By Diana Goovaerts

Xiaomi enters 5G era

Xiaomi joined the 5G footrace, unveiling its first next-generation smartphone, the Mi Mix 3 5G, alongside its latest Mi 9 flagship at a launch event yesterday.

With the release of the Mi Mix 3 5G, SVP Wang Xiang said “Xiaomi has entered the 5G era”.

The new 5G variant features many of the same specifications as the original Mi Mix 3 released in October, including a 6.4-inch display, sliding frame, dual 12MP rear cameras and dual 24MP and 2MP selfie cameras. However, Xiaomi swapped in Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 855 processor and X50 modem to enable 5G connectivity.

"It’s essentially everything you loved about the Mi Mix 3, now coming along with 5G," Donovan Sung, Xiaomi’s director of product management, added during the event.

Xiaomi highlighted 5G partnerships with a number of European operators, including Telefonica, 3, TIM, Sunrise, Vodafone and Orange. With help from the latter, Sung demonstrated the device’s new capabilities on stage, making what he said was the company’s first ever 5G video call outside of China.

The Mi Mix 3 5G is expected to hit the market in May at a cost of €599.

Mi 9 flagship

Xiaomi also took the opportunity to talk up its new Mi 9 flagship, which was first announced at an event in China on 20 February.

The phone features Xiaomi’s first triple rear camera setup, including a 48MP main camera, 12MP telephoto lens and 16MP wide angle lens. Like the Mi Mix 3 5G, the Mi 9 also includes an upgraded Snapdragon 855 processor and a 6.4-inch display, with an under screen fingerprint reader.

Mi 9 will be available in Europe from 28 February, at a cost of €449 for the 6GB+64GB version and €499 for the 6GB+128GB model.

The Mi 9 will be compatible with Xiaomi’s new 20W wireless charger, which it said is the first of its kind on the market. The charger, capable of refuelling the Mi 9 in 90 minutes, will be sold separately.