The Xiaomi Mi4 arrived like a fresh faced cupid in our offices today, a 5 inch Android smartphone that sports a Snapdragon 801 processor and a whole lot more. Is it worth importing one of these flagship killers from China? Is it worthy of all the hype? Mobile Geeks do an unboxing of the Mi4 followed by our first impressions of the device.
Firstly, I must admit to having looked forward to this day with plenty of anticipation. It’s a similar buzz to being totally stoked about our first time with the Galaxy Note, or more recently the OnePlus One for example. Xiaomi have always impressed us with their build-quality, producing really solid, quality handsets. I have been using Mi4’s predecessor, the Mi3 as my main go to smartphone for a few months now, and in our office we have also spent lots of time with the MiPad and the RedMi Note from Xiaomi.
Check out the video below, where our man Sascha gets his very first whiff of Xiaomi Mi4 love:
What you see in the video above is the 16GB version of the Xiaomi Mi4 which we purchased from EFOX shop in Shenzhen. There are actually two versions available – 32GB and 16GB storage options, neither of which supports upgradeable memory via microSD.
Let’s get straight to the point of our first impressions of the Mi4 – the first thing that struck me was just how much it looks like an iPhone – so much so, that Sascha has had to fight off an allergy-attack throughout the unboxing. But that does not mean you are getting cheap crap here. The Mi4 immediately feels like quality and the manufacturing workmanship is at its best. iPhone comparisons abode, and although we are not huge Apple fans, we recognize quality when we see it.
The back cover feels like the material it is made of. Plastic. I know we might have expected to be using a fancier word like ‘polycarbonate’ or something to do with resin or cashew nuts, but the standard white version we have is simply glossy plastic, and feels like glossy plastic. However we do really look forward to trying out the alternative covers that Xiaomi showed at launch a few weeks ago.
The metal frame around the device is what really sparks off the iPhone comparisons. All Android smartphones tend to have rectangular slab like design, often with rounded corners and of course a touchscreen display – let’s be honest, smartphone design has pretty much become uniform in almost all of these respects. For me it really is the tapered frame around the edge that simply screams iPhone at you.
Xiaomi Mi4 Full Specifications
- 5 inch 1080p display (1920 x 1080)
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 801, Quad-core 2.5GHz
- 3GB RAM
- 16/64GB eMMC Internal Storage
- 13MP Rear Facing Camera
- 8MP Front facing Camera
- 3G plus Global LTE Support
- Micro SIM
- 3,080mAh battery
- Android 4.4
- MIUI V5
In terms of retail packaging the Mi4 is typical Xiaomi in that it is very minimalistic and without frills. No headphones. Only a charger, a pin to access the SIM card slot and your documentation. This is all delivered in a very unassuming brown re-cycled cardboard box. The simplicity is both eco-friendly and zen-like. We just threw it in the recycling bin and got on with our day, as I am sure Xiaomi expected us too.
Our focus is on the phone of course, and what a phone it is. Just after a few moments with the Xiaomi Mi4, you have the feeling that it is a real quality piece of kit. Our next job is to install and run our benchmarks, try out the audio, take plenty of pictures and then let you know our innermost thoughts about a pretty exciting device that represents China’s latest thrust in to the high-end smartphone space. The full review will available very soon. Stay tuned folks.
The Xiaomi Mi4 can be purchased from E-FOX Shop here.