Tecno Phantom X2 Pro: Retractable Zoom Lens Works.

The company launched its most premium and expensive phone this month, and it’s one of the most original—in both design and concept—phones of the year.

The key selling point of this new flagship, Tecno Phantom X2 Pro, is its retractable portrait lens, which really works. But more than this, I’m particularly impressed by the Tecno Phantom X2 Pro’s software image processing which is something smaller phone brands usually struggle with.

Key Specs
  • Corning Gorilla Glass Victus layered AMOLED
  • Three lenses on the rear side
  • 32MP Selfie Shooter
  • 5160mAh battery
  • 12GB RAM 
  • MediaTek Dimensity 9000 MT6983 chipset

Key Specs

ProcessorMediaTek Dimensity 920 MT6877T
Rear Camera200 MP + 13 MP + 2 MP
Front Camera32 MP
Battery4500 mAh
Display6.8 inches (17.27 cm)


Launch DateDecember 20, 2022 (Official)
Operating SystemAndroid v12
Custom UIXOS


ChipsetMediaTek Dimensity 920 MT6877T
CPUOcta-core (2.5 GHz, Dual core, Cortex A78 + 2 GHz, Hexa Core, Cortex A55)
Architecture64 bit
Fabrication6 nm
GraphicsMali-G68 MC4
RAM8 GBBest in Class ▾


Display TypeAMOLED
Screen Size6.8 inches (17.27 cm)
Resolution1080 x 2400 pixels
Aspect Ratio20:9
Pixel Density387 ppiExcellent ▾
Screen Body Ratio (calculated)90.54 %
Bezel-less displayYes with a punch-hole display
Touch ScreenYes, Capacitive Touchscreen, Multi-touch
Brightness1000 nits
Refresh Rate120 Hz
Screen to Body Ratio (claimed by the brand)91.4 %


Height165.5 mm Compare Size 
Width74.5 mm
Thickness8.7 mmGood ▾
Weight213 gramsPoor ▾
ColoursCoslight Silver, Genesis Noir


Camera SetupTriple
Resolution200 MP f/1.7, Wide Angle, Primary Camera(0.64µm pixel size)13 MP f/2.4, Ultra-Wide Angle Camera
2 MP, Depth Camera
AutofocusYes, Phase Detection autofocus
FlashYes, Quad LED Flash
Image Resolution14500 x 13800 Pixels
SettingsExposure compensation, ISO control
Shooting ModesContinuous Shooting
High Dynamic Range mode (HDR)
Camera FeaturesDigital Zoom
Auto Flash
Face detection
Touch to focus
Video Recording3840×2160 @ 30 fps
1920×1080 @ 30 fps
Video Recording FeaturesDual Video Recording
Camera SetupSingle
Resolution32 MP f/2.0, Wide Angle, Primary Camera
FlashYes, Dual LED
Camera FeaturesFixed Focus
Video Recording1920×1080 @ 30 fps


Capacity4500 mAh
TalkTimeUp to 50 Hours(3G) / Up to 65 Hours(2G)
Standby timeUp to 336 Hours(2G)
Quick ChargingYes, Thunder, 180W: 100 % in 12 minutes
USB Type-CYes


Internal Memory256 GBBest in Class ▾
Expandable MemoryNo

Network & Connectivity

SIM Slot(s)Dual SIM, GSM+GSM
SIM SizeSIM1: Nano, SIM2: Nano
Network Support5G Supported in India, 4G Supported in India, 3G, 2G
SIM 15G Bands:FDD N1 / N3 / N5 / N7 / N8 / N20 / N28
TDD N38 / N40 / N41 / N77 / N784G Bands:TD-LTE 2600(band 38) / 2300(band 40) / 2500(band 41)
FD-LTE 2100(band 1) / 1800(band 3) / 2600(band 7) / 900(band 8) / 700(band 28) / 1900(band 2) / 1700(band 4) / 850(band 5) / 800(band 20)3G Bands: UMTS 1900 / 2100 / 850 / 900 MHz2G Bands: GSM 1800 / 1900 / 850 / 900 MHz
GPRS:AvailableEDGE: Available
SIM 24G Bands:TD-LTE 2600(band 38) / 2300(band 40) / 2500(band 41)
FD-LTE 2100(band 1) / 1800(band 3) / 2600(band 7) / 900(band 8) / 700(band 28) / 1900(band 2) / 1700(band 4) / 850(band 5) / 800(band 20)3G Bands: UMTS 1900 / 2100 / 850 / 900 MHz2G Bands: GSM 1800 / 1900 / 850 / 900 MHz
GPRS:AvailableEDGE: Available
Wi-FiYes, Wi-Fi 6 (802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax)
Wi-Fi FeaturesMobile Hotspot
BluetoothYes, v5.0
USB ConnectivityMass storage device, USB charging


FM RadioYes
Audio JackUSB Type-C


Fingerprint SensorYes
Fingerprint Sensor PositionOn-screen
Fingerprint Sensor TypeOptical
Other SensorsLight sensor, Proximity sensor, Accelerometer, Compass, Gyroscope
Tecno Phantom X2 Pro: Design

Let’s first look at the overall design. The Tecno Phantom X2 Pro is an extra tall slab phone with a 6.8-inch OLED screen with an elongated 20:9 aspect ratio. The back side can come in glass or vegan leather “made from recycled materials from the Indian Ocean,” and I am testing the latter model. I like the look and feel of the orange leather, and the visually striking camera module makes it a real eye-catcher. I’ve been approached by random strangers twice in the past month inquiring about the phone because the backside drew their attention.

