Mi Mix – beautiful Philippe Starck ceramic iPhone killer

mi-mix-front-and-backThe Xiaomi Mi Mix has certainly caused a stir since being announced only a few hours ago. This new smartphone just goes to show that there are still innovations to be made.

With the Mi Mix Xiaomi has created a phone with bezels so small that it has a 91.3% screen-to-body ratio. That means that this 6.4-inch screened phone has similar dimensions as the 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus.

Mi Mix screen

The edges of the screen are are actually curved which allows them to creep even closer to the bezel. Adding further to its stylish credentials, the ceramic body was designed by Phillipe Starck.

[youtube id=”uiutj90dqAU”]

The screen has a rather odd 17:9 aspect ratio with a resolution of 2040×1080. The reason for this is, as the phone uses on-screen navigation buttons, it still leaves a 16:9 display area for content.

That resolution translates to 360 pixels per inch. 360ppi still qualifies for ‘retina display’ if you’re Apple, but current-gen smartphones hit upwards of 500ppi. Will anyone notice, or care though?

Hidden tech

You might be wondering where the camera and sensors that usually sit at the top of a smartphone are. Well, the Mi Mix uses an ultrasonic distance sensor that sits behind the display rather than a standard proximity sensor for starters.

Selfie fans will be relieved to hear that there is a smaller-than-usual camera sensor down at the bottom right of the phone.

mi-mixAh, but what about the earpiece? More clever stuff here too. Instead of a boring old earpiece there is ‘cantilever piezoelectric ceramic acoustic technology’ to transmit sound.


Under the hood is a 2.35GHz Snapdragon 821, 4GB of RAM, 128GB of UFS 2.0 storage, and a 4400mAh battery. Around the rear you’ll find a 16MP camera and fingerprint sensor.

The Mi MIX also supports LTE Cat 11 with download speeds of up to 600Mbps using tri-carrier aggregation.


There’s an even higher-end Mi Mix 18k version. This ups the specs to 6GB of RAM and 256GB of storage. The 18K version also has a ring of 18 karat gold around the camera and fingerprint sensor.

Both versions get a full ceramic body, which means the back, frame, and side buttons all use the stuff.

Apple now on the back foot

I don’t think Apple will have expected this level of disruption from Xiaomi. Do you? The fruity phone company is expected to have kept a lot of ideas behind for the iPhone’s 10th anniversary next year, hence the 7 not being that exciting.

Word has been that instead of aluminium and glass unibodies (everyone is doing them now) that the next batch would be ceramic. Looks like Xiaomi pipped them to the post there.

How about dropping the headphone socket? Many people have thought that this was a taste of more ‘innovations’ freeing up room and giving a cleaner looking device. The Mi Mix is pretty much just all screen up front – how cleaner do you want it?

Somehow, just an even thinner iPhone isn’t going to cut it next year is it?

Xiaomi Mi Mix price and availability

The Mi Mix will be available in China from November 4th.

It is priced at RMB 3499 for the 4GB of RAM, 128GB storage model, and RMB 3999 for the 6GB RAM, 256GB storage model with 18k gold trims around the camera and fingerprint sensor.

mimix-edgeA straight conversion to Sterling is £422.37 and £482.69, though these will unlikely be the prices you pay in the UK.

Since Xiaomi doesn’t officially sell its phones in the UK, you will need to purchase through a Chinese importer such as GearBest. I have heard that GearBest will have it up for pre-order in the next day or so.