Every discussion or review or content I see about the Mi A3, I see one common theme and that’s “Pure Android”. Everybody touts this phone’s pure Android capabilities.
So what is it? And is the Mi A3 a good enough phone or is it great?
Before we get into a Mi A3 review, let me give you a small recap about the Mi A series.The MiA1 was a super duper hit that resulted in making the A2. The A2 was an “epic fail” because Xiaomi did the unthinkable. They removed the headphone jack.
The Xiaomi Mi A3 is a lot different. And Xiaomi is throwing the kitchen sink at this.
Xiaomi Mi A3 Review
Inside the Box
The MiA3 phone comes packed with a 10W charger, type-C charging port, the phone and an instruction manual.
Design and Display
The MiA3 without a doubt is a good looking phone. It has a water drop notch and a thick bezel at the bottom, which is a sight for sore eyes. The back of the phone has a premium finish because of the presence of glass.
The glaring omission I must mention upfront is the lack of water protection. You drop your phone into a tub of water and it’s a goner.
The phone is packed with features such as an IR Blaster, Headphone Jack and a SD Card slot.
The phone already punches above its weight class with the optical under display fingerprint sensor. Does it work like a charm?
It works great. You can use it to unlock your phone without having to press any buttons. It also has a face unlock option which is pretty quick for a mid-ranger.
The display size is 6.01-inches with a Super AMOLED screen with a 720p resolution. When it comes to its pixel density, it’s pretty poor. What does that mean?
Your phone can pixelate! But why would Xiaomi do this?
Price ! Price ! Price !
The Mi A3 can be priced for ridiculously cheap and also you don’t need much battery power and a powerful chipset to run this. If you can look beyond the screen, the Mi A3 has something in store.
Functions and Specs
Powering this phone is the Snapdragon 665 with 4GB RAM and 64GB of minimum storage. Although this chipset isn’t that powerful, the lesser screen resolution ensures that the Snapdragon has to power lesser and that makes this phone really quick and when I mean quick, it’s super quick.
How about gaming though?
Very surprisingly, gaming is fantastic on the MiA3. And it all boils down to the 720p display. It ensures smooth functioning of everything.
But what are the cons? Some images are pixelated and some icons of some apps are pixelated. If you are a display aficionado, then this might hurt a bit.
Now let’s get to the Pure Android bit. MiA3 is part of Google’s Android One program and this means this phone runs on stock Android without the trappings of any other skins or themes or layers.
This means you get the cleanest Android experience on the planet. No ads, no unnecessary fluff. BUT, the navigation experience on Android One is pathetic. The pill navigation is one of the worst ways to use your phone and for people who live quick and fast gestures, this will hurt.
Always a hot topic. There are three cameras for the MiA3. The 48-megapixel main camera and an 8-megapixel ultra-wide camera and the 2megapixel depth sensor.
One very huge deficiency is the lack of optical image stabilization. This is an absolute requirement when you are taking photos otherwise you will get a lot of shaky photos.
The quality of the cameras are fantastic and have very deep detailing. The Night Mode isn’t the best of the lot, but is better than a lot of phones out there especially Huawei.
The camera can shoot good quality videos at 1080p @ 30fps. The front camera is a mammoth 32-megapixels. It’s a fixed focus camera that doles our some juicy high quality photos.
The battery life on this phone is astounding. The 4030 mAh battery does not have much power and gives you easily 101 hours of standby time that is unseen on most phones. Although the phone supports Quick Charge 3.0, Xiaomi only ships the normal 10W charger.
The Xiaomi MiA3 is a super confusing phone to review. It lacks a few basic things, but that lack advances and improves the performance of other things and overall it’s a mixed package. But misses and hits are clear that will help you take the right decision.
The biggest misses are the screen resolution of 1080p and the Xiaomi’s own MIUI Android OS. Although the resolution is lesser, it makes the phone faster and the battery life even better. The lack of the MIUI OS ensures you get a super clean Android experience.
This is a blazing fast phone that works super quickly. The battery life is one of the best in the business but that has its trade offs.
- Super fast phone
- Surprisingly great for gaming
- Amazing battery life
- Good, solid cameras
- Navigation experience of stock Android is abysmal
- You can see small pixelations on certain images and apps
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