Xiaomi and Asus both unleashed their A game today in India with the launch of Mi4i and Zenfone 2 lineup respectively. While Xiaomi already has two Mi4 variants selling in 15 to 20k price range after a fresh price cut, Mi4i will threaten the low end Zenfone 2 model and in fact every budget Anroid phone, selling in India today. Here are our first impressions of Xiaomi’s next big thing.
Xiaomi Mi4i Quick Specs
- Display Size: 5 Inch with, 1920 x 1080 Full HD resolution, Gorilla Glass 3 protection
- Processor: 1.7 GHz Snapdragon 615 Octa Core
- RAM: 2 GB
- Software Version: Android 5.0 Lollipop based MIUI
- Primary Camera: 13 MP AF camera with Dual Tone LED flash, F 2.0 Wide angle lens
- Secondary Camera: 5 MP, With F1.8 Lens
- Internal Storage: 16 GB
- External Storage: no
- Battery: 3120 mAh battery Lithium Ion
- Connectivity: 3G, 4G LTE, Wi-Fi 802.11 ac, Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP, aGPS, 3.5mm audio jack, FM Radio
- Others: Dual SIM – Yes, both support 4G
Design, Build and Display
Xiaomi Mi4 is a plastic phone alright, but it is every bit as premium as you would want it to be. The unibody handset is quite slim (138.1 mm x 69.6 x 7.8 mm) and feels well balanced and substantial when held in hand. Button and port placement is similar to what we conventionally see on Xiaomi phones.
The matte finish back panel folds and extends to form side edges. On the rear side, it has an unobtrusive Mi logo and a wide speaker grill close to the bottom, while the rear camera sensor flanked by dual tone LED flash and secondary microphone are hushed up in the left corner.
For now Xiaomi will be selling white color variant in India, but other colors will be available soon. Only black and white color variants have matte finish back, rest of colors have glossy plastic. Since Xiaomi is launching a plastic variant of its flagship phone, comparison with iPhone 5c are inevitable.
Xiaomi has successfully delivered some amazing IPS LCD displays in the past and the 5 Inch full HD JDI display on Xiaomi Mi4 continues this tradition. Viewing angles, brightness and colors are all very satiating. It has a scratch resistant OGS Glass from Corning which means there is no gap between display and digitizer. The display is laminated and is labeled as ‘sunlight display’, which essentially means contrast will adjust itself when you are out in the harsh summer sun to make it more readable.
Processor and RAM
Xiaomi Mi4i is powered by28 nm Snapdragon 615 chipset, which includes 2 set of Cortex A53 cores in big.LITTLE architecture. One cluster can run at maximum frequency of 1.7 GHz and other power efficient one is clocked at 1.1 GHz. Xiaomi claims 40,253 score on Antutu and 25,686 on Quadrant, but you are advised to take these with a pint of salt.
The chipset is the same one which we saw on Yureka, though the clock frequency has been marginally increased. The Snapdragon chip will also benefit from Adreno 405 GPU and 2 GB LPDDR3 RAM, which will ensure that MIUI 6 remains efficient and lag free in the long run.
Camera and Internal Storage
The rear camera on Xiaomi Mi4i has a 13 MP sensor and is complimented with a real tone flash and f2.0 wide aperture lens. Since it is the same setup which was used in flagship Mi4 and Mi Note, this could be a very sweet deal for the price.
The 5 MP selfie shooter looks pretty good too. Xiaomi has used a 5 MP front facing lens. The selfie camera has 36 beautify profiles which are supposed to make you look beautiful. A refocus feature is also present, which Xiaomi calls magic focus. Xiaomi talked a lot about its HDR technology and it does look like Xiaomi is doing something right here.
Internal storage is 16 GB but there is no MicroSD card slot for further expansion. Out of this 16 GB only 10.6 GB is available at user end. Aggressive users can eat that up in no time, but for basic and moderate users, this won’t necessarily be a deal breaker.
User Interface and Battery
For the first time Xiaomi has unveiled Android 5.0 Lollipop based MIUI6, which is similar to MIUI 6 we have experienced before. We like MIUI6 as its vibrant, feature rich and intuitive. This time since it is based on Android 5.0 Lollipop, we would like to test its power efficiency over a period of usage.
Battery capacity is 3120 mAh and Xiaomi claims this can last for upto 1.5 days on normal usage. This is again impressive since the handset is only 7.8 mm thick. Since it is a unibody device, battery is sealed inside.
Xiaomi Mi4i Photo Gallery
Xiaomi Mi4i is a dialed down version of Xiaomi Mi4, designed to pass on the same experience for basic and moderate users, to a lower price. It checks all the right boxes and is expected to be the new hot selling commodity in 10k to 15k price range. However, the limited 10 GB storage means it is far from perfect. Be will give our final verdict after spending some more time with the device, but for now one thing is sure, Xiaomi has successfully stolen Asus’s thunder.