This post is based on the author’s personal opinion and may not reflect the views of other Android Authority employees or the company as a whole.
The Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 is expected to make its debut sometime in October. The company is keeping the majority of details about the flagship under wraps, so we don’t know exactly what it will bring to the table. However, I have a few ideas on what the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 needs to grab consumers’ attention and outsell its predecessor.
Pop-up selfie camera
The Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S features a super-thin top bezel and doesn’t have a notch, which looks great but creates a problem — where do you put the selfie camera? Xiaomi’s solution was to place it in the bottom bezel, which is less than ideal. Not only does this mean the bezel is thicker than it could have been, it also makes capturing selfies and taking video calls a pain.
I hope this will change with the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3. I’d like to see the company opt for a selfie camera that pops up from the top edge, similar to the ones found on the Vivo Nex and Oppo Find X. This would give the device a futuristic vibe and allow it to achieve a higher screen-to-body ratio. It would also make it easier to take selfies.
Based on the image of the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 (above) posted online by the company’s president, and an alleged video of the device (below) shared by Ben Geskin on Twitter, my wish could be granted. Both show that the smartphone features a sliding mechanism that reveals the selfie camera.
Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 with a sliding form factor. Launching in October.
— Ben Geskin (@VenyaGeskin1) September 3, 2018
However, the mechanism is spring loaded and not powered by a motor, which doesn’t look very futuristic — but at least you won’t have to worry about the motor breaking and losing access to the camera.
The problem with the Mi Mix 2S — and Xiaomi products in general — is that it isn’t available in many parts of the world. You can get it in China and a few other Asian countries as well as a couple of places on the old continent. However, the device isn’t officially on sale in the U.S. or the vast majority of European markets.
I’d really like to see Xiaomi bring the Mi Mix 3 to loads of other places via its website or through carrier deals. If OnePlus can sell its smartphones in well over 30 countries across the globe, I can’t see a reason why Xiaomi couldn’t do the same.
Granted, Xiaomi has increased the number of countries it does business in over the last few years, but I feel it could have done more in this department. Instead of expanding slowly from market to market, it should just make the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3, along with the rest of its products, available in as many places as possible. Based on the fact it already sells its phones in Spain and Italy, it shouldn’t be too difficult to ship them to most other countries in Europe as well.
New, original design
One of the biggest problems I have with Xiaomi is that it likes to copy its competitors — especially Apple. For example, the back of the Mi Mix 2S looks very similar to the iPhone X with its vertical dual-camera arrangement in the upper-left corner. Hopefully, Xiaomi will change its strategy with the Mi Mix 3 by opting for a new and original design.
I want to see the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 stand out in the design department.
In addition to looking similar to the iPhone X, the Mi Mix 2S also doesn’t stand out. Although I generally like minimalistic designs, I think every manufacturer should spice things up with a few unique details here and there. A great example of this is the Mate 10 Pro, which sports a simple glass back with a gorgeous reflective stripe that runs horizontally across the cameras and gives the device a bit of personality.
I’m not saying Xiaomi should copy Huawei, but it definitely should add a bit of flair to the Mi Mix 3. I would like to see a design element that would make the device instantly recognizable, which shouldn’t be too hard based on the fact lots of phones these days look somewhat similar.
As far as the front of the device is concerned, the only new thing I’d like to see is a thinner bottom bezel, which will likely happen if the Mi Mix 3 comes with a pop-up camera.
Android One variant
The MIUI skin that sits on top of Android on Xiaomi smartphones is far from my favorite. It looks similar to iOS in many ways, doesn’t have an app launcher, and comes with a few of Xiaomi’s apps on board that I’d likely never use. That’s why I hope the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 will be part of the Android One program, which means it would run a stock version of Android.
Read next: Your guide to Android One
I prefer stock Android over MIUI and most other skins, as it offers a clean, fast, and bloat-free experience — and a lot of people think the same way. Stock Android devices are also generally the first in line for software updates and are guaranteed to get them for at least two years.
Xiaomi already has a few Android One smartphones in its lineup including the Mi A1 and Mi A2. These devices are quite popular, and although stock Android isn’t the only reason for their success, it is a part of it. Making the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 a part of the Android One family might make the upcoming flagship a lot more appealing to many, which could result in more sales for the company.
In-display fingerprint scanner
An in-display fingerprint scanner lets you unlock a device by placing your finger on a certain part of the screen. It has a futuristic vibe to it and, as it’s hidden from sight, gives a handset a cleaner look. That’s why I hope we’ll see it on the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3.
The other reason is that I prefer phones that have the fingerprint scanner on the front as opposed to the back, as that means I can unlock the device and check notifications while its placed on a flat service like a desk — with a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner, you have to pick up the device first. Since Mi Mix 3 is expected to sport thin bezels, the only way to place the scanner up front is to embed it into the display.
Xiaomi has already released a phone with an in-display fingerprint scanner.
Based on the fact the high-end Mi 8 Explorer Edition has an in-display fingerprint scanner, it’s possible the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 will have it too. Additionally, we’ve also seen the technology in a few other handsets so far including the Vivo Nex, the Porsche Design Huawei Mate RS, and the recent Vivo V11, with more devices expected to join this list soon.
There you have it — these are the top five things the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 needs to outsell its predecessor in my opinion. Would you add anything to the list? Let me know in the comments!