Xiaomi smartphone series have been infamous for offering incredible specifications at extremely competitive prices and 2017’s Mi6 is no different. After the success of last year’s Mi5, the latest Xiaomi phone looks to continue the company’s onslaught on the entire market. The Mi6 builds on the things that made the Mi5 click with customers while adding enough to the phone to make it stand out from the crowd.
The phone’s body shares some design cues with recent Samsung flagships. The front and back are covered in glass and the front mounted fingerprint scanner is also under the glass. Xiaomi touted the use of four directional 3D glass on the Mi6 which supposedly makes it feel more natural and ergonomic in the hand.
The dual cameras on the back do not protrude from the body. The phone is also splash resistant although a specific IP rating has not been quoted. The main speaker is downward firing but like the iPhone 7, the earpiece acts as a secondary speaker thus creating a stereo experience. A glaring omission from the body is the 3.5mm headphone jack. This is an unnecessary removal that will surely be annoying and cause inconvenience. There is a more premium build of this mobile phone with a ceramic back and 18 carats gold lining the camera rims.
The specifications are the main point of interest for most people. Xiaomi Mi6 comes with an octa-core (4 x 2.45 GHz Kryo & 4 x 1.9 GHz Kryo) Snapdragon 835 processor. Yes, you read that correctly, a Snapdragon 835. This means that the Mi6 is the only mobile phone other than the Samsung Galaxy S8 that will ship with this coveted processor anytime soon (and that too at a relatively affordable price). Backing the CPU are 4GB of RAM, 64GB of built-in storage and a large 3,350mAh battery. A version with 6GB RAM and 128GB storage will also be available. The premium ceramic model with 18 carats gold will also be up for sale with a 6GB RAM and 128GB internal storage configuration.
Xiaomi added a dual camera setup to their new flagship thus joining the likes of Apple, LG and Huawei. Xiaomis’s approach is like Apple’s in that one camera has a telephoto lens while the other has a wide angle lens. This combination allows for lossless zooming at 2X as well as a bokeh mode. The rear camera has 4 axis OIS but Xiaomi has not clarified if this is true for both the sensors. Both cameras are 12MP with one lens having a f/1.8 aperture while the other has a f/2.6 aperture. The front-facing camera is 8MP that can record 1080p video.
The IPS screen is 5.15 inches across with a 1080p resolution with the standard aspect ratio of 16:9. Many were surprised that Xiaomi did not implement the bezel-less design from the Mi Mix but my guess is that Xiaomi stuck to this design to keep costs low. This move makes the mobile phone look less attractive when compared to devices like the Samsung Galaxy S8 and LG G6.
The Xiaomi Mi6 will ship with Android 7.1.1 Nougat starting on April 28th in China. Other markets will follow soon after. The standard 4GB RAM-64GB internal storage model costs approximately $360 whereas the 6GB RAM-128GB internal storage model costs about $420. The premium ceramic and gold model will cost $435. Pricing similar to this can be expected in the Bangladeshi market within the coming months. So far the latest Xiaomi smartphone looks to be a very compelling mobile phone. I am keen to see which device captures this year’s title of flagship killer as the Mi6 offers almost everything of interest.