Gadgets and Gizmos (India) - - COVERSTORY -

Xiaomi, known as the Ap­ple of China, en­tered In­dia with the Mi3, which was an­nounced in its home coun­try last Septem­ber. The Mi3 re­sem­bles the high-end Lu­mia smart­phones, mi­nus plas­tic. It has an alu­minium-mag­ne­sium chas­sis and the matt sil­ver fin­ish looks nice. The 5-inch IPS panel with full HD res­o­lu­tion is great to work on. The touch is re­spon­sive and I was com­fort­able us­ing the phone with one hand. For dis­play, other than the de­fault themes, Xiaomi gives ac­cess to its Theme Store, from where free themes can be down­loaded.

Mi3 doesn’t pack the de­fault An­droid UI. In­deed, the MIUI adopts some UI fea­tures from iPhone as well where all the apps are on the home screen and there isn’t an app launcher tray.

The smart­phone runs on Qual­comm’s Snap­dragon 800 chipset, the same chipset which does duty on LG G2 and Sony Xpe­ria Z1. The Mi3 has a quad core pro­ces­sor clocked at 2.3Ghz and is paired with 2GB of RAM. This en­sures a lag-free per­for­mance but at times I did no­tice that the phone froze for a cou­ple of seconds while charg­ing. Play­ing As­phalt 8 and Dead Trig­ger 2 was a treat on this phone. Web brows­ing was smooth. Over­all, the ex­pe­ri­ence was fluid. It packs in a 13MP cam­era, which is the best in its price cat­e­gory. The Mi3 does a great job in low-light con­di­tions. The cam­era has a QR code built-in.

Xiaomi al­lows users to get rid of pre-in­stalled apps they do not want to use, a much-needed fea­ture in all smart­phones. The MIUI con­stantly im­proves with fre­quent soft­ware up­dates be­ing pushed to the cus­tomers.

With the in­creas­ing dis­play size of the smart­phones, bat­tery plays a vi­tal role. The Mi3 has a 3050mAh bat­tery that lasted me more than a day on full charge with heavy us­age.

VERDICT: It fea­tures spec­i­fi­ca­tions which are usu­ally found on phones that cost 30,000 and above

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