As you have probably already noticed – this year’s biggest trend in phone design is slimming down the bezels around the screen as much as possible. Even since the Xiaomi Mi MIX was unveiled last year, we’ve seen a parade of high-end phones from Samsung, LG, and Essential that have basically taken the same approach to design.
This year, Xiaomi unveiled a successor to the first bezel-less smartphone which amazed the Android crowd last year. It’s called the Mi MIX 2 and in this article, we’re going to pit it against LG’s latest flagship effort, the V30. Both are sleek devices that impress by virtue of their +premium designs, but also powerhouses brimming with features. So, if you were given a choice which one would you choose? Keep reading to get an idea which model is more exciting.
On the outside
The new Xiaomi Mi MIX 2 boasts a sleek metal/ceramic design. While it has managed to keep the bezels on top and sides as minimal as possible, Xiaomi also shrunk down bottom bezel (12% less chin size according to the company) which also accommodates the frontal camera and the ultrasonic proximity sensor. But unlike the original Mi MIX, the successor swapped out the piezoelectric acoustic driver for a standard earpiece which now sits at the top of the phone. The device is 7.7mm thin and weighs 185 g.
Moving on to the display, Xiaomi also switched to an 18:9 display ratio this year, following the trends imposed by LG and Samsung. The phone boasts a 5.99-inch screen with 2160 x 1080 resolution and includes a handy sunlight mode, which selectively boosts contrast when outdoors to improve readability in harsh sunlight conditions.
What about the LG V30? The phone rocks a metal/glass sandwich design with minimal bezels just like the company’s previous flagship the LG G6. However, the V30 takes advantage of a more spacious 6-inch OLED display with 1440 x 2880 resolution and 18:9 aspect ratio. The LG V30 supports HDR effects that make videos and pictures look more vibrant and colorful.
The LG V30 is a bit sleeker and lighter than the Xiaomi Mi MIX 2, as it’s only 158g in weight and 7.6mm thin. The phone also has a USB Type-C port located at the bottom and a 3.5mm headphone jack on top (which is missing on the Mi MIX 2).
On the inside
Both handsets are powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 processor, but while the Xiaomi Mi MIX 2 offers a choice between 6GB of RAM and 8GB of RAM (available only with the Special Edition) in combination with 64GB/128GB/256GB storage, the LG V30 only includes 4GB of RAM and either 64GB or 128GB of storage. Just the latter offers a microSD card slot for memory expansion.
What about batteries? With this year’s model, Xiaomi is using a 3,400 mAh battery (last year’s model included a 4,400 mAh one), while the LG V30 relies on an even smaller 3,300 mAh one. So big chances are you won’t be able to go through a full day without needing to pop these devices in for a charge.
LG flagships are well-known for their advanced photographic qualities and the LG V30 is no different. The phone includes a dual-camera setup that pairs a main 16-megapixel sensor with massive f/1.6 aperture and a 71-degree field of view with a 13-megapixel wide-angle lens with f/1.9 aperture and a 120-degree field of view. Unlike the Galaxy Note 8, the V30 only has OIS (optical image stabilization) on the main lens.
The phone also includes a host of additional features for photography and videography fans like Graphy or Cine Log. A series of manual controls are also available.
Unlike most flagships launching this year, the Xiaomi Mi MIX 2 goes against the grain as it doesn’t feature a dual-camera setup on the back, but only takes advantage of a singular 12-megapixel sensor with f/2.0 aperture and dual-LED flash.
Both phones include a 5-megapixel selfie snapper. In the case of the LG V30, it’s a wide-angle sensor with f/2.2.
The LG V30 has a leg up when it comes to audio, as it ships with Hi-Fi Quad DAC on board that was tuned by B&O Play engineers. A pair of B&O Play headphones will ship out alongside the LG V30 as part of the bundle, although we’re not sure at this point whether US customers will be able to take advantage of this freebie or not.
What’s more, the V30 is the first phone to support MQA, which means users will be able to store hi-res audio files more easily.
We should also note that the LG V30 will ship as a Daydream-ready phone out of the box, while the Xiaomi Mi MIX 2 doesn’t offer this feature (just yet?). The LG phone also offers iris scanning and runs Android 7.1.2 Nougat with LG’s UX 6.0+, but the device will probably be among the first LG models to receive the Android 8.0 Oreo update. The same can be said of the Xiaomi Mi MIX 2 which also ships with Android 7.1 Nougat of the box with MIUI 9 on top.
Last but not least, we should mention that unlike last year’s LG V20, the V30 doesn’t take advantage of a secondary ticker display. Instead, LG is using a software alternative dubbed the Floating Bar which gives you quick access to things like Settings, Notes and so on.
LG hasn’t officially revealed the pricing for the V30 in the US just yet. However, we expect the phone will start selling in the country for $750 and up. The phone will be available in Aurora Black, Cloud Silver, Moroccan Blue and Lavender Violet.
As for the Mi MIX 2, it’s a little bit more affordable as you’d normally expect a Xiaomi device to be. The 6GB of RAM/64GB storage version was announced with a price tag of approx. $500. The standard version is only available in Black.