Mi 11 Lite Review: The new Mi 11 series smartphones created a huge buzz in India. This series is filled with smartphones for every purpose. Until now, we saw Mi 11 X, Mi 11X Pro and Mi 11 Ultra being unveiled as a part of this series. For instance, if you are a camera enthusiast, Mi 11 Ultra will help you with it. If you are looking for a flagship range smartphone on a budget, Mi11 X will be your choice. If you are a hard-core gamer, Mi11 X Pro will cheer you up. In other words, this series will offer you a wide range of smartphones for every usage style.
Now, Xiaomi has unveiled a new smartphone release for its Mi 11 series, the Mi 11 Lite. Unlike those 3 models, Mi 11 Lite does not have a flagship-grade processor. The phone is powered by an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 732G processor. In other words, no 5G for now. It comes with a 6.55-inch touchscreen display with 1080×2400 pixels resolution. Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite is currently priced in India at Rs. 21,999. Let’s jump into the review of this smartphone to see what’s good and what’s not good about it.
Mi 11 Lite Review: Design
Xiaomi devices generally don’t score that much in this segment. Xiaomi mostly prefers performance aspects over the design aspects of a smartphone. As a result, you won’t find jaw-dropping designs from Xiaomi. For instance, Mi Mix is the only smartphone series from Xiaomi that’s visually pleasing and will certainly let your jaw drop. On the other hand, it looks like Mi 11 Lite is not suffering from any design flaws.
The phone looks amazing and thin. In fact, Xiaomi is also trying to sell this smartphone based on its design factor. According to Xiaomi, Mi 11 Lite is the thinnest smartphone ever made by Xiaomi. Mi 11 Lite was just 6.8mm thick, making it slimmer than any other smartphone from Xiaomi. It also weighs just 157 grams which will make it the lightest smartphone launch of this year. The phone is even thinner than the new releases such as Vivo X60 (7.3mm) and OnePlus 9R (8.4mm).
Apart from having the thinnest body, Mi 11 Lite is also equipped with a 6.55 inch AMOLED panel with a 90Hz refresh rate. The typical brightness of this panel was clocked at 500 nits and the peak brightness is at 800 nits.
Design-wise, Mi 11 Lite looks just like Mi 11X with a thinner body. Above all, these models even share the same type of colour schemes. The glossy design on the back gives the phone a premium feel. However, the phone is attracting a lot of fingerprints. Apart from the look and feel, Mi 11 Lite has got some extra protection. The front panel of Mi 11 Lite is made of Gorilla Glass 5.
Verdict: Overall, Mi 11 Lite has got Sleek looks, Amazing design specs, bright AMOLED Panel with a 90Hz refresh rate. I think design-wise, this mode is a great head turner.
Xiaomi phones are well known for their amazing hardware complemented with reasonable price tags. But, it looks like Xiaomi is not repeating the same with Mi 11 Lite. Let’s go through some facts about the phone. Based on them, we will judge if it is true or not.
- Mi 11 Lite has got Qualcomm Snapdragon 732G, a mid-range 8-core chipset announced on August 30, 2020. In other words, it is pretty old to power a new phone.
- The chipset has scored over 275862 on the Antutu Benchmark test which is way lower than POCO X3 Pro. POCO X3 Pro is currently priced at 18,000 INR and the phone managed to gain over 477882 points in Antutu Benchmark. Mi 11 Lite is much pricier than POCO X3 Pro.
- Mi 11 Lite lacks 5G compatibility. Xiaomi hasn’t launched the 5G version of this phone. The current version only supports a 4G network.
- Snapdragon 732G suffers from heating issues. Although the processor is optimised for mobile gaming, it is known to produce a lot of heat. It is quite evident too. I played PUBG for a while on Mi11 Lite and observed the heating issue in this phone after a couple of gameplays.
The current version of Mi 11 Lite was priced at 21,999. This particular price segment (15-20K) is already filled with heavy competition from devices such as IQOO Z3, OnePlus Nord, POCO M3 Pro, Realme 8 and Narzo 30 Pro.
Verdict: We expected Mi 11 Lite might get powered by Snapdragon 768. This kind of price tag deserves a flagship-grade processor rather than a mid-range chipset.
Mi 11 Lite Review: Camera
Mi 11 interestingly scored well in this segment. The triple camera setup on the rear has a 64 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), 8 MP, f/2.2, 119˚ (ultrawide), 1/4.0″, 1.12µm and 5 MP, f/2.4, (macro), AF. These shooters managed to capture some great images in bright light conditions. However, the performance of them deprived when the light source was depleted. They weren’t particularly good when it came to producing night-time shots. The shots went underexposed and dull in low light conditions.
However, the video shooting performance of the camera was good. These cameras can shoot 4K@30fps, 1080p@30/60/120fps with gyro-EIS. The colour rendition is good and managed to capture every detail of the environment.
The front camera of Mi 11 Lite is a 16 MP shooter with f/2.5 aperture, 25mm (wide), 1/3.06″ 1.0µm. I observed some things with this shooter as well. It managed to capture some crisp images with attention to detail in every shot. However, it failed miserably in low light conditions just like the rear cameras. The 5G version of Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite has successfully impressed the reviewers at the noted benchmark site DxOMark. It even managed to secure a good position sitting right next to Pixel 4a.
Verdict: Overall, the camera performance of Mi 11 Lite is good. The only problem with these cameras is their autofocus. It could have been better.
The phone is equipped with a descent 4250 mAh Li-Po battery and a 33W fast charger out of the box. It is quite low compared to most models in the same range due to its slim design. However, according to GSM arena reports, Mi 11 Lite has got a total 100h endurance rating. The charging speeds were good. It took only 60 minutes to reach 100% of the battery. However, battery drain was frustrating in Mi 11 Lite, especially while playing games. In conclusion, according to my experience, Mi 11 Lite’s battery is not sufficient for a heavy user. It can only do Calls, Casual Data Browsing & Day to day activities without any hiccups. If you go beyond that, I don’t think the phone will make it to the end of the day.
Verdict: Although, charging speeds are quite impressive, Mi 11 Lite needs a massive battery to make it through the day. But, due to design constraints and to make it slim, Xiaomi took a serious jab on battery and it seriously affected the experience.
Mi 11 Lite Review: Operating System
Out of the box, Mi 11 Lite comes with Android 11 based MIUI 12.5. We are seeing MIUI a lot lately on many Xiaomi phones and the experience on Mi 11 Lite was also just the same. MIUI 12.5 hasn’t brought any outstanding changes to MIUI, except for some improvements in the interface. It also brought improvements to battery life. Xiaomi has claimed that “MIUI 12.5 will be using 20 per cent fewer cores than before with 35 per cent less background memory and 25 per cent less power consumption”.
Verdict: OS on this phone was quite decent and the animations were smooth. However, It needs some polish here and there to make it clean and more responsive. Maybe a simpler UI might make MIUI more usable.