the Xiaomi mi 11i This is the third high-end mobile that the company is presenting in Europe so far this year. We put the high end in the foreground, because if we look at the portfolio of new products in 2021, we have to use all the fingers of our hands and we would be missing several.
This device is presented as a cheap Xiaomi Mi 11 chance, although along the way, he leaves some of the functions that most captured the attention of his older brother. In return, the price is 100 dollars lower, at least if we look at the costs at the time of its launch.
Fe atures of the Xiaomi Mi 11i
- Size: 6.67 inches.
- Technology: AMOLED.
- Resolution: Full HD + 2400 X 1080.
- Refresh rate: 120 Hz.
- HDR10 +.
- Brightness: 1300 nights.
- DisplayMate Grade A +.
- 6/8/12 GB of RAM.
- 128/256 GB of storage.
- 108 Mpx main + 8 Mpx ultra wide angle + 5 Mpx macro.
- Front camera: 20 Mpx.
- 4,520 mAh.
- Fast charge 33W.
- Connectivity: 5G, 4G LTE, WiFi 6, Bluetooth 6.1, NFC, Infrarrojos, GPS, GLONASS….
- Fingerprint sensor under the screen.
- Stereo speakers.
- Android 11.
- MIUI 12.5 as an interface.
- Dimensions: 163.7 x 76.4 x 7.8 mm.
- Weight: 196 grams.
We put the glass aside
The first thing that caught my attention when opening the Xiaomi Mi 11i box and getting started was its finish. It immediately reminded me of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10S which I still have on loan, a device that costs three times less.
Indeed, unlike the Mi 11, in this model Xiaomi opted for plastics, as Samsung and OnePlus did in their cheaper models. The point is, the S21 and OnePlus 9 feel better in the hand, they don’t instantly convey the image of a cheap mobile.
Despite this, the Mi 11i is a comfortable terminal for everyday use, light and very ergonomic.
The fingerprint sensor, located on the side, works great, but that doesn’t help take away the idea that we are a mid-range mobile, not a high-end like Xiaomi wants to position it.
To have dual speaker, but no headphone jack, something also reminiscent of the high end, but we have the cheapest Xiaomi phones.
The interior is like its older brother
Where we have no complaints is performance. This Xiaomi Mi 11i uses the Snapdragon 888, a top-notch processor that allows us to perform any action, play any game and not complain about performance.
Of course, as happens in the rest of the models that use this processor, the Mi 11i heats up when you ask for a lot, and the battery consumption increases, as you will see in the autonomy section. This is not a worrying thing, as we have seen in previous generations of Qualcomm processors.
The unit they gave us has 8 GB of RAM and 256 GB of internal memory, with LPDDR5 and UFS 3.1 technologies. The latter, and not the numbers, is what sets this model apart from the Redmi Note variants.
It also shares with them the position of the fingerprint sensor, which is on the right side and works well with both hands, although it continues to be activated by mistake when we take the terminal from the table or from any surface, something that is slightly irritating.
The dual speaker is powerful and looks more like the Xiaomi Mi 11 than the company’s mid-range models.
The best flat screen
Xiaomi boasted in the presentation of this model to have the best flat screen in a mobile. The panel-shaped subsection is relevant because the Xiaomi Mi 11 uses a panel with QHD resolution, but its larger sides are curved.
In this model, it was chosen to eliminate this curvature, in the same way that OnePlus eliminated it from the OnePlus 9, but not from the 9 Pro.
So we are before an AMOLED panel with FHD + resolution and 120Hz refresh rate. The quality of it is very good, but it is not particularly far from that of the Redmi Note 10. And it is not because this Mi 11i has a bad screen, but because the one we analyzed there A few weeks ago was using one that, as we said, felt more of a high end than a mid-range.
Of course, here we have more brightness and support for HDR10 + instead of the Note 10 Pro’s HRD10.
A good camera that fails
The Xiaomi Mi 11 cut the camera off compared to the Ultra model, and this Mi 11i does the same with the Mi 11.
