Xiaomi’s Mi Max 2 smartphone is now officially on open sale in India, and this time the phone will be made available on all channels, offline and online. Mi Max 2 is the successor to last year’s Mi Max and Mi Max Prime smartphones. However, Mi Max 2 is launching in only variant this time which has 4GB RAM and 64GB storage. Also there’s only one colour on offer: The matte black.
So how does the Mi Max 2 fare? Is this is a good enough tablet replacement? Can this be the ideal device for video consumption? Here’s our full review.
Mi Max 2 full specifications: 6.4-inch full HD resolution display | Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 octa-core processor at 2Ghz | 4GB RAM + 64GB storage (expandable to 256GB) | 12MP rear camera + 5MP front camera | Android Nougat 7.0 with MIUI 8 | 5300 mAh battery
Mi Max 2 Price in India: Rs 16,999
Xiaomi Mi Max 2 Design, Display review
Mi Max 2 is officially the first Mi branded smartphone from the company to launch in India for 2017. The last phone in the Mi series was the Mi 5, and since then Xiaomi has stuck with Redmi phones. Now Mi Max 2 by its very name and size is playing in a niche category. Not all users in India want a 6-inch plus display smartphone, which is one of the main propositions of the Mi Max 2.
From a design perspective, Mi Max 2 is a more polished version of the original Mi Max, and there’s no doubt about this. The full metal unibody design with muted antenna bands on the back might remind some of a bigger iPhone 7, thanks to the matte black colour. Mi Max 2 might be huge, but the phone does look premium, and it is not as heavy as you’d expect, given the 5300 mAh battery.
Xiaomi sticks with all glass on the front, this has Corning Gorilla Glass 3 on top and capactive buttons that light up. Also the fingerprint scanner remains the back, similar to how it is on other Xiaomi smartphones. I had no trouble using this with one hand, but fitting this big phone into a pocket can be challenge at times.
Coming to the 6.4-inch full HD display, this is ideal for binge watching videos. The display is really vibrant and bright and as usual Xiaomi has delivered on this one aspect of the smartphone.The company is talking about thinner bezels here, but this is no Mi Mix. If your prime need is consumption of video on a phablet-sized device, the Mi Max 2 fulfills that criteria. I had no trouble holding the device with one hand and watching video after video on YouTube.
But there’s a negative to this 6.4-inch full HD display. The sheer size means it won’t be everyone’s first preference when picking a smartphone. Most people are happy with a 5.5-inch display, unless of course you are looking for a tablet replacement that’s a bit more manageable.
Xiaomi Mi Max 2 Performance
On the performance front, Mi Max 2 runs Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor, same as the Redmi Note 4. There’s 4GB RAM and 64GB storage on board. This phone has Android Nougat, unlike the Redmi phones which are still on Android Marshmallow. From a daily performance perspective, Mi Max 2 works smoothly and didn’t give me any cause for complain. Animations are smooth in the MIUI, and switching between multiple apps is quick.
You can run games like Asphalt 8, etc on this and I didn’t face any lag or noticeable heating while gaming on this phone. But I wouldn’t say it is all perfect on this phone. Lara Croft Run crashed twice on this phone for me, which was odd. Plus the big display size means this might always be ideal for gaming for some folks.
Finally, I wasn’t too impressed by the audio quality on this device despite what Xiaomi claims. Even with YouTube videos, I had to keep the volume at max to really enjoy the audio. For an entertainment device, it doesn’t deliver so impressively on audio, and that’s a serious miss according to me.
Xiaomi Mi Max 2 Camera Review
The 12MP rear camera on the Mi Max 2 is quite impressive. Be it indoor lighting or taking pictures outside in th blue Delhi sky these days (best to enjoy it before smog season arrives), gave some excellent results. I’d say there’s is a marked difference from Mi Max in terms of the cameras. The camera is responsive, and results are quite detailed.
But in low-light conditions, Mi Max 2 does not live to the mark. There’s a noticeable noise in the pictures, and details are not as sharp. For the price of Rs 16,999, Mi Max 2’s camera is more than adequate.
One thing I will say is that with a such big display taking pictures with really steady hands did prove to be a challenge for someone like me. So do keep that in mind, if considering this as your primary smartphone. The 5MP selfie camera on the front is at par with what you would find on other phones.
Xiaomi Mi Max 2 Battery review
Mi Max 2 has two huge features: Display and the battery. A 5300 mAh battery on board, this will easily last two days is what Xiaomi is promising and that is indeed the case. Two days of heavy duty usage will still ensure the phone lasts. The PC Mark test saw this smartphone score 12 hours.
But in real world usage, the phone’s battery will be more than enough for most users. I got around 9 hours plus of screen on time with this, with the battery dipping to under 10 per cent. This phone was used extensively for watching videos, listening to music, and even as a hotspot to power data on another device.
On the charging front, Mi Max 2 has a Type-C USB charger with Fast Charging supported. This is an important feature, given the battery size. In my own observations, Mi Max 2 went from 20 to 91 per cent in under two hours with the charger that came in the box. This is another crucial feature Xiaomi gets right.
Xiaomi Mi Max 2 Verdict
If you go by the size of Mi Max 2, there’s no big name that jumps to mind in the recent launches. Some phones have similar specifications, but a higher price band. On the battery front, we’ve seen a few options with 5000 mAh like Moto E4 Plus for example. But on the specifications side those are different devices.
There’s no doubt Mi Max 2 is a niche phone, which performs well and delivers on the core area of display, battery, and performance. Battery is one of its best features, and this could be the device that never dies. But unless you actively want a 6.4-inch phone to make your daily calls, you can look at other options in the market, including Redmi Note 4, Moto G5 Plus and others.