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iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G Review: Good Value

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The iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G is the company’s latest smartphone under Rs. 40,000 in India, sitting above the Neo 7 5G (Review), which was launched earlier this year. Compared to its affordable sibling, the Neo 7 Pro 5G packs a more powerful SoC, an extra camera sensor on the back, and comes in two finishes. The sub-Rs. 40,000 segment is currently filled with a plethora of options, including the likes of the OnePlus Nord 3 (Review), OnePlus 11R 5G (Review), Vivo V27 Pro (Review), Nothing Phone 1 (Review) and the Oppo Reno 10 Pro 5G (First Impressions).

Does the iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G have what it takes to be the best smartphone in its segment, or should you skip it and look at the alternatives? Here is our full review to help you decide.

iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G price in India

iQoo has launched the Neo 7 Pro 5G in India with two storage options. The base model packs 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage and is priced Rs. 34,999. Our review unit comes with 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage, and is priced at Rs. 37,999.

iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G design and display

The iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G looks similar to the Neo 7 5G in terms of design. It sports a curved-edge rear panel and a plastic frame. Just like the Motorola Edge 40 (Review) and the Realme 11 Pro+ 5G (Review), the Neo 7 Pro comes with a vegan leather rear panel. This one is available in a saturated shade of orange, which the company calls Fearless Flame. I really like the textured finish, which, coupled with the lightweight design (194.5g) of the phone, helps offer an excellent in-hand feel. There is also an AG glass option called Dark Storm, which feels premium and has a slightly shimmery look when light falls on the back panel.

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iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G in its two colour options

iQoo says that the Neo 7 Pro 5G has an IP52 rating, which is alright but not great considering some of the rivals offer up to IP68 water and dust resistance. The iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G has an in-display fingerprint scanner, which is quick to authenticate and unlock the device, however it would have been better had iQoo placed the scanner a bit higher.

The iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G has a 6.78-inch AMOLED display with a full-HD+ resolution (2400×1080 pixels) and 120Hz refresh rate. Despite sporting a flat display with fairly thin bezels, the device offers a good multimedia experience with vibrant colours, deep blacks and a loud dual-speaker setup. Although, the bezels are not as slim as the OnePlus Nord 3 (Review).

iQoo Neo 7 Pro WM 1 iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G

iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G’s fingerprint scanner is placed a bit too low for our liking

Also, with a peak brightness of 1,300 nits, you should not experience any issues using it indoors or outdoors. The display offers three refresh rate settings — 60Hz, 120Hz and Smart Switch. There are no stutters across the UI when using the phone in Smart Switch mode.

iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G specifications and software

The iQoo Neo 7 Pro features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 SoC, which is also found in the new and more expensive Nothing Phone 2 (First Impressions), Oppo Reno 10 Pro+ 5G (Review) and the OnePlus 11R 5G (Review). The device also features LPDDR5 RAM and UFS 3.1 storage. It packs a beefy 5,000mAh battery with 120W fast charging support, and the charger is bundled with the phone.

In terms of software, the iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G runs on the Android 13-based Funtouch OS 13 out of the box. While the phone does come with a few preinstalled third-party apps, the software situation is not as bad as Realme UI 4 or ColorOS 13, where you get more than 50 preinstalled apps. The iQoo Neo 7 Pro comes with some popular apps such as Spotify, Snapchat, LinkedIn, Netflix and Amazon. If you do not use these apps, you can choose to uninstall them.

There are also Hot Apps and Hot Games recommendation folders, which can be hidden from the app drawer or home screen by disabling the toggle in the ‘Home Settings’ section of the Settings app.

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iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G is promised to get two major Android updates

Other than that, you get a bunch of personalisation and customisation options, which we have detailed in our iQoo 11 5G review. iQoo has promised to provide two major Android updates and monthly security patches for three years for the Neo 7 Pro 5G.

iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G performance and battery life

With the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 SoC under the hood, performance is of no concern in the iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G. During my week-long use, I did not experience any issues, even while playing games. I played Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI) and Asphalt 9: Legends on the phone and the overall performance was quite excellent.

