Xiaomi 12 & 12 Pro officially unveiled: The first flagship of 2022

TL;DR

The Xiaomi 12 and Xiaomi 12 Pro are the first smartphones to feature Snapdragon 8 Gen 1.
The display will be 120 Hz on Xiaomi 12, and an LTPO panel with 2K resolution on Xiaomi 12 Pro.
120-watt battery on Xiaomi 12 Pro including wireless and reverse charging.
The MIUI 13 based on Android 12 is in use on all newly launched smartphones.

For quite some time now, we knew that Xiaomi would unveil its new Xiaomi 12 series smartphones at the end of the year. Now, that has actually happened in China: At the launch event, there was plenty of hardware to marvel at. First and foremost we got to see the Xiaomi 12 and the Xiaomi 12 Pro, the flagships of the Chinese manufacturer.

Xiaomi 12: The compact flagship

With the Xiaomi 12, the Chinese giant gives us a very compact flagship. Of course, this is a little weaker equipped than the Pro model, but it can still hold up to the flagship standard. For the first time we have a 6.28-inch AMOLED display with Full HD+ resolution that offers a refresh rate of 120Hz and 12-bit technology. The display comes with a brightness of up to 1100 nits and is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass Victus.

This is the back of the Xiaomi 12 / © Xiaomi

As in the larger device, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is used here for the first time. Depending on the model, the new SoC is combined with up to 12 GB RAM (LPDDR5) and up to 256 GB storage (UFS 3.1). The device will also feature an improved vapor chamber cooling system to prevent overheating. The stereo speakers are built into the 8.16 mm thin case, for which Xiaomi relies on Harman Kardon tech.

For the camera, Xiaomi relies on Sony’s IMX766 50-megapixel sensor with an aperture of f/1.88. We also get a 13 MP ultra-wide-angle sensor with f/2.4 aperture and 123 degrees viewing angle, and a macro shooter with 5 MP and f/2.4. A new camera feature is the CyberFocus technology, which is said to result in noticeably faster and clearer focusing on moving subjects. A 32 MP selfie camera is located in the front of the device inside the typical punch hole.

Xiaomi also accommodates a battery with a capacity of 4,500 mAh in the device, which can be charged with up to 67 watts. This is also possible wirelessly with an astonishing 50 watts, and reverse charging with 10 watts is also possible.

In terms of price and availability, we can’t tell you anything about the US, since the device will probably not be available here. In any case, if you happen to be in China you can already preorder by paying a deposit, with an expected delivery window within the first few days of January.

Here are the prices for China:

Xiaomi 12 with 8 GB RAM and 128 GB storage: 3699 yuan (about $580).
Xiaomi 12 with 8 GB RAM and 256 GB storage: 3999 Yuan (about $628)
Xiaomi 12 with 12 GB RAM and 256 GB storage: 4399 Yuan (about $690)
Xiaomi 12 Pro: The first top smartphone for the year 2022

Even if the Xiaomi 12 is already a strongly equipped flagship phone, Xiaomi takes it up a notch with the Xiaomi 12 Pro. This is most obvious in the larger and higher-resolution display. The screen diagonal grows to 6.73 inches, whereby it is once again a curved AMOLED panel.

Except for the size, the Xiaomi 12 Pro and the Xiaomi 12 could be twins. / © Xiaomi

The resolution is 3200 x 1440 pixels, which brings the pixel density to 522 ppi. Again, refresh rates up to 120 hertz are possible, but here, the Xiaomi 12 Pro comes with LTPO technology which allows the refresh rate to be used dynamically – making the screen particularly energy efficient. The luminance is stated to be up to 1500 nits and the touch sampling rate is 480 hertz, just like the Xiaomi 12. Also identical on both devices is the fingerprint sensor integrated under the display.

Of course, the Xiaomi 12 Pro is powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, also accompanied by up to 12 GB of RAM and up to 256 GB of internal storage. When it comes to the camera, Xiaomi again opts for an arrangement consisting of three cameras on the Pro model. In this case, however, it’s three sensors with 50 megapixels each, led by the 1/1.28-inch Sony IMX707 with 1.22-micron pixels.

The camera is one of the highlights of the Xiaomi 12 Pro / © Xiaomi

Completing the triple cam setup is an ultrawide-angle camera as well as the 2X zoom telephoto camera with f/1.9 aperture. This makes the camera array perhaps the most important difference from the Xiaomi 12 and should offer decidedly better camera performance. The Night Mode 2.0 is also supposed to provide extra high color fidelity in night shots. Logically, CyberFocus technology is expected here as well and the 32MP selfie shooter is also identical to the Xiaomi 12.

The battery has a capacity of 4600 mAh, which is just a little bit bigger than the base model but it can be charged with up to 120 watts! Wireless and reverse charging are the same at 50 and 10 Watts respectively.

Price-wise, the Xiaomi 12 Pro is of course priced above the Xiaomi 12. Here are the prices announced for China:

Xiaomi 12 Pro with 8 GB RAM and 128 GB storage: 4699 yuan (about $737).
Xiaomi 12 Pro with 8 GB RAM and 256 GB storage: 4999 Yuan (about $784)
Xiaomi 12 Pro with 12 GB RAM and 256 GB storage: 5399 Yuan (about $847)

Incidentally, both models will be offered in a total of four color variants, one of which is green with faux leather back. As already mentioned, the device will probably never be launched in the US, but global versions are expected to show up around February or March for both devices. For comparison, the Xiaomi Mi 11, which was also unveiled for China in December, was launched globally in February, the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra followed in March.

Xiaomi 12X and more

Regarding the Xiaomi 12X, the company was much more stingy with information. However, with its 6.28 inches, it is the slightly weaker-equipped (Snapdragon 870) twin of the Xiaomi 12. Camera array, battery capacity, display – almost everything that has been communicated about this model is pretty much exactly the same as the Xiaomi 12. Thus, it would probably be unfair to call the 12X the Lite variant. Price-wise, it starts at the equivalent of about $500.

But Xiaomi presented more hardware at its launch event in China yesterday like the Xiaomi Watch S1 smartwatch. Despite featuring high-quality equipment with a steel case, sapphire glass and leather strap, the company charges less than the equivalent of $170 for it.

Also new: Two new True Wireless headphones. The “True Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones 3” and the “True Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones 3 Pro” can also be pre-ordered in China and will reach their new owners in early January. They will be offered for the equivalent of about $90 and $120 respectively, with the Pro version featuring Spatial Audio.

This was a very exciting event, which by the way was with a physical, live audience once again, that got to react to the Xiaomi 12 lineup. We are now eagerly awaiting the release and of course our test devices – until then, you are welcome to let us know what you think of the new smartphones from Xiaomi in the comments below.


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