- Adam Doud , Pocketnow
The Xiaomi Mi Note has top quality design and feel, but the insides don't live up to the outsides.
- Premium design and build quality
- Fast performance
- HD display
- Excellent camera quality
- Glass back panel attracts smudges
- Not available in all countries
The Xiaomi Mi Note is the company's flagship phablet and competes directly with the likes of Apple and Samsung. Reviewers note that it bears design hallmarks of both manufacturers – the metal frame of the iPhone 5 and curved back of the Galaxy Note Edge. Both the front and back of the device is protected by Gorilla Glass completing the premium look of the Mi Note. At 0.3 inches thick it is also thinner than the iPhone 6 Plus and weighs a scant 156 gram; almost too light and thin for some critics. The only niggle experts had with this was that the back panel attracted smudges. Besides this, however, they applaud its build quality and overall design calling it "gorgeous."
There's another area where the Mi Note emulates the iPhone – the UI. When experts compared them side-by-side the cosmetic similarities were obvious from the icons to the drop down menu. It does, however, run on Android so it has access to the Google Play store as well as its own Mi app store.
Despite its low cost, the Mi Note doesn't make any concessions in the hardware department. The most obvious feature is its 5.7-inch, 1080p LCD display. Critics had no problem with the screen sharpness, color balance or viewing angles. Sitting behind the screen is a 2.5GHz quad-core processor and 3GB of RAM. It offers two performance modes – balanced and performance – with balanced as the default. Based on benchmark tests, balanced mode throttled the CPU maxing it out at 1.7GHz while performance offers unhindered CPU and RAM usage. Regardless of what mode they used, experts didn't notice any slowdowns when swiping through the OS or performing basic task and even playing some casual games. The balanced mode is meant to get more life out of the 3,000mAh battery and, in fact, lasted experts a full day of moderate usage.
The Mi Note comes equipped with a 13MP rear camera and optical image stabilization technology. When put to the test, experts were able to take detailed and color accurate images in almost every lighting situation, though they point out it loses some detail in night time shots. Still, they commend its performance with Ars Technica stating, "There is nothing to complain about in the camera department."
Reviewers highly recommend the Xiaomi Mi Note for those that can get their hands on it. CNET states, "The Xiaomi is one heck of a phone…I'm very much taken with its design, performance and features." IB Times adds, "The Xiaomi Mi Note is what I wish the iPhone 6 looked like."
Reviews (8.7/10 Avg. rating)
Don’t judge a book by its gorgeous cover
At the end of the day, what you’re left slipping into your pocket is a good phone, built with great materials, for a good/great price – depending on where you live in the world. It’s a great phone to hold in your hand and it stands out in a crowd. Unfortunately, that’s where the great stops. Everything else about this phone from the internals to the camera, to the software merely falls into the good category. Is that a problem? Not at all, but we don’t want to pretend this phone is anything it is not.
The outside covering is what makes the first impr... Full review
One very solid device from hardware to software
An affordable flagship
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