Xiaomi’s latest flagship smartphone is a stunning piece of kit

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The final flagship from MWC 2016 has dropped and it is from Chinese smartphone makers Xiaomi with their brand new Mi 5 — and it’s a beautiful beast.

Several days before the official announcement, Xiaomi has been teasing the capabilities of the Mi 5, starting with the camera where they posted pictures that their president Bin Lin had taken with the Mi 5 on his Lunar New Year holiday. They also launched a series of videos featuring record holders blitzing through tasks like jumping rope and solving a Rubik’s cube, emphasising the Mi 5’s speed.

We also have the failed attempts from Hugo Barra, but I don’t think that has anything to do with the smartphone’s speed — at least I hope not. But now, we finally get to see if the Mi 5 really lives up to the expectations Xiaomi has set for it.

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For starters, the Mi 5 will sport a 5.15-inch full-HD near-bezel less Sunlight display on the front which Xiaomi seems to think makes a big difference over the 5.1-inch and 4.7-inch displays on both the Galaxy S7 and iPhone 6S.

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On the inside, it will be powered by Qualcomm’s latest next-gen Snapdragon 820 quad-core processor paired with either 3GB or 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM and a choice of 32GB, 64GB or 128GB of internal UFS 2.0 flash storage which Xiaomi says posts a blistering AnTuTu score of 142,084. The key point here is it doesn’t sport a microSD expansion slot, but with a 128GB option, things aren’t so bad.

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For optics, the device gets a 16MP rear-facing f/2.0 Sony IMX298 camera that sits flush at the back with PDAF, while a 4-megapixel 2 micron large pixel selfie shooter graces the front. The primary camera features a 4-axis OIS, which you can check out in this video:

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Other features include a front fingerprint scanner, dual-SIM, LTE-Advanced and VoLTE support, Bluetooth 4.0 and support for NFC with MIUI 7 running on top of Android 6.0 Marshmallow preinstalled. Keeping everything running is a moderate 3,000 mAh battery with Quick-Charge 3.0 via USB Type-C.

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One unique thing about the Xiaomi Mi 5 is the fact that it sports what Xiaomi calls “3D ceramic glass” which forms the back of the phone. At the front it’s glass as usual with a metal frame holding both panels together. It also has a slight curve on the back much like the new Samsung Galaxy S7 and the Galaxy Note 5 including Xiaomi’s own Mi Note.

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The device will come in three colours — Black, White and Gold (which has an exclusive back etched design) — and prices are as follows:

Xiaomi Mi 5, Snapdragon 820 SoC clocked at 1.8GHz, 3GB RAM, 32GB of storage with 3D glass back – RMB1,999 (around RM1,295)

Xiaomi Mi 5, Snapdragon 820 SoC clocked at 2.15GHz, 3GB RAM, 64GB of storage with 3D glass back – RMB2,299 (around RM1,490)

Xiaomi Mi 5 Pro, Snapdragon 820 SoC clocked at 2.15GHz, 4GB RAM, 128GB of storage with 3D ceramic back – RMB2,699 (around RM1,750)

These devices will be available in China starting 1st March with global availability coming soon.