The announcement at Mobile World Congress from Xiaomi of a ‘revamped’ reinterpretation of its current premium flagship – the Mi Mix 3 – with a functional repurposing of the Snapdragon 855 chipset which allows for the deployment of 5G data connectivity and heralds a new, accessible, era in 5G smartphone availability.
Most territories have yet to roll-out 5G in any meaningful way. The UK will see major cities rollout 5G towers by the end of 2019. This means that the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 5G could be the first, and let’s face it, the most cost-effective way of utilising the new 5G technology. The rollout of 4G highlighted the cost of new handsets for new communications networks. Could the Mi Mix 3 5G provide a cheaper route to 5G connectivity?
The handset will support in the UK Three’s 5G rollout with additional support for Orange in mainland Europe. The utilisation of the Snapdragon 855 chipset paired with X50 5G modem makes this a possibility. But what do we know about the actual handset?
There isn’t a firm release date for the UK – at Mobile World Congress the company hinted at a May 2019 release date. The handset will be priced at £520 which will make it lower end of the flagship market.
The handset will boast a ceramic polished design that will house a 6.39-inch 2340 x 1080 FHD+ Samsung AMOLED display with 19.5:9 aspect ratio. Whilst deploying the Snapdragon chipset it will also include 256GB of storage and 6GB of RAM. It also includes the much-lambasted slider design that some critics ridiculed in the non-5G edition in late 2018.
The handset is a ‘updated 5G ready’ version of the Mi Mix 3. The tweaks allow for 2019 5G availability in the UK and beyond. However, it should be noted that like 4G and 3G one shouldn’t necessarily rush to get the latest handset just to meet the rollout of 5G. The clunky technology that met 4G showcased the trepidation of handset manufacturers.
Whilst there has been maturity and a lot more cross-sector engagement for the 5G rollout in comparison to 4G, this handset allows those who want an early peak to find the most cost-effective way of gaining entry to the 5G network. But time will tell if the handset is truly a great 5G handset experience.
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