Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite is the fifth smartphone of the line up. The device in question represents a mix between the latest trends in terms of design: we find an attractive gradient back cover and the notch, while the hardware side Xiaomi come back to the Snapdragon 660 (SoC already dear to the brand), but with a renewed photographic sector. The premises are the best: let's find out how he behaved in our full review!
Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite Review
For the latest addition to the Mi series, the company turns the usual minimal design upside down from the sales box, presenting a package with a gradient color that recalls the different colors of the device. Inside we find:
- Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite;
- 5V 2A wall power supply;
- USB / USB Type-C cable;
- silicone cover;
- USB Type-C adapter / mini jack 3.5 mm;
- Pin to extract the SIM carriage.
Design and construction quality
Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite comes as the device with less claims than the whole line up, however it comes with important dimensions - 156.4 x 75.8 x 7.5 mm - for a weight of 169 grams, and houses a large display in 19: 9 from 6.26 inches covering about 82% of the screen area. Despite the size, you never have the feeling of having a cumbersome smartphone in your hands and, also because of the shiny workmanship, Mi 8 Lite returns a good grip, although it is, however, almost impossible to use in one hand.
As we anticipated, already from the sales package we have the impression of being faced - at least aesthetically - with something never seen before. Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite hits indeed for personality. We have rarely seen smartphones in this range using an original design with excellent results. While frontally we find "the usual notch" in which they lodge capsule, selfie camera, notification LEDs and sensors, the reference to the originality is all on the back cover.
In fact, we find on the back a glass panel, with the choice (happy in my opinion) to horizontally position the Dual Camera with LED Flash. The plus is given however by the cathodic pulverization process of the back that gives back a gradient color, visible in backlight and not too accentuated to seem tacky. To recall the hue, we have a shiny aluminum frame on which are located:
- Volume bar and power button on the right;
- Dual SIM hybrid cart on the left;
- At the bottom are space: microphone, mono speaker and USB Type-C;
- At the top we have the second noise suppression microphone.
The paradox of proposing a more captivating and more original design (at least compared to the standard Mi 8) on the entry level of the Mi 8 line in my opinion is an absolutely apt choice; thanks also to the excellent construction quality that distinguishes all the products of the brand, challenging Mi 8 Lite you will have the feeling of owning a medium-high end device.
One of the flagship specifications of this device is undoubtedly the display Full HD + IPS LCD from 6.26 inch 1080 x 2280 pixels and 403 PPI density. The thin frames and a notch contained make the panel very pleasing to the eye, as well as the 2.5D curvature of the glass, penalized in part by the rather pronounced black step and particularly visible in the gradient variants.
Beyond the slight aesthetic flaw, however, we are faced with a panel of excellent workmanship, well visible exposed to direct light (thanks to a good light sensor) and able to maintain a discreet color fidelity even by tilting the device. The only small drawback is the tendency, not too accentuated, to the cold colors. Tendency to which one can easily remedy by setting the reading mode or more simply by accessing the "Contrast and colors" setting through which you can select between standard mode, hot o cold.
Feeding the fantastic Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite we find the SoC Snapdragon 660, octa-core solution (up to 2.2 GHz) to 14 nm already used by the brand for Mi A2 and Mi Note 3. To complete the hardware we find the Adreno 512 GPU, accompanied by 4 / 6 GB di RAM LPDDR4X e 64 / 128 GB di Storage eMMC5.1 (expandable up to 256 GB).
In practical terms, the hardware of Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite supports in a more than decent way the classic uses. In daily use we will not have any kind of problem related to lag and delays, both in navigation and for the use of more substantial apps. Also gaming side the sensations are excellent, both for the reproduction of fillers and for heavier titles - PUBG on all - where we find an optimal gaming experience with graphic parameters not at the most. In addition, the smartphone has never heated too much, with parameters in the standard even for longer-lasting sessions of use.
In this 2018 we have seen Xiaomi present, in contrast with previous years, smartphones with a respectable photographic sector. The trend first concerned the flagships, then grouped in a more or less indiscriminate way all the company's devices. Also this Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite responds perfectly to this examination, with a photographic section worthy of note. The smartphone arrives with a double rear sensor 12 + 5 mega - pixel with focal aperture respectively f/ 1.9 ed f/ 2.0; the first - Sony IMX363 - with dual PDAF pixels, while the second dedicated to depth.
