Xiaomi Mi 11i (5G) Review – User Experience, Design, Display, Cameras, Performance, and Battery Life, Other Features
Xiaomi has recently launched the Xiaomi 11i (5g) and the 11i HyperCharge in India. I bought the Xiaomi 11i from Flipkart for Rs. 24,990, and here is my experience with the smartphone after using it for a week.
First, let’s have a look at the key specs, and then we will get into more details:
- 6.67 inch AMOLED display 120 Hz with 700 Nits Brightness.
- Boxy Design with Glass Back Cover
- Processors – MediaTek Dimensity 920 5G Octa-Core Processor
- 6 GB DDR4 Ram and 128 GB Internal Storage
- 5G Support – 8 Bands
- 5160 mAH Battery and 67 Watts Charging
- Price Rs. 24,990 (6 GB Ram and 128 GB Storage)
Detailed Video Review
I did a video review of the phone in Hindi, and if you want to check that out can view it below:
Let’s start with the design. The Xiaomi 11i comes with a modern design with boxy looks, and it has squarish edges that are not sharp, but the design looks familiar to the iPhone 13 Pro.
I usually prefer the in-hand feel of curved back phones that are less edgy, like my Oneplus 8T. The 11i Camo Green variant looks stunning and has a glass back with a gradient finish.
The large camera bump that houses the 108 MP camera is noticeable and annoying if you put your phone on a flat surface and try to work. It wobbles a lot. Put on the supplied silicon case, and there is some respite.
At the top, we have a 3.5 mm headphone jack (a rarity in modern phones) and an IR blaster.
The bottom and top of the screen have dual stereo speakers, and the volume rocker and power button (doubles as a fingerprint Reader) are on the right side.
The bottom chin is slightly more prominent than some more expensive flagship smartphones. The smartphone weighs 204 grams and has 8.4 mm thickness, which is high. However, it comes with a massive battery.
The Xiaomi 11i (5G) comes with a large 6.67 inch Super AMOLED display with Full HD+ (2400*1080) pixels resolution. The display offers a 120 Hz refresh rate – you can either choose 60 Hz or 120 Hz; there is no option to choose 90 Hz or other custom values.
The display is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 5 and has 700 Nits of peak brightness.
It has an 86.1% screen-to-body ratio which is not the highest. I tested the display by watching some 4K HDR videos on YouTube, and these play without any hiccups.
The display seems sharp and color-accurate, even slightly better than my Oneplus 8T.
Powering the smartphone is the Dimensity 920 5G Octa-Core processor based on a 6 nm manufacturing process and comes with the ARM Mali G68 MC4 GPU.
Here are some of the Benchmark Scores:
- GeekBench Single Core – 743
- Geek Bench Multi-Core – 2202
The Geek Benchmark scores are about 20% slower in Single Core and 30% slower in the Multi-Core compared to the Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 SOC available in phones close to 30K.
Storage Test – UFS 2.2
- Read Speed – 700 MB/s
- Write Speed – 500 MB/s
The Gaming performance is good, and you can easily play games like Call of Duty Mobile or PUBG New State on High settings for long hours.
There is not too much heating, but I have observed some throttling if you are gaming for a long time.
The key highlight of the Xiaomi 11i (5G) is the massive 108 MP rear camera with an f/1.9 aperture lens, EIS support, and it can record 4K(30 FPS) videos. The limitation is the lack of OIS (don’t expect in this range) or the 4K @ 60 FPS support. I know there is OIS on Realme 9 Pr,o+, but that doesn’t work well in videos.
The secondary lens is an 8 MP ultra-wide shooter, and the third lens is a not-so-useful 2 MP depth sensor.
Furthermore, it comes with a 16 MP selfie camera with an f/2.5 aperture.
Here are some of the camera samples that I have shot on the Xiaomi Mi 11i (5G), and here are some of the observations.
