This is the Xiaomi Mi A1, an Android One device from the Chinese manufacturer in collaboration with Google. Essentially it’s just a rebranded Mi 5X running stock Android. It’s the same premium but pedestrian looking design, and the same hardware specifications, which might not be all bad.
The 5.5” display is good looking enough in most lighting conditions, it has a decent sounding speaker that can get pretty loud, the headphone jack has a standalone amp that provides good sound quality and volume, the fingerprint sensor works reliably, you have the option to choose between using dual SIM or a MicroSD card, and you even get an IR blaster that some people may still find useful.
It’s also using the tested and proven Snapdragon 625 chipset paired with ample amount of storage and RAM. It’s a little long in the tooth now, but it still provides a nice balance between power and efficiency. So I haven’t really had any issues with day to day stuff. However, if you’re an avid gamer, it does stutter a little when playing some graphically intensive games. But they are still mostly playable if you’re not too particular.
RAM management is surprisingly good too for a device in this price range, even after switching to a couple of other apps, I can jump back into my games again without missing a beat.
One of the headlining features of the Mi A1 would be its dual 12MP camera. It’s the usual wide angle and telephoto lens setup, so you get 2 times zoom, and a portrait mode. It works decent enough if you’re into that sort of thing, but I don’t really find it that useful since it only works in good lighting. For normal shooting, it’s a perfectly serviceable camera, but definitely not flagship level. Well, maybe a flagship phone from a few years back. The dynamic range isn’t that great, and there isn’t an auto-HDR feature, so you’ll have to turn it on when you need it. In low light, I need to hold the camera a bit steadier to avoid camera shake, and with a bit of patience, I’m still able to get some decent looking shots. Just keep in mind the actual price of the phone, and you’ll be happy with the results. Video recording is probably one of the weaker aspects of the phone, lacking any sort of stabilization even for 1080p recording.
The 5MP front camera is also rather underwhelming. Something that I’m sure some of you guys noticed is that the camera app is actually not Google’s. It’s Xiaomi’s own camera app because of the dual camera. And that’s not the only addition to the software.
I am a little disappointed with the battery size though. Considering the size of the phone, 3,080mAh is just a bit on the smaller side. I get about a day of use on it with a bit of light gaming, but not much more. Also, there is no support for any form of fast charging.
Another slightly disappointing aspect of the phone is the lack of an NFC chip for Android Pay and the MIUI style capacitive buttons. It’s probably an effort to cut cost, but I think those would have made the phone a lot more compelling for me.
There is a Remote app as well for the IR Blaster, and a Feedback app. You’ll also find some traces of Xiaomi too in settings. Which is why Xiaomi is actually the one handling the software updates for the phone, not Google. They did promise an update to Android Oreo by the end of the year, and that it’ll get the next major version of Android as well, but I’ll believe it when I see it. But when it comes to stock Android, there isn’t really anything much to talk about.
Like the basic split screen feature, fast app switching, and app shortcuts. And that’s what I really like about it. It’s simple, clean, and only has the essentials. It’s not going to be suitable for everyone, which is why if you want software features, you can simply go for the Mi 5X. The Xiaomi Mi A1 is for people who like the stock Android experience, but don’t want to pay a huge amount of money for a Google Pixel. Pretty much everything about the phone is good enough for its price, and the fact that it runs stock Android is a huge plus.
At its current price (15,000 in India), it’s a pretty compelling option when compared to other similar devices like the Moto G5 Plus. The combination of affordable Xiaomi hardware and clean Google software is almost a match made in heaven for me. If only it has an NFC chip and the proper android navigation buttons.
So Guy’s this was the review of Xiaomi Mi A1, hope you enjoy please share this article with your friend and also don’t forget to leave your thought about this phone in the comment section below. Goodbye!