The Xiaomi Mi Mix 2 has just been announced here in Beijing, and although it really shouldn’t come as a surprise, it’s much more refined – and practical – than its predecessor. Despite the fact that there are already quite a number of smartphones with very minimal bezels in the market now, the Mi Mix 2 is still quite an impressive smartphone.
And the best part is, the Mi Mix 2 is priced very, very competitively. Then again, its affordable price tag also comes with a few caveats.
Unlike the original Xiaomi Mi Mix, the Mi Mix 2 is a much more practical smartphone. The piezoelectric speaker – while technologically impressive – has been replaced with a conventional one. The reasoning? It’s so that people nearby the device won’t be able to hear your phone calls – that’s one of the inherent disadvantages of the piezoelectric speaker.
The Mi Mix 2 is much more compact than its predecessor.
Aside from that (and this is a big one), the Mi Mix 2 is now much, much more compact than the first Mi Mix. Not only is the former sporting a smaller 5.99-inch display, it’s also a taller 18:9 panel not unlike the ones found on the LG G6 and LG V30. Thanks to the taller aspect ratio, the width of the Mi Mix 2 isn’t all that different from, say, a conventional 5.5-inch smartphone.
Beyond these practical improvements, the Mi Mix 2 naturally comes with hardware you’d expect from a 2017 flagship smartphone. These include a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chipset paired with 6GB of RAM, up to a whopping 256GB storage, a 3,400mAh battery, a 12MP IMX386 rear camera – the same primary sensor used on the Xiaomi Mi 6 – and a 5MP front-facing shooter.
Well-built, and theoretically more durable.
Xiaomi’s Mi devices are generally very well-built, and the same goes for the Mi Mix 2. It has a nice heft to it (this phone weighs 185g), the ceramic back feels very premium, and the rounded aluminium frame is ergonomically-sound. Seeing how the Mi Mix 2 doesn’t have the brittle ceramic frame of its predecessor, it should theoretically be more durable too.
Design, of course, is also one of the Mi Mix 2’s most noteworthy aspects. Much like the Essential Phone, the Mi Mix 2 has very little top bezel; only the bottom bezel is slightly thicker, and that’s where the front-facing camera is placed too. Yes, it’s the same awkward position, and I’ll have to turn the phone upside down to take a selfie.
In the performance department, the Mi Mix 2’s Snapdragon 835 chipset should be more than capable at delivering a pleasant user experience. Switching between different apps is fast, there’s no noticeable lag or stutter while navigating through the phone’s user interface, and apps launch quickly too.
But in the camera department, the Mi Mix 2 is…slightly underwhelming. Although it has the same 12MP primary sensor found on the Mi 6, it lacks the latter’s secondary telephoto lens. Basically, there’s no 2x optical zoom or Portrait Mode on the Mi Mix 2.
That being said, the Mi Mix 2 does appear to be a decent shooter. If it’s anything like the Mi 6’s camera, this phone should be able to take great-looking shots. It’ll be interesting to see how the Mi Mix 2’s camera performs in low-light conditions; the Mi 6 didn’t fare very well in less than ideal lighting.
The Xiaomi Mi Mix 2, in a lot of ways, is a more practical take on the original Mi Mix. It’s more compact, it’s more affordable, and most of all, it’s a more refined and focused smartphone. However, it has several diadvantages too: it lacks quite a number of features found on other flagship devices.
For one, there’s no form of dust or water resistance. To top it off, the Mi Mix 2 forgoes the 3.5mm headphone jack too. Oh, it only comes with a 2160 x 1080 LCD display as well; no AMOLED or 1440p display here.
Lacks several key features, but competitively priced.
However, the lack of these features – well, except for the 3.5mm headphone jack – makes sense once we take into account the Mi Mix 2’s competitive price tag: the base model with 64GB of storage and 6GB of RAM retails at only 3299 Chinese yuan (about RM2,120). At that price point, there’s really no denying the Mi Mix 2’s sheer value for money.
At the moment, it still remains to be seen if the Mi Mix 2 will ever be brought into Malaysia officially. Then again, considering the fact that the device supports 43 different bands, we reckon the Mi Mix 2 won’t just be a China-only product. Hopefully, the Mi Mix 2 will be officially sold in Malaysia in the near future; if priced right, it may be a winner for Xiaomi.
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