the potential to be able to hold its own. This smartphone should appeal to gamers and power users but we'll know for sure once I put it through our tests, so stay tuned for the full review.