Xiaomi hosted its 8th Anniversary Special event in Shenzhen, China where the company launched 7 products in total. The Mi 8-series smartphones are now official along with MIUI 10 interface, Mi Band 3 fitness band, Mi VR standalone headsets powered by Snapdragon 821 SoC, and the Mi TV 4 75-inch model. But the highlight of the event was the smartphone announcement, which includes the Mi 8, Mi 8 SE and the Mi 8 Explorer Edition. Here’s a look at the differences between the three smartphones.
The Mi 8 price starts at RMB 2,699 (approximately Rs 28,550) for the base variant with 64GB storage. The 128GB variant is priced at RMB 2,999 (approximately Rs 31,550), whereas the top end variant with 256GB storage will set you back by RMB 3,299 (approximately Rs 34,750).
The Mi 8 Explorer Edition, on the other hand, will set you back by RMB 3,699, which is approximately Rs 39,000. The compact Mi 8 SE is priced at RMB 1,799 (approximately Rs 18,900) for the base variant with 4GB RAM, and the higher variant with 6GB RAM will set you back by RMB 1,999 (approximately Rs 21,150).
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All three Xiaomi smartphones feature full HD+ AMOLED displays with an aspect ratio of 18.7:9 and a notch on top. While the Mi 8 and Mi 8 Explorer Edition smartphones feature a 6.21-inch panel, the Mi 8 SE comes with a slightly compact 5.88-inch display. The panel is HDR10 compliant, and screens on all three smartphones are covered with Corning Gorilla Glass protection.
The Mi 8 and the Mi 8 Explorer Edition smartphones are powered by the latest and fastest Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 octa-core SoC. The Mi 8 SE, on the other hand, is the first smartphone to be powered by the recently announced Qualcomm Snapdragon 710 octa-core SoC.
The Mi 8 comes with 6GB of RAM and three configurations with 64GB onboard storage, 128GB onboard storage or 258GB storage on board. The Mi 8 Explorer Edition, on the other hand, is only offered in one configuration with 8GB of RAM and 128GB storage. Lastly, the Mi 8 SE is offered in 4GB RAM with 64GB storage, or 6GB of RAM with 64GB storage.
After the likes of Huawei, Oppo and Vivo, even Xiaomi is going high on AI cameras. The Mi 8 and Mi 8 Explorer Edition feature vertically stacked dual cameras at the back. Out of the two, one is a 12-megapixel sensor with wide-angle lens, and the other is a 12-megapixel sensor with telephoto lens. Both cameras work together to add DSLR-like bokeh effects to your photos, and also enable 2X optical zoom.
The AI is capable of scene detection which can tweak contrast, white balance and other settings accordingly. You also get AI portrait mode for those depth of field effects. The Mi 8 has logged a photo score of 105 by DxOMark, leaving behind the iPhone X and Pixel 2. Up front, you get a 20-megapixel selfie camera with AI portrait selfies and beautify feature.
The Mi 8 SE also comes with AI dual cameras where the primary sensor is of 12-megapixel resolution, and the secondary is a 5-megapixel depth sensor. The AI includes Portrait mode, facial recognition, business card recognition, intelligent translation, and more. Up front, you get a 20-megapixel camera with AI background bokeh, and beauty mode.
Software and security
All three smartphones run on Android 8.1 Oreo OS with the latest MIUI 10 skin on top. MIUI 10 brings a number of improvements over the previous interface, and Xiaomi has added a lot of AI chops as well. Be it for the battery management or AI preload feature that anticipates the app you would need to preload them, and offer faster app load times.
In terms of security, all three smartphones get Infrared based 3D face unlock feature. And while the Mi 8 and Mi 8 SE come with a fingerprint sensor at the back, the Mi 8 Explorer Edition comes with an in-display fingerprint scanning technology.
Connectivity and battery
Connectivity options on the Mi 8-series smartphones include Bluetooth, 4G LTE with VoLTE, dual GPS and Wi-Fi 802.11ac and USB Type-C port for charging and data transfer. To keep things ticking, you get a 3,400mAh battery on the Mi 8, a 3,000mAh battery on the Mi 8 Explorer Edition, whereas the Mi 8 SE gets a 3,120mAh battery.
Xiaomi Mi 8 vs Mi 8 Explorer Edition vs Mi 8 SE: Comparison table
|Features||Xiaomi Mi 8||Xiaomi Mi 8 Explorer Edition||Xiaomi Mi 8 SE|
|Display||6.21-inch Full HD+||6.21-inch Full HD+||5.88-inch Full HD+|
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 octa-core||Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 octa-core||Huawei Kirin 970 octa-core|
|Rear Camera||Dual 12-megapixel + 12-megapixel||Dual 12-megapixel + 12-megapixel||Dual 12-megapixel + 5-megapixel|
|Connectivity||4G LTE, Dual-SIM, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth||4G LTE, Dual-SIM, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth||4G LTE, Dual-SIM, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth|
|Android OS||Android 8.1 Oreo with MIUI 10||Android 8.1 Oreo with MIUI 10||Android 8.1 Oreo with MIUI 10|
|Security||Fingerprint sensor and infrared face unlock||In-display fingerprint sensor and infrared face unlock||Fingerprint sensor and infrared face unlock|