Late last week, Xiaomi said that it would launch a phone in a brand-new series, and that the device would make its debut in India. At a media event in New Delhi, Xiaomi unveiled the Mi A1, its first Android One phone. The device is a variant of the Mi 5X, which was unveiled in China back in July. What makes the Mi A1 particularly interesting is the fact that it runs stock Android out of the box.
Before we discuss the software, a quick look at the specs on offer: the Mi A1 has a 5.5-inch Full HD display, Snapdragon 625, 4GB of RAM, 64GB storage, dual 12MP cameras with a primary wide-angle lens and a secondary telephoto lens, Wi-Fi ac, Bluetooth 4.2, and a 3080mAh battery. Like all Xiaomi phones sold in India, the Mi A1 will be assembled locally in the country.
- Xiaomi Mi A1 specs
- Xiaomi Mi A1 preview: Android One at its best
The phone doesn't come with Oreo out of the box — it is running Android 7.1.2 Nougat with the August security patch, but Google says that the Oreo update will be rolled out before the end of the year. Google also says that the Mi A1 will be one of the first devices to pick up the Android P update next year.
And unlike previous Android One devices, which received updates directly from Google, Xiaomi will be rolling out the updates to the Mi A1.
That's because of the dual camera setup at the back — to take full advantage of the dual imaging sensors, Xiaomi bundled its own camera app with the phone, and that means any new update will have to go through Xiaomi to make sure it doesn't break the camera. Xiaomi is also offering an IR blaster on the Mi A1, and has bundled its Mi Remote utility as well. Aside from that, you'll get a clean software experience.
The Mi A1 will be available on Mi.com as well as Flipkart for ₹14,999 ($230), and will be up for purchase at Mi Home stores as well as Xiaomi's retail partner network. The phone will go up for sale on September 12 and will be heading to over 25 global markets shortly.
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Harish Jonnalagadda is a Senior Editor overseeing Asia at Android Central. He leads the site's coverage of Chinese phone brands, contributing to reviews, features, and buying guides. He also writes about storage servers, audio products, and the semiconductor industry. Contact him on Twitter at @chunkynerd.