Xiaomi MI3, One Cool Ricer!

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Xiaomi MI3

One of the most important smartphone manufacturers from Asia has just released a tempting top-notch device that sports some premium features and delivers a lovely user experience. I’m talking about Xiaomi and their brand new flagship, the Xiaomi Mi 3, a wonderful performer that promises to offer a lot and has a killer appearance that breathes elegance, style and will certainly turn a lot of heads. But enough with the chit chat, let’s find out more details about it, shall we?

The Xiaomi Mi 3 comes accompanied by a 1A charger, a microUSB cable and a little tool for ejecting the SIM card.

One of my favorite things that define this handset is its appearance. The Xiaomi Mi 3 measures 144 x 73.6 x 8.1 mm and has a weight of 145 grams. Its design is quite minimalist, consisting in a rectangular unibody with sharp edges which are very sleek in my book and I personally prefer them instead of rounded ones. Its build seems nice and solid, being made from polycarbonate, which is known for being a high quality material (just think about the Lumia line). The back surface features a matte finish and will keep fingerprints away from sticking to your handset. It also offers a good hand grip.

The frontal part of the hot-looking body is dominated by a 5 inches IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen, which offers a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels, has a pixel density of 441 ppi and is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 3. The screen offers a decent image quality for those kind of specs, with vibrant colors, good contrast and wide viewing angles, yet the sunlight legibility leaves something to be desired. It’s by no means unusable under direct sunlight, but I’ve seen a lot better.

In terms of user interface, the Xiaomi Mi 3 comes loaded with Android v4.4.2 KitKat, which has been significantly tweaked by Xiaomi with their own MIUI v5 interface. The customization is strongly felt as almost everything has been replaced, Google’s services included on some regional models. No worries, you can get them right away from Mi’s Market. The interface is friendly and intuitive and you’ll find that it’s not far from the general experience offered by Android. You have Google Now as your personal assistant or, if you’re speaking Chinese, you can use the Xiaomi Voice Assistant.
In terms of performance, the Xiaomi Mi 3 comes powered by a Snapdragon 800 chipset, having a quad-core 2.3 GHz Krait 400 processor, Adreno 330 GPU, 2 GB of RAM and 16 or 64 GB of internal storage which can’t be expanded due to the lack of a card slot. The Mi 3 is an excellent performer and will offer a great user experience, as lagging or freezing are totally out of the question.

In its connectivity package, the Xiaomi Mi 3 holds support for quad-band GSM, GPRS and EDGE, quad-band 3G, dual-band Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac with the Hotspot functionality and Wi-Fi Direct, Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP, microUSB 2.0 with On-The-Go support and NFC.

Surfing the web is a mixed bag, as the handset holds the MIUI Browser, which is very capable, loads the pages fast and generally delivers a nice experience, yet lacks support for Find on page and doesn’t allow you to copy text either (only links). You should install Chrome for not having to worry about anything, as Google’s browser is far more capable and offers the complete package for a hiccup-free browsing experience.

For taking photos, the Xiaomi Mi 3 features a 13 MP snapper with autofocus which captures stills with a maximum resolution of 4128 x 3096 pixels and holds on board a dual-LED flash for assisting in low light conditions. The camera application is rich in settings and offers support for adjusting the ISO, white balance, focus mode, scenes, exposure and more. HDR and Panorama are present too.
The image quality offers beautiful colors (but a little bit over-saturated, sometimes), good contrast and a good amount of resolved detail.
The video camera is able to produce some pleasant 1080p videos @ 30 fps, yet falls behind some of its competitors from the same league.

Some other goodies found in the Mi 3’s basket are  a GPS receiver with support for GLONASS and A-GPS, Google Maps and Navigation for finding your way in the unknown, a file Explorer, an FM Radio with RDS support, some very capable players for managing your audio and video files and much more.

The Xiaomi Mi 3 relies on a 3,050 mAh un-removable battery which will keep the device alive and kicking for almost three days under a moderate usage.

Xiaomi MI3 One Cool Ricer

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