No, it’s not in the 108 Mpx main sensor, which is the same as the other model, but at the wide angle, which goes from the 13 Mpx of the Mi 11 to 8 Mpx, a figure totally insufficient for a high-end terminal.
The macro is also unchanged, and takes good photos, but we still feel that there is no need to mount a sensor for this when it can be included in the wide angle.
The quality of the photographs is not bad, but it gives us the feeling that this time the sky is more saturated than in the images of the Xiaomi Mi 11, the gallery of which you can see in this link.
In addition, it gives the feeling that the contrast is very high and that the automatic HDR does not solve it. Of course, at least it doesn’t create unreal photos like in other models.
Wide angle works surprisingly well in terms of color accuracy and other settings, and we’re only missing out on a bit more resolution, although we’re aware that in these type of images we’re not going to crop or crop. zoom in.
At night, the quality of the images is maintained, more or less, in the main sensor. The lights appear without halos and the detail is correct, even if we will not shoot at 108 Mpx. The problem is with the macro, which loses a lot of detail and sharpness, which is normal. And also in the wide angle, which suffers from resolution and light control.
We especially liked the videos, both for the color and for the the stabilization that Xiaomi achieves. Even at wide angle, we have remarkable results. At night, the worry typical of almost every mobile appears, although it is the one who controls it the best without making it go away. It still falls short of Vivo, Samsung, and Apple.
The front camera works well, and while it looks a bit nicer, it doesn’t leave faces bogged down. We have good detail and very good stabilization and dynamic range when recording video. Even at night the results are better than average and the video, although it has more noise, stabilizes better than most models.
The autonomy of the Xiaomi Mi 11i leaves much to be desired
It is one of the Xiaomi mobiles that combines a battery of correct capacity with a decent fast charge, 33 W. It does not have wireless charging.
In the first battery test we turned on the 60Hz screen and used the mobile mostly outdoors, listening to many podcasts with bluetooth headphones, chatting about something on the phone and taking several photos and videos. We played, but not a lot. We have reached 4 hours of screen time with 19 hours of battery life in total.
In the second battery test, we used the mobile indoors, to use social apps and play Honkai Impact Third a lot. This was noticed because the refresh rate at 120 Hz the battery drop and the heating of the mobile were noticeable. We have reached 4 hours of screen time with 18 hours of battery life in total.
In the third battery test, we went back to the 60Hz screen. We listened to music, used WhatsApp, surfed the web, and played games, but not much either. We have reached 4 hours of screen time with 22 hours of battery life in total.
As you can see, autonomy is not one of the strong points of this model, which with 4520 mAh of battery we expected to perform better.
MIUI 12 goes very well with this hardware configuration
MIUI has never been a light and fast interface. Rather, it was a very customizable device, powerful and a bit heavy. However, in high-end mobiles this is not a problem and the Mi 11i moves smoothly between desktops, applications, functions …
As of yet, it hasn’t been updated to MIUI 12.5 but that’s not a big deal either, given that it starts with Android 11, as expected.
You have all the news of this interface in a video that we made a few weeks ago where we also commented on the changes made by Xiaomi in Android 11.
The main rival of the Xiaomi Mi 11i is its older brother
The feeling that this model left us is similar to the one that the Redmi Note 10S left us. If we look at things individually, we are faced with a decent mobile, which is compliant, and which is not particularly expensive.
The problem is, just as the Redmi Note 10S was left in the shadow of the Redmi Note 10 Pro, this Mi 11i is too close to the Mi 11 in price.
The normal model costs 749 dollars at launch in its 8 and 128 GB variant and the Mi 11i costs exactly 100 dollars less. The point is, we’re sacrificing material quality, screen resolution, wide-angle resolution, battery life, wired charging speed, and wireless charging.
You might think that all this does not justify the increase of 100 dollars, but the Mi 11 has been on sale for some time and we have seen offers on Amazon with prices even lower than the Mi 11i.
Overall, both are good phones, but the reality is that the Xiaomi Mi 11 seems to offer better value for money, even if it costs more.