Wednesday 5 September 2018

Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S ★★★☆☆

Xiaomi’s gotten a $70 Billion valuation recently which just proves how mighty they are since they don’t officially sell in USA & most of Europe yet. One of the reasons for that is their flagship Mix series of phones which paved the way for bezel-less, no notch nonsense design before anyone else even thought about it. Let's find out if the 3rd model in the Mix series, the 2S is a hit.

The upgrades in the 'S' model over the previous Mi Mix 2 include a faster Snapdragon 845 processor, a dual-camera with AI and Qi wireless charging. It still has the almost bezel-less and also notch-less 18:9 large-screen, and a shiny ceramic design that, on the black model (it's also available in white), features an 18K gold ring on the rear. Importantly, the touch on the ceramic is smooth but as slippery as an eel.
All models are available in black (with 18K gold trim) or white (with chrome trim), with the same 5.99in display and 3400mAh battery. 

There are no buttons on the front and the fingerprint sensor is at the back comfortable to access.
The only complaint though is the chin that holds the front camera is at the bottom which means often you might need to turn the phone upside down for a selfie. It's still not waterproof, and that’s disappointing.

It supports wireless charging which is slower than the Quick charge 3.0 bundled power adaptor in the box that can go from 0-55% in 30 mins. Being a Dual sim device, Xiaomi hasn’t made the 2nd slot a hybrid one, so there’s no SD card support. The Mix 2S also moves away from 3.5mm jack in favour of Type C audio/charging port but does provide a connector in the box for your old 3.5mm earphones.

During daily use the Xiaomi Mix 2S is a fast and responsive device no matter what you task it with or how many things you task it with at once. Asphalt 8 & 17 other apps run without a glitch and thanks to the RAM you can resume where you stopped without reloading. The phone runs on Android Oreo with MIUI 9 on top & is in line for Android P beta. Software features include the regular MIUI options like Second Space for select apps to be available for other users of your phone, like kids can have only games on that screen or you can have a work apps space only. Dual Apps option lets you run 2 instances of same apps if you use dual SIMs for apps like Whatsapp etc. A new addition, Guide on the leftmost screen lets you access notes, frequent apps,calendar events etc.

Finally, the Dual camera set up at the back is a combo of 12MP Sony & a 12MP Samsung (telephoto and portrait shots thanks to this one!).The camera rating on this phone was higher than Pixel XL which some might not agree to but no doubt is right up there. It can shoot 4k video & has multiple AI modes it applies automatically to make your pictures look better based on the scene conditions.

The 5MP selfie camera is average but thanks to the bezel-less design, sits at the bottom right below the display & makes it awkward when Snapchatting or using other apps that need selfies unless you are ok with double chin shots in every image! 

Overall it’s a great phone considering the price point of being well below releases from Samsung, Apple, LG etc. Look at other options if you’re an audiophile, into selfies or need a waterproof phone since the speakers aren’t something to write home about, the front camera is weirdly positioned, and the IP67 rating is missing.

Pritesh Khilnani

Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S at CeX

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