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Xiaomi Mi 4i Review

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Competition on our local smartphone market has never been this intense. Local brands are offering bang for buck smartphones with great specs as the Chinese brands drop the prices of their phones as well. The battle continues as Xiaomi introduces the Xiaomi Mi 4i to the market. It has great specs with a nice price. Should you consider buying one? Read on with the review.

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Xiaomi Mi 4i

  • 1.7GHz Octa Core Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 (2nd generation) 64-bit processor
  • Adreno 405 graphics
  • 2GB RAM
  • 16GB internal memory
  • 5-inch Full HD Sharp/JDI IPS LCD display (1920 x 1080 pixels) 441 ppi
  • 13 megapixel rear facing camera with autofocus and dual LED flash
  • 5 megapixel front facing camera
  • Dual SIM, Dual Standby
  • 4G/LTE, 3G/HSPA+, WiFi, WiFi hotspot, Bluetooth 4.1, USB OTG
  • GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS
  • 3,120 mAh battery
  • Android 5.0 Lollipop with MIUI 6
  • SRP: P9,799
  • Status: Available on Lazada and Mi Authorized Resellers
  • Buy on Lazada

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HARDWARE AND DESIGN:

Xiaomi has been know making no frills smartphones with simplistic look and the Mi 4i is no different. There are no fancy design cues, curves or striking colors. We were quite surprised that despite having a large 3,120 mAh battery, Xiaomi has managed to keep the phone slim and lightweight. If you plan to buy one, you are stuck with one color – gray. The Mi 4i also comes with other colors like yellow, white, pink and blue but we have no idea if these colors will be offered here.

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DISPLAY:

The 5-inch display is one of the best features of this phone. It is sharp, bright, has good color contrast and with excellent viewing angles. It can even withstand the harsh direct sunlight. It is such a joy to use outdoors thanks to Xiaomi’s Sunlight Display display technology that adjusts contrast and improves sunlight readability.

SOFTWARE AND PERFORMANCE:

All Xiaomi smartphone has a custom UI called MIUI on top of Android. Unfortunately, if you are looking for any traces of vanilla Android 5.1 Lollipop look here, you’ll see nothing. You’ll not even notice the difference between Lollipop running on the Mi 4i and KitKat running on the Redmi 2. They look so much alike. The experience is great as we never encountered any lag or stutter even when playing intense games. We do notice that the phone warms up a little after more than 20 minutes of gaming but not up to the point that you have to worry about overheating.

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CAMERA:

The 13 megapixel Sony sensor takes pretty good pictures in good lighting conditions. You can manually adjust exposure for better low light shots as well. We also managed to take pretty good selfies using the 5 megapixel Samsung camera.

Check out some of the sample shots below:

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CONNECTIVITY:

One gripe we have on this phone is the lack of expandable storage. We could wish that Xiaomi opted to use the SIM 2 slot as a microSD card slot expansion just like what Meizu did on the M2 Note. You’ll be stuck with the limited 16GB internal memory.

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As for the LTE connectivity, we used our Globe SIM and it worked fine. As of this writing, we inserted our Smart SIM but we wonder why we can’t get any LTE signal. Calls are clear too. Other connectivity options like WiFi and Bluetooth worked fine as well.

BATTERY:

Obviously, the battery never disappoints. Having a large 3,120 mAh battery means the phone can last a full day of regular use. On our heavy use, we managed to get around 4 hours and 20 minutes of screen on time. It includes about an hour of gaming, an hour of You Tube videos, two hours of IWantv and our usual social media, email, and calls at auto brightness with 4G on and WiFi on.

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VERDICT:

The Xiaomi Mi 4i feels like you are using a flagship smartphone at an affordable price. This phone should be on your smartphone shopping list – good camera, amazing display, decent battery life, slim and lightweight and no frills design.