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Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has appointed Panmi Pty Ltd as its sole distributor of Xiaomi and its partner’s new generation of ‘smart’ products into Australia.

But what is Xiaomi? It is a Public listed Chinese electronics company founded in April 2010. HQ is in Beijing. It makes smartphones, mobile apps, laptops, bags, earphones, shoes, fitness bands, and many other products. Pronunciation is ‘She-O-me’.

It is one of the world’s top four smartphone makers – Samsung, Apple, Huawei, BBK (Oppo/realme/vivo/One Plus). Global website here.

Previously Xiaomi’s mass-market Redmi and Mi models were legitimately sold via JB Hi-Fi, and this popular Chinese brand is widely grey marketed in Australia.

Panmi’s authorised retailers are JB Hi-Fi, Harvey Norman, Office Works and digiDirect. It also has an official reseller (to other computer/smartphone retailers) called PCByte that also handles a broader array of Xiaomi accessories. It has official Xiaomi Mi stores on eBay and Amazon Australia.

Before we cover any new brand, we seek to establish Xiaomi bona fides.

  • Panmi has submitted a declaration of conformity to the Australian Communications and Media Authority. This is a self-declaration that Xiamoi phones function on Australian networks, not that they have been carrier tested and approved. That is mostly now only used for phones the carriers sell.
  • The Mi 10 Pro series has the Australian C-Tick (RCM) mark on its Regulatory page, box and charger. It indicates compliance with the applicable technical standards for Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) and establishes a traceable link between the device and the supplier responsible for placing it on the market.
  • SARS (RF radiation) ratings must be available to the public – here
  • Warranty is fully ACL compliant and provided by third-party Service is via PTC (Phone Tech and Comm) that have kiosks in several Australian shopping centres.
  • And we like to get detained specification sheets (not just what you see on a website).

So, welcome Xiaomi to the Australian market.

BTW Xiaomi does more than smartphones. It has affiliations with Segway Ninebot, Yeelight and a vast range of Xiaomi accessories (if you count smart toothbrushes, luggage, air purifiers, vacuums, scooters and many more categories!).

Xiaomi Me 10 Pro and Mi 10 (Mi 10 series)

Where are the M10-series aimed? The natural target is the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra, but it has things like 4K AMOLED, IP68 and microSD, not to mention its 108MP camera uses NanoCell binning versus TetraCell. Given the Samsung reputation and support that is going to be a hard one to beat.

It also competes with the OPPO Find X2 Pro and all coming Qualcomm SD865 flagships.

Without having reviewed these its hard to say if they are better or worse – but they do present a strong challenge.

Xiaomi

Forgive us for getting techie – it is what we do.

  ItemMi 10Mi 10 Pro
Price$1699$1999
Display6.67” 2340×1080, 386ppi AMOLED
19.5:9 aspect ratio
90Hz, 180Hz touch rate (adjusts to 60Hz) 500/800/1120nit (typ/max/peak)
5,000,000:1 (typ) contrast ratio
100% DCI-P3 HDR10+
△E<1.11, JNCD 0.55
Dual ambient light sensors (front & back)
TÜV Rheinland Low Blue Light Gorilla Glass 5
AOD
Same with 1200nit peak      
ColourGlossy:
Twilight Grey
Coral Green
Matte:
Solstice Grey Alpine White
Dimensions162.58×74.80x 8.96mm x 208gSame
5G Network SupportQualcomm X55 modem
5G: Sub-6 n1/n3/n7/n28/n77/n78  
Same
4GSingle SIM
VoLTE
1/2/3/4/5/7/8/20/28/32/38/40
Same
Wi-Fi/CommsWi-Fi 6
4/5G+Wi-Fi 2.4/5Ghz MultiLink
BT 5.1 AAC/LDAC/LHDC /LLAC
Qualcomm TrueWireless Stereo Plus Multifunctional NFC
IR blaster
Dual Frequency GPS
Same
ProcessorQualcomm SD865 5G
1×2.84GHz+ 3×2.42GHz+4×1.80GHz Adreno 650
Same
Storage8GB+128GB 8GB+256GB LPDDR5 + UFS 3.0Same  
Cooling SystemLiquidCool 2.0
Vapour Chamber + multi-layer graphite + graphene with up to 10.5°C
Same

Specs continued

Rear Camera 1108MP main lens (binned to 25MP) Samsung Bright S5KHMX
7P F/1.69 .8um (binned to 1.6μm) 82° FOV
OIS/EIS  
PDAF
2x Digital cropped zoom [email protected]
Same with 8P lens and Laser AF
Rear camera 213MP ultra-wide-angle lens
123° FOV
f/2.4
FF
EIS  
20MP ultra-wide-angle lens Sony IMX350 117° FOV
f/2.2 1.4um 2-pixel autofocus  
Rear Camera 3  2MP depth sensor lens
1.75μm
f/2.4  
12MP telephoto portrait lens Samsung ISOCELL Fast S5K2L7 2x optical zoom f/2.0 1.4μm 2-pixel phase detection autofocus
Rear camera 42MP macro lens
1.75um
f/2.4
AF  
8MP telephoto lens OmniVision OV08A10 1.0um f/2.0 5X zoom
10x hybrid zoom and OIS
Camera FeaturesAI 2.0 Dual Flash
Pro Mode HVEC compression
Triple flash
Selfie20MP in-display camera
Samsung ISOCELL Slim S5K3T2 .8um
f/2.0
FF
[email protected]
Same
Selfie featuresPanorama selfie | Full-screen camera frame | Palm shutter | Front camera HDR | Front camera flash (via display) | Selfie timer | Eye light | AI Beautify | AI feature adjustment | AI makeup | AI portrait mode | AI scene detection | AI studio lightingSame
SecurityBiometric optical  in-screen fingerprint sensor
2D face recognition
Same
Battery & Charging​14,780mAh 30W USB-C QC4.0+/PD3.0 fast charge
(57 mins to 100%​​)
30W wireless fast charge
5W Reverse wireless charging
18W in-box charger
4,500mAh 50W USB-C fast charge
(45 mins to 100%​​) 30W wireless fast charge
5W Reverse wireless charging
30W in-box charger
AudioDual 1216 linear speakers
symmetrical system
1.0cc sound chamber Hi-Res Audio certification Dual mics Earpiece speaker
Same with 1.2cc sound chamber  
MotorX-axis linear vibration motorSame
SystemMIUI 11 based on Android 10 Slated to get MIUI 12Same
BuildGG5 glass sandwich
over a metal frame
Same
MissingNo microSD slot
Only a single SIM No IP rating ‘splash resistant.’
No formal Android update policy
Same