Sunday, November 11, 2018

Xiaomi Unveils Flagship Mi 8 Pro, Gears Up to Challenge Smartphone Giants

The Chinese smartphone and consumer IoT company herald its arrival in the UK with a new flagship handset and a store in London.

Xiaomi, currently the number four smartphone-maker worldwide behind Samsung, Huawei and Apple, has officially entered the UK market, spearheading its latest European expansion with the global debut of a new flagship handset, the Mi 8 Pro.

The company will also open its first authorized Mi Store in the UK on 18 November, in London's Westfield shopping center. This will showcase not only Xiaomi's smartphones but also a range of smart home and lifestyle products, including fitness tracking bands, an electric scooter and more.

Xiaomi joins a number of smartphone manufacturers seeking to offer premium features at a competitive price and has officially committed to limiting its net profit margin to 5 percent on hardware products. The new Mi 8 Pro starts at £499 -- the same entry price as the OnePlus 6T, from another would-be smartphone market disruptor.

Standout features of the Mi 8 Pro are a 6.21-inch AMOLED display with an on-screen fingerprint sensor, a Snapdragon 845 platform with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage, a transparent 'Titanium 3D glass' back, dual 12MP rear cameras and a 20MP front camera, plus IR face unlock.

Here's a specs comparison with the OnePlus 6T:

The Mi 8 Pro is available from today (9 November) via Three, Amazon, Argos, John Lewis, Carphone Warehouse, Currys PC World, Very, Go Mobile, Mobile Phones Direct, Katana and, and -- from 18 November -- in the London Mi Store.

Other Mi Ecosystem products whose UK availability was announced yesterday were: Redmi 6A (affordable 5.45-inch smartphone, £99); Band 3 (fitness tracker, £26.99) and Mi Electric Scooter (£399).

"Today we witness a new chapter in Xiaomi's global expansion journey, underpinned by our global ambitions. We are thrilled to make great strides by announcing our arrival in the UK. By bringing a range of our amazing products at honest pricing we want to offer more choices and let everyone in the UK enjoy a connected simple life through our innovative technology," said Wang Xiang, senior vice president of Xiaomi Corporation, in a statement.


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