phones with an ir blaster

An IR blaster can be an asset on your phone, allowing it to double as a universal remote, giving you control over various electronic devices in your home. Unfortunately, phones with IR blasters aren’t as common as they used to be. Companies like Samsung have more or less ditched the technology altogether, but you can still find it on smartphones from Chinese brands.

Best phones with an IR blaster:

Editor’s note: We will be updating this list of the best phones with an IR blaster regularly as new devices launch.


What is an IR blaster, anyway?

The “IR” in IR blaster stands for “infrared.” The hardware itself is also equally simple to understand. If your phone has an IR blaster, it allows you to send commands via infrared rays to another device, such as a television, set-top box, or stereo compatible with IR remotes. The main advantage of using an IR blaster-based device is that you don’t have to go through a cumbersome Bluetooth pairing process and that you can use it with older devices that don’t offer Bluetooth or wireless connections.


1. Huawei P40 Pro and P40 Pro Plus

Huawei P40 Pro Plus with IR blaster

Despite the lack of Google Play Services, Huawei’s P40 Pro and P40 Pro Plus were some of the best phones in 2020, hands down. The fact that they’re phones with IR blasters is just some extra icing on top. Both models take the impressive cameras of the earlier P30 family and crank them even closer to perfection.

See also: Huawei P40 Pro review | Huawei P40 Pro Plus review

While you’ll find a bit of bloat in Huawei’s UI, both the P40 Pro and P40 Pro Plus are about as refined as you can get. The build quality is excellent, and the 90Hz displays are incredibly smooth. Both phones actually measure in at 6.58-inches with Full HD+ resolutions. You’ll also find an identical setup of 8GB of RAM and the Kirin 990 chipset on both devices.

One benefit to choosing Huawei’s P40 Pro Plus over the P40 Pro is that you’ll get a whopping 512GB of storage space to work with. It also includes a quad-camera setup compared to the three lenses you’ll get with the more affordable option.

Unfortunately, Huawei’s recently announced P50 and P50 Pro have decided to ditch the IR blaster. That means your days are numbered if you want this powerful camera phone with its IR capability.


Huawei P40 Pro specs:

  • Display: 6.58-inch, Full HD+
  • SoC: Kirin 990
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 128/256/512GB
  • Cameras: 50, 40, and 12MP + ToF
  • Front camera: 32MP
  • Battery: 4,200mAh
  • Software: Android 10

Huawei P40 Pro Plus specs:

  • Display: 6.58-inch, Full HD+
  • SoC: Kirin 990
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 256/512GB
  • Cameras: 50, 40, 8, and 8MP + ToF
  • Front camera: 32MP
  • Battery: 4,200mAh
  • Software: Android 10

2. Poco F3

Poco F3 Review Back of Phone Portrait Orientation
C. Scott Brown / Android Authority

The Poco F3 is the closest we’ve come to a true Poco F1 successor, and it packs an impressive hardware package. It sticks with the IR blaster making it quite a deal for what’s on offer.

This Snapdragon 870 phone sports a 6.67-inch Full HD+ display, up to 8GB of RAM, and a 4,520mAh battery with 33W charging. The Poco F3 also feels really good in the hand, especially for the price.

The Poco F3 packs some premium hardware, even if the software falters a bit.

The F2 Pro also features a central punch hole selfie camera, three rear cameras, and Dolby Atmos tuning. All these things combined and the IR blaster make it useful, plus one of the best Snapdragon 870 phones you can get at the price point.


Poco F3 specs:

  • Display: 6.67-inch, Full HD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 870
  • RAM: 6/8GB
  • Storage: 128/256GB
  • Cameras: 48, 8, and 5MP
  • Front camera: 20MP
  • Battery: 4,520mAh
  • Software: Android 11

3. Xiaomi Mi 11 series

Mi 11 Ultra rear of the phone viewfinder
Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

The Xiaomi Mi 11 gave us a taste of the OEM’s 2021 goals, and it’s still one of the best phones with an IR blaster. It may have been the first Mi 11 series device to hit the market, but now it’s joined by the larger and more powerful Mi 11 Pro and Mi 11 Ultra.

See also: Xiaomi Mi 11 buyer’s guide

Xiaomi’s latest flagship was one of the first devices to launch with a Snapdragon 888 processor on board, beating the Samsung Galaxy S21 family. You can pair that up with 8GB or 12GB of RAM and up to 256GB of storage space.

In addition to the 108MP shooter we mentioned before, you’ll also have the chance to try 13MP ultra-wide and 5MP macro lenses on the Mi 11. A front-facing 20MP selfie shooter rounds things out, and the 4,600mAh battery should keep you juiced up. It tops out at 55W charging speeds, so you won’t have to spend long at an outlet before you can get back to your IR blaster.

If you splurge on either the Mi 11 Pro or Mi 11 Ultra, you’ll still get the IR blaster on board. All three devices pack the same hefty 6.81-inch displays as well as IP68 ratings for dust and water resistance. However, the two more powerful beasts jump from a 4,600mAh battery to a 5,000mAh cell.

