Xiaomi’s Mi Mix 2 wants to push the screen to the edge

Xiaomi Mi Mix 2

If you have been living under the cave, the future of smartphones is bezeless screens or frame, that surrounds a phone’s display. This gives the users the illusion that they are only holding a screen in their hand, with no other distractions. Established players (Samsung and LG) and newcomers (Essential) alike are all trying to reach that goal. Even Apple is expected to announce new iPhone that largely eliminates the border around the screen today.

Xiaomi is also playing this game and it actually had a head start over much of the industry when it launched the Mi Mix last year. In all honestly the Mi Mix was one of the first phones to be released with nary a bezel at all. The Mi Mix2 is a more realistic version of the first one. Xiaomi was aware of all the issues of the first iteration when it labeled the phone as a “concept” device, even though it was available for purchase in the company’s home market of China.

 Now Xiaomi has announced the Mi Mix 2, which rectifies some of the issues of the original and wants to sell it commercially. This new model is smaller and more approachable than the first Mix, and it will eventually be available everywhere Xiaomi sells phones (which, sadly, does not yet include the US). It will first be available in China, with prices ranging from from $500) to $720.

Like most high-end phones for 2017, the Mi Mix 2’s standout feature is the edge-to-edge display. This time it’s a more manageable 5.99-inches with an 18:9 aspect ratio, similar to what Samsung and LG are using on their high-end phones this year. That means that the Mi Mix 2 is much smaller than the first version, and therefore much more practical to use.

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It has a bright and vibrant LCD panel with wide color gamut and 2,160 x 1,080 pixels of resolution. It has rounded corners and just the scantest of frames above and on the sides of it. The border below the screen is larger, as it houses the front camera (which is now better disguised thanks to a “super black” lens coating), a notification light, and other electronics necessary to power the panel. The screen itself isn’t as vibrant, bright, or hi-res as Samsung’s OLED displays, but it’s still very nice to look at and perfectly fine in every day use.

No Dual camera set

The phones comes with a Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 processor, 6GB of RAM, and either 64, 128, or 256GB of storage. The Mix 2’s performance is snappy, and the 3,400mAh battery makes it last all day without much issue. There is also a If you feel that you need even more power, a Special Edition of the phone offers 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage.

Xiaomi Mi Mix 2_ backThere is no dual camera set-up like all other 2017 high-end smartphone, instead Xiaomi has put a 12-megapixel camera with an optically stabilized f/2.0 lens and has large pixels, so it is potentially capable of taking good photos. It won’t keep pace with the best cameras from Google, Apple, or Samsung, but it’s certainly good enough for most people.

Xiaomi’s software is polarizing, as well. The Mi Mix comes with MIUI 9, which is based on Android 7.1.1 Nougat, but doesn’t look like anything that comes out of Google’s offices. It’s best described as an interpretation of iOS, made to fit the Android platform.

Now if only we could buy it in Uganda really soon.