Xiaomi has been quite busy this year. In the past month or so, we have seen them launch their budget-oriented Redmi Note 11 Series on our Kenyan shores, and consequently, we covered the review of the base Redmi Note 11 here.
First forward to this month, and the Chinese company has launched their new flagships, the Xiaomi 12 series today, the 15th of March with the devices expected to be available in Kenyan stores starting in April.
The Xiaomi 12 Series is not the successor to the Redmi Note 11 Series, as the naming scheme might suggest. While the Redmi Note 11 Series targets the middle range market, The Xiaomi 12 Series which will build on what the Mi 11 Series achieved last year targets the higher middle range to the high-end market of smartphones trading blows with the likes of Samsung and Apple flagships.
We might get news of the Redmi Note 12 Series later in the year, or early 2023 as it is only 2 months old in the international market, and 4 months old taking the slightly different versions available in China into consideration.
With the Xiaomi 12 Series being the flagship models in 2022 for Xiaomi, the devices pack the best performing chipset currently available for Android devices, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1.
As usual these days, there are 3 variants of the Xiaomi 12 available in the Kenyan market, namely, the Xiaomi 12, Xiaomi 12 Pro, and the Xiaomi 12X. Both the Xiaomi 12 and the Xiaomi 12 Pro are powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset, while the Xiaomi 12X is powered by the Snapdragon 870 chipset.
This consequently makes the Xiaomi 12X to be the most affordable of the three variants thanks to the less powerful chipset that it is packed with. Keep in mind though that the Snapdragon 870 SoC still lies among the best performing chipsets in the Android ecosystem.
The Xiaomi 12 has an OLED screen with a 120 Hz refresh rate and an impressive 1100 nits of peak brightness. It also features support for HDR10+ as well as Dolby Vision.
The device as well as the Xiaomi 12 Pro and Xiaomi 12X has 3 RAM /storage combos, i.e 8 GB/ 128 GB, 8 GB/ 256 GB and 12 GB/ 256 GB.
The camera set up has three main sensors, a primary 50 MP and two secondary ones at 13 MP and 5 MP for ultra-wide and depth shots respectively. The selfie camera on the other hand is a single 32 MP sensor.
The Pro model of the Xiaomi 12 is largely similar to the Xiaomi 12, but has a few key differences to set it apart. The first one being a higher screen resolution at 1400 x 3200 compared to 1080 x 2400 in the Xiaomi 12.
The Xiaomi 12 Pro has the same rear triple camera set up, but the sensors are different, with the three of them being 50 MP sensors. The selfie camera, however, retains the same 32 MP sensor that is also present in the Xiaomi 12.
The only difference between the Xiaomi 12 and Xiaomi 12X is the chipset powering them, making the 12X a very tempting device if you are not a particularly heavy user.
Going by the information available to us at this time, the Xiaomi 12 and the Xiaomi 12 Pro are what we are getting in the Kenyan market. Pricing for the Xiaomi 12 and Xiaomi 12 Pro starts at Kshs 85,000 and Kshs 105,000 respectively. Both devices will have the flagship 12GB + 256GB onboard storage variant included.
The pricing of the Xiaomi 12 series pushes the devices into the high-end bracket, and it will definitely be interesting to see how they compare against other flagships like the Pixel 6, Samsung Galaxy S22, and iPhone 13 in real-world benchmarks.