Chinese tech maker Xiaomi held their event last night (or this morning if you want to be technical), sneaking in ahead of Samsung’s Unpacked event later today. During the event, it confirmed some rumours surrounding some of the products it showcased and had a few surprises as well.
Xiaomi Mi Mix 4
The Mi Mix 4 was one of the more anticipated products slated for launch at this event. The big buzz here is Xiaomi’s first use of a technology called Camera Under Panel (CUP) to give you a completely bezel-less screen without losing the front-facing camera.
There have, of course, been other ways to achieve the same result. Xiaomi tried the manual screen slider in its Mi Mix 3, but this way uses diamond-shaped pixels and a redesigned circuit array and that’s way cooler to say.
The other specs of the phone are pretty much what you’d expect from a flagship-tier device. You’ll get a 6.67in AMOLED display with 10-bit colour and 120Hz refresh rate, but it’s limited to 1080p because of the under-screen camera. Too many pixels would get in the way. Unfortunately, there’s no second screen on the back, those renders fibbed.
The Mi Mix 4 will also feature a 4500mAh battery and Xiaomi’s new charging technology. While it’s not the HyperCharge technology with 200W, 120W wired and 67W wireless charging it’s still pretty damn fast. It’ll also come with Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 888+ 5G chip and 19 antennas so you don’t have to hold it up in the air to look for a signal. You can expect the standard options for memory and storage, 8GB or 12GB of RAM and 128GB, 256Gb or 512GB of ROM.
Around the back, you’ll find a rather large camera bump that houses the 108MP main shooter, a 13MP ultra-wide with a 120-degree view and an 8MP periscope camera that offers 5x optical or 50x digital zoom. It’ll be interesting to see how the pictures measure up against other 108MP sensors because a bigger number doesn’t always equal better pictures.
Its pricing starts at RMB4999 (Renminbi), which is about $770 or roughly R11,400. That’s if you get it directly from Mainland China. Xiaomi wasn’t too forthcoming on international availability or pricing.
Xiaomi Mi Pad 5
The Mi Pad 5 was another hotly anticipated product, and while there were some rumours about it before the event, nothing specific was known until now. Firstly, it doesn’t look like we’ll be seeing the range of 3 pads on launch, Xiaomi only showed off the Mi Pad 5 and 5 Pro. The latter will also receive a 5G option. That doesn’t mean we might not get a third later but we’ll have to wait and see.
Both the regular and pro models feature an 11in 2.5K (2560×1600) LCD display, with 500 nit brightness and 1500:1 contrast. They boast a 120Hz refresh rate, HDR 10 and Dolby Vision compatibility.
The differences between the models start at the chip inside. The early rumours were correct that the regular Mi Pad 5 will get the Snapdragon 860, and the Pro the 870. The 5 Pro will also get 67W fast charging for its 8600mAh battery, smaller than the regular’s 8720mAh.
Both will be compatible with Xiaomi’s new keyboard and stylus which magnetically attaches to the tablet.
The Mi Pad 5 is available in Mainland China, priced from RMB1999 (R4555/$308). The Mi Pad 5 Pro starts from RMB2499 (R5694/$385). As with the Mi Mix 4, there’s no news yet on if this will be available internationally and how that might affect the price.
Xiaomi Cyberdog – what?
While these two devices were eagerly awaited, the biggest surprise was the third ‘device’ that Xiaomi showcased. We’re not talking about the mini smart speaker (more details on that when they’re known) but Xiaomi’s version of Spot, the robotic quadruped from Boston Dynamics. You can read all about it here.
With all this tech on offer at very reasonable price points Samsung better bring it’s A game today or we could see Xiaomi booting it from the top global smartphone manufacturer spot. Just not another robot dog, please Samsung.