Five Chinese alternatives to the iPhone 12


Mobiles on the 71st anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China in Tiannamen Square Credit: El País

The introduction of the new generation of iPhone each year marks a turning point in the mobile phone market. The event of the Californian company is followed around the world with anticipation. And also with mixed feelings among fanboys and those who will criticize that the family iPhone 12 It comes with specifications that other Android phones have released a long time ago.

Meanwhile, Chinese brands are gaining positions. Their value for money makes them more attractive in a time of economic crisis like the current one, and they also incorporate interesting technological innovations. In fact, the Asian giant’s brands have been pioneers in the development of such common elements -but at first neglected by Apple- such as fast charging -Vivo has already shown a 120W-, telescopic lenses -invented by Huawei with a X5 optical zoom-, or the fingerprint readers under the screen -introduced with the Vivo X20 UD-, especially useful in times of the mandatory mask.

What’s more, even decisions like eliminating the headphone jack, which have earned Apple so much criticism, were made before by Chinese companies -OPPO, in that case-, and technologies such as the folding screen that Samsung has popularized were also released earlier in the Asian giant -in that case with the unknown Royole- and they have gone there further with the Xiaomi prototype that bends in two different places. Now, ZTE has moved into the future with the first hidden camera behind the screen, which seems the standard for 2021.


A Realme X50 Pro Credit: Zigor Aldama

For now, THE COUNTRY has chosen five terminals that offer superb performance, some features that Apple still does not offer, and a price more content than that of the bitten apple. All of them have 5G connectivity and, yes, unlike what the Cupertino brand is going to do, they include the charger in the box.

Realme X50 Pro 5G

The little sister of conglomerate BBK – which includes OnePlus, OPPO, and Vivo – has entered the market like an elephant in a bazaar. In just a few months, Realme has climbed into the group of the five best-selling manufacturers in Spain with an aggressive pricing policy and has been able to put rivals like Xiaomi on the ropes using the same weapons. He X50 Pro 5G, which sells for 600 eurosis a good example of the brand’s strategy: a bland, no-frills design but plenty of power and decent cameras.

The X50 Pro 5G mounts the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 chip -standard of the high-end in 2020-, accompanies it with up to 12 GB of RAM and 256 GB of internal storage, and offers a wide range of extras: the magnificent fast charge of de 65W brings the 4200 mAh to 100%. of its battery in less than 40 minutes, the double selfie camera has a standard lens for individual portraits and a wide angle for group portraits, the screen with a 90Hz refresh rate. makes navigation more fluid, and a steam cooling system makes the most of the device. With mobiles like this, it is not surprising that Realme has become the fastest growing brand in 2020.


An Oppo Find X2 Neo

An Oppo Find X2 Neo Credit: Zigor Aldama

OPPO Find X2 Neo

OPPO has historically been one of the most innovative Chinese brands. It introduced the rotating camera in September 2013, did the same with the motorized camera five years later with the groundbreaking Find X, and has pioneered the adoption of 65W fast charging. However, its flagships have also attracted attention for having exceeded the thousand-euro mark, previously exclusive to non-Chinese brands. The new Find X2 family surpasses it again with the terminal that bears the surname Pro, but offers a very interesting younger brother for 700 euros.

Contrary to the Realme X50 Pro 5G, the Find X2 Neo opts to take care of the design and reduce the power, since it replaces the Snapdragon 865 with a more modest 765G that, except in the case of fans of video games or video editing, is more than enough. Theirs is a slim body and especially light -171 grams- for a terminal with a 6.5-inch screen that, in addition, has the always elegant lateral curvature. On the graphics level, it adopts a trio of aces: a standard lens with a 48-megapixel sensor and an optical stabilizer, a decent 8-megapixel wide-angle, and a two-power telephoto lens that stretches to 20 digitally. These three cameras are accompanied by a monochrome fill.


OnePlus 8T

OnePlus 8T Credit: Zigor Aldama

OnePlus 8 Pro (y 8T)

Although it has been increasing in price to flirt with the psychological threshold of a thousand euros, OnePlus continues to be a winning horse. And possibly manufactures the most complete terminals in China. The OnePlus 8 Pro has been on the market for half a year now, but it is still a great contender: the most powerful processor adds extras such as 30W wireless charging, water resistance, QHD + curved screen with 120 Hz refresh, and WiFi 6. For To top it off, OnePlus has improved the quad camera and offers excellent photo and video results. Thus, all this provides one of the most fluid experiences on the market.

But, with a starting price of 909 euros, it does not escape anyone that the OnePlus flagship is no longer a bargain when compared to the iPhone. That is why it launched the mid-range Nord a few months ago, but perhaps its most interesting terminal is the OnePlus 8T, presented on Wednesday. It includes the same refresh rate as the OnePlus 8 Pro and even faster charging. OnePlus explains that the 65W will fill its 4500 mAh battery in just 39 minutes, with a price of 599 euros for the version with 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB of storage, and everything indicates that the price will return the brand to the great value for money that made it famous.


Xiaomi 10T Pro

Xiaomi was made to beg. For several years it avoided the European market, where users were forced to acquire its terminals, highly valued in China, through parallel import pages of dubious legality. At that time, it provided such innovative devices as the Mix, the first that could appropriate the nickname all screen. Without a doubt, it has been one of the brands that have helped the most to eliminate the negative connotations of the label made in China in the smartphone sector. And, as its president, Lin Bin, stated in an interview with EL PAÍS seven years ago, it has succeeded in its objective of “democratizing technology.”

But it has more and more competitors and has lost charm in recent years, something that is reflected in its declining market share in China. Although prices remain attractive, the use of lower-quality components in sections with little advertising value has made the terminals in its gigantic catalog age slightly worse. However, the Beijing brand is a leader in key countries such as India, and the Mi 10 T Pro is a good example of why: it offers Qualcomm’s flagship processor from 599 euros, up to 8 GB of RAM, and, in this case, the hook of a triple rear camera in which the 108 megapixel sensor capable of recording at a maximum resolution of 8K at 30 frames per second stands out. Of course, its 218 grams of weight are noticeable, and the 33W load may beat that of Apple, but it falls short in front of its compatriots.


An Oppo Reno 4 Pro

An Oppo Reno 4 Pro Credit: Zigor Aldama

OPPO Reno 4 Pro 5G

It’s difficult to classify OPPO’s Reno family. Some of its members belong to the budget range, while others have flagship specifications. Differences from the Find range are difficult to determine, although the Shenzhen company claims they are mostly found on cameras. And, without a doubt, those of the Reno 4 Pro 5G they cope with ease in all circumstances. Unlike those looking for the easy marketing hook, it dispenses with the fourth camera and focuses on the three that really matter: the main one, with a bright lens, optical stabilizer, laser autofocus, and 48 megapixels; a wide angle that covers 120 degrees of vision and is capable of night video thanks to its 12 megapixels of 1.4µm size; and a two-magnification telephoto.

Where the cameras really stand out is in the video section, because the stabilization is among the best on the market and, added to the algorithm that creates HDR images, offers results that are increasingly close to those of professional cameras. Plus, the Reno 4 Pro 5G is as light as the Find X2 Neo and that makes freehand recording easy. However, the processor – again the Snapdragon 765G – falls a bit short and limps at times with 4K video. Considering that the price is already close to 800 euros, the Snapdragon 865 would have been a much rounder choice. Luckily, it makes up for it with a 65W load and stereo speakers that offer a sound above the average in its price range.

FURTHER

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