There’s an optical in-display fingerprint scanner and selfie camera underneath the display panel, and both work well. Powering the phone is a MediaTek Dimensity 9000 chip, a flagship chip from Taiwan chipmaker MediaTek. It’s not quite as powerful as the best Qualcomm chip, but the Dimensity 9000, paired with 12GB of RAM, is still more than capable enough for any task you throw at it. There’s a large 5,160 mAh battery that can be fast charged at 45W, and the charger is included with the box.

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Tecno Phantom X2 Pro: Display

The display is curved, with a resolution of 1080 x 2400, a maximum brightness of 500 nits, and a refresh rate of up to 120Hz. In terms of color vibrancy, viewing angles, animations, and sharpness, I have no complaints. The screen looks good. But the 500 nits of brightness is a bit low by 2022 flagship standards, and this is a screen that looks dim under direct sunlight compared to something like a new iPhone or Samsung.

Tecno Phantom X2 Pro: Cameras

The main attraction here is the retractable portrait zoom lens, which physically pops out (see picture below). This allows not only the lens to get ever so slightly closer to the subject, but allows for more room through which image information can travel before it reaches the ISP (image signal processor). This extra space makes the difference, as the zoom lens can pull off a convincing 2.5x zoom for a focal length of around 65mm.

The retractable zoom lens works. There’s noticeable natural bokeh (depth-of-field blur) in photos due to the focal length, image sensor size (1/1.3-inch), and fast f/1.5 aperture. This fast aperture also allows the lens to perform well at night, which smartphone zoom lenses usually suffer.

The main camera is a 50MP Samsung GNV sensor that is the same sensor used by Google in the Pixel 7 Pro. It’s a great sensor, but it wouldn’t matter if Tecno’s image processing isn’t up to par, and as I said at the beginning, Tecno’s image processing is surprisingly up to par. Look at the below photo samples, all captured by the Phantom X2 Pro’s main cameras. I’m impressed by the HDR which requires software image smarts to quickly snap multiple photos and stitch them together for one shot.

Video stabilization is on par, too, the only weakness I would say is the ultra-wide lens, and that the portrait lens struggles with a focus in lower light situations. Otherwise, this is a camera system that can almost hang with the biggest names in the industry, and this is a remarkable achievement by Tecno.

Tecno Phantom X2 Pro: Software and Performance

The Tecno Phantom X2 Pro runs Tecno’s Android HiOS Android skin over Android 12. This is one of the most customizable Android skins I have ever tested. Everything from app icon looks to animations when swiping through the home screen to the dozens of shortcut gestures, can be tweaked to fit your liking. To be honest, it can be a bit overwhelming how many things you can change here. For the most part, everything works and the heavy-handed skin does not get in the way of basic Android functionality. However, Android 12 is a generation old now and Tecno does not have a proven track record of offering software updates promptly. I wouldn’t hold my breath on Android 13 coming here anytime soon.

The MediaTek chip here is built on 4nm architecture and it’s plenty fast to handle any app. Even playing graphically intensive games like Genshin Impact, the phone did not miss a beat—though it does heat up as most smartphones would.

Battery life is great, thanks to that large battery. I have taken this phone out for a 15-hour day of heavy use consisting of snapping dozens of photos and videos, navigating from point to point, streaming Spotify, using social media, and the phone would finish that intense 15-hour day with over 10% battery to spare.

Tecno Phantom X2 Pro: Conclusion

The Tecno Phantom X2 Pro is the company’s most ambitious and premium device ever made. It features an eye-grabbing design and genuine innovative camera hardware breakthroughs. But it’s also very pricey for a brand that’s still far from a household name. The phone is launching first in Saudi Arabia (it will soon reach other markets) and is priced at 3,499 SAR, which converts to around $930. This is like four or five times the average price of a Tecno handset, so it’s quite a big jump.

I think for many consumers, asking them to pay nearly $1,000 for a Tecno phone over a more established brand may be a hard sell. But this is also part of Tecno’s strategy—it wants to expand and be seen as a premium brand, not just a maker of $100 phones that sell in Africa. If it comes off as overpriced at first, so be it. This was also Huawei’s strategy during its mobile heyday (2017 to 2019): the company priced its phone at the Apple level instead of the Xiaomi level because Huawei saw itself as a maker of premium products.

Huawei also got there by making truly cutting-edge premium phones. Tecno has taken a big first step with the Tecno Phantom X2 Pro.

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By Ashish Bharnuke

My name is Ashish Bharnuke from Maharashtra (India). I have completed my Master’s in English Literature (2022) and recently pursuing my assistant professor job.

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