BGMI supports ‘Extreme’ framerate if you opt for ‘HDR’ graphics. If you want ‘Ultra HD’ graphics, the framerate support drops to ‘Ultra’. I preferred the HDR graphics and Extreme framerate combination, and during my gameplay sessions, there were no signs of any stutter or lag. The phone did get a tad warm around the camera module region, but it was nothing alarming.

The iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G is said to have an independent display chip, which unlocks support for ‘Frame Rate Interpolation’. The feature essentially adds extra frames in between while playing games to offer a smoother gaming experience. You can enable this by going to the ‘Ultra Game Mode’, which also provides some additional features that help enhance the gaming experience. These include Motion Control, locking screen brightness, disabling notifications, etc. You can also switch between Battery Saver, Balanced and Monster modes. The latter ensures that there is no CPU throttling while playing games but will consume more battery.

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iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G packs some best-in-class hardware

The iQoo Neo 7 Pro dominates its closest rivals in benchmark tests. In AnTuTu (v10), the iQoo Neo 7 Pro scored 12,63,884 points. The OnePlus Nord 3 with its Dimensity 9000 SoC and the OnePlus 11R 5G with a Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 SoC scored 8,47,115 and 10,26,784 points, respectively. In Geekbench 6’s single-core and multi-core tests, the iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G managed to get 1,727 and 4,459 points, which again, is higher than the Nord 3 (863 and 2,978 points) and the 11R (908 and 3,430 points).

Battery life on the iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G is also quite good. I averaged about 7 hours and 40 minutes of screen-on time (SoT) during my review. This included gaming for 45 minutes to an hour, capturing some photos and videos, and scrolling on social media. In our HD video battery loop test, the iQoo Neo 7 Pro lasted for 22 hours and seven minutes, which is quite impressive.

The phone also comes with a 120W fast charging adapter in the box, which takes about 27 minutes to charge completely.

iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G cameras

The iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G features a triple-camera setup on the back. There is a 50-megapixel primary camera with an f/1.88 aperture, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide camera and a 2-megapixel macro sensor. For selfies, the phone has a 16-megapixel front camera.

The primary camera’s daylight images offer good details and dynamic range. The colours are mostly close to real life but at times, the algorithm boosts the greens in trees. In low light, the camera exposes the overall picture quite well but I would recommend switching to Night mode to get the right balance of exposure between highlights and shadows. There are some exposure issues when it comes to Night mode and I hope iQoo fixes this with future updates.

iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G primary camera samples (tap to see full size)

The ultra-wide camera’s colour temperature is pretty close to that of the main camera. You also get good dynamic range and colours but the images are not as detailed. There is distortion around the edges, something that we see in almost all ultra-wide camera samples.

In terms of selfies, the iQoo Neo 7 Pro’s front camera does a pretty good job when it comes to getting the skin tones right in most cases. There is beautification on by default for those who do not want the extra step of post-processing an image. However, even if you disable it, the algorithm smoothens the skin a bit and also exposes the overall image slightly more than required.

iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G camera samples (Top: Ultra-wide camera, bottom: front camera)

In terms of video, the iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G can record up to 4K 60fps videos with the rear main camera, and the overall output is pretty good when it comes to colours, dynamic range and stabilisation. The front camera captures 1080p 30fps videos. While colours are usually good, dynamic range performance needs improvement.

Verdict

The iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G introduces some key features that were missing in its younger sibling, the Neo 7 5G. You get a more complete camera system with better performance and a more powerful SoC. The phone also offers a smooth 120Hz AMOLED display with good speakers and an impressive battery life with 120W fast charging. As a package, the iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G offers great value and clearly has an edge over the OnePlus Nord 3 (Review) when it comes to raw performance. However, the Nord 3 5G offers 16GB of RAM and does have an edge when it comes to overall camera performance.

The 12GB RAM variant’s price of the iQoo Neo 7 Pro 5G is quite close to the OnePlus 11R 5G’s (Review) base model. The 11R 5G offers a higher resolution display with curved edges and has the same performance unit. The main difference between iQoo and its OnePlus rivals is the software experience, and I think most buying decisions will ultimately boil down to the preference of Android skins. 


Will the Nothing Phone 2 serve as the successor to the Phone 1, or will the two co-exist? We discuss the company’s recently launched handset and more on the latest episode of Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
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