Xiaomi Mi Mix and Mi VR - Frameless Virtual Reality

    Hi, Giktayms! This year, Xiaomi has already shown several smartphones for every taste and wallet, but the manufacturer received the main attention from users and journalists thanks to the unexpected new Mi Mix, which without exaggeration overshadowed almost all smartphones in 2016, including the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus . What is the reason for such a stir, you probably understood from the main image of this article.

    Yes, Xiaomi Mi Mix boasts a truly revolutionary design, ensured by the lack of display frames. And the matter is not so much in the technology itself as in the advantages of its use: with a screen diagonal of 6.4 inches, the size of the smartphone does not exceed the dimensions of the iPhone 7 Plus with a display of 5.5 inches.

    Mi Mix looks like a guest from the future, and it is rather symbolic that they decided to go to Xiaomi on such a bold step, and not to Apple, Samsung or Google. The main thing is that the Chinese have shown not just a concept that will be forgotten in a month, but a real smartphone with Napoleonic plans to seize the world market this year.

    The smartphone screen occupies 91% of the entire front panel - incredible, when other manufacturers, this figure, as a rule, does not exceed 80%. The display resolution was 2040 x 1080 pixels (362 ppi), it is strongly extended upwards, so the aspect ratio here is 17: 9 instead of the usual 16: 9. Brightness up to 500 nits. The speaker and proximity sensor were removed from the front panel, placing them directly under the screen. The sensor is ultrasonic, so the display does not interfere with its operation. But it was precisely these two elements that previously did not allow manufacturers to produce frameless smartphones. Because of the main innovation, the front camera has also moved - now it is located along the Mi Mix's “chin».

    The absence of conversational dynamics netting is worth considering in more detail. Piezoelectric acoustics are responsible for the sound in Mi Max - in other words, the sound is created by the vibrations of the screen itself. Obviously, without the use of such technology, frameless design would be simply impossible.

    In pursuit of an exclusive design and an unusual display, Xiaomi could have forgotten about the technical characteristics, but this turned out to be completely different: the Mi Mix is ​​quite consistent with the top flagships of this year. Qualcomm Snapdragom 821 processor, 4 GB or 6 GB of RAM, 128 GB or 256 GB of internal memory.

    Features Xiaomi Mi Mix

    Snapdragon 821, 2.35 GHz, quad
    Graphic accelerator
    Adreno 530
    4 GB or 6 GB LPDDR4
    Internal memory
    64 or 128 GB UFS 2.0
    IPS LCD 6.4 inches, 2040 x 1080 pixels
    Rear camera
    16 MP, f / 2.0, phase autofocus, LED flash
    Front camera
    5 MP
    4,400 mAh, Quick Charge 3.0
    operating system
    MIUI 8 based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow
    SIM card slot
    The fingerprint scanner
    there is
    USB-Type C
    158.8 x 81.9 x 7.9 mm
    209 g

    You can admire the design of the device for a long time (yes, it's really cool), but what's inside deserves no less attention. For example, Sharp has supplied a 6.4-inch display for Xiaomi - the latter has already tried to release the frameless Aquos Crystal smartphone since 2014, although it didn’t go further than the Japanese market. The reasons for this were many, but the fact remains: Xiaomi is not the first company to introduce a frameless smartphone, although the ratio of areas on the front panel of the Mi Mix is ​​really a record one.

    The very Sharp Aquos Crystal

    The front camera with a resolution of 5 megapixels has an OmniVision OV5675 1/5 "sensor and is so small that it can hardly be distinguished on the front panel of the Mi Mix. Not surprisingly, this sensor is the smallest on the market with a resolution of 5 megapixels.

    The main camera is also not no surprises: 16 megapixels, OmniVision OV16880 1 / 3.06 "sensor with a pixel size of 1 micron. Supports PDAF focusing, records video in 4K. Yes, perhaps it could be better, but for such a screen can be forgiven. On the rear panel is located and a fingerprint scanner, and dual LED-flash.

    As for small amenities, in Mi Mix is ​​support for Quick Charge 3.0, a 4,400 mAh battery and work with two SIM-cards. Perhaps someone will lack protection from dust and moisture, as in smartphones from Apple or Samsung, but in a frameless smartphone, it seems, it is more difficult to implement.

