Monday , September 20 2021

OnePlus Has A New Challenger In Europe




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The Xiaomi Mi Mix 3.Ben Sin

Last October in Beijing, Xiaomi launched unveiled the & nbsp;Mi Mix 3, an all-screen phone that used a slider-concept to avoid incorporating a notch. The global version of the phone has just begun to hit European markets this month, launching last week in Spain and Italy and U.K. next week

I've been using the global version for the past three weeks, and it's much better than the Chinese version I was first tested in October. It's so polished, in fact, I think it will seriously challenge OnePlus in European markets.

What's the difference

Let's go over what sets the global version apart from the original Chinese release. The global version that is launching in Europe, Hong Kong and Singapore has Google apps pre-installed. & Nbsp; On the original Chinese version, users have to side-load Google apps, and due to lack of optimization and native support, some crucial Google Features such as location-based services and auto-sync for Google Photos are broken.

Second, the AI ​​digital assistant button that triggers Xiaomi's own native "Xiao Ai" assistant (the name means "little love" in Mandarin) & nbsp; now triggers the Google Assistant in the global version.

The global version, unfortunately, only ships in one configuration: 6GB of RAM with 128GB of internal storage. The Chinese version offers up to 10GB of RAM and 256GB of storage.

Click-click

The Mi Mix 3's main selling point, as readers are likely to know, is its sliding form factor, and the Mi Mix 3's is very satisfying to use. It uses a magnets to help the sliding parts snap into place, and the click – which can be both heard and felt – is very satisfying, resembling a old-school phone with a physical keyboard.

The phone's ceramic build stands out from the flood of glass-backed phones, and the sliding mechanism is sturdy and clicky.Ben Sin

The Mi Mix 3 in sliding form.Ben Sin

Factoring in my initial hands-on time, I've been using the phone for a total of 30 days or so, and I still do not get tired of snapping the phone open and closed. In fact, I & nbsp; often do it for fun – it's like a fidget toy.

The sliding form factors allow the Mi Mix 3 to achieve a design that is as close to a true all-screen phone as it gets right now, with a screen-to-body ratio of over 93%. The ceramic body gives the device a bit more heft than its competitors at 218g, which actually makes it feel more premium.

The hole-punch display that was used in the recent Honor View 20 and will be used by Samsung in the upcoming Galaxy S10 is probably a more practical design, but aesthetically, I like the Mi Mix 3's look better.

The three types of display design currently dominating Android right now: a waterdrop notch seen on the OnePlus 6T (left); an uninterrupted display that requires a moving part like the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 (middle) and a hole punched into the corner of the screen like the Honor View 20 (right).Ben Sin

Performance

The Mi Mix 3 runs on the Snapdragon 845, and it's a capable processor that can handle everything graphically and image processing with ease. However, it is technically an outdated chipset as the Snapdragon 855 is official and the first phone with the chip will be unveiled in a month. This does not mean much to the average user, but if you're a power user, the 845 no longer impresses.

The day-to-day performance is just about flawless, except for one crucial flaw: the camera sometimes struggles to launch in a timely fashion, taking over a second to become fully ready to shoot. This does not happen too often – by my estimates, around 10% of the time. I am not sure if this is a memory management issue, but it seems as if increasing RAM & nbsp; would not help to alleviate this minor issue.

Battery life is decent, despite the relatively small 3200 mAh cell. The Mi Mix 3 can not quite power through a full day on heavy use, but it can last long enough for most users.

Capable shooter

If there was one weakness to Xiaomi's handsets before 2017, it was the cameras, which were always decent but not at the level of other big names players. This changed with last & nbsp; February's release of the Mi Mix 2S, when Xiaomi really prioritized its imaging capabilities.

The Mi Mix 3 continues in the same vein. Its twin 12MP rear cameras & nbsp; do not grab the headlines in the spec sheet, but the phone snaps images with great balance, accurate colors, and plenty of details. In the photo sample below, the Mi Mix 3 did a great job of finding the correct balance and dynamic range. The clouds are clearly visible, the sky is not blown out, and the shadowed area is well contiguous, but not too dark.

