Xiaomi first introduced its ‘i’ series of smartphones in 2015 with the launch of Mi 4i. After that the company went silent and only to revive the series with the launch of Mi 10i in 2021. The Mi 10i was the first smartphone to debut in the mid-budget segment with a 108MP camera. This year, the company took the top spot with the launch of Mi 11i HyperCharge (and Mi 11i). Like the Mi 10i, the Mi 11i relies on one factor to make its case.
The recently launched Mi 11i 5G HyperCharge comes with a 120W charger, which the company claims can fully charge the phone in just 15 minutes. While this sounds like a marketing gimmick, Xiaomi has turned its magic wand and made something impossible, possible. Mi 11i HyperCharge lives up to its hype. The phone charges really, really fast. In fact, it easily puts the fast charging capabilities to shame by companies like Realme and Samsung. That said, fast charging capability should not be the only deciding factor when buying a smartphone. Thankfully, the phone doesn’t disappoint in other areas either.
With a 120Hz AMOLED display, 108MP rear camera, 16MP front camera, MediaTek Dimensity 920 processor and 4,500MAh battery, the Xiaomi Mi 11i makes a strong case for itself, especially in the sub-30K price segment. But there’s more to it than some numbers…
design and performance
The Xiaomi 11i Hypercharge sports a design that is quite different from last year’s Mi 10i. While the Mi 10i came with a 2.5D curved edge design, this year’s Mi 11i HyperCharge features a flat screen design that will be reminiscent of the iPhone 12 in some ways. This flat screen design makes the phone incredibly slim. In fact, with a width of just 8.34 mm, the Mi 11i HyperCharge is definitely one of the slimmest smartphones in India at the moment. However, with the large 6.67-inch display, this flat screen design makes the phone a little uncomfortable to hold, especially if you have small hands like mine.
But if you can ignore the size, which isn’t exactly easy to do, then the Mi 11i HyperCharge is a great phone if you have a case. It has plastic edges along with a glass back, which gives a premium appeal to the phone. What adds to the overall charm of the phone is the way the lighting creates a soft pattern from the back of the phone. The subtle shades of green, black, purple and blue in which the phone is available add to this pattern. What makes the back of the phone a winner is that it doesn’t attract dirt and fingerprint marks. So, even if you dare to take out the phone without taking a walk in that case, chances are that you will find it unheard of as far as the dirt accumulation is concerned.
One thing that will grab your attention is the huge rear camera setup that sits vertically on the rear-left side. It’s big, clunky and hard to miss. And while it doesn’t exactly drag down the overall look of the phone, it doesn’t add to it either. On the one hand, there are a total of five camera circles in this rear camera setup, which consists of triple rear cameras and an LED flash. On the top you get a speaker with 3.5mm jack and on the bottom you get the SIM card tray, a USB Type-C port for charging and another speaker.
The Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge comes with a side-mounted fingerprint sensor, also known as the Home button. It sits below the volume rockers on the right. The fingerprint sensor works every time the phone is unlocked. You won’t find it sluggish in your work, even on the toughest of days.
Talking about the display, the Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge has a Full HD + AMOLED display with a resolution of 2400×1080 pixels. It sports a 120Hz screen refresh rate with a peak brightness of 1200 nits. The large 6.67-inch display of the phone delivers a comfortable viewing experience, especially if you watch your favorite movies and shows on OTT apps like Netflix, Disney+ Hotstar and Prime Video on your phone. With the Widevine L1 certification, you can watch Full HD content on Prime Video and Netflix. In this phone you can also watch HDR movies on Netflix. The colors are bright and well rounded and the small punch hole camera makes for a perfect binge-watching companion.
Now let’s talk a little bit about the performance.
The Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge is powered by MediaTek’s Dimensity 920 5G chipset coupled with up to 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage space. The phone comes with Android 11-based MIUI 12.5, which is a bit disappointing at this point. It would be nice to see Xiaomi shipping the phone with Android 12, especially since the device is arriving in 2022. Still, having Android 11 doesn’t affect the overall performance of the phone. The Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge is well optimized to take full advantage of the Dimensity 920 5G SoC and be seen in day-to-day use, which is fast and almost effortless. Whether you’re passionately playing games or surfing social media or reading an annoyingly large mail, the Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge doesn’t break a sweat at all.
Now, I say almost because MIUI doesn’t come without bloatware. While it’s not a lot the first time you use the phone, it’s enough to not ignore unwanted apps. But if you can ignore it (after deleting those apps, of course), the Xiaomi Mi 11i HyperCharge offers a pretty decent experience in terms of run time.
Now, a little about that huge 108MP camera.
For the most parts, the Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge is a good phone. However, the one part where it misses the mark is in terms of the camera. As mentioned earlier, it sports a triple rear camera setup that consists of a 108MP primary sensor, an 8MP ultra-wide-angle sensor, and a 2MP macro sensor. While it offers a decent dynamic range with almost accurate color reproduction, images sometimes lack clarity. However, this is not immediately noticeable. But when you zoom in on the pictures, you will notice this drawback. Along with that is the fact that the Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge falls under saturated colors at times. This is especially noticeable in daylight conditions, which make the image dull and somewhat lifeless.
The 8MP camera also clicks pretty good pictures, especially when there are well-distributed lighting conditions. However, it also misses the mark a bit in terms of clarity. Same is the case with images clicked in low light conditions. That said, the Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge performs surprisingly better than some of the other phones in this category in low-light conditions.
This pattern repeats itself in the case of the 16MP front camera as well. While it maintains a good dynamic range, skin tone is hit or miss most of the time.
Now let’s address the elephant in the room – 120W HyperCharge.
The Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge is backed by a 4,500mAh battery and has support for the company’s HyperCharge technology. At the backbone of this technology is a 120W charger, which the company claims can fully charge the phone in 15 minutes.
Now, it sounds too good to be true. But in reality, the Xiaomi 11i Hypercharge comes close to this mark. In my experience, it fully charges the phone in about 20 minutes. But there is a catch. You need to charge the phone very fast. The phone has something called boost mode, which allows the phone to charge at the highest wattage without worrying about overheating while doing so. This boost mode is hidden under Settings > Battery & performance > Battery > Boost Charging Speed. So, if you want your phone to charge within minutes, you’ll need to turn on this setting manually. Without boost mode, it takes around 25-30 minutes for the phone to get fully charged.
While this may seem a bit frustrating to some, the idea is that you won’t need to charge your phone all the time within minutes. And when you do, the HyperCharge technology will juice up the phone in 15-20 minutes.
As far as the runtime is concerned, the Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge lasts a full day on a single charge. I used this phone non-stop to answer endless calls, from checking mail to binge watching series, During my day to day usage, the phone easily lasted a day.
Should I buy Xiaomi Mi 11i Hypercharge 5G or not?
In short: yes. At a starting price of Rs 26,999, the Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge is easily one of the best phones in the sub-30K market segment. While Xiaomi has only talked about one feature in detail – 120W Hyper Charging technology – the phone has some great specs that are lauded by equally dependable performance.
Xiaomi Mi 11i 5G Hypercharge after review: Charges really fast, but there’s a lot more to it than that which appeared earlier on BGR India.