Xiaomi Mi 4 launch promises stylish OnePlus One rival

Chinese smartphone giant Xiaomi has taken the wraps off its latest  flagship Android phone to rival the OnePlus One, the Xiaomi Mi 4.

With a sleek design that calls to mind the iPhone 5S, top-end specs that are a match for most Android big hitters, and a double take-worthy price tag, the Mi 4 could be one to watch.

Just on the topic of its design, the Xiaomi Mi 4 is the first effort from the manufacturer to feature metal in its external make-up. The frame of the device is made from stainless steel, while the back panel is formed of a removable (and swappable) plastic cover. All in all, it weighs 149g.

Around front, you get a 5-inch 1080p IPS display, which places it in the company of the HTC One M8, the Samsung Galaxy S5, and the Google Nexus 5.

Internally, the Xiaomi Mi 4 is equally adept, with a quad-core Snapdragon 801 CPU clocked at 2.5GHz. This is backed by a generous 3GB of RAM. You also get the option of either 16GB or 64GB of internal storage.

On the software front you get Android 4.4.2 KitKat with Xiaomi’s brand new custom MIUI 6 skin layered on top.

As for the Mi 4’s photographic chops, you get a 13-megapixel f/1.8 rear camera and an impressive-sounding 8-megapixel front camera. Both of these components are from Sony, so you can expect them to be up to scratch.

Meanwhile, it’s all powered by a 3,080mAh battery, which Xiaomi reckons can be charged to 60 percent capacity in just one hour.

All of which appears to pitch the Xiaomi Mi 4 against another recent Chinese export, the OnePlus One – especially when you consider the price.

At ¥1,999, which works out to around £189, the Xiaomi Mi 4 would appear to be offering a similarly unbelievable price-to-performance deal to the £229 OnePlus One. Once you add the usual UK premium to the Mi 4, the prices would likely be about even given a global launch.

Xiaomi says that the Xiaomi Mi 4 will be available to preorder in China from July 29, but while no details have been forthcoming about a wider release, you can bet that a phone of this quality will be going global before too long – especially with former Google man Hugo Barra in the company’s corner.

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