The Mi Mix 3 excels in dynamic range.Ben Sin

In the low light situation, the Mi Mix 3's & nbsp;1 / 2.55" The sensor and 1.4 pixel size helps to keep light and keep noise and grain at a minimum.

The Mi Mix 3 in low light situation.Ben Sin

Its video recording is also impressive: & nbsp; 1080/30 videos are stable and smooth, and 4K / 60 clips, while not stabilized, do not have the micro-jitters that plague many Android phones. The phone can also shoot 960fps slow motion videos.

Overall, I'd say the Mi Mix 3 edge the OnePlus 6T slightly to claim the strongest camera among the mid-tier price range right now. But there's a caveat: Honor is releasing its hole-in-the-screen View 20 in Europe later this month, and that phone's 48-megapixel camera is even better than the Mi Mix 3 in pulling in light in low light situations and, of course, allows for a more cropping thanks to the sheer image size of the & nbsp; But, considering that the View 20 is not officially out yet, it's not fair enough to compare Mi Mix 3 against a still-to-be-official phone.

Power pricing

The ceramic back has a glossy finish.Ben Sin

The Mi Mix 3 is priced & nbsp; identically to the OnePlus 6T in Europe, and if you're a tech savvy consumer in Europe looking for a great value, it's going to be mighty difficult to pick one. The 6T has better software, but the Mi Mix 3 has a wireless charging and a better video capability. The 6T has a better battery life but the Mi Mix 3 has an uninterrupted screen and a slightly better camera. & Nbsp; They both excel in different areas, but really either one will serve the average user very well.

The Mi Mix 3 almost achieves its completely bezel-less dream.Ben Sin

The only thing I can say objectively is that & nbsp; nowadays, it's rarely & nbsp; worth it for average consumers to buy flagship handsets. Sure, a Huawei Mate 20 Pro or an iPhone XS Max is still technically better, but the gap in quality is narrowing every day, and definitely & nbsp; does not justify an additional $ 400.

And this, in my opinion, is why both Apple and Samsung announced less-than-desired sales in 2018. It's got less to do with Chinese national pride or lack of innovation, but that the value offered by Chinese middle-tier brands such as OnePlus, Xiaomi, and Honor are simply too enticing to pass up.

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The Xiaomi Mi Mix 3.Ben Sin

Last October in Beijing, Xiaomi launched the Mi Mix 3, an all-screen phone that used a slider-concept to avoid incorporating a notch. The global version of the phone has just begun to hit European markets this month, launching last week in Spain and Italy and U.K. next week

I've been using the global version for the past three weeks, and it's much better than the Chinese version I first tested in October. It's so polished, in fact, I think it will seriously challenge OnePlus in European markets.

What's the difference

Let's go over what sets the global version apart from the original Chinese release. The global version that is launching in Europe, Hong Kong and Singapore has Google apps pre-installed. On the original Chinese version, users have to side-load Google apps, and due to lack of optimization and native support, some crucial Google features such as location-based services and auto-sync for Google Photos are broken.

Second, the AI ​​digital assistant button that triggers Xiaomi's own native "Xiao Ai" assistant (the name means "little love" in Mandarin) is now triggering the Google Assistant in the global version.

The global version, unfortunately, only ships in one configuration: 6GB of RAM with 128GB of internal storage. The Chinese version offers up to 10GB of RAM and 256GB of storage.

Click-click

The Mi Mix 3's main selling point, as readers are likely to know, is its sliding form factor, and the Mi Mix 3's is very satisfying to use. It uses a magnets to help the sliding parts snap into place, and the click – which can be both heard and felt – is very satisfying, resembling a old-school phone with a physical keyboard.

The phone's ceramic build stands out from the flood of glass-backed phones, and the sliding mechanism is sturdy and clicky.Ben Sin

The Mi Mix 3 in sliding form.Ben Sin

Factoring in my initial hands-on time, I've been using the phone for a total of 30 days or so, and I still do not get tired of snapping the phone open and closed. In fact, I often do it for fun – it's like a fidget toy.

