Xiaomi Mi A3 review: best-in-class smartphone on Android One, but without NFC


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The editors thank the ALLO online store chain for the kindly provided smartphone for review

Xiaomi Mi A1 and A2 smartphones were quite popularthanks to very good features, clean Android on board and a very attractive price tag. The new representative of the Android One program from Xiaomi, the Mi A3 smartphone was introduced recently and has already gone on sale in Ukraine. Technically, this is the CC9e, which is available in China, but without the MIUI shell and for the international market. Compared with its predecessors, Xiaomi Mi A3 received an updated design and hardware. Some of the innovations were positively received by the public, some not so. The smartphone has already visited the editorial office gg, today we will tell you more about it.

  1. What is it?
  2. What is interesting about Xiaomi Mi A3?
  3. What is in the box?
  4. What does the Xiaomi Mi A3 look like?
  5. How good is the screen?
  6. How does a fingerprint scanner work?
  7. What about performance, memory, sound and autonomy?
  8. What about the interface?
  9. How good are the cameras?
  10. In the dry residue

What is it?

Xiaomi Mi A3 is a smartphone on pure Android with 6.088-inch AMOLED screen, glass body, eight-core mid-level Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, 4 GB of RAM, 64 GB of internal memory and a triple main camera.

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What is interesting about Xiaomi Mi A3?


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The company decided to change the design and materials inthe new smartphone of the line, now instead of a metal backdrop, glass is used. Instead of the IPS-display, AMOLED is now used with a diagonal of 6.088 inches and a drop-shaped cutout for the front camera. But the resolution was reduced and instead of 1080p we got 720p. AMOLED-matrix allowed to install a fingerprint scanner in the screen. Inside is the new eight-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 processor, 4 GB of RAM and 64/128 GB of internal memory, plus a hybrid tray, so you can install a memory card instead of a second SIM. The main camera is triple: a 48-megapixel main module, an 8-megapixel wide-angle and ToF camera for determining the distance to objects. There is a dual-band Wi-Fi module, Bluetooth 5.0, an infrared transmitter for controlling electronics and even an FM radio. But NFC was not delivered. The smartphone is powered by a 4030 mAh battery, 18 W fast charging is supported.

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What is in the box?


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Xiaomi Mi A3 comes standard onthe size of the white box with the image of the smartphone and a brief technical information. The kit is almost standard: a smartphone, a USB Type-C cable, a 10 W charger, a tray eject tool, a dark gray silicone case and documentation.


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What does the Xiaomi Mi A3 look like?


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Visually, Xiaomi Mi A3 is very reminiscent ofthe current flagship Xiaomi Mi9: streamlined outlines, glass front and rear and a drop-shaped cutout for the front camera. Frames around the perimeter of the display are not record, but very thin. Only the chin is a little wider. Above the display is a thin slot in the earpiece, proximity sensors, lighting and a small LED indicator.


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The frame is made of metal and painted with glossy paint, for a smoother transition into the glass backdrop. The standard set of the power button and volume rocker is located in the usual place, on the right:


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On the left side there is a tray, it is hybrid. Either 2xSIM or a memory card instead of a second SIM card:


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At the top there is an additional microphone, an infrared port and a standard 3.5 mm headphone jack:


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An external speaker, microphone and USB Type-C connector are on the bottom:


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The back panel is made of fifth Gorilla Glassgeneration (as on the screen). The smartphone is available in three colors, the most “conservative” gray came to us. But he also does not look boring thanks to iridescent shades:


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The main camera is located in the upper left corner. It includes a 48-megapixel main module, an 8-megapixel wide-angle, ToF camera and LED flash:


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The Xiaomi Mi A3 looks and is made very well,high quality materials are used. And the shape fits comfortably in the hand, including due to the small width and streamlined outlines. But the smartphone turned out to be a little slippery (like all glass modern smartphones), it is more reliable to keep it in the complete bumper.

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How good is the screen?


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Xiaomi Mi A3 has 6 installed.088-inch AMOLED screen with an aspect ratio of 19.5: 9. The matrix itself is very sensible in terms of brightness and color. But its resolution is 1560 × 720, the pixel density is about 286 ppi. Downgrade compared to previous models that used 1080p. But the predecessors used IPS. It is also worth considering the arrangement of subpixels according to the PenTile scheme of AMOLED matrices, which exacerbates the situation. In general, watching videos and playing games on such a screen is quite comfortable, but reading a lot of text, especially in small print, is already worse: you can see “ladders”, the text is not too clear. And on monochromatic pictures a little bit of pixelation is visible.