The double main sensor is characterized by being able to capture most of the details in the open field shots and, even more so in the macros, while maintaining good contrast and vivid colors. The chromatic vivacity is then aided by the scene recognition with AI. In this context, the company's software work is known and the recognition is always faithful. One feature that I particularly appreciated is the application of AI in portrait mode: even if it is not faces, the AI recognizes the subject (whether it is a plant or a building) and perfectly matches the edges.
Even the night shots have proved up, albeit with the classic (and necessary) loss of detail. Unfortunately, in this sense Xiaomi has not yet proceeded to insert a night mode worthy of note, as opposed to some competitors who, thanks to software implementations, ensure shots with a high contrast even if starting from a qualitatively inferior basis.
On the front we have a sensor of 24 mega - pixels that fulfills in a way more than suited to the requests. In fact, we find both the rear and front cameras the HDR Auto which gives, in some cases, an edge to the photos. With the decline of the light, the front sensor also loses quality, however thanks to the flash display we will be able to take acceptable photos even in situations of almost total darkness, with the only limit, also related to the rear camera, of the almost impossibility of taking portrait mode shots at night. Poco bad: in my opinion the photographic sector of Mi 8 Lite is one of the many reasons why you might prefer this device.
Mi 8 Lite then allows the ability to record video up to 120 fps in 1080p, a choice not recommended for the poor stabilization (EIS), which we find instead filming 30 fps in 1080p.
Software side we find the MIUI 10 based on Android 8.1 that, in its new role adapted to elongated displays and the use of gestures is able to express itself to the fullest. In this specific case, we tested the smartphone with the MIUI 10 China Stable, which entailed access to some additional features, such as AI recognition in portrait mode, but with important shortcomings such as the difficulty - in some cases - to receive notifications and more.
First of all, we find support for full screen gestures, very much loved by the brand's users: swipe from bottom to top to return to the home (or extended to access the app menu) e swipe side to return to the previous page. In any case, Xiaomi allows, for the less accustomed to changes, to still retain the classic NavBar. The personalized software experience offered by Xiaomi is not limited to gestures. Even the management of the cloned Apps is always effective, as well as the power saving mode that will limit the consumption of apps not used frequently, while still retaining the full operation of those desired (such as messaging apps). To be counted among the exclusive features we then have the Mi Mover for file sharing, and the Second space.
A real sore point of the current interface is the management of the notch, in fact, the notification icons will not be displayed in the part to the left of the notch.
In addition, thanks to an excellent front camera, we will have the possibility to make the Face Unlock via software. While on several occasions we are talking about strong limitations of facial unlocking without the hardware support, I must say that for Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite is not so: both methods of unlocking (via face unlock and with the biometric sensor) turn out to be equally efficient . Unlocking the device with Fingerprint ID we will have speed and effectiveness, but the feeling is repeated even with the facial release. The latter was particularly fast and, even in situations of poor or no light, the lighting of the display was sufficient to take advantage of the face unlock.
Connectivity and audio quality
On the test days, Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite It is distinguished by excellent reception, both in call and for Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac, dual-band, which for the Bluetooth 5.0. Average results also for satellite navigation, GPS / A-GPS / GLONASS, BeiDou. Absent instead NFC, FM radio and mini jack 3.5 mm.
The audio in the case then returns a discreetly clean and sufficiently high sound; listening experience embellished with a cap by presence dell'AptX.
Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite mounts a battery from 3350 mAh which could initially lead to a not optimal autonomy, also seen the large display Full HD + da 6.26 inch. However, while not using the Global ROM, the device in question behaved more than excellently from the standpoint of autonomy. During the weeks of use I have always used the device at most, with push notifications and Bluetooth active and has always allowed me to arrive until evening with over 30% of residual battery. In numerical terms, Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite reaches around 5 hours and minutes 30 of screen lit.
A discrete autonomy, then assisted by charging times far from long. Thanks to the new standard USB Type-C and support for Quick Charge 3.0 di Qualcomm, you will be able to make a complete recharge - from 0% to 100% - in poco less than an hour e half.
Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite Review - Price and conclusions
We wasted a lot of words about how extremely saturated the mid-range is this year more than ever. However, this Mi 8 Lite comes at a price similar to smartphones (the cousins of the Redmi family in primis) with slightly lower specifications and with much less personality! The device in question is, in fact, available on the Asian stores on a permanent basis for less than € 190, while it is from poco landed on Amazon at about 230 €: in both Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite will repay you very well: a best buy for the mid-range.