comscore Xiaomi Mi 6 hands-on and first impressions: Innovative design and visible craftsmanship
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Xiaomi Mi 6 hands-on and first impressions: Innovative design and visible craftsmanship

After the not-so-impressive Mi 5, Xiaomi has made amends by launching the impressive Mi 6. Here are my first impressions.

xiaomi-mi-6-first-impressions-1

After a relatively long wait, Xiaomi launched its flagship Mi 6 smartphone in China last month. The smartphone is currently restricted to its home country, and Xiaomi is yet to reveal any plans for a launch in other countries, including India. I however got to spend some time with the Xiaomi Mi 6 recently, and here are my first impressions. Also Read - Good news for iPhone loves! Apple beats Xiaomi to regain second position in global smartphone market

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The first thing that hits you when you lay your eyes on the Xiaomi Mi 6 is its design. Just saying it looks premium doesn t do the smartphone any justice. The Mi 6 boasts a combination of stainless steel and glass, and the curved glass on four sides adds to the oomph factor. The glass wraps around the edges, which gives it a look similar to what we see on the recently launched Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+. Also Read - Top 5 OnePlus 9RT alternatives: OnePlus Nord 2 5G, Samsung Galaxy A52s 5G, more

xiaomi-mi-6-first-impressions-6Adding to the classiness is an expensive ceramic version. The glossy look gives the device a premium feeling, and this particular variant also comes with 18K gold-plated camera rings. The use of ceramic makes this variant a tad heavier than the standard Mi 6 variant, but there s a visible improvement in premium-ness as well. The Mi 6’s body is splash resistant, which means it can survive an accidental splash of water or light rains but not a dunk in water.

xiaomi-mi-6-first-impressions-3Xiaomi has gone the Apple way, and ditched the 3.5mm audio jack. Instead there’s an USB Type-C port placed at the bottom. In a statement to AndroidCentral, the company revealed the reasons for this move “Smartphones are highly-integrated products and internal space is precious, the statement says. By removing the headphone jack, we can save room for other components such as a bigger battery. Audio through USB Type-C is becoming more common, and will continue to provide excellent sound quality. Another talking point is the fingerprint sensor, which is placed under the front glass.

While the Xiaomi Mi 6 is quite clearly a very good looking phone, it does have a couple of issues. For one the glossy body is a magnet for fingerprints and smudges. In the short time I spent with them, I had to wipe the two devices constantly between clicking photos. The combination of steel and glass also makes the Mi 6 very slippery. While it fits into one s palms comfortably, you get a sense that it could slip out of your hands if you are not careful. It is highly recommended that you use a case that will not only protect the device, but also offer some much-needed grip.

xiaomi-mi-6-first-impressions-2With the design bit out of the way, let s dive in a bit deeper. The Xiaomi Mi 6 flaunts a 5.15-inch full HD (1920×1080 pixels) display, which is sharp and offers good viewing angles. Under the hood is Qualcomm s latest Snapdragon 835 SoC, which incidentally also powers Samsung s latest flagship devices. The processor is paired with 6GB of RAM, and needless to say, smooth performance will be the least of your concerns.

The Xiaomi Mi 6 s USP is its photographic chops. At the back is dual-camera setup, which includes a pair of 12-megapixel snappers. With a functionality that is similar to the Apple iPhone 7 Plus, the setup includes one 12-megapixel wide-angle lens, while the other is a 12-megapixel telephoto lens for lossless 2x zoom. In the short time with the smartphone, I found the camera performance to be quite impressive. The portrait or dual mode lets you easily click photos with bokeh effect. Xiaomi says that it has used binocular stereoscopic vision imaging and depth learning algorithms to make edge recognition more accurate in photos. Up front, there’s an 8-megapixel snapper, which is again good enough for casual selfies.

xiaomi-mi-6-first-impressions-4Besides the design, and the dual-camera setup, the talking point of the Xiaomi Mi 6 will no doubt be the price tag. Despite boasting specifications and features on par with the likes of Samsung Galaxy S8 and LG G6, prices for the Xiaomi Mi 6 start from RMB 2,499 (Rs 23,500 approximately) and go up to RMB 2,999 (Rs 28,000 approximately) for the ceramic version. As you may have guessed, these are half the price of what the premium flagship smartphones retail at.

There s currently no word on whether Xiaomi has any plans to launch the Mi 6 in India. But if it does, the flagship smartphone is likely to be placed in a segment dominated by the OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T. Xiaomi s previous flagship device, the Mi 5, was not what you would call a success, and there s a lot riding on the Mi 6 to reverse the company s fortunes. In the short time I spent with the smartphone, it managed to impress me. My final judgments will however be reserved until I have spent more time reviewing the Xiaomi Mi 6.

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  • Published Date: May 6, 2017 11:04 AM IST


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