Xiaomi Mi A3 Quick Review [Buying Guide]: Affordable Enough?
The third generation Mi A series smartphone, Mi A3 has been finally unveiled in the country. Unveiled in Spain last month, Mi A3 has been launched at a far affordable price starting at Rs 12,999. So, is the smartphone good enough? We find out.
Mi A3 has its own set of positives and negatives with Android One interface definitely makes a big difference.
The only-HD+ display could be a deal breaker for many, but it has a lot more to look into. The smartphone comes with a complete glass body, a new processor, larger battery, triple camera system and more. Here’s everything in-depth you need to know about Mi A3 before you buy.
- 1 Build & Design: Glass Body With A New Gradient Design & 3D Back Glass
- 2 Size & Ergonomics: Compact & Perfect
- 3 In-Display Fingerprint Sensor, Headphone Jack Is Back
- 4 HD+ AMOLED Display: Can Work?
- 5 Hardware & Performance: Snapdragon 665 & Realme 5
- 6 Software: The Android One Magic
- 7 Cameras: 48MP Powered Triple Camera System
- 8 Battery: A Bigger One Finally!
- 9 Mi A3 Verdict: Good Enough For The Price?
Build & Design: Glass Body With A New Gradient Design & 3D Back Glass
It’s a complete glass body covered by Corning Gorilla Glass 5, 3D rated. Unlike the current Redmi glass body smartphones, the Mi A3 feels very premium and the 3D glass curves make it easy to hold all throughout including the curves.
Coming to design, the smartphone features an all new colour combinations on the out with gradient finish.
The new design does have a spooky look, and you will notice the differences in colour tones while moving the device. Also, the rim between the glass is made up of plastic. But that doesn’t make much of a difference.
Size & Ergonomics: Compact & Perfect
Mi A3 is very compact given the current set of smartphones available in the market. Mi A3 features a thickness of around 8.5 millimeters, and the screen is perfectly sized with the overall ergonomics. The increasing screen sizes have churned up the smartphone sizes, and for someone like me, it takes a lot to handle such devices in crowded places.
The compact screen size makes it perfect to be used with a single hand, and the higher screen to body ratio makes sure you can consume content without any issues.
In-Display Fingerprint Sensor, Headphone Jack Is Back
Thankfully, the company has added back the 3.5 mm jack headphone jack back to Mi A series. In a blatant attempt to make Mi A2 more premium, the company discarded the headphone jack. Well, Xiaomi soon understood its mistake, and Mi A3 sports a hole on top for your beloved wired earphones.
Also, the company has added an in-display fingerprint sensor under the screen glass.
It’s going to be Xioami’s only budget smartphone in the country to feature an in-display fingerprint sensor. It’s quite fast, and with the AMOLED panel, you have to option to have an always-on screen, so that you can unlock your smartphone without tapping.
HD+ AMOLED Display: Can Work?
This could be a big deal breaker for many, but honestly, it’s really hard to notice the difference. The company surisplingly used a HD+ only display for Mi A3, but it’s an AMOLED panel. If you look really really close, you may see the difference between a Full HD panel, but for day to day use, it’s perfect.
The screen size does offer a higher screen to body ratio with a thin chin down under.
It’s a circular notched display in an 19.5:9 aspect ratio measuring 6.08-inch. The HD+ AMOLED offers 530 nits of brightness. The broad daylight visibility is more than okay and viewing angles are absolutely fine.
Hardware & Performance: Snapdragon 665 & Realme 5
The Mi A3 runs on Qualcomm Snapdragon 665. The chip stands between Snapdragon 660 and Snapdragon 675. While it does have a bit more to offer than its predecessor, the new chip comes with added artificial intelligence capabilities. With Android One to take up the power, the Snapdragon 665 offers some great performance in terms of mid-end games and extensive multitasking.
The new Snapdragon processor is coupled with 6GB of RAM, with storage options to choose from.
There’s two options to choose from, a base model with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage, and a higher-end model with 6GB RAM and 128GB of storage. This time, you can add up to the overall storage. There’s an additional micro SD memory card slot to add up expandable storage. Again, there’s no extra space for a memory card, it’s a hybrid slot.
Software: The Android One Magic
The biggest USP of Mi A3 is its seamless software. It’s an Android One smartphone running on Android 9.0 Pie with guaranteed Android Q upgrade.
Google will be offering guaranteed upgrades for the next two years since launch. Pure Android offers a clean operating system layer without any additional customizations.
Also, the Mi A3 has no ads, a big plus for any Xiaomi user. The company hasn’t officially confirmed that Mi A3 won’t come with ads, but we didn’t have any ads on our unit. Even the other reviewers also haven’t yet found any ads on any Mi A3 unit in the country.
Cameras: 48MP Powered Triple Camera System
The smartphone comes with a three camera system featuring a 48-megapixel main Sony IMX 586 sensor with a focal length of f / 1.79, coupled, a secondary an 8-megapixel wide-angle sensor and finally a third 2-megapixel wide-angle lens.
If you see any similarity, yes it’s the same 48MP sensor as Redmi Note 7 Pro with the depth sensor. Here you get an additional wide-angle lens, which again is handy at times, but lacks details.
Inside the water drop notch, the company has used a 32-megapixel with an f / 2.0 aperture.
The smartphone does an awesome job when it comes to daylight photography. The photos in artificial lighting also did above average, and it can capture some cool portraits. The AI capability help the smartphone to join four pixels to form larger ones of 1.6 microns and offer a great low light performance.
Battery: A Bigger One Finally!
Unlike the previous two Mi A smartphone, finally, the third Mi A device will come with a much bigger battery. Also, the previous generation A smartphones maintained the legacy of the new-age Type C ports, and Mi A3 carries the same. Mi A3 comes with a Type C USB connector supporting up to 18 watts fast charging. Inside the box you get the standard 10W charger, so you need to buy the fast charger separately.
Coming to the battery, it’s a large 4,000+ mAh unit, an upgrade over the 3,000mAh batteries from Mi A1 and Mi A2. The battery capacity has been increased to 4030 mAh, and it can easily run up to two days on a single charge on moderate usage.
The use of a HD+ has helped to increase the battery life, while the new Snapdragon 665 has made the device more efficient. Finally, with Android One on top, the smartphone will be able to perform well offering a good backup throughout.
Mi A3 Verdict: Good Enough For The Price?
Xiaomi Mi A3 is available in two storage variant: 4GB RAM with 64GB storage has been priced at Rs 12,999 and the top-model comes with 6GB RAM and 128GB storage. It is priced at Rs 15,999. The smartphone will be available for purchase via Amazon India starting 23 August.
Realme’s new Realme 5 series is going to be a big threat. While Realme 5 will be powered by the same chip Mi A3, Realme 5 Pro has all it better to take on Mi A3 upfront.
Most importantly, the company has used a HD+ only display on top with just a slightly improved processor, and it costs Rs 12,999. Unless you are a big fan of clean Android, it doesn’t make sense to pay extra for Mi A3.
The Realme 5 4GB/64GB model matches with the base model of Mi A3 with similar storage and RAM, and they cost 2,000 apart.
In a nutshell, Xiaomi Mi A3 has some really good features on a budget as 48MP sensor, glass body, clean stock UI, an AMOLED panel and an in-display fingerprint sensor.