    The smartphone case is made of ceramics, including hardware buttons and a frame - in this case, hello sends Mi5. Also, when assembling the case, Xiaomi does not use glue or double-sided tape, but gives preference to an alternative seamless connection. 8 value of hardness on the Mohs scale. Even ceramic speaker - cantilever piezoelectric, as we have said.

    The Adreno 530 graphics accelerator and the X12 LTE modem are no surprise now - these components Xiaomi already uses in its flagships. From wireless interfaces, we note 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi (802.11 ac), Bluetooth 4.2, GPS and NFC. Charging is still done using USB Type-C.

    By the way, at the presentation, many thought that once Xiaomi decided to make such a revolution, it did not stop and deprived the Mi Mix of the 3.5 mm audio jack after Apple with the iPhone 7. Fears were not confirmed - here it is, on the top.

    Xiaomi Mi Mix, of course, impresses first of all with its design, and only then potential buyers will look at its technical characteristics. There are several questions to the smartphone: in particular, how the frameless display affected ergonomics, how much protection against mechanical damage has been worked out, and whether it will be convenient to take selfies and communicate with such an arrangement of the front camera.

    Now there is almost no doubt that frameless smartphones will become one of the main trends of 2017 in the mobile device market. Judging by the number of enthusiastic reviews, Mi Mix is ​​doomed to success.

    Xiaomi warned in advance that Mi Mix will be distributed in limited quantities, since the smartphone is very difficult to manufacture. The cost of a smartphone from Russian retailers will be more than 50 thousand rubles, GearBest is cheaper - 659 dollars. You can pre-order now !

    Xiaomi Mi VR - an unexpected guest at this holiday

    Yes, not only the frameless smartphone was able to surprise Xiaomi on October 25th. Although many assumed that the Chinese company would decide to stop at its first experience in the field of virtual reality, on the contrary, it went further, making VR both stylish and affordable.

    Imagine that someone would think to connect Oculus Rift and Google DayDream View, and even sell the resulting device for $ 29. No, you can’t say that Mi VR is an exact copy of the first or second: this gadget looks stylish and unique and wears the famous Mi logo for a good reason.

    The virtual reality helmet from Xiaomi is equipped with a motion sensor and a touch controller. Control is also carried out using two physical buttons. Mi VR not only tracks the position of the user's head, but also recognizes the movements and turns of his hands, and in all directions. The gadget is presented only in white color, which, perhaps, makes it even more futuristic.

    Xiaomi's previous attempt to enter the virtual reality device market was much simpler. Mi VR Play, although it looked stylish, and made of pleasant materials, in fact was a tidier version of Google CardBoard, so they asked for more. But the helmet, if you can call it that, was universal and supported smartphones with a screen diagonal from 4.7 inches to 5.7 inches.

    Now we have a complete mince: a helmet like a robocop (well, almost), software optimizations to prevent unpleasant sensations in the process of using the device (nausea, dizziness), its own section in the app store, where more than 500 panoramic videos and 30 apps are already available. The number of programs will grow as 200 registered developers create them, the company said. Xiaomi claims that Mi VR can be used even for a long time without experiencing any discomfort. Well, this has yet to be verified by users.

    Mi VR has advantages even in comparison with the Gear VR VR from Samsung. For example, the delay when watching a video using a Xiaomi gadget is only 16 milliseconds, while the Gear VR has a figure of 20 milliseconds. The viewing angle of the Gear VR 2016 (updated version) is 101 degrees, while the first copy had 96 degrees. Mi VR was able to albeit a little, but bypass the competitor - with a viewing angle of 103 degrees. And this is despite the fact that Gear VR is twice as expensive.

    Conveniently, Xiaomi has not forgotten about people with poor eyesight - Mi VR has the ability to adjust the focus for users suffering from myopia or farsightedness. Most of the analogs in the same price segment of this function are deprived, which discourages the lion’s share of customers.

    A spoon of tar in a barrel of honey adds only that the new product is compatible only with some of the flagship Xiaomi - Mi5 , Mi 5s and Mi 5s Plus, presented at the end of September this year, as well as Mi Note 2 , with which Mi VR was announced. Yes, frameless Mi Mix placed in this helmet does not work, but sorry.

    By the way, since October 26, GearBest has opened pre-order for the new Mi VR virtual reality helmet from Xiaomi.

    It's amazing how quickly Xiaomi managed to turn from a catch-up into a manufacturer who is not shy about setting trends to more serious competitors who have been present on the market for more than a dozen years.

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