Xiaomi’s phones are rare sightings in the united kingdom, but the company’s market dominance in China and increasingly India (where this Mi 5 goes on open sale tomorrow – 1 June) means many more folks are starting to discover of Xiaomi. Not officially sold here, the single method you’ll get your hands on one and is through unofficial channels. GearBest furnished our Xiaomi Mi 5 for review.
WHAT is the Xiaomi Mi5?
The Samsung Galaxy S7, LG G5 and HTC 10 are all amazing mobiles. No doubt about it. But, they’re also expensive. You’ll need to shell out at least £500 to buy each device outright or pay £40 a month as an element of a contract. But what if you can get a handset with a similar spec for hundreds of pounds less?
The Xiaomi Mi 5 is merely that mobile. It has a design like the amazing Galaxy S7, a camera with exactly the same megapixel count as the LG G5 along with the same CPU as the HTC 10. Yet it can be had for just £275.
It sounds like the perfect deal. And in several ways it is. The Xiaomi Mi 5 is a fantastic cellphone, with one major disadvantage. It’s not on sale in the UK, or Europe or even the USA. And it probably never will be. In case you prefer this phone then you will have to import it.
Xiaomi’s impressive performance is, in no small part, thanks to an admirable strategy of over providing with almost every iteration in its flagship “Mi” lineup, while additionally releasing several really remarkable budget smartphones within the “Redmi” lineup. Arriving almost two years after its predecessor, does Xiaomi’s latest main continue this trend of offering a flagship experience minus the main price?
- Appears Fantastic
- Lots of High-end Specs
- Lovely Screen
- Quick and comprehensive Camera
- Super Economical
- Have to import it
- Camera battles in low light
- Skin is nothing like Android 6.0
For comparison, same tests on an LG G5 were ran, which has an identical processor but 4GB of RAM and got a single-core outcome of 2296 and a multicore score of 5277.
Apps start quickly enough – a short pause is inescapable when an app isn’t already running in the background, but it didn’t feel like waiting for the telephone.
Though it shares a cost tier with the $249 OnePlus X phone, Xiaomi’s Mi 5 pulls ahead in the specs department. And I’m speaking substantive specs. The Mi 5’s Snapdragon 820 chipset is literally years ahead of the 801 inside the X, and its inclusion pays off in a big way.
Having experienced the glories of LG’s V10, Apple’s iPhone Google’s Nexus 6P, 6S Plus, and Samsung’s Note 5, it can’t take a look at the graphics the Mi 5 takes and be impressed. Sharpness and color accuracy are both lacking, even in well-illuminated images. Xiaomi relies on Qualcomm’s image-processing engine – which happens to be an exact area where companies like Apple, Samsung, and LG pour in their biggest investments to improve – and that holds it back.
Although many recently released flagship smartphones, like the Samsung Galaxy S7 and HTC 10, are shipping with quad HD displays, Xiaomi has chosen to stick with the tried-and-true full High Definition resolution. It respect this decision as 1080P panels are often cheaper, use less battery power, and nearly all users will likely not be able to notice a difference, notably at the Mi 5’s size.
The 5.15″ 1080P panel on the Mi 5 is also one of the finest we’ve seen, thanks to energetic and saturated colors, deep blacks, great contrast, and exceptional viewing angles. We also found sunshine readability as was the adaptive brightness characteristic, to be very good during our testing. MIUI manages brightness adjustments notably nicely, and I scarcely had to reach for the adaptive brightness slider something which can’t be said for all smartphones available today, during my testing.
With 802.11ac Wi Fi, Bluetooth 4.2 LE, NFC, and GPS with A-GPS, the Mi 5 offers the connectivity alternatives we expect from a main. Since it truly is an unlocked dual-SIM apparatus, you can use two phone numbers simultaneously. Cellular info will probably be limited to HSPA within the U.S., as neither AT&T’s nor Tmobile’s 4G LTE network is supported. We should also mention that you may not receive HSPA in some regions when using T-Mobile since the phone lacks AWS (1700/2100MHz) support.
Xiaomi’s Mi 5 feels amazing in the hand. With the right and left rear edges tapered to give a comfortable fit in the hand it has a Gorilla Glass 4 front and back, in common with the Samsung Galaxy S7. This mobile is thinner and lighter, though, only 7.25mm and 129g.
Although this rear panel can apparently be replaced should you decode it, the insides are not user-accessible. The SIM (two Nano SIMs if you like) is loaded using a slotted tray at the cellphones top left the edge, while the 3000mAh built in the battery could be non-removable but it’s amazingly fast to charge.
People frequently feel like a broken record when referring to software on Chinese phones. Whether it’s Meizu, Huawei or Oppo, the dilemma remains that all feel the need to tinker and alter Android so much that it’s nearly unrecognizable from Google’s creation.
Xiaomi, however, takes this to another level. The Mi 5 runs Marshmallow 6.0, and the cellphone can be shipped with the Google Play Store installed, but if you didn’t already know then you’d the handset featured a custom piece of software designed by Xiaomi.
Another strong area for the Xiaomi Mi 5 is its battery life. The 3,000mAh non-removable cell tucked under that glass back has managed to easily get me through the day, typically with about 10-15% to spare – even with intensive use.
A 30-minute gaming session playing Hitman Sniper eats through 13%, while a less-intensive title for example Monument Valley consumes around 8-9%. An hour of Spotify streaming on my commute takes up around 5%, which is quite striking and on a par with other phones with a 3,000mAh battery.
Overall, there ’s no denying that Xiaomi has made yet another superb smartphone. The Mi 5 undercuts the very best smartphones in the marketplace in price but not nearly as much in characteristics as in previous years. Although its lack of U.S. availability and 4G LTE support are a major hurdle, its low-light camera may be somewhat disappointing, and MIUI could use a few updates, there’s definitely a lot to love about the Xiaomi Mi 5.
Screen the Mi 5’s design, functionality, hardware, battery life, camera, and applications impressed us overall, which is astonishing at this price point. Xiaomi has yet again raised the bar for what an affordable smartphone should be, and much like previous years, rival OEMs will surely need to up their game to topple Xiaomi’s latest flagship.