After years of silence, Xiaomi returned to the premium smartphone space with its Mi 11X series in India. Xiaomi’s approach, however, is to leave no stones unturned, and it’s quite visible with Xiaomi’s new entrant – the Mi 11X. But is it good enough to make a splash, or is it just another smartphone that will be lost with time? Well, it’s quite early to conclude, but I decided to share a quick experience of the first 24 hours with the device, and here are my initial thoughts.
Getting back to Android
After being away from Android for almost two years, the Mi 11X took some time for me to get used to it. While MIUI has matured from the last time I used a Xiaomi device, I still believe I would’ve felt more at home on a stock/close-to-stock Android skin.
Coming from an iOS user’s perspective, the sheer number of UI features at first seems overwhelming. But once I got back the hang of it, the little nuances of the skin broke in.
How does it feel?
Once you pick up the device for the first time, you feel the heft of it. Tipping the scales at 196g, the Mi 11X is amongst the lightest of the bunch. But the big screen means it can get cumbersome to use, especially if you have smaller pair of hands.
The materials used here are some of the best and feels well built. The metal rails house the tactile buttons that click with a good level of assertion.
Lastly, the design, which is entirely a subject of taste, I quite liked. The lines are smooth and package the device pretty well. The camera module is relatively neutral and in line with the 2021 trend of phones. The only gripe that I have is the colour, the Celestial Silver, to be specific. It’s something that I would personally avoid as there are a shocking number of hues at play. While this is moderated by the soft-touch matte finish of the glass back, I think it only looks good on posters, and I wouldn’t carry it around every day.
What about the hardware?
The first thing you notice is the gorgeous display. The 6.67 inches Super AMOLED display refreshes at 120Hz, and boy, it’s great. In addition, the E4 panel gets ample bright and is devoid of legibility issues even under sunlight. The screen is suitable for media consumption, and content from YouTube and OTT platforms is pretty enjoyable. Adding to the experience are the stereo speakers, which get loud enough to fill out a medium-sized bathroom.
On the inside, the Snapdragon 870, the spiritual successor to the SD 865+, is still based on the 7nm process. Our test unit was the base 6GB+128GB variant, and it worked just fine. Apps on the background pick up nicely from where you left off, and overall performance is smooth. I played CoD for a brief 30 minute period, and the performance was pretty darn good with consistent frames. But this is where the high refresh panel seems worth it, with beautiful fluid movements. The phone warms up a bit, but nothing to make you feel uncomfortable.
The Mi 11X stuffs in a substantial 4250mAh battery with support for 33W fast charging. With moderate usage and with the screen always running at 120Hz, I managed to squeeze out an entire day during my usage. Once you do drain out the battery, the charging is pretty rapid. So, even though it’s not the fastest on paper, it’s plenty good in real life.
Are cameras good enough?
Unfortunately, lockdown restrictions due to the pandemic aren’t helping my super professional testing. But I sneaked the Mi 11X out for a quick spin to check out its camera performance, and in the short time outside, I realised it’s a good all-rounder for most people looking for a decent camera on the phone. However, I will reserve my thoughts on the camera for later.
What’s My Take After 24 Hours?
With the hardware that is packed, I knew what to expect from the Mi 11X. But most importantly, it has lived upto the expectations, and I must add that nothing is absurdly wrong with the device so far. I would be extensively testing the device putting it through its paces, and take notes like Sheldon. You will get to know all about it in our review.