Estimated read time: 6 minutes
The Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra is the company’s flagship smartphone for 2020. It assembles top mobile technologies in a device with an unmatched spec sheet.
Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra Design
Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra is a big smartphone in everyway. Its performance is not that far off from the Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra.
For the Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra Design, Xiaomi went with a glass sandwich design with aluminum rails and curved glass on both sides. The phone has a full-size display with a punched hole at the top left and a speaker grille above the glass, and a large camera bump at the top left corner of the rear panel. The volume rocker and power button are located at the right side of the phone with nothing on the left side. There are two microphones and an IR-blaster located at the top, and a USB-C port, microphone, main speaker, and a dual-SIM tray at the bottom.
The in-display finger print scanner is quite fast and accurate. The internals of the device are shown off through the rear glass because of its transparent design. The Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra feels and looks as premium as it should.
The phone has a quad-camera array which is so large that it causes discomfort while holding the phone for long periods.
The Mi 10 Ultra is not IP-Certified unlike other phones in its price range like Apple and Samsung that offers protection from water and dirt.
Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra DISPLAY: Great, but not for pixel-peepers
The Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra used a 2,340×1,080 full HD+ resolution and a 6.67-inch 120Hz OLED panel. Competitors such as Samsung Galaxy Note 20 and oneplus 8 pro offer higher screen resolution at same price range but not same charging feature as well as other techs packed in this phone.
The screen can be changed to 60Hz in settings. The display adaptive colour settings can also be changed in the comprehensive display setting menu if you don’t like the default setting.
The Mi 10 Ultra has a brightness of over 480nits, which is quite good and significantly higher than the samsung galaxy 20 ultra’s 412nits.
Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra performance and battery
The Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra is very fast irrespective of the model and tasks performed on the phone. This phone performed admirably while gaming, taking photos and multi-tasking.
The Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra has a fairly average sized battery of 4,500mAh cell which is not suitable for a device with five cameras, a power hungry chipset and a high-refresh-rate display. However, the Mi 10 Ultra’s software works aggressively in the background killing applications and optimizing power usage to deliver good battery life.
The Mi 10 Ultra takes about 21 minutes to fully charge, which makes it the fastest charging phone in the world. This is accomplished because of its 120w charger and its battery being split into two halves. Its wireless charging is equally impressive, taking about 40 minutes to charge at 50w.
A setback to its charging speed is, the batteries live span is cut short due to excessive heat generated by the phone while charging as a result of the power produced by the phone’s charger.
Reverse wireless charging is known for its limitation of charging only accessories like earbuds. But in this case, this device comes with a 10W reverse wireless charging that can charge a phone, not just its accessories.
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- Android 10
- MIUI 12
The Mi 10 Ultra is an android 10 device. The MIUI’s aesthetic can be found throughout the phone’s interface.
The MIUI 12 has some extra features that doesn’t come with base Android. Features such as built-in screen recorder, pr-installed Mi remote for TV control and Game turbo for adjusting game performance.
The Mi 10 Ultra doesn’t come with Google play store activated. This has to be done manually by enabling it in the GetApps app on the phone.
Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra Camera
The Mi 10 Ultra takes punchy and contrast-heavy images, with a fair amount of dynamic range. In good light, there’s not much change between all four rear sensors in terms of quality. Colors stay pretty consistent and are slightly oversaturated.
The Mi 10 Ultra seems to be able to capture white balance well. On dull days, the phone took dull photos. On bright days, the phone took bright photos.
About one-third of the time, the Mi 10 Ultra struggled with autofocus on both the main and telephoto lenses. Sometimes, it simply wouldn’t autofocus at all and so required a lot of tap-to-focus, which is rather cumbersome when you’re zoomed in.
The Mi 10 Ultra’s biggest photography feature is its zoom functionality. Samsung offered 100x zoom in the S20 Ultra, but Xiaomi is offering 120x in the Mi 10 Ultra. Below is a 120x shot of a sign in a garden center, right next to the main camera, 5x, and 10x versions. This shows off just how powerful this feature is.
I found the Mi 10 Ultra’s night mode to be one of the worst I’ve ever encountered on a flagship smartphone. It struggled with flares, captured very little detail, and was overall rather disappointing.
I believe that this could be fixed in a software update. Until that happens, the Mi 10 Ultra has an underwhelming-at-best night mode experience.
Please find all of the full-resolution camera samples in this Google Drive folder
The Mi 10 Ultra’s video is average at best. It’s got 8K @24fps video support alongside the standard UHD 60fps mode. There’s also a 960fps slow-motion mode.
The Mi 10 Ultra’s camera app is both comprehensive and intuitive to use. There are many modes and options for those who want them and simple controls for those who don’t.
Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra specs
|Model||Mi 10 Ultra|
|Launched||11th August 2020|
|Launched in India||No|
|Dimensions (mm)||162.38 x 75.04 x 9.45|
|Battery capacity (mAh)||4500|
|Colours||Obsidian Black, Mercury Silver, Transparent Edition|
|Screen size (inches)||6.67|
|Processor make||Qualcomm Snapdragon 865|
|Rear camera||48-megapixel (f/1.85, 1.2-micron) + 20-megapixel (f/2.2) + 12-megapixel (f/2.0, 1.4-micron)|
|Rear autofocus||Laser autofocus|
|Front camera||20-megapixel (f/2.3, 0.8-micron)|
|Operating system||Android 10|
|Wi-Fi standards supported||802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/Yes|
|Bluetooth||Yes, v 5.10|
|In-Display Fingerprint Sensor||Yes|
|Ambient light sensor||Yes|
Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra: The Final Verdict
The Mi 10 Ultra has a great display, a fantastic camera setup, next-level charging speeds, good battery life, and brilliant performance.
However, it’s not perfect. Xiaomi really needs to fix its heat generated while charging. Compared to the Huawei P40 Pro, this doesn’t feel quite as polished. However, as a package, Xiaomi has done a great job with the Mi 10 Ultra. It’s a shame that the phone is not yet readily available outside of China.