Ever since smartphones have taken over the market, there seems to be a plethora of brands being launched on the market. Companies appear to view it as an excellent opportunity to cash in on the popularity and earn profits. Amidst these brands, there are a couple that manage to dominate the market with their impeccable features and design. However, these brands are rather expensive, which necessitates having some cheaper options for a large section of the population.
It is this section that most new brands are targeting. In this review, we are going to discuss one such model that is affordable, the Xiaomi Mi 4i. We are going to go through the various specifications of the phone so that it can be gauged whether it has what it takes to make a mark or would it be just one among the millions. Let us now proceed with the review to see the features this model brings to the table.
The design of the Xiaomi Mi 4i is devoid of any extravagant effects with a simple rectangular shape without any curved edges. However, this does not imply that it would feel cheap in your hands. In spite of the plastic case, the phone does reek of quality. The slim 7.8 mm width with 130 grams of weight does make this phone an easy-to-carry article that would not feel as though you are carrying a heavy burden around.
The 5-inch screen with 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution does seem impressive, which would ensure your text and images are nice and crisp. The fonts are pleasing to the eye. The display makes use of IPS technology, providing better viewing angles and enabling you to view the screen from the side as well.
The phone is composed of polycarbonate chassis with a soft-touch matte design. The phone will feel nice and smooth in your hands. It also has an anti-grease coating which, if the claims by Xiaomi are to be believed, can allow you to erase even permanent ink from the case.
A number of options with regards to the colors have been made available. You have the option of white, black, blue, orange and pink which makes for a refreshing change.
The only factor that seems to be missing in terms of design is the microSD card slot. However, the dual SIM option is present in the phone.
Hardware and software
The phone is equipped with a built-in hardware feature called the sunlight display. This makes use of local tone mapping to identify dark areas on the screen and brightens them up, ensuring you do not have any difficulty in using your phone in sunlight. However, this feature would not come into play if you are in a dark area indoors. The sensor needs to detect a bright light to kick into action.
The nonremovable battery has incredible power, which charges in a rather speedy manner. The phone runs on a 1.7 GHz octa-core Snapdragon 615 with 1 GB RAM and an internal storage of 16 GB. There are no issues with regards to the speed and performance of the processor. However, the non-expandable storage is something that you would have to think about.
The phone comes with Android 5.0 Lollipop with the Xiaomi MIUI skin. An app drawer is lacking and the apps would be cluttered all over the home screen. You can download additional themes from the store, which will enable you to evade monotony in terms of your phone screen. You can move apps from screen to screen with ease.
Xiaomi Mi 4i has a 13-megapixel rear camera and 5-megapixel front one. The absence of optical image stabilization does pave the way for a bit of difficulty while clicking pictures, but the quality of the images has not been hampered. Steady hands would, however, be a necessity. The camera functions nicely in low light, but the noise is not something you would be able to ignore with ease. The option of manual shooting is present as well.
With the front camera, you can take some amazing selfies and do some touch ups as well with the beautify mode. Using this mode, you can smooth the skin and remove wrinkles. The artificial touch, however, might be a little too apparent.
The videos would all turn out to be of fine quality and you can have fun with the slow and fast mode option.
No sluggishness would be felt while using the phone and the performance is more than satisfactory.
The fact that its performance does not give you a lot to complain about and the phone is available at an impressively low rate is something that holds a lot of weight. The design, along with the anti-grease coating that ensures your phone would not start to look its age after a few years of usage, is a factor in favor of the model. The camera quality along with the replaceable battery gives you another reason to give this handset a thought.
The changes that have been brought about in the interface of Android are not all praiseworthy. Furthermore, the absence of optical image stabilization affects the quality of the pictures to a certain extent. Another factor that poses worry is the lack of expandable storage, which means you would have to make do with what you have got.
However, one thing is apparent. At the price at which the handset is being offered, it does offer you a lot of features and gives little reason to complain. This phone is worth the money and would prove to be a tough competition for its contemporaries.