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In terms of settings - the necessary minimum, whichis in stock Android. Font sizes, scale of interface elements, night mode, blue filter and brightness settings. No color rendering modes. Hardware measurements showed that the maximum brightness is 360.038 cd / m2, and the screen goes a little in cold colors. The color gamut typical of AMOLED: significantly wider than sRGB. The screen is very good in all respects except resolution.


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Comparison with other models:

Device name
White field brightness,
cd / m2
Black field brightness,
cd / m2
Contrast

Xiaomi Mi A3
360.038
0

Samsung Galaxy A80
402.303
0

Sony Xperia 1
394.97
0

Sony Xperia XZ3
408.047
0

Huawei P20 Pro
415.876
0

Meizu 16th
432.107
0

How does a fingerprint scanner work?

Using the AMOLED matrix allowed to establishsub-screen fingerprint scanner. There is also an option with face recognition of the owner. But only the front camera and standard Android algorithms are used, and when registering a face, the smartphone notifies that this method is not too safe.


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The fingerprint scanner works onsurprise fast and accurate. What you don’t really expect from a very affordable smartphone. Optical scanner: the fingerprint is highlighted for scanning. With wet hands, of course, does not work.


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What about performance, memory, sound and autonomy?

Xiaomi Mi A3 smartphone got fresheight-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 processor. It is manufactured in compliance with the 11-nm process technology and includes 4 Kryo 260 Gold cores at 2 GHz and 4xKryo 260 Silver with a frequency of 1.8 GHz, Adreno 610 is responsible for the graphics. In terms of performance, it is very close to Snapdragon 660, which was installed in Xiaomi Mi A2. But a finer manufacturing process is used (11 nm vs 14 nm), which should have a positive effect on autonomy and the new graphics accelerator. Of the additional features, improved work with machine learning algorithms and support for triple cameras up to 48 MP are noted. The smartphone has 4 GB of RAM LPDDR4x, which is quite normal for its class of devices. As for modern games, the smartphone does not have any problems, especially considering the low resolution of the display.


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The internal memory can be 64 or 128 GB, aswe already wrote above. Fast UFS 2.1 is used. As expected, in processor performance tests, the results of the Snapdragon 665 are just below the 660th. Although it is worth considering that the maximum frequency of the 660th is 2.2 GHz versus 2.0 for the new model. In some graphics tests, the new 665th shows itself a bit stronger:


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In the Throttling Test, the processor performed very well: by the end of the test, performance drops to 85%, while the case does not heat up:


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The interfaces have dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac, Bluetooth 5.0 A2DP, LE with support for aptX HD, FM tuner and infrared port. USB Type-C is used to connect to a PC or memory. Navigation: GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS. Unfortunately, there is no NFC module. And this is especially strange, given the potential audience of Android One smartphones. There is no stereo sound in the smartphone, there is only one external speaker, but it is very loud. You won’t be able to miss a call; rather, you shouldn’t even set the maximum volume. At the same time, the quality is also not bad. There is a 3.5-mm jack, the smartphone gives the average “smartphone” sound quality to the headphones, without any surprises.

According to the battery capacity, the smartphone significantly scored incomparison with predecessors. It is powered by a 4030 mAh battery. Supports Quick Charge 3.0 fast charging at 18 watts. But the kit comes with a 10 W charger, from which the smartphone charges about 2.5 hours. The impressive battery capacity, low-resolution AMOLED display and the new energy-efficient processor have a very positive effect on battery life. “Dropping” a battery in a day will be difficult. With an active load (with a lot of photos, games, web surfing and online video), the smartphone lives for a day and a half, in a more gentle mode, 2 days will be stable.


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What about the interface?

Xiaomi Mi A3 is a member of the Android One program, andthis means that it works on pure Android with the current version 9 Pie with a minimum of something third-party. I think everyone is already familiar with the current version of the OS, so it makes no sense to examine it in detail. Everything is familiar: desktops, a separate application menu, an application manager with large cards with a slider for switching, split-screen mode, Google news feed, “Digital Well-being” to control the time you use your smartphone, and so on. Formally, the smartphone will receive big updates for another 2 years and plus another year of security updates. At the same time, Android One smartphones are among the first to usually receive new versions of the OS.


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There were only a few third-party applications: Mi Community, Mi services, camera app and FM tuner. Interestingly, even an application for controlling electronics using the infrared port “out of the box” is not. But it can be installed in a couple of movements from the Play Market:


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How good are the cameras?

