Xiaomi’s new budget smartphone with free 4G data comes out to play

Mi Play comes with one-year free 10GB high-speed monthly data
Mi Play

Right before the end of 2018, Xiaomi releases yet another smartphone, this time the wallet-friendly Mi Play. What’s unique about the CNY1,099 (MYR664) device is that it comes bundled with a SIM card that offers unlimited one-year data for free – that’s 10GB of 4G high-speed data every month.

As you may know, Xiaomi obtained an MVNO (mobile virtual network operator) license from the Chinese government in July this year, after running a nationwide MVNO trial programme for three years. Called Mi Mobile, it was first introduced in September 2015 together with the Mi 4c smartphone.

Mi MobileMi Mobile is essentially a prepaid mobile operator, riding on China Unicom’s 3G/4G network. China Unicom is a state-owned telco and is the fourth largest mobile service provider in the world, by subscriber base. The MVNO offers pay-as-you-go (PAYG) rates of CNY0.10 (MYR0.06) per voice minutes, SMS and 1MB of data on top of fixed data packages from CNY39 per month up to CNY188 per month.

Mi PlayMi Play, despite its “Play” moniker isn’t in the same league as Honor’s gaming-focused Honor Play effort. Xiaomi’s effort is a budget entry, priced similarly to the Redmi 5 Plus.

The device features a 5.84-inch FHD+ 19:9 display (1080×2280) display that’s protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 5 and features a waterdrop design notch.

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Mi PlayThe compact phone weighs just 150g, and features an attractive glossy glass-look plastic back with a rear mounted fingerprint sensor.

It comes with a fairly sized 3,000mAh battery that charges up via micro-USB.

The dual-SIM device offers a triple card tray – that fits two nano-SIM cards and a microSD card.

The Mi Play is powered by the 12nm MediaTek P35 chipset, which features eight ARM Cortex-A53 cores with a maximum clock speed of 2.3GHz.

There’s a single configuration offered: 4GB RAM + 64GB of storage.

Mi PlayIn terms of optics, the Mi Play sports a familiar 12MP f/2.0 + 2MP (depth) AI dual-camera setup, with the main sensor featuring 1.25-micron pixels for better low-light photos.

The front gets an 8MP selfie shooter with AI Beautify and AI Portrait mode.

Mi PlayMi PlayFrom the sample photos Xiaomi has supplied, camera performance looks to be more than decent.

Pricing and availability

In China, the Mi Play retails at CNY1,099 (MYR664) and comes bundled with free data for 12 months. The phone comes in Blue, Red and Black colour options. Will the Mi Play make its way to Malaysia and other markets? We’ll see.

For official specs and information, visit Mi.com.

Mi PlayMi PlayDuring its China launch, Xiaomi also set a Guinness World Record for erecting the tallest animated Christmas tree consisting of 1,005 units of Mi Play smartphones.

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Gallery

Mi PlayMi PlayMi PlayMi PlaySource: MIUI Forum

 

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