The iQOO Z6 is the latest in iQOO’s Z-series and it represents much of what the Z-series has stood for – performance on a budget. While it isn’t the Snapdragon 778G-baring monster that the iQOO Z5 was, it has a lower starting price as well. But is that enough to make this a good purchase? Read our full review to find out.
iQOO Z6 specs: 6.58-inch IPS LCD screen with 120Hz refresh rate | Snapdragon 695 chip | 5000mAh battery + 18W charging | 50MP+2MP+2MP camera on the back, 16MP front camera | side-mounted fingerprint scanner |
iQOO Z6 What’s good?
The iQOO Z6 looks great thanks to the matte finish and angular edges. The colour scheme has been seen in many phones now, but there’s a feel to this polycarbonate back that somewhat tries to replicate the in-hand feel of holding a glass-sandwich phone. It isn’t the same, but it does feel better than most other plastic phones out there.
The front of the phone, which features a waterdrop notch and this does feel outdated, though this is not a deal-breaker. The phone has the 3.5mm headphone port along with a side-mounted fingerprint scanner that works quickly and accurately.
The iQOO Z6 comes with an IPS LCD screen. (Express Photo)
While there’s nothing extraordinary about this LCD FHD+ panel, it is a tried-and-tested reliable IPS LCD+ 120Hz display combination right now. You don’t get AMOLED blacks, but you do have viewing angles and average visibility outdoors. The high-refresh rate is also nice to have and you get four options to lock the refresh rate: 60Hz, 90Hz, 120Hz and a smart-switching mode. Touch response was also quick at 240Hz and this made the phone a great device for gaming in this segment.
The iQOO Z6 performs well thanks to the Snapdragon 695 chip. The phone handles day-to-day apps with ease, and casual games are not a problem either. For more resource-heavy titles like BGMI, the performance is as expected with frame rates locked at Balanced/Ultra or HD/High.
The iQOO Z6 is great with casual games and can handle bigger games at lower graphic settings. (Express Photo)
The phone did not heat much with long sessions, so that’s nice to see. Other titles like Asphalt 9 and Call of Duty Mobile can also be played without any problems here, but not at max graphics. But for the price you pay, you get a great gaming experience here.
One of the strongest aspects of the phone is the 5000mAh battery unit, which easily makes this a one-two day device depending on your usage. Even with heavy gaming, your phone will still have enough juice for you to reach home at the end of the day. However, charging the device isn’t exactly the most convenient, more on that later.
At a time when budget and mid-range phones are still launching with Android 11, it was nice to see the iQOO Z6 launch with Android 12-based FunTouchOS 12, which in itself is a vastly improved skin since last year. It is relatively clean with the user interface (UI) and both first-time smartphone users and those coming from other UIs should adapt quickly.
iQOO Z6: What’s not good?
The iQOO Z6 features a 50MP main camera along with a 2MP macro and 2MP depth sensor. There’s no ultrawide camera in the triple camera setup here, and the sensors that are present don’t take the best pictures either.
The camera setup and quality of pictures on the iQOO Z6 is not the most impressive. (Express Photo)
The main camera takes average shots in daylight, and these sometimes lack enough detail. Many photos came out softer than what I would have preferred. The front camera quality was also average and nothing special, although skin tones looked nice. Check out our camera samples by clicking on the image below to know more.
No Stereo speakers
For a phone that is targeted at gamers, I felt the iQOO Z6 could really have used stereo speakers. The single speaker unit on the phone isn’t the loudest, and can also be easily covered with your hands when gaming.
Other problems include the bloatware, most of which thankfully can be uninstalled. Lastly, the 18W charging is not very fast anymore for charging these bigger 5,000mAh batteries. Competing phones in this segment offer much faster charging.
Verdict: Should you buy the iQOO Z6?
The iQOO Z6 is not really a successor to the iQOO Z5, (although a rumoured iQOO Z6 Pro could be). Instead it tackles a new segment entirely, one where competition from Redmi and Realme reign supreme. It does well in terms of performance, battery, but it could use improvement on the camera front and the slow charging is a negative as well.
However, if you’re looking for a phone which offers good performance, and aspects like the camera quality aren’t too important, then you can consider the iQOO Z6. But it faces tough competition from other Snapdragon 695-bearing devices like the Poco X4 Pro (review coming soon), Realme 9 Pro, Redmi Note 11 Pro+, though some of these are priced higher and do pack other higher specifications. There’s also Vivo T1 with a similar set of specifications and price range, though it costs Rs 500 more compared to the iQOO.
The iQOO Z6 does have the cheapest base variant with the 4GB/128GB coming in at Rs 15,499, but we’d recommend getting at least the 6GB RAM variant at Rs 16,999 if you are getting this phone.