Of course, the biggest change you’ll notice is the massive camera bump on the back of Xiaomi’s Mi 11 Ultra. It even houses a small display that you can use as a viewfinder for crisp selfies. Check out all three devices below.


Xiaomi Mi 11 specs:

  • Display: 6.81-inch, Full HD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 888
  • RAM: 8/12GB
  • Storage: 128/256GB
  • Cameras: 108, 13, and 5MP
  • Front camera: 20MP
  • Battery: 4,600mAh
  • Software: Android 11

Xiaomi Mi 11 Pro specs:

  • Display: 6.81-inch, Full HD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 888
  • RAM: 8/12GB
  • Storage: 128/256GB
  • Cameras: 50, 13, and 8MP
  • Front camera: 20MP
  • Battery: 5,000mAh
  • Software: Android 11

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra specs:

  • Display: 6.81-inch, Full HD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 888
  • RAM: 8/12GB
  • Storage: 256/512GB
  • Cameras: 50, 48, and 48MP
  • Front camera: 20MP
  • Battery: 5,000mAh
  • Software: Android 11

4. Redmi K40 Pro

Redmi K40 Pro
Weibo/Redmi

Redmi’s K40 Pro may look familiar to some of you, and that’s because it’s a near-twin to Poco’s F3. Though the Redmi device takes things to 11 with its Snapdragon 888 chipset, the two share plenty of design cues.

The K40 Pro is twins with Poco's F3, but it takes everything just a bit further.

Of course, you’ll find an IR blaster baked right in, and the K40 Pro packs a triple rear camera setup, topped off by a 64MP main shooter. You can also choose 6GB or 8GB of RAM and up to 256GB of storage to round out your new flagship. While you won’t have top-notch IP68 protection, the IP53 rating should do against splashes and dust in a pinch.

If you want to switch up your Redmi K40 approach, the OEM also offers a dedicated gaming version and a standard K40 to accompany the Pro. Both the Pro and the classic come with 6.67-inch displays and tough Gorilla Glass 5.


Redmi K40 Pro specs:

  • Display: 6.67-inch, FHD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 888
  • RAM: 6/8GB
  • Storage: 128/256GB
  • Cameras: 64, 5, and 8MP
  • Front camera: 20MP
  • Battery: 4,520mAh
  • Software: Android 11

5. Xiaomi Mi 10T series

Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro with IR blaster
Ryan-Thomas Shaw / Android Authority

Xiaomi’s Mi 10T series takes its place among the best phones with IR blasters, and they’re far better options than the previous 9T lineup. Instead of rehashing a few Redmi designs, Xiaomi added some serious 5G kick to the Mi 10T lineup without inflating the price tags.

See also: Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro review

Like many modern smartphone lines, you’ll find three phones in the Mi 10T lineup — a Mi 10T Lite, the standard Mi 10T, and the Mi 10T Pro. All three are identical in terms of the 6.67-inch displays, and you’ll find Android 10 running MIUI 12 across the board too. Xiaomi trimmed the Mi 10T Lite down to 6GB of RAM to save some money, and it starts at 64GB of storage. You’ll get at least 128GB of storage on the more powerful versions, and the Mi 10T Pro packs 8GB of RAM.

Xiaomi chose a Snapdragon 865 chip to keep both the Mi 10T and Mi 10T Pro up to speed, and the Mi 10T Lite relies on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 750G. While you’ll find four total cameras on the Mi 10T Lite, The Mi 10T Pro is the only one with a 108MP main shooter. Both of the other models top out at 64MP. Don’t forget, all three of these phones include IR blasters, and you can grab most of them for under $500.


Xiaomi Mi 10T Lite specs:

  • Display: 6.67-inch, Full HD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 750G
  • RAM: 6GB
  • Storage: 64/128GB
  • Cameras: 64, 8, 2, and 2MP
  • Front camera: 16MP
  • Battery: 4,820mAh
  • Software: Android 10

Xiaomi Mi 10T specs:

  • Display: 6.76-inch, Full HD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 865
  • RAM: 6/8GB
  • Storage: 128GB
  • Cameras: 64, 13, and 5MP
  • Front camera: 20MP
  • Battery: 5,000mAh
  • Software: Android 10

Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro specs:

  • Display: 6.76-inch, Full HD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 865
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 128/256GB
  • Cameras: 108, 13, and 5MP
  • Front camera: 20MP
  • Battery: 5,000mAh
  • Software: Android 10

6. Poco X3, X3 Pro, and X3 GT

Xiaomi Poco X3 NFC POCO branding on the back of the device
Ryan-Thomas Shaw / Android Authority

Poco first made waves a few years back with the Pocophone F1, and it hasn’t really slowed down since then. Its portfolio has grown exponentially, and the Poco X3 is one of its best efforts yet. Further, it’s one of our favorite affordable phones that just so happens to have an IR blaster.

