The $129 Poco M3 is Xiaomi’s latest budget big battery king

The $129 Poco M3 is Xiaomi’s latest budget big battery king

Xiaomi’s Poco sub-brand has launched its latest entry-level phone, the Poco M3. As with most other Poco phones, the M3 has an strong spec sheet for its comparatively low price.

The Poco M3 has a 6.53-inch 1080p LCD screen with a waterdrop notch for the 8-megapixel selfie camera. The display is pretty basic: the chin at the bottom is quite big, the fingerprint sensor is integrated into the power button on the side rather than the screen, and the panel is only 60Hz, but it’s sharp enough and perfectly serviceable.

The phone’s design certainly stands out from behind, with a large glossy camera bump emblazoned with a bright white “POCO” logo. The main camera is 48 megapixels, but the other two cameras are just 2-megapixel sensors for depth and macro, so this isn’t really a meaningful triple-camera setup. While the phone’s chassis is constructed out of plastic, it uses a leather-ish finish that feels much nicer to the touch than most other plastic phones. It’s available in black, yellow, and blue.

The M3’s processor is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 662, which is paired with 4GB of RAM. It runs MIUI 12 atop Android 10. The battery is an impressive 6,000mAh, and the phone is a hefty but fairly manageable 9.6mm thick and 198g in weight. There are options for 64GB or 128GB of storage, and the phone has two SIM card slots in addition to a separate microSD slot. There’s also a headphone jack as well as a USB-C port.

Xiaomi is putting the Poco M3 on sale online on Black Friday, November 27th, with early US pricing starting at $129 for the 64GB model and $149 for 128GB. The regular price is $149 for 64GB and $169 for 128GB.

Even at those higher prices, the M3 looks like it’ll be very good value by US market standards. You could compare it to this year’s Moto E, for example, which starts at the same $149 price point but has a 720p screen, a Snapdragon 632 processor, a Micro USB port, 32GB of storage, and just 2GB of RAM.