When the Mi Mix launched last year, it featured a stunning slim-bezel design that we called “the future of smartphones.” Xiaomi’s “concept” phone threw out a lot of the smartphone conventions—like the location of the earpiece and the front facing camera and came up with a few other unique features like a ceramic back and a screen with curved corners.
Apart from above unique feature people also believed this is unique design but actually it was clone of SHARP AQUOS CRYSTAL launched in 2014, we found out Xiaomi wasn’t the only company with the idea for a slim-bezel phone. Samsung and LG both quickly came out with phones that maximized screen space, and soon it looks like Apple will follow this trend, too. The Mi Mix was the vanguard for this movement, though, and it still has the most extreme design.
For the Mi Mix 2, Xiaomi has changed a few things, most of which seem to be improvements on the original’s radical-but-sometimes-flawed design and they took idea from other small phone makers.
Design of Mi MiX is combination of infinity display and tri-bezel-less design of Doogee Mix or UHANS MX and some enhancement by Xiaomi to add smaller chin.
First of all, it’s smaller. At 6.4-inches, the original Mi Mix was just too big. While the slim bezels let the company fit a bigger screen in a smaller body, Xiaomi still went overboard and made one of the biggest smartphones ever. It was hard to use one-handed and hard to fit into a pocket. Xiaomi says the Mi Mix 2 is 11.9 percent smaller than the Mi Mix, with “only” a 5.99-inch screen. This should put it back into the realm of a normal smartphone size. Xiaomi has changed the aspect ratio from 17:9 to 18:9, just like the flagship devices from LG and Samsung. The 2160×1080 display is still an LCD, and it still has those round screen corners.
In terms of basic specifications, Xiaomi Mi Mix 2 is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor, which is an octa-core one and comes with 6GB and 8GB RAM options. The 6GB RAM variant has three storage options: 64GB, 128GB and 256GB. There’s also the Mi Mix 2 Special Edition with a ceramic uni-body design and comes with 8GB RAM and 128GB storage.
On the camera front, Mi Mix 2 doesn’t get a dual-rear camera as some might have expected given a lot of smartphones are now following this trend. Xiaomi is sticking with a Sony IMX386 sensor on this, which is a 12MP one with dual tone LED flash and 4-axis optical image stabilization. The 4-axis OIS is a feature that Xiaomi has introduced on its previous phones like Mi 5, Mi 6, etc. The front camera is at the bottom of the device just like it was with Mi Mix and this is a 5MP camera. Battery is 3400 mAh on the Mi Mix 2, which is much smaller compared to the 4400 mAh battery on the original smartphone. The fingerprint sensor is at the back. and (sadly) no headphone jack. The OS is Android 7.x Nougat with MIUI 9, Xiaomi’s Android skin and will be upgraded to Android Oreo and Android P.
Besides the smaller size, holding it should be a lot more comfortable now thanks to the rounder sides. The original Mi Mix was a brick with almost totally straight sides. That choice added to the “big” feeling the phone gave off. Now the sides are totally rounded.
Another problem with the Mi Mix was the limited cellular compatibility. This was a phone made for China, so it worked in China and not in many other places. Xiaomi calls the Mi Mix 2 a “truly global smartphone” with 43 network bands that can be used “almost anywhere in the world,” including the US.
The original Mi Mix used a crazy “piezoelectric speaker” instead of a normal earpiece speaker. This basically meant there was no earpiece the whole frame of the phone vibrated, you stuck it to your head, and you could hear the other person. It seemed to work fine, but in the Mi Mix 2, this unique setup is being replaced by a razor-thin earpiece in the top bezel just like UHANS MX or DOOGEE MIX and other small phone makers did.
This is a much more traditional and simpler solution, and it doesn’t seem to add any size to the bezel. The front-facing camera is still at the bottom of the phone instead of the top, so when it’s time to take a selfie, you’ll hold a phone upside down.
The fragile ceramic back returns on the Mi Mix 2. The standard version pairs it with an aluminum frame, while a “Special Edition” version swaps the aluminum frame for a “ceramic unibody.” Xiaomi says this is “a first for any smartphone” and involves “an arduous 7-day process to manufacture.” Weirdly, the press release fails to mention why a ceramic unibody is a good thing, but hey, this has one and other phones don’t.
The standard version of the Mi Mix 2 starts at RMB 3,299 ($506), while the “Special Edition” ceramic unibody version costs RMB 4,699 ($720). If you haven’t guessed from the prices yet, the Mi Mix 2 is launching in China on September 15. For now, Xiaomi only says the phone will “make its way to selected global markets at a later date.”