See also: Poco X3 review | Poco X3 Pro review

The 6.76-inch display offers plenty of real estate for just about anything you can imagine. It even comes with a massive 5,160mAh battery onboard the NFC version, so you should easily get two days of juice. The huge Poco branding on the back of the X3 may not be for everyone, but at least you can throw a case on it. However, you can’t throw a case on the fact that there are ads in the UI.

We’re fans of the Poco X3’s main cameras, as well as the IR blaster, obviously. The video footage it captures isn’t great either, but the X3 is a serious value buy. You get a lot for your money, and you should be happy with the overall experience.

If you want to pump some more power into your Poco X3, you can pick up the Pro version, complete with its Snapdragon 860 chipset. You’ll still get an IR blaster, and the display packs a crisp 120Hz refresh rate. Poco also jumped to Gorilla Glass 6 for the X3 Pro, and the dual-texture body should be easier to grip.

Those of you waiting for a more premium Poco experience might want to hold on for the Poco X3 GT. It swaps to a Dimensity 1100 SoC with 8GB of RAM and up to 256GB of storage. Perhaps best of all, Poco switched up the X3 GT design with a corner-mounted camera array for a new approach.


Poco X3 specs:

  • Display: 6.76-inch, FHD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 732G
  • RAM: 6GB
  • Storage: 64/128GB
  • Cameras: 64, 13, 2, and 2MP
  • Front camera: 20MP
  • Battery: 5,160mAh
  • Software: Android 10

Poco X3 Pro specs:

  • Display: 6.67-inch, FHD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 860
  • RAM: 6/8GB
  • Storage: 128/256GB
  • Cameras: 48, 8, 2, and 2MP
  • Front camera: 20MP
  • Battery: 5,160mAh
  • Software: Android 11

7. Redmi Note 10 and 10 Pro

Redmi Note 10 camera module
Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

Another pair of affordable phones with IR blasters for your consideration is Redmi’s Note 10 and Note 10 Pro. They’re much improved over the Note 9, earning points for design, battery life, and some seriously great prices.

See also: Redmi Note 10 review | Redmi Note 10 Pro review

The beautiful design is the first thing you’ll notice on both the Note 10 and Note 10 Pro. It skips the bold gradients and wild colors of some other budget-friendly phones and instead sports a clean and classic look. Sure, the 10 Pro is a fingerprint magnet, but the more we clean it, the more we can stare at it. You’ll also notice the corner-mounted camera housing right away. Both phones pack four lenses, though the premium Note 10 Pro swaps the 48MP main lens for a 108MP shooter.

Unfortunately, it’s not all sunshine with the Redmi Note 10 lineup. We’re not overly impressed by the peripheral lenses, and the software experience is still hit or miss. That said, these phones surely manage to stand out in a rather crowded category.


Redmi Note 10 specs:

  • Display: 6.43-inch, FHD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 678
  • RAM: 4/6GB
  • Storage: 64/128GB
  • Cameras: 48, 8, 2, and 2MP
  • Front camera: 13MP
  • Battery: 5,000mAh
  • Software: Android 11

Redmi Note 10 Pro specs:

  • Display: 6.67-inch, FHD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 732G
  • RAM: 6/8GB
  • Storage: 64/128GB
  • Cameras: 108, 8, 2, and 2MP
  • Front camera: 16MP
  • Battery: 5,020mAh
  • Software: Android 11

8. Poco M3

Poco M3 back panel with camera module
Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

Our last phone with an IR blaster brings us back to Poco one more time. We told you the portfolio has been growing, and the M3 might be one of Poco’s best efforts yet. The design is brilliant, and it’s one of the brightest finishes you’ll find in 2021.

See also: Poco M3 review

We have to applaud Poco for its large stereo speakers, the powerful 6,000mAh battery, and we can’t forget about the pocket-friendly price tag. The M3 almost resembles a hi-tech LEGO brick in its bright yellow polycarbonate finish, and we’re not complaining. We have a few complaints about the camera performance, as we’ve definitely seen better from the brand.

Poco grabbed a midrange Snapdragon 662 chip for the M3, which does just fine in most applications. There’s really a lot to like about Poco’s M3, and we’ll never complain about an IR blaster.


Poco M3 specs:

  • Display: 6.53-inch, Full HD+
  • SoC: Snapdragon 662
  • RAM: 4/6GB
  • Storage: 64/128GB
  • Cameras: 48, 2, and 2MP
  • Front camera: 8MP
  • Battery: 6,000mAh
  • Software: Android 10

There you have it, folks. These are our picks for the best phones with an IR blaster. Many other phones with IR blasters debuted last year, mostly from Chinese manufacturers like Xiaomi, Huawei, and Honor. If you’re looking for a Samsung or HTC-branded handset, you’ll have to go with something much older like the Galaxy S6 and One M9.