The sliding form factors allow the Mi Mix 3 to achieve a design that is as close to a true all-screen phone as it gets right now, with a screen-to-body ratio of over 93%. The ceramic body gives the device a bit more heft than its competitors at 218g, which actually makes it feel more premium.

The hole-punch display that was used in the latest Honor View 20 and will be used by Samsung in the upcoming Galaxy S10 is probably a more practical design, but aesthetically, I like the Mi Mix 3's look better.

The three types of display design currently dominating Android right now: a waterdrop notch seen on the OnePlus 6T (left); an uninterrupted display that requires a moving part like the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 (middle) and a hole punched into the corner of the screen like the Honor View 20 (right).Ben Sin

Performance

The Mi Mix 3 runs on the Snapdragon 845, and it's a capable processor that can handle everything graphically and image processing with ease. However, it is technically an outdated chipset as the Snapdragon 855 is official and the first phone with the chip will be unveiled in a month. This does not mean much to the average user, but if you're a power user, the 845 no longer impresses.

The day-to-day performance is just about flawless, except for one crucial flaw: the camera sometimes struggles to launch in a timely fashion, taking over a second to become fully ready to shoot. This does not happen too often – by my estimates, around 10% of the time. I am not sure if this is a memory management issue, but it seems as if increasing RAM would not help to alleviate this minor issue.

Battery life is decent, despite the relatively small 3200 mAh cell. The Mi Mix 3 can not quite power through a full day on heavy use, but it can last long enough for most users.

Capable shooter

If there was one weakness to Xiaomi's handsets before 2017, it was the cameras, which were always decent but not at the level of other big names players. This changed with last February's release of Mi Mix 2S, when Xiaomi really prioritized its imaging capabilities.

The Mi Mix 3 continues in the same vein. Its twin 12MP rear cameras do not capture headlines in the spec sheet, but the phone snaps images with excellent balance, accurate colors, and plenty of details. In the photo sample below, the Mi Mix 3 did a great job of finding the correct balance and dynamic range. The clouds are clearly visible, the sky is not blown out, and the shadowed area is well contiguous, but not too dark.

The Mi Mix 3 excels in dynamic range.Ben Sin

In the low light situation, the Mi Mix 3's 1 / 2.55 "sensor and 1.4μm pixel size helps to keep light and keep noise and grain at a minimum.

The Mi Mix 3 in low light situation.Ben Sin

Its video recording is also impressive: 1080/30 videos are stable and smooth, and 4K / 60 clips, while not stabilized, does not have the micro-jitters that plague many Android phones. The phone can also shoot 960fps slow motion videos.

Overall, I'd say the Mi Mix 3 edge the OnePlus 6T slightly to claim the strongest camera among the mid-tier price range right now. But there's a caveat: Honor is releasing its hole-in-the-screen View 20 in Europe later this month, and that phone's 48-megapixel camera is even better than the Mi Mix 3 in pulling in light in low light situations and, of course, allows for more cropping thanks to the sheer image size. But, considering that the View 20 is not officially out yet, it's not fair enough to compare Mi Mix 3 against a still-to-be-official phone.

Power pricing

The ceramic back has a glossy finish.Ben Sin

The Mi Mix 3 is priced identically to the OnePlus 6T in Europe, and if you're a tech savvy consumer in Europe looking for a great value, it's going to be hard to pick one. The 6T has better software, but the Mi Mix 3 has a wireless charging and a better video capability. The 6T has a better battery life but the Mi Mix 3 has an uninterrupted screen and a slightly better camera. They both excel in different areas, but really either one will serve the average user very well.

The Mi Mix 3 almost achieves its completely bezel-less dream.Ben Sin

The only thing I can say objectively is that nowadays, it's rarely worth it for average consumers to buy flagship handsets. Sure, a Huawei Mate 20 Pro or an iPhone XS Max is still technically better, but the gap in quality is narrowing every day, and definitely does not justify an additional $ 400.

And this, in my opinion, is why both Apple and Samsung announced less-than-desired sales in 2018. It's got less to do with Chinese national pride or lack of innovation, but that the value offered by Chinese middle-tier brands such as OnePlus, Xiaomi, and Honor are simply too enticing to pass up.


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