“The Mi 8 is the first smartphone from the brand to come with a notch display”

Xiaomi’s much-hyped Annual Product Launch event didn’t disappoint as the brand has unveiled not one, not two but three smartphones at once. The spotlight, of course, was on the flagship, the Xiaomi Mi 8, which seems to be loaded smartphone for the price. And its Explorer Edition is an even more beautiful option to consider. If you’re wondering what all makes these smartphones special, then let’s take a look at the top 8 features of the Mi 8 and Mi 8 Explorer Edition.

A full-screen experience

Xiaomi Mi 8 official phone

Both the Xiaomi Mi 8 and Mi 8 Explorer Edition comes equipped with a 6.21-inch Super AMOLED display, which has minimal bezels on all its sides. At the top, the large notch does act as a blemish, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that the screen will offer an immersive visual experience. It’s quite sharp as well thanks to a resolution of 1,080 x 2,248 pixels with an aspect ratio of 18.7:9.

Secure face unlock 

While the cut-out at the top of the display might be an eyesore, it does promise a lot of security for the face unlock mechanism. The notch houses a couple of infrared sensors that emulate the iPhone X’s Face ID hardware. This means you get hardware-level face unlock functionality that’s not just more secure, but also works in low light scenarios. This feature also allows the company to offer Animojis.

AI-powered dual rear cameras 

As expected, two cameras can be found at the back of the Xiaomi Mi 8. Both of them sport 12MP sensors and are accompanied by various AI features. These cameras are optically stabilised, and allow capturing 4K clips at 60fps. The presence of this dual camera setup, also means that a portrait mode will be present, along with the 2x optical zoom.

Powerful hardware

Xiaomi Mi 8 official FB

For the Mi 8 and Mi 8 Explorer Edition, Xiaomi has utilised the Snapdragon 845 SoC, which is the best in the business right now. This chipset’s 2.8GHz octa-core processing power will be complemented by 6GB of RAM, which should ensure blissfully smooth performance. And if you buy the phone’s Explorer Edition, the RAM will go from 6GB to 8GB.

Dual-frequency GPS

This is a first for any smartphone till now. The dual-frequency GPS functionality of the Xiaomi Mi 8 and its Explorer Edition will ensure that navigation and location services will work better than ever before. This technology reduces the interference that occurs when tall buildings are nearby, and thus is more accurate than regular GPS.

High-res front camera with AI capabilities

Xiaomi Mi 8 Front Camera

The Xiaomi Mi 8 comes fitted with a 20MP front camera which is accompanied by MIUI’s new AI Portrait feature. It’s a software-level tweak that allows the camera to offer deep bokeh effects without the use of a secondary camera, just like on the Pixel 2 phones from Google. There’s AI-backed beautify mode on offer as well. 

An exquisite design

MI 8 Dual Camera

With an aluminium frame that’s sandwiched between two glass slabs, the Xiaomi Mi 8 looks quite premium. The front surface is particularly attractive to look at thanks to its minimal bezel approach.

Explorer Edition takes the smartphone design to the next level 

Xiaomi Mi 8 EE

The more expensive Explorer Edition of the Mi 8 comes with an in-display fingerprint scanner. But that’s not the only change it bears over its regular sibling. This version also offers a transparent back panel that looks gorgeous, along with striking a chord with the inner nerd in you. 

Related read: Xiaomi Mi 8 vs OnePlus 6

All these features definitely make the Xiaomi Mi 8 a smartphone to watch out for. Its attractive price, which starts at CNY 2,699 (approximately Rs 28,300), poses a big challenge to the OnePlus 6 (review) and the other handsets in this price range. Now if only the brand brings it to the subcontinent…