Screen

6.01”, 2160 x 1080, 402ppi, 18:9, Super AMOLED, Gorilla Glass 3,
77.9% S-T-B-R
MPEG4, H.263, H.264, H.265, VP8, VP8 video playback

As an AMOLED, the colours are vibrant, and blacks are black. It reaches 93% Adobe RGB and 100% sRGB.

It is a very bright screen at 650 nits (max-auto) and 450 nits (typical). Contrast is infinite. To put that in perspective it’s almost as bright as a Samsung Galaxy S9.

Out-of-the-box, colours default to vibrant rather than accurate. Colour temperature is adjustable from Warm to Cool and offers standard and vibrant saturations. You can get them very close to accurate which is good for photographers.

Adaptive brightness is fine – not too over aggressive to save battery and will be helped by Android Pie (coming). It is a great outdoor readable screen.

It lacks a customisable Always-on-Display that found on many OLED smartphones, but it does show a clock, battery charge and notifications when you look at it (attentive display).

Performance

Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 SDM636 (14nm)
Eight-Core
1.8Ghz Quad-Core Kryo 260 Gold
1.6Ghz Quad-Core Kryo 260 Silver
GPU Adreno 509
RAM 4GB LPDDR4X
64GB UFS 2.0 (50GB free)
micro-SD up to 2TB (uses second sim slot)
OTG to 2TB

Performance tests with Geek Bench 4 are 1924/6614 single/multi-core. This is in line with other phones using the same SoC and shows a good implementation of the Qualcomm SoC. By comparison, it is about the same speed as a Qualcomm 835 based Google Pixel 2 XL.

Renderscript (video performance indicator) is 4231 which means it is VR capable (as an AMOLED screen should be). It achieves 60fps in common games.

RAM is the latest LPDDR4X. There is no lag or stutter with several apps open at once.

The external temperature at 100% load is 38° – fine for a pocketable phone. We did not see any evidence of throttling.

Comms

Comms Wi-Fi AC, dual-band, MU-MIMO, Wave 2
Wi-Di, Hotspot
Bluetooth 5.0 aptX/HD
USB-C 3.1
NFC

Wi-Fi signal at two metres from our reference D-Link AC-5300 router is 867Mbps – as fast as the 5GHz chipset allows. At 5m it was 380Mbps and at 10 metres, 120Mbps. Then the 2.4Mbps band took over.

Bluetooth 5.0 should support aptX/HD, but in all our tests it defaults to the SBC standard codec.

Sound

Sound Earpiece mono speaker
ANC dual mics
24-bit/192kHz
MP3, WAV, eAAC+, FLAC

The single earpiece speaker is loud as both a ringer and for voice achieving over 80dB for both. Only the HTC U12+ is louder. The sound is surprisingly distortion free and hands-free is excellent.

Sound signature is no bass, good mids and highs. This is a Bright Vocal signature best for voice.

Using the USB-C DAC to an amp, it provides a good flat 20Hz-20kHz frequency response and lots of volume (signal strength).

We are very happy with the sound and volume on our Sony WH-1000XM2 reference headphones.