The Mi 10i comes in at the first low price of just Rs. 21,999 but still has a 108-megapixel camera and 5G connectivity, which are the hallmarks of the Mi 10 series. Xiaomi tells us that “i” represents India because this model is designed specifically for our market. That could be a bit of a stretch because there is only a small difference between this device and units sold like Mi 10T-Lite and Redmi Note 9 Pro 5G in some markets.
It is immediately clear that Xiaomi wants to put its stamp on the sub-Rs. The 25,000 space here with the Mi 10i will have to take on some heavy equipment including the popular OnePlus Nord, and the Vivo V20. The camera specification alone is sure to pay off, but we will check the whole package. Find Out Our Full Review Of Xiaomi Mi 10i.
Price of Mi 10i in India and variety
The basic price of Mi 10i in India is Rs. 20,999, then get 6GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. These variations are not currently listed for sale and will be available in due course. Surprisingly, you can get the same phone with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of Rs storage. 21,999 which is just Rs. 1,000 more, which makes the base variation seem pointless. If you want to upgrade to 8GB of RAM with 128GB of storage, you can choose a third option that costs Rs. 23,999.
Xiaomi has managed to upgrade the OnePlus Nord (Update) but does not offer the option with 256GB of less expensive storage, especially if you think you will lose a second Nano-SIM space if you choose to use a microSD card. With such a small price difference, most people will choose a different end-to-end option.
Design of Mi 10i
Despite its name, the new Mi 10i has a very little family resemblance to the Mi 10 (Review) or Mi 10T series, apart from the fact that these are all big, heavy phones. The Mi 10i is 9mm thick and weighs 214.5g. One thing all the same Mi 10 siblings are similar to their 6.67-inch screens, though the Mi 10i has a completely flat panel with no round sides. There’s a front camera hole in the top center of the screen, and it’s bigger and more distracting than we usually see it now.
Three distinctions will be available — glossy but subdued Atlantic Blue and Midnight Black, with an eye-catching Pacific Sunrise, with a matte finish and a gradient color ranging from blue above, past white, to orange below. This is the version Xiaomi will use for its marketing, and this is what I have to review. It looks like a sea or a horizon landscape. I found that it is less affected by taking fingerprints or smudges, but that may not be true of other color options.
The rear camera module is very large but not very visible, Xiaomi says because of its choice of sensors — more so over time. There is a fingerprint sensor on the right, connected to the power button. It was slightly reversed and it was not always easy to use it when the Mi 10i was in plastic that fits into the box. The volume buttons are on top of it and were not always easily accessible. There is a dual-SIM hybrid tray on the left which means you will have to choose between a second SIM and additional storage.
One of the most interesting little touches is the installation of a 3.5mm audio socket on wired headsets, a feature almost every manufacturer these days seems to think is offered for premium phones. Another unusual feature is the small LED notification near the ear that illuminates when the phone is charging and you have a call or message alerts. The earphone works with the speaker below to deliver stereo sound.
Although this is a very good phone, it is not too difficult to hold and use because of the rounded edges. A slight pull on the hand will be required but at least the back is not very slippery. There is a Gorilla Glass 5 front, rear, and camera module. Another point to consider is the IP5 water and dust resistance, which you rarely see at this price point. It’s not the best in the industry, but the OnePlus Nord in particular doesn’t have the official water resistance. My review unit had a screen protector pre-installed.
Details of the Mi 10i
Front and center, we have a 6.67-inch full-HD + (1080x2400) 120Hz HDR10 + LCD display. Some people may be disappointed that Xiaomi did not go with the AMOLED panel. The maximum brightness is only 450nits and color production is limited to 84 percent of the NTSC gamut, which is not very large. However, I had no problem with daily use and the display is high enough to enjoy videos and games. You won’t feel like you’re missing out too much, especially if you don’t like very vibrant colors.
One clean feature is the positive renewable frequency, which can be measured between 30Hz and 120Hz in six steps. According to Xiaomi, the panel will automatically adjust any content you play, for example, it will switch to 48fps when watching a 24fps movie. There is a TÜV Rheinland certificate for blue light output, and you can not only select your favorite color complement but also set a white balance by hand.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 750G is a modern SoC and the only other phone in India to use it to date is the Moto G 5G. This chip is newer than the Snapdragon 765G and has some advantages over the state-of-the-art Kryo 570 cores operating based on the ARM Cortex-A77 design than the Kryo 475 cores based on the Cortex-A76. There are two of these cores and six cores that work well on the Cortex-A55. In terms of graphics capacity, the integrated Adreno 619 GPU is slightly more advanced than Snapdragon 765G’s Adreno 620. Both chips have the same integrated Snapdragon X52 5G modem.
The 4,820mAh battery may not seem as big as today’s standards, but real land use will depend on many factors including SoC performance. The Mi 10i supports USB-PD standard, and a 33W faster charger is included in the box. The battery is actually two cells alike, Xiaomi says it will allow 100 percent charge in less than an hour, and 68 percent in 30 minutes.
One feature that all Mi 10 models have in common is 5G. Mi 10i works with less than 6GHz networks as well as all 4G, 3G, and 2G bands. There is support for two-band GPS and an Indian NavIC placement system, as well as Bluetooth 5.1 and Wi-Fi ac. Xiaomi also said it had added custom hardware to support both Google Assistant and Alexa, but this will be enabled by future software updates.
Mi 10i software and usage
The Mi 10i comes with an Android 10 and Xiaomi interface that is highly customizable for MIUI 12.0.3. My unit had a November 2020 security clip but received a December update which sales units should also ship. The first setup process is straightforward, and you can adjust all the preferences over time no matter what you choose.
Xiaomi goes hard on bloatware and promotional content (though it promises a “clean MIUI 12 experience with Google apps”). The lock screen displays auto-sponsored content and takes a few digs in the settings app to turn this off.
I’m glad to see that there were no attempts to get people to download advanced apps during the setup process, but the first thing you’ll notice when the phone is ready for use is the great speed to use Xiaomi’s GetApps app store, as well as a lot of notifications from it in the first few days of use. I also listed many Mi and third-party applications pre-loaded on the phone, however thankfully most of them can be downloaded.
MIUI 12 has many clean features and customization options. You can choose whether to have an app drawer or not, with tabs for different app categories. The search bar is at the bottom, within the reach of the sixth, simple. Home screen grid space and icon size can be changed. If you want to do something as simple as changing your wallpaper anyway, you should go through Xiaomi’s Themes app full of options.
There’s a lot more to discover in the settings app — battery saving modes, shortcuts and body actions, Secure Second Space Secure Data, Lite Mode UI, Game Turbo settings, a floating Video Toolbox with integrated graphics and audio enhancement options, and Google’s parent’s Controls and features -Digital Wellbeing.