Last year's Mi Mixx was one of the most beautiful smartphones I have ever seen. When it launched, it had one of the highest screen to body ratios of any smartphone. But that was almost a year ago and a lot has changed. Smartphone bezels have continued to get slimmer and slimmer. The Mi Mix caught a lot of attention for its radical bezel-less design. It was a concept, more or less. But the successor of the Mi Mix, which is the device we have here, aims to bridge the gap between a neat concept phone that you might see online and a neat high-end Android phone that you can actually buy and use with your current carrier.
So this is the Xiaomi Mi Mix 2 with that I was sent from GearBest.com.
After we lift off the top of the box, we’ll find a special note in Chinese that is sitting right on top. If there are any Chinese speakers out there, drop a comment down below letting us know what it says.
Underneath, we’ll find the Mi Mix 2 off to the right. There is a US wall wart off to the left hand side as well as a USB-C to USB-A charging cable. Hiding underneath the Mi Mix 2 is a compartment holding some basic paperwork and a soft touch protective case designed specifically for this device. Given how fragile this thin-bezelled smartphone is, it’s highly advised that you use it with the case and it’s nice to see one included right here. Last but not least, we’ll find a SIM card ejector tool and a USB-C to 3.5mm headphone jack adaptor since there is no headphone jack built into this smartphone.
The Mi Mix 2 feels incredible in the hands. There’s an aluminum frame that blends seamlessly with the glass front and back. It’s really hard to even notice the separation of materials. This phone has a nice premium weight to it and while it is a bit slippery in the hands, it’s not quite as slippery as a fully aluminum smartphone. The back is really reflective, so much so that it can double as a mirror. You’ll find the text “Mix Designed by Xiaomi” on the back but other than that, it’s very clean.
The Mi Mix 2 has a smaller 5.99-inch 18:9 display that should help it appeal to more users. It’s less wide and wielding than the 6.4-inch panel in the original Mi Mix. You’ll also see some rounded edges and, of course, very thin bezels. That’s got to be a defining feature of this smartphone. The display does get bright and it looks pretty sharp upon first impressions but it is an LCD panel and it doesn’t have as high of a contrast ratio or as high vibrancy as an AMOLED panel. The screen to body ratio is actually slightly less than its predecessor but you do have a top speaker that doubles as a call and loudspeaker. There’s also a bottom-facing speaker so you do have a stereo pair of speakers here with this phone similar to the iPhone.
The fingerprint scanner is on the rear because there’s really no room for it up front. The phone is running Android 7.1.1 Nougat out of the box with Mi UI version 8.5. If you’re not familiar with Mi UI, it’s a very heavy skin that runs on top of Android, probably it’s most similar to TouchWiz. It brings a bunch of features of its own that stock Android does not have. Some people might like that, others may like more of a pure stock Android setup. And if you’re one of those users, you probably won’t like this smartphone.
The base model features 64GB of storage. There’s a Snapdragon 835 chipset with 6GB of RAM. The higher end configurations have 8GB of RAM so this phone is certainly among the best of the best in the performance department.
There’s a 3400mAh battery under the hood that should keep this phone running for a solid day on a single charge with moderate to heavy usage. It does pale in comparison though to the Mi Mix’s 4400mAh battery.
There is a 12-megapixel f/2.0 camera sensor with Optical Image Stabilization and face detection auto focus that is on the rear. Judging by strictly hardware specifications, it doesn’t seem like it will perform as well in low-light conditions when compared to other high-end Android smartphone camera sensors. But in well-lit environments, I see no reason why this sensor will not perform really well. Random side note: it’s always fun viewing photos or videos that you’ve captured on a display with very thin bezels.
With that said, this is the new Xiaomi Mi Mix 2.