There’s no official price or availability yet but Xiaomi wants to confirm that the Mi MIX 3 will be making its way here before the year ends. We got a brief hands-on time with the Mi MIX 3 during Xiaomi’s media workshop for the phone today and we’re going to share our initial impressions of the device.

First, here’s a quick rundown of the specs:

Display: 6.39” Super AMOLED display, Corning Gorilla Glass (2,340 x 1,080 resolution)

SIM: Dual nano, dual standby

Operating system: Android 9.0 Pie

Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 octa-core 4 x 2.8GHz

GPU: Adreno 630

Memory: 6/8/10GB RAM

Storage: 128GB/256GB internal

Cameras: Rear – 12MP wide with f/1.8 aperture, 1/2.55”, Dual Pixel PDAF, 4-axis OIS, 1.4µm + 12MP telephoto, 1/3.4”, 1.0µm, up to 2160p@30/60fps video + 1080p@960fps; Front – 24MP, 1/2.8”, 0.9µm + 2MP, depth sensor, 1080p@30fps

Connectivity & I/O ports: Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band/Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot; Bluetooth 5.0, A2DP, aptX HD, LE; GPS with dual-band A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS, GALILEO, QZSS; NFC; USB Type-C 1.0 reversible connector

Other features: Rear-mounted fingerprint sensor

Battery: Non-removable Li-Ion 3,200mAh, fast charging (Quick Charge 4.0+), wireless charging

Dimensions & weight: 157.9 x 74.7 x 8.5mm, 218g

The MIX line is Xiaomi’s line of devices where the company gets experimental. The company is proud to say they’re the first to introduce the “real full screen” device when it launched the Mi MIX back in 2016. And it has continued that tradition with the Mi MIX 3. Even with a 6.39-inch display, it doesn’t feel as big or hefty in hand. For the most part it’s still a two-handed device but you’ll still be able to use it with just one hand. With the sides tapering off, it’s comfortable to hold in hand.

The Mi MIX 3 comes in three colors—Jade Green, Sapphire Blue, and Onyx Black, plus a special edition Palace Museum model—and we got to play around with the Jade Green model. Its color is similar to the Emerald Green shade of the Huawei Mate 20 Pro but with a smooth, ceramic back. It feels slightly slippery in hand and a bit of a fingerprint magnet. The device has an aluminum rim and hardened glass for the front.

You get the volume rocker and power button on the right and the SIM tray and an AI button for Xiaomi’s own Xiao Ai voice assistant. It charges via the USB Type-C port or wirelessly. One significant thing missing here is the 3.5mm audio jack. You will get a USB Type-C-to-headphone jack adapter, if you still prefer wired audio accessories over wireless ones.

What’s also missing here is the mostly maligned notch. The Mi MIX 3 keeps to the tradition of the series and its full-screened devices. It manages to keep it this way by introducing a magnetic slider to the Mi MIX 3 to hide the dual front-facing cameras and an LED flash.

There’s a satisfying click to sliding down the display to reveal the front-facing cameras. Xiaomi is even introducing customizable sounds for the slider for a touch of whimsy. Unlike a traditional spring slider, Xiaomi claims better durability for this device and promises up to 300,000 slides. Aside from how this affects durability of the phone, one thing the slider takes away is the possibility of waterproofing the phone.

Now, if you aren’t big on selfies, you might not even find that much use for it, thus extending the life of the device. But according to Xiaomi’s Director for Southeast Asia John Chen, the slider can also be used to answer calls and even access customizable shortcuts.

As a quad-camera-toting smartphone, Xiaomi claims the Mi MIX 3 has the company’s most powerful smartphone camera setup to date. It can handle steady handheld night photography, reduce noise, and use its AI capabilities to stabilize your videos and even allow for real-time AI bokeh effect for your selfies. The cameras on this phone can also handle 960fps slow motion videos. And it packs in an LED flash for the front shooter, a feature that’s usually omitted but since Xiaomi hid the feature away it could easily add it here.

We tried shooting around at the venue for today’s launch and found that it easily focuses and seems to handle low light environments pretty well. Its AI mode seems to correctly identify the objects we point at. But we’d need more time to see how it works in other conditions. For now, here are some sample shots we took with the Mi MIX 3.

Taken with the default mode without turning on AI

Taken in default photo mode with AI on

Trying out the Portrait Mode with the rear cameras

Shot in default Photo mode with AI turned on

Trying out Portrait mode with AI on for the front camera

As we mentioned earlier, Xiaomi doesn’t have official prices yet, but it promises to bring the device in before 2018 ends. Chen also mentioned the possibility of bringing the 5G version of the Mi MIX 3 but this depends on how fast our telcos can roll out the technology.

About The Author

Nicole Batac
Managing Editor

Nicole calls herself an accidental techie that has learned to love all things consumer tech since she started with this line of work around seven years ago. In her spare time, she devours books, TV shows, movies, and a large amount of Japan-related entertainment.

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