After months of rumors and speculation, the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra is here. This is a super-premium phone from the company, likely intended as a rival to Samsung’s Galaxy S21 Ultra or Apple’s iPhone 12 Pro Max.
But while those phones have top-end features, the Mi 11 Ultra turns it up to 11; it has a mini-screen on the back, the fastest wireless charging we’ve seen on a phone, and a wild 120x camera zoom.
Launched alongside the Mi Smart Band 6 and Mi 11 Lite 5G, and loads of other devices you won’t be able to buy (Mi Mix foldable phone, Mi 11i, Mi 11 Lite 4G, Mi 11 Pro, the list goes on), the Mi 11 Ultra represents one of the most premium phones we’ve seen in a long time.
We’ll be sure to test out the Mi 11 Ultra as soon as we possibly can, but until then, we’ve listed all the specs and features of the phone so you can come to your own judgment on whether it’s for you.
Cut to the chase
- What is it? Xiaomi’s most premium consumer phone
- When is it out? Sometime in April 2021
- How much will it cost? We’ve no idea – but probably a lot
Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra release date and price
If there’s one thing we don’t know about the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra, it’s its price. We can imagine it’ll cost a lot.
For context the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra started at $1,199 / £1,149 / AU$1,849 and it’s likely the Mi 11 Ultra will have a similar price tag.
The phone goes on sale in April in the UK – we don’t know about Australia or the US just yet, but the latter likely won’t see the handset, as Xiaomi doesn’t sell its devices there.
Design and display
The Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra has a 6.81-inch AMOLED screen with a 3200 x 1440 resolution, 1700 nits max brightness, 120Hz refresh rate, 240Hz touch input rate and 20:9 aspect ratio. It seems the screen is the same as on the Mi 11, but with a higher max brightness and lower touch input rate.
But wait – there’s a second screen! It’s on the back, by the rear camera bump. This isn’t a Nubia Z20 situation where there are two main displays though – this rear panel is a 1.1-inch AMOLED screen with 126 x 294 resolution and 450 nits max brightness.
It’s used mainly for notifications and reminders when the phone is face-down, but can be used as a viewfinder for pictures too, if you want to use the main cameras to take a picture of yourself.
The phone is pretty big, with dimensions of 164.3 x 74.6 x 8.38mm and a weight of 234g – the biggest part is the rear camera bump though, which sticks out loads. The handset has IP68 protection and comes in black or white versions.
There’s a USB-C port here but no 3.5mm headphone jack, as well as an IR blaster which most Xiaomi phones have.
Cameras and battery life
There’s a hearty 166MP worth of cameras here, though unlike on most premium Xiaomi handsets, there’s no 108MP main camera here.
On the back we’ve got a 50MP f/1.12 main camera, 48MP f/2.2 ultra-wide camera with 128-degree field-of-view, and 48MP telephoto camera for 5x digital, 10x optical and 120x digital zoom. That’s a high-res triple threat that should take great pictures.
There’s also a 20MP selfie camera on the front. What’s the point of having a front camera, if the rear display means you can use those super-cameras for selfies too? We’ve no idea.
Xiaomi says there’s 8K video recording here on both the main and telephoto lenses – so perhaps zoom shooting is a thing here. There could be more fun photography modes too, as Xiaomi typically introduces new ones on its handsets.
The battery is 5,000mAh, which is pretty big, but is likely necessary for that huge, high-res display. It charges at 67W wired or wireless charging, and that’s the fastest wireless powering we’ve seen on a smartphone, beating a few that have 50W.
There’s also 10W reverse wireless charging, so you can use the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra as a wireless powering mat to charge up other devices.
Performance and software
The Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra uses the top-power Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 chipset as well as 12GB RAM, so it should be really powerful – but we’ll need to test it to be sure.
The phone has dual speakers tuned by Harman Kardon, like the Mi 11, which should make it sound good for games, streaming and playing music out loud, if its audio performance matches the vanilla phone.
In terms of software, Xiaomi puts its MIUI Android ‘fork’ over stock Android, which brings a few function changes to the standard Android playbook.
This is also a 5G phone, so you’ll be able to connect to the next-gen data network whenever it rolls out where you live.