Infinix Note 12 G96 Review

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Infinix has been on a roll with its smartphones, often offering really competitive hardware and features for the price. The Note 12 G96 wants to be a part of that club as well, and on paper, apart from a few minor concerns I have, it does seem to check a lot of the boxes. Let’s take a deep dive.

Specifications

Display6.7-inch FHD+ AMOLED, 60Hz
ProcessorHelio G96
RAM8GB
Storage128GB/256GB (Expandable)
Rear Camera50MP Main
2MP Depth
QVGA
Front Camera16MP
OSAndroid 12 + XOS 10.6
Battery5000mAh + 33W Fast Charging

Design and Build Quality

Infinix Note 12 G96 Review (21)

Contrary to the design of other phones from the brand, like Zero 5G, the Infinix Note 12 resorts to a flatter and more squarish design, which I personally prefer.

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A matte band is seemingly sandwiched between the front and rear panel, housing the volume rocker and power button on its right side, and the SIM slot on the left.

Infinix Note 12 G96 Review (11)

The cameras are housed on a slightly protruding module, with the other side looking slightly like a mirror, while the rest of the rear panel boasts a sparkly, glitter-like coating with wave patterns that nicely contrasts with the Infinix branding.

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At the bottom, you’ll find a speaker grille, microphone, USB-C port, and for people like me who still prefer wired headphones, the headphone jack makes this phone an even sweeter deal.

Infinix Note 12 G96 Review (1)

Most Infinix smartphones I reviewed in the past had high refresh rate displays, so it’s kind of surprising to know that the Note 12 sticks to 60Hz. Personally, While I personally don’t mind, it makes this phone just a bit less appealing. At least, it’s 6.7-inch AMOLED display offers punchy colors that make content look just a bit more lively.

Performance

At the helm of this device is a MediaTek Helio G96 processor, which unfortunately does not support 5G. It is, however, one of those staples for mid-range devices, at least before the newer Dimensity chips arrived. With 8GB of RAM, which can even be increased by up to 5GB (virtual RAM), multi-tasking should not be an issue.

Nonetheless, if you’re going to game on this phone, and you’re not planning on playing a resource-heavy game like Genshin Impact, you should get quite an enjoyable experience.

Infinix Note 12 G96 - Gaming

Unfortunately, even now, I still can’t crank up the settings for some games like CoD Mobile. I’m not sure if this is an issue with the game not being optimized for this chip, or is the G96’s GPU just not up to par?

Thermal performance was also decent, as the phone didn’t feel too hot during the course of testing.

Camera

At the back of the Infinix Note 12 is a 50MP main camera, a 2MP depth sensor, and a third QVGA camera. The configuration is decent, but the lack of an ultra-wide camera can be a deal-breaker for some.

Quality-wise, photos offer good levels of detail, sharpness and contrast, and the depth of field effect it products is convincing. While it can’t tame the glare of multiple light sources at night, the quality of its night shots are actually pretty good especially when you consider the price. Selfies also offer good texture and detail, though the AI needs some work on which area to blur.

Software

At the time of writing this review, the Infinix Note 12 G96 runs on XOS 10.6.0 on top of Android 12. The UI itself performs with no issues, and the features you get are basically similar to a lot of the other Infinix devices we’ve reviewed in the past.

You get features like an Always-On Display, which comes in handy as you don’t have to unlock the device to get a glimpse of your notifications. There’s also MemFusion, which converts a portion of the phone’s storage into virtual RAM to improve the devices’ overall performance.

For multi-tasking, there’s Lightning Multi-Window, which is basically Infinix’s version of having a floating window that you can drag around and resize. There’s also a Smart Panel which gives you quick access to apps, while also letting you capture what’s on screen via a screenshot or a video.

While most of these features are quite useful, the UI does come with a number of pre-loaded apps that could have just been optional.

Battery

Infinix Note 12 G96 OS (7)

Using PCMark’s Work 3.0 battery benchmark to simulate tasks such as data manipulation, web browsing, as well as photo and video editing, the Infinix Note 12 with its 5,000mAh battery managed to score an uptime of 14 hours and 9 minutes. Charging from completely empty took around 1.5 hours, which isn’t the fastest we’ve seen, but is still a decent result.

Verdict

Infinix Note 12 G96 offers a good-looking design, decent performance, and great battery life. Its cameras are not only flexible, but also perform well especially in low light, relative to its price of PhP8,999 for this 8GB + 128GB version.

On the other side, you do miss out on a high refresh rate screen and an ultra-wide camera. Both are what I would consider as must-haves on any phone. So if those are your priorities, you may have to look somewhere else. Otherwise, I think this phone is still, overall, a decent choice for those looking for a phone that’s good on most of the things that a phone should be good at.

Infinix Note 12 G96 Review 25 1
Infinix Note 12 G96 Review
Our Verdict
Design and Build Quality
Performance
Camera
Software
Battery Life
Price
What's Good
Decent performance
Good looking design
Great battery life
Good camera performance, especially in low light
What's Not
No high refresh rate screen
No ultra-wide camera
Some pre-loaded apps could've been optional
4.2

Emman has been writing technical and feature articles since 2010. Prior to this, he became one of the instructors at Asia Pacific College in 2008, and eventually landed a job as Business Analyst and Technical Writer at Integrated Open Source Solutions for almost 3 years.

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