Xiaomi enters 2015 armed with a well-engineered and gorgeous phablet in Xiaomi Mi Note. Together with its more powerful cousin Xiaomi Mi Note Pro, it is considered by expert reviewers as the best 2015 phablet.
Phones sold through ShopJoy are 100% genuine. The Xiaomi Mi Note is sourced directly from the authentic Xiaomi maker in China. The model listed on this page has been tested and proven to be compatible with Telstra, Optus and Vodafone.
Please do not confuse this phone with the cheaper budget phone Xiaomi Redmi Note 2.
Physical Size, Camera
Aimed at the high end market, this 5.7" full HD smartphone looks very attractive with its elegantly curved 3D glass back panel and metal trim. Xiaomi's engineering is now so good that they can make Mi Note thinner than the iPhone 6 Plus while having a camera that does not protrude from the back - something that Apple and Samsung fail to do with their flagship smartphones.
Speaking of camera, Xiaomi Mi Note's main 13MP camera is made by Sony. It is equipped with optical image stabilisation and is capable of taking good shots. Its f/2.0 wide aperture allows more light to reach the lense, letting you take decent photos in low-light conditions.
Despite its relatively large size, Xiaomi Mi Note is still pretty comfortable to handle, thanks to its thin build and curved back panel. Weighing only 161 grams also helps.
The Mi Note has a neat trick up its sleeve: it's a dual SIM phone. It takes one micro and one nano SIM card. This can be a life saver for those who are currently forced to carry 2 phones (for whatever reason).
Telstra 4G and Optus 4G were picked up automatically when we performed single SIM testing (as can be seen on the screenshot), whereas Vodafone AU 4G worked flawlessly when reviewed by PC World.
In a dual SIM test, we inserted a Telstra micro SIM as the primary card and Vodafone nano as secondary. Nominating which card to use for data connection can be done easily in Settings.
Being a dual standby SIM system, only one SIM can be active at a time. In other words, making a phone call from one SIM deactivates the other.
The Mi Note's quad-core Snapdragon 801 CPU is not the latest and greatest in 2015, but still provides a great amount of juice - more than enough to power your day to day use. Its 3GB RAM is standard for high-end devices these days, matching the amount of RAM in flagship phones such as Samsung Galaxy S6 and LG G4.
The Mi Note packs 1080 x 1920 pixels into a 5.7 inch IPS LCD screen. Its 74.4% screen-to-body ratio is higher than iPhone 6 Plus, Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and LG G4. In other words, the Mi Note dedicates more screen real estate for display than other top-end smartphones, leaving as little room as possible for buttons, bezel and other things.
On the software side, Xiaomi Mi Note runs the slick MIUI 6. A heavily customised and regularly updated version of Android KitKat 4.4, the OS provides pleasant user experience, earning praises from Android phone reviewers. Xiaomi's flavour of Android contains modifications that let you perform actions more intuitively. For example it's good to have a File Explorer app that is built-in and, more importantly, very easy to use. The camera app is another example - it takes almost no time to figure out its features.
Google Play Store doesn't come pre-installed on MIUI but you can install it yourself easily. Our blog post shows you how to do so.
In our test, we installed Google Play Store and from Play Store we installed Chromecast. We then played a Youtube video while casting it to TV. All of this worked flawlessly. Mirroring Mi Note's screen to TV through Chromecast worked out of the box too.
The first time you boot the phone, you're asked to set its language to either English or Chinese. Having selected English, you will still see bits of Chinese labels in some of the more obscure Xiaomi apps but this doesn't pose any problem at all, given that the main apps (settings, camera, dialer, file explorer, etc) are fully translated. For everything else, you should use apps installed from Google Play Store.
Chipset Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 2.5GHz quad-core Memory 3GB LPDDR3 RAM Screen 1080 x 1920 pixels 5.7" IPS screen, made in Japan Camera Sony 13MP (back), 4MP (front) Thickness 6.95mm SIM micro SIM + nano SIM (dual) 4G FDD LTE band 3/7 & TDD LTE band 38/39/40/41 3G TD-SCDMA 1900/2100MHz & WCDMA 850/1900/2100MHz 2G GSM 850/900/1800/1900MHz Battery 3000mAh OS Android 4.4 MIUI6
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- 1 genuine Xiaomi Note FDD LTE 4G phone
- 1 genuine Xiaomi USB cable
- 1 genuine Xiaomi charger (2 flat parallel pins)
- 1 generic Australian charger
- 1 manual (Chinese language)
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