With smartphone manufacturers getting increasingly desperate to differentiate their offerings from the competition, having the biggest, fastest, lightest etc. etc. is viewed as essential. To most users this is not important. They want a decent quality handset, with a good screen that takes clear pictures and does not cost the earth. Basically, they want a mid-ranger!
The Xiaomi Note 10 falls into this category but it does also manage to become the first mainstream phone to have a massive 108MP camera, but more of that later.
As always, let’s start with the screen. This is a curved edge, 6.5” AMOLED with a near 88% screen to body ratio. Made of Gorilla Glass 5, it has a 19.5:9 ratio, near 400 PPI density, 600 nits max brightness and 1080 resolution. All pretty impressive for a mid-ranger, but pretty common these days. The back is also Gorilla Glass 5 and it is all encased in an aluminum frame.
Inside is the Qualcomm’s top-of-the mid-range processor, the Snapdragon 730G. This will be more than enough for your typical day-to-day use but is probably not the best if you want to run some heavy-duty games on it. Backed up by 6GB of RAM and 128GB of non-expandable memory the Mi Note 10 is no sluggard in performance.
5 camera rear array
Now, onto the camera. The rear array has a total of 5 (yes 5) lenses, but unlike the Nokia Pureview 5 they are arranged so as not resemble a sink drainer. In fact, the 5 are quite understated, being arranged in a neat vertical line on the left-hand side.
The main lens is a massive 108MP f/1.7 wide. There are also a 12MP f/2.0 telephoto with a 2X optical zoom, a 5MP f/2.0 telephoto, 20MP f/2.2 ultrawide and finally a 2MP f/2.4 macro for close ups. The 108 and 5MP lenses also have optical image stabilisation (OIS).
This setup covers all bases and not surprisingly produces detailed photos in just about any light conditions. All this is backed up by a 32MP f/2.0 wide selfie camera, that is positioned centrally in a teardrop notch.
Massive 5260 mAh battery
The Mi Note 10 is powered by a big 5260 mAh battery that supports 30W fast charging and will give you 58% juice in 30 mins and 100% in just over an hour.
Other features worth mentioning are an integral infra-red blaster that you can program to change your TV channel when you can’t find the remote, an under-display fingerprint scanner, a single speaker and a 3.5mm headphone jack.
Shipping with Android 9 and Xiaomi’s own MIUI 11 skin, this means that there is no app drawer (everything is on the Home screen). So, if like me, this annoys you, you will need to download another launcher from the Google Play store.
Available in Aurora Green, Glacier White and Midnight Black, it can be picked up at the time of writing for just under £400. Making it a good value for money handset.
Is it for you. Well, if you are looking for a great camera and a big battery in a good-looking package with a curved-edge AMOLED screen, then this is for you. My only concern would be the price, as you can get a lot of these features for £100 - £200 less – although obviously not all together in the same package! So, it depends on what is important to you.
As always, the choice is yours!