Xiaomi unveiled its alternative to the Note 7 this week with the Mi Note 2, but that wasn’t all the Chinese company had up its sleeve.
Alongside its new curved phablet, the firm debuted a new ‘concept phone’, which will actually be avaialble in China, called the Mi Mix.
Related: Xiaomi Mi 5 review
Xiaomi has teamed up with French designer Philippe Starck to design the the 6.4-inch device, which comes with only a small bezel at the bottom of the front panel to make room for the front-facing camera.
Unfortunately, there’s no water resistance here, and the black ceramic used for the phone’s casing is likely to be a fingerprint magnet.
But, those drawbacks noted, there’s a tonne of impressive features that make the Mix more than just a well-designed phone.
Xiaomi has added an ultrasound sensor in place of the proximity sensor (a first for smartphones), which sits beneath the display, along with what the company calls a “piezoelectric ceramic actuator” to provide audible voice calls to your ears in place of the earpiece.
All of which sounds a lot like what various patents have hinted at for Samsung and Apple’s upcoming handsets, meaning Xiaomi has managed to beat its competitors to the punch somewhat here.
When it comes to the other specs, the company has managed to pack in some impressive hardware, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 chipset clocked at 2.35GHz running the show.
That comes alongside either 4GB or 6GB of LPDDR4 RAM, 128GB or 256GB of UFS 2.0 storage, and a whopping 4,400mAh battery with Quick Charge 3.0.
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There’s also a fingerprint reader, NFC, HD audio playback, a 16-megapixel main camera and a 5-megapixel selfie camera which is made from a module half the size of a conventional one.
Xiaomi revealed the phone will come in two models and will be available in China on November 4. The 4GB RAM and 128GB onboard storage version will sell for 3,499 yuan (about £420) while a premium model featuring 18-carat gold embossing and 256GB onboard storage will cost 3,999 yuan (about £480).
The phone is unlikely to launch outside of China, but it does provide an early look at what 2017 holds for smartphone design, and shows that some of the technologies we’ve been hearing about are entirely within reach.
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Let us know what you think of the Mi Mix in the comments.
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