Xiaomi Mi A3 got pretty popular nowconfiguration of the main camera. The main module is 48 megapixels (by default it shoots 12 MP, but can be switched to 48) with an aperture of f / 1.79, PDAF and without optical stabilization, the additional one is wide-angle 8 megapixels with a viewing angle of 118 ° and aperture of f / 2.2, without autofocus. The third module is time of flight (ToF) for determining the distance to objects. The application decided to use their own. It is organized in the usual way: switching swipe modes, switching cameras next to the shutter button, Ai-definition and frame adjustment, HDR, and so on. There is a night mode:


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The main camera does an excellent job in the afternoon, in the eveningfrom time to time it feels like it's an affordable smartphone. There is noise and the detail drops slightly. But, in general, to get a decent shot in low light is quite realistic. Including with the help of night mode. I think they will improve it with the updates, and the GCam port will probably appear soon.


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The wide-angle camera copes a little worse and in the evening “smears” more:


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Blur background:


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Smartphone video shoots in 4K resolution, but stabilization is only with FullHD:

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In the dry residue

In Xiaomi Mi A3, the company made a lot of improvementscompared to the predecessor Mi A2. The new smartphone received an up-to-date design and materials, a fresh Qualcomm platform, a significantly increased battery and a modern triple camera, which shoots very well. The IPS matrix was changed to AMOLED, and the fingerprint scanner moved right under the screen panel. At the same time, they returned a slot for memory cards, a 3.5-mm headphone jack and even an FM receiver. But I had to save a little on some things: the smartphone is worth 6000 UAH and in this price range the competition is extremely high. “Under the knife” went the resolution of the display, but the NFC-module never appeared.

5 reasons to buy Xiaomi Mi A3:

  • nice appearance and quality materials;
  • long battery life;
  • actual, productive processor;
  • good image quality (considering the class of the smartphone);
  • pure Android 9 Pie.

2 reasons not to buy Xiaomi Mi A3:

  • low resolution display;
  • no NFC.

Xiaomi Mi A3

Pure Android 9 Pie smartphone with 6.088-inch AMOLED screen, glass body, eight-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 processor, 4 GB of RAM, 64 GB of internal memory and a triple main camera.

Buy in Allo

Android One

Specifications Xiaomi Mi A3 and comparison with Xiaomi Mi A2

Model
Xiaomi Mi A3
Xiaomi Mi A2

Display
AMOLED, 6.088 inches, 1560 × 720 (19.5: 9 aspect ratio), 286 ppi, Gorilla Glass 5
IPS, 5.99 inches, 2160 × 1080 (18: 9 aspect ratio), 403 ppi, Gorilla Glass 5

Housing
dimensions: 153.5 × 71.9 × 8.5 mm, weight: 174 g, glass, metal frame
158.7 × 75.4 × 7.3 mm, 166 g, metal

CPU
Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 (11 nm), 2 × 2.2 GHz Kryo 470 Gold, 6 × 1.8 GHz Kryo 470 Silver, Adreno 610
Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 (14 nm), 4 × 2.2 GHz Kryo 260, 4 × 1.8 GHz Kryo 260, Adreno 512

RAM
4 GB
4 GB

Flash memory
64/128 GB + MicroSD
32/64 GB

Camera
triple: 48 MP, f / 1.79, 1/2 ″, 0.8µm, PDAF, wide-angle 8 MP, f / 2.2, 1.12µm, TOF 3D camera, f / 2.4, front: 32 MP f / 2.0, 0.8µm
Dual: 12 MP, f / 1.8, 1 / 2.9 ″, 1.25µm, 20 MP, f / 1.8, 1 / 2.8 ″, 1.0µm, PDAF, front: 20 MP, f / 2.2, 1 / 2.8 ″, 1.0µm

Wireless technology
Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac / (dual band, 2.4 and 5 GHz), Bluetooth 5.0 LE, aptX HD, FM, IR
Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac / (dual band, 2.4 and 5 GHz), Bluetooth 5.0 LE, infrared

GPS
GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS, GALILEO
GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS, GALILEO

Battery
4030 mAh non-removable, quick charge 18 W Quick Charge 3.0
3000 mAh non-removable, 18 W quick charge Quick Charge 3.0

operating system
Android 9 Pie
Android 9 Pie (Android 8.1 Oreo at launch)

Sim card
2xNanoSIM
2xNanoSIM

Headphone jack
there is
Not

Additionally
On-screen fingerprint scanner
Rear fingerprint scanner

For those that want to know more:

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  • Huawei P30 lite review: 48 megapixel smartphone
  • Review of the smartphone Redmi Note 7: the best camera and display for modest money
  • Samsung Galaxy M20 review: an unambiguous answer to Chinese smartphones
  • Xiaomi Mi MIX 3 Review: Sliders Returning

Thanks

Revision gg thanks Allo chain of stores, kindly providing the Xiaomi Mi A3 smartphone for this review.

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