Photo Credit: Xiaomi
Mi Mix Fold has debuted as Xiaomi's first foldable phone. The new phone competes directly with the likes of Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 and Huawei Mate X2. The new smartphone is a part of the Mi Mix series that brought concept devices such as the original Mi MIX and Mi Mix Alpha in the past. However, unlike those concepts that were aimed at showcasing the company's innovative efforts, Mi Mix Fold is designed as a commercial device that will be available for purchase and carries a conventional folding design. Mi Mix Fold is also Xiaomi's first phone to feature its proprietary Surge C1 image signal processor (ISP) and Liquid Lens technology.
Mi Mix Fold price has been set at CNY 9,999 (roughly Rs. 1,12,100) for the base 12GB + 256GB storage variant. The pricing goes up to CNY 10,999 (roughly Rs. 1,23,300) for the 12GB + 512GB storage configuration and CNY 12,999 (roughly Rs. 1,45,700) for the top-of-the-line 16GB + 512GB storage option. Mi Mix Fold will be available for purchase from April 16 in Mainland China through Xiaomi's official sales channels. However, pre-orders for Mi Mix Fold — alongside Mi Mix Fold Ceramic Special Edition — will begin in the country from March 30.
Details about the global availability and pricing of Mi Mix Fold are yet to be announced.
Back in January 2019, Xiaomi President Lin Bin confirmed that the company is working on a "double folding smartphone." Mi Mix Fold is a result of the early prototypes that Xiaomi showcased back then. The company claims that Mi Mix Fold underwent 200,000 bends in reliability testing and up to a million bends in extreme reliability testing.
Xiaomi has used a U-shaped hinge design on Mi Mix Fold that brings inward folding — similar to Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 and Huawei Mate X2. There is an 8.01-inch WQHD+ flexible OLED display with 900 nits of peak brightness and 4:3 aspect ratio. On the cover side, the phone offers a 6.5-inch AMOLED display with 840x2,520 pixels resolution, 27:9 aspect ratio, and 700 nits of peak brightness. The inner screen of Mi Mix Fold has a traditional 60Hz refresh rate, while the outer display carries a 90Hz refresh rate.
The flexible display of Mi Mix Fold also includes support for Dolby Vision and HDR10+ standards. It also has DCI-P3 colour gamut and 4,300,000:1 colour contrast ratio. The external display also includes HDR10+ support and is capable of doubling resolution of pictures and videos to 1440p.
Under the hood, Mi Mix Fold has an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 SoC, along with up to 16GB of LPDDR5 RAM and up to 512GB of UFS 3.1 storage. The smartphone also includes a butterfly-type cooling system that has VC liquid cooling, thermal gel, and multilayer graphite sheets, among other heat dissipation methods.
Mi Mix Fold brings the Surge C1 ISP that is claimed to be in development for the last couple of years. The proprietary processor can offer high performance without consuming many resources. It is also touted to bring an improved 3A algorithm and low-light focus capabilities to bring more accurate autofocus, auto exposure, and auto white balance over the competition. Xiaomi claims that it spent CNY 140 million (roughly Rs. 157 crores) during the research and development stages of the Surge C1 chip.
In addition to Surge C1, Mi Mix Fold has a Liquid Lens technology that uses the principle of human eye bionics and forms a lens-like structure with a transparent fluid wrapped in film. There is also a high-precision motor to change the radius of the spherical surface's curvature to offer up to 3x optical zoom, up to 30x telephoto, and a minimum focus distance of three centimetres.
“One lens virtually covers functions of two lenses. You can shoot micro-details up close, and gaze at magnificent rivers and mountains from a distance,” the company said in a blog post while defining its Liquid Lens technology.
Mi Mix Fold also has a triple rear camera setup that includes a 108-megapixel primary Samsung HM2 sensor, an 8-megapixel secondary sensor with the Liquid Lens technology, and a 13-megapixel sensor with an f/2.4 ultra-wide-angle lens. There is also a 20-megapixel selfie camera sensor at the front.
Xiaomi has provided a dual-cell 5,020mAh battery on Mi Mix Fold that supports 67W fast charging. It is rated to fully charge the phone in 37 minutes. Mi Mix Fold also includes quad speakers that are tuned by Harman Kardon and are powered by Xiaomi's own quad-speaker algorithm. This is claimed to bring 3D spatial audio field playback.
Mi Mix Fold comes with a Corning Gorilla Glass protection at the back with a ceramic texture. There is also Mi Mix Fold Ceramic Special Edition that has an identical hardware of the standard model but with a gold middle frame and volume buttons, as well as a black ceramic back with special laser engraving.
On the software front, Mi Mix Fold runs on Android 10 with MIUI 12. The phone also includes a side-mounted fingerprint sensor. Connectivity options include 5G, 4G LTE, Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth, and a USB Type-C port.
Mi Mix Fold measures 173.27x133.38x7.62mm when unfolded or 173.27x69.8x17.2mm when folded. The standard edition of Mi Mix Fold weighs 317 grams, while its Ceramic Special Edition weighs 332 grams.
Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast, has a double bill this week: the OnePlus 9 series, and Justice League Snyder Cut (starting at 25:32). Orbital is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.