Shot on Xiaomi 11i (Click on the image to view in Full Resolution)
The 108 MP camera works when you go into settings and choose to click 108 MP images; otherwise, the camera shoots photos at 12 MP resolution (9:1 pixel binning).
The 108 MP image files are huge – over 20 MB and for most people, it has no real-life use or advantages. Overall, image quality is good, but sometimes there is a yellow tint on both front and rear camera images.
Low light images are also decent but not the best. You can record 4k videos but the ISP feels stretched while processing higher frame rates on this camera. You may see more focus hunting and jelly effect in videos if shooting in lower light conditions. But in decent light, the videos have details and are suitable for posting on social media.
Several options in the camera app make using it a delight even for beginners—more camera comparison with Oneplus 8T in the above video.
The smartphone boots Xiaomi MiUi 12.5 enhanced edition and Android 11. There is no Android 12, and I don’t know how long you will have to wait for it.
There is Glance (the App that shows unique Ads on the home screen). You can disable it in the settings, but it is enabled by default.
The MIUI 12.5 experience has improved significantly from the previous iteration and looks less annoying to me. The pull-down menu is copied blatantly from Apple, and some of the visual effects are also stolen from the Cupertino giant.
Nevertheless, the icons and some UI elements can still be improved to make it more accessible for end-users. There are tons of options buried in settings and even in the pull-down menu that can confuse buyers looking for a simple, easy-to-use UI.
But the good thing is you can get used to it and remove the clutter from the pull-down menu, pre-installed apps, and even from the Xiaomi keyboard to make it simplistic.
Overall, I think it is far better (both visually and functionally) than the MIUI 9 or 10 that I have mostly used on older phones.
I like the speakers on the Mi 11i (5G). If you use speakers for calls or watching movies – you will love the crisp and loud audio from the top and bottom firing dual stereo speakers. It is excellent that Xiaomi is offering stereo speakers in this price range.
Also, I tested the smartphone that comes with Dolby DTS support. And once you pair a TWS headphone with ApTX support, the phone recognizes it and offers a higher audio codec.
Also, there is a 3.5 mm headphone jack that I tested with my Sennheiser headphones, and the output from the device is decent.
I don’t think it has a dedicated AMP or anything to offer superior audio like some Sony or LG smartphones.
Call Quality and Other Features
I used the phone for just a few days as my secondary phone and found no issue with the signal strength or call quality. Also, pairing with TWS was uneventful, and everything worked as intended.
The phone comes with a hybrid Nano-Sim and has IP 53 rating (dust and splash-proof). You can expand the storage if you want using a micro-sd card.
There is a feature that increases the Ram by two gigs; it uses the storage as Ram – not extremely useful as the storage speed is not as fast as Ram.
The smartphone comes with an IR blaster, and you can use it to control devices.
Battery Life and Charging Speed
The bit bulky phone promises a long battery life thanks to the 5160 mAH battery capacity.
A 67 Watts supplied charger (in the box, a luxury perhaps nowadays) is a delight to use and can charge the phone up to 50% in around 18 minutes and fully charge it in 43 minutes.
The battery optimization is decent, and it can last a full day or even work for 1.5 days with regular usage. It can offer a SOT of 7 hours or even more, depending on the use.
Concluding Thoughts: Xiaomi 11i (5G) Review
The Xiaomi 11i comes with decent hardware but quirks like the considerable camera bump that makes it wobble or the slightly bigger bottom bezel.
The user experience is good, but you will have to wait for the latest Android for some months.
The primary camera is good, but I would have liked a 12 MP ultra-wide camera instead of 2 more cameras that are not so useful. Also, there is a side-mounted fingerprint scanner that works well, but I prefer an in-display scanner.
The battery life is excellent, and the charging speed is amazing. The performance from the MediaTek processor is snappy, and who would have imagined a few years back that they would be challenging Qualcomm with excellent performance and energy efficiency.
The display quality is praiseworthy, and the sound is also immersive.
You are getting what you are paying for, probably nothing more, nothing less, considering the competition.
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