By Dominik Bosnjak
The Xiaomi Mi 8 will be the most “cost-effective” Android flagship launched in the first half of the year, a known industry insider from China said Saturday. Xiaomi’s next high-end offering is rumored to start at 2,799 yuan, i.e. the equivalent of $440, at least in the company’s home country. That price tag will reportedly be attached to a model with 6GB of RAM and 64GB of storage space, being some $90 below the starting price of the OnePlus 6, a handset that’s currently widely believed to be the best-value flagship on the market.
The upcoming device is said to be advertised as the Mi 8 Anniversary Edition even though it’s meant to succeed the 2017 Mi 6, with the name being intended to commemorate Xiaomi’s eight years in business which the company celebrated in early April. The handset is expected to feature a wide display notch accommodating a 3D camera capable of depth sensing, according to a broad range of reports dating back to late 2017. The module should allow for facial recognition that’s both faster and more accurate — i.e. secure — than what simpler face unlock mechanisms support. Support for Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 4.0 technology should also be part of the package, with Xiaomi’s next offering hence being predicted to become only the fourth Android smartphone compatible with that unprecedentedly fast charging solution after the Nubia Z17, Razer Phone, and the newly announced HTC U12 Plus.
The Mi 8 is set to be powered by the Snapdragon 845, Qualcomm’s most powerful chip to date, with its most premium model being expected to offer 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage space. The more premium variant of the phablet is rumored to retail at $500 in China, with Xiaomi likely targeting global availability, much like it did with the Mi 6 last year. Recent teasers from the phone manufacturer are pointing to an official announcement of the Mi 8 being scheduled for Thursday, May 31. The company is also presently pursuing a market listing, having already filed for its initial public offering expected to take place in the first half of July.
By Dominik Bosnjak