Xiaomi’s Mi 11 Ultra is here to take on Samsung’s Galaxy S21 Ultra
Xiaomi released the Mi 11 already in Europe last month following its debut in China at the end of last year. However, we’ve still been waiting for Xiaomi’s more premium Mi 11 Ultra which we’ve been expecting since it leaked over a month ago. Xiaomi finally revealed the phone in full today, and as expected, it’s headlined by a new triple camera array, high-resolution display, fast wired and wireless charging, and Qualcomm’s latest flagship chipset.
Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra: Design, Specs, and Features
The Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra is a massive, thick, and heavy phone, measuring 164.3mm tall and 8.38mm thick and weighing 234g. Considering its ceramic build, large cameras, and expansive display, these dimensions make sense. Speaking of ceramic, Xiaomi is offering the Mi 11 Ultra in two colorways: Ceramic White and Ceramic Black. Both models feature a layer of Corning’s Gorilla Glass Victus on the front for protection and are IP68 rated for water and dust resistance. The Mi 11 Ultra is actually Xiaomi’s first-ever IP68-rated device, which is something they’re proudly touting but is standard among premium flagship phones.
Xiaomi’s Mi 11 Ultra shares some similarities with the non-Ultra model, like a 6.81-inch 120Hz Quad HD+ resolution display with a 120Hz refresh rate, Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 chipset, 5G connectivity through the integrated Snapdragon X60 modem, and an under-display fingerprint sensor. However, the storage and RAM are upgraded — there’s only one configuration, with 256GB of storage capacity and 12GB RAM. There doesn’t appear to be a microSD card slot, so 256GB is all you’re getting. Also, the Ultra now supports Wi-Fi 6E connectivity depending on the region.
Another change from the standard Mi 11 is the rear camera array, which is much larger and has a different sensor setup. You get a 50MP main sensor with Samsung’s new ISOCELL GN2 image sensor, a 48MP ultra-wide, and a 48MP telephoto. The telephoto supports 5x optical zoom, 10x hybrid zoom, and 120x digital zoom. That’s a step down compared to the Galaxy S21 Ultra‘s telephoto lens, which offers 10x optical zoom and 100x digital zoom, but is substantially better zooming than what’s found in the standard Mi 11.
The rear camera bump also contains a 1.1-inch AMOLED screen, with a resolution of 126 x 294. Xiaomi says it can be used to take selfies with the rear cameras, function as an always-on display, and more. Earlier leaks showed the screen can essentially mirror whatever is on the phone’s main display, though watching YouTube or checking emails on a finger-sized screen probably isn’t ideal.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen a smartphone with a rear display for taking photos — the Vivo NEX had a much larger one in 2018, as did the Nubia Z20 in 2019. More recently, the ASUS ROG Phone 5 Pro and Ultimate have a small screen on the center of the back, but that one is a dot-matrix display that only displays text and simple logos.
Xiaomi also packed some of the fastest charging technology we’ve seen yet into the Mi 11 Ultra. The device features a silicon-oxygen anode battery with a capacity of 5,000mAh. It should easily last an entire day, but you also get 67W wired and wireless charging, which Xiaomi says can fill the battery within 36 minutes. That’s slightly faster than the OnePlus 9 Pro, which can charge at 65W with the included power adapter, or the same speed using OnePlus’ proprietary wireless charger. The phone also has 10W reverse wireless charging.
|Specification||Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra|
|Dimensions & Weight||164.3mm x 74.6mm x 8.38mm, 234g|
|RAM & Storage|
|Battery & Charging|
|Front Camera||20MP, f/2.2, 78° FOV, 0.8μm 4-in-1 to 1.6μm, fixed-focus|
|Audio & Vibration|
|Software||MIUI 12 based on Android 11|
Pricing and Availability
Xiaomi has announced that the Mi 11 Ultra will cost start at ¥5599 in China for the 8/256GB model, ¥5999 for the 12/256GB model, and ¥6999 for the 16+256GB model. In Europe, the 12/256GB version will cost €1200.