“Xiaomi Mi 8 is a ‘notch’ above its predecessor”
It comes as no surprise that Xiaomi has carved a niche in the smartphone market. Every product from the brand’s stable offers cutting-edge technology with powerful hardware, without burning a hole in your pocket. The Chinese giant’s latest offerings – the Mi 8, Mi 8 Explorer Edition and Mi 8 SE – are no different as they bring several firsts. In this post, let’s take a look at the mainstay of the series, the Mi 8 and what it offers over its predecessor, the Mi 6 (first impressions).
Design and display
In a first for the brand, the Xiaomi Mi 8 sports a notch at the top of the display. It bears no resemblance to other notch-toting Android phones and the cut-out is similar to that of the iPhone X. But that also allows the phone to offer more secure face unlock method which uses IR to work even in dim settings, similar to the one seen on Apple’s latest flagship.
Coming to the design, the Mi 8 features a four-sided curved glass back and a 2.5D glass at the front, which is held together by an aviation-grade aluminium frame. At the fascia, the smartphone sports a 6.21-inch FHD+ Super AMOLED display. In contrast, the Mi 6 also sports a glass-sandwich design but features a smaller screen size of 5.15-inches bearing a resolution of 1,080 x 1,920 pixels.
There’s the Mi 8 Explorer Edition too, which offers a transparent back, making the smartphone even more exquisite.
Hardware and software
The Mi 8 is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 chipset, which promises more immersive experiences and faster on-device AI processing, in comparison to the last-gen Snapdragon 835, which powers its predecessor. Both the Mi 8 and Mi 6 come with 6GB RAM + 64GB internal storage for the base model. The Mi 8 is also available with 128GB and 256GB storage options. There’s the Mi 8 Explorer Edition as well, that comes with 8GB RAM.
Apart from this, the two phones carry similar connectivity options, such as dual-SIM support, NFC, Bluetooth and USB OTG. Interestingly, Xiaomi’s Mi 8 is also the first smartphone in the world to boast a dual-frequency GPS, which supports both L1 and L5 bands, which ensures accurate navigation.
For software, the Xiaomi Mi 8 boots the latest MIUI 10 running atop Android Oreo, whereas its previous iteration ships with MIUI 8 which is based on Android 7.1 Nougat. That said, the latest iteration of Xiaomi’s platform will be rolled out to other smartphones too, including the Mi 6.
Cameras and battery
And now the most distinguishing feature in smartphones – cameras. The Mi 8 features dual 12MP cameras, with one being a wide-angle sensor and the other, a telephoto lens. According to the DxOMark ratings, the phone offers an impressive quality as it scores 105 in the still photo test, surpassing the likes of the Google Pixel 2, iPhone X, and Samsung Galaxy S9+. What’s more? The phone has a 20MP front-facing camera that’ll let you take those stunning selfies powered by AI Beauty. On the other hand, the Mi 6 has a pair of 12-megapixel snappers at the back and an 8MP front shooter.
Lastly, a 3,400mAh battery backs the latest Xiaomi flagship, while the Mi 6 packs in slightly lesser power with a 3,350mAh cell.
Price and Availability
As of now, Xiaomi has not announced any official date for Mi 8’s launch in India. However, during its launch in China, the official teaser had a glimpse of Taj Mahal, which gives us a strong reason to believe that the India launch is on the cards. The phone’s price starts at RMB 2,699 (~ Rs 28,000) and goes all the way up to RMB 3,299 (~ Rs 34,000). The Explorer Edition is priced slightly higher at RMB 3,699 (~ Rs 39,000)
On the other hand, Xiaomi Mi 6 never made its way to India. Its prices started at RMB 2,499 (roughly Rs 23,500) in China for 64GB model, with the high-end variant carrying a sticker price of RMB 2,999 (roughly Rs 28,000).
Packed with a stunning design, top-notch internals, and high-rated cameras, the Xiaomi Mi 8 does seem like a solid upgrade over its previous avatar. And now it’s a wait-and-watch game to see if the device ever makes its way to India.