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Is the Mi A1 Xiaomi’s Best Budget Phone Yet?

12 November 2017 | Reymart Jan Sarigumba

Xiaomi’s collaboration with Google not only makes the Mi A1 a compelling option but also the right device with impressive specs and features for those on a budget. Find out why the Mi A1 is the best budget phone you can currently buy in Malaysia.

This 2017, Xiaomi is going to crush its rivals with its powerful recent offerings like the Redmi Note 4, and now the Mi A1. With the Mi A1’s stunning specs and features, you’ll get more bang for your buck!

Design and Display

Design-wise, the Mi A1 looks similar to other Xiaomi devices but it has some elegantly crafted trimmings including its premium metallic feel and solid construction. Aside from that, it sports a 5.5-inch IPS display that delivers impressive visuals and contrast. With its vivid and bright screen, users won’t have any issues using it in broad daylight.

Hardware and Battery

Like the Redmi Note 4 and Mi Max 2, the Mi A1 is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor that offers a balance of performance and efficiency. It’s also coupled with a 4 GB RAM to make the device snappy and able to handle demanding apps and graphics-intensive games.

In terms of battery life, Xiaomi fans expected the Mi A1 to wield a larger battery compared to its predecessors, but Xiaomi has kept the capacity modest by providing the Mi A1 with a 3,080 mAh battery. Although it’s not exceptional, it offers impressive standby times.


The Mi A1 is one of the few mid-range phones in the market that wields a dual camera set up. But what makes it so special is that it is the first one in the series to come with a 2x lossless optical zoom, meaning it can deliver a smooth zoom experience that is essential for recording high-quality videos from a wide range of distances. The Mi A1 can also take some great portrait images with natural-looking colors and accurate color reproduction. Aside from that, it has a 5-MP front camera that is good enough for taking decent selfies.

How Does It Compare with Other Budget Smartphones?

Along with the Xiaomi Mi A1, the Redmi Note 4 is one of the best budget mid-range devices that has been released so far this year. The Sony Xperia XA1 is not far from these two which is also selling droves. So, how does the Mi A1 compare with these equally powerful devices?

The Mi A1’s strengths are its dual camera system and top-of-the-line Google software that provides timely updates. Although it has a smaller battery compared to the Redmi Note 4, it has a powerful hardware. Meanwhile, both the Sony Xperia XA1 and the Redmi Note 4 boast a good design and build quality but the Mi A1 also delivers well in that aspect. Despite having a stunning camera, the Xperia XA1 fails in other departments such as display quality and the lack of fingerprint scanner. On the other hand, the Redmi Note 4 may have the best battery life among the three devices but it has a subpar camera quality.

In terms of price, the Mi A1 costs a bit higher at RM 879 compared to the Redmi Note 4 (RM 699) and lower than the Sony Xperia XA1 (RM 969). All in all, judging by the Mi A1's specs, it excels in almost all departments unlike Redmi Note 4 and Sony Xperia XA1 - both of which have their own set of apparent weaknesses. If you are in the market for a budget mid-range device that ticks almost all the right boxes, then the Mi A1 would be the ideal choice.

Xiaomi Smartphones in Malaysia

Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus
From RM 485.00 #xiaomi #redmi5plus Manufacturer: Xiaomi [Brand new imported set, unsealed box] Warranty Labelling / Inspection purposes Model: Redmi 5 Plus Network: GSM / CDMA / HSPA / LTE 2G bands GSM 850/900/1800/1900 — SIM 1 & SIM 2 CDMA 800 & TD-SCDMA 3G bands HSDPA 800/900/1900 /2100 4G bands LTE band 1(2100), 3(1800), 5(850), 7(2600), 8(900), 34(2000), 38(2600), 39(1900), 40(2300), 41(2500) Speed HSPA, LTE, GPRS, EDGE Dimensions: 158.5×75.5×8.1 mm (6.24×2.97×0.32 in) Weight: 180 g SIM: Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by) Display type: IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors Size: 5.99 inches 92.6 cm2 (~77.4% screen-to-body ratio) Resolution: 2160 × 1080 FHD (~403 ppi pixel density) OS: MIUI 9 (Global ROM) Chipset: Qualcomm MSM8953 Snapdragon 625 CPU: cta-core ARM Cortex A53 Up to 2.0 GHz GPU: Adreno 506 RAM: 3 GB / 4 GB Memory: 32 GB / 64 GB Card slot: No Primary camera: 12 MP (f/2.2, 1.25 μm), phase detection autofocus, dual-LED dual-tone flash Features: geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, HDR, panorama Video: 1080p@30fps, 720p@30fps, Secondary camera: 5 MP WLAN: Wi-Fi 802.11b / g / n, DLNA, hotspot 2.4 WiFi / WIFI Direct / WiFi Display Bluetooth: 4.2, Bluetooth HID GPS: Yes, with A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS USB: microUSB 2.0 Sensors: Fingerprint (rear-mounted), accelerometer, gyroscope, proximity, compass, ambient light sensor, hall sensor Battery: Non-removable Li-Po 4000 mAh 5V / 2A Color: Gold What's in the box 1 x Phone 1 x Power adapter 1 x USB cable 1 x SIM needle 1 x User manual *ALL GOODS SOLD ARE NOT REFUNDABLE!!!* WARRANTY TERMS & CONDITIONS 1 YEAR LABOUR SERVICE FROM THE DATE OF PURCHASED AGAINST ALL MANUFACTURING DEFECTS EXCLUDING ANY DAMAGE CAUSED BY UNAUTHORIZED THIRD PARTIES OR WATER/LIQUID DAMAGE. 3 MONTHS WARRANTY COVERED FOR LCD DISPLAY, TOUCH SCREEN, KEYPAD, TRACK PAD AND TOUCH PAD. 3 MONTHS WARRANTY COVERED FOR CAMERA, BATTERY, EARPHONE AND AC TRAVEL CHARGER.

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