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Xiaomi phone with notch hits TENAA, but it's not the Mi 8
- A Xiaomi phone with a notch has surfaced on China’s telecoms authority website.
- The phone has mid-range specifications, which means it isn’t the Xiaomi Mi 8 flagship.
- The website also lists a near-identical variant, albeit without a display cutout.
The phone (model number M1805D1SE) seems to be a mid-range device, featuring options for 2GB, 3GB, and 4GB of RAM. We also see 16GB, 32GB and 64GB storage options, adding fuel to the mid-range suspicions. Flagship phones simply don’t have 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage as options.
Another feature that suggests this isn’t a flagship phone is a 5.85-inch TFT LCD screen (2,280 x 1,080), as opposed to an IPS or OLED display. The presence of a notch makes for quite a talking point too: will it house sensors for facial recognition in addition to the selfie camera (or two, from the looks of things), earpiece and proximity sensor? We’ll have to wait and see.
The latest rumors suggest Xiaomi is working on advanced facial recognition, using sensors on the notch itself. So on the one hand, it’s reasonable to expect similar functionality on another Xiaomi phone with a notch. On the other hand, the technology might be confined to the Mi 8 for now, owing to price and business considerations.
Nevertheless, the phone seems to have plenty of decent features, such as a large 3,900mAh battery, rear fingerprint scanner, infrared blaster support, a headphone jack, dual camera setup (at least one camera is a 12MP shooter), and a 5MP selfie camera.
If you don’t like the notch, there’s also a version of the device on TENAA without the display cutout. The variant (model number M1805D1ST) seems identical to the notched model in every other department.
If confirmed as a notchless variant, it could be a welcome move by Xiaomi, giving it the opportunity to gauge the popularity of the display cutout. After all, if the notchless model dramatically outsells the notched version, it would tell Xiaomi that the notch might not be worth the trouble. Then again, if the notched model outsells the notchless variant…
Understanding Xiaomi’s product lineup
The phones seem to be members of Xiaomi’s Redmi series, but beyond that, things are murky. The company hasn’t helped matters by going with a somewhat confusing naming convention for its Redmi 5 series.
Xiaomi launched the Redmi 5 and Redmi 5 Plus in China late last year, but the latter phone is also known as the Redmi Note 5 outside China. The company then launched the Redmi Note 5 Pro in February, which packs dual cameras. But the company followed up the Pro model with a Redmi Note 5 AI Dual Camera variant.
This means the new phones could be the Redmi 6 Plus or the Redmi Note 6, though it might be too early for them (the Redmi 5 and 5 Plus were launched in December 2017.).
Two things are for certain, however: they’re not Mi 8 variants (they would have more impressive specs) and they’re better equipped than the Xiaomi phones that surfaced on TENAA last week (tipped to be the Redmi 6 and Redmi 6A). Any guesses? Shout them out in the comments.