Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite falls in the price tag which can be seen as a sweet spot for budget takers. It is the segment where many powerful but budget-friendly devices have mushroomed all this time and Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 4G is seeking a piece of the pie.
The phone follows the design identity of its premium Mi 11 siblings while bringing specifications that may be subject to being well-powered or underpowered depending upon how you take it.
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Well, there’s a whole lot more to discuss a smartphone than what you can see on a paper so here’s a hands-on review on the Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite that you must read.
Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 4G in India is available in two storage trims. The first is the 6GB RAM plus 128GB storage variant priced at Rs 21,999/- while the higher 8GB RAM plus 128GB storage variant fetches the price tag of Rs 23,999/-. Get up to Rs 15,300/- off using the Exchange program on Flipkart India. Choose between Jazz Blue, Tuscany Coral, and Vinyl Black colour variants with Mi 11 Lite 4G.
In the first look, I loved the black box packaging of the Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite. The box contents of Mi 11 Lite include:
- Mi 11 Lite device
- Transparent plastic cover
- 33W fast charger
- USB Type-C cable
- USB Type-C to 3.5mm headphone converter
Before we talk in detail about the Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite let’s see what the on-paper specs look like?
- Display: 16.64 cm (6.55 inch) Full HD+ 10-bit 90Hz AMOLED Display
- Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 732G
- Storage: 6GB/128GB
- Software: MIUI 12 based on Android 11
- Rear cameras: 64MP + 8MP + 5MP
- Front camera: 16MP
- Battery: 4250 mAh
- Weight: 157g
- Dimensions: 160.5 x 75.7 x 6.8 mm
Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite shares the design with the other Mi 11 series smartphones which is awesome. The phone is technically like a feature with just 157 grams of weight and with a slimmer 6.8mm thickness, the phone is a total head-turner look-wise. What if I tell you the new Mi 11 Lite is as thin as your pencil.
It arrives in three colours although only the Tuscany Coral has frosted matte glass at the back while the other two colours are simply glossy and thus, it’s a fingerprint magnet. I still feel the Jazz Blue colour which I have looks stunning to hold and catches minimum fingerprint smudges.
The back panel has a triple rear camera setup Mi 11-style. It has a two-step design where the giant glossy bump has an ultrawide snapper and a LED flash while the stepped-up section has a primary sensor and a 2MP decorative sensor on-board.
Mi 11 Lite’s frame is plastic and it uses a Gorilla Glass 5 on top while the back glass panel remains unknown at least at the time of writing this.
Unfortunately, the phone comes without any ingress protection. In fact, it doesn’t have any rubber gaskets on the SIM card tray or other openings which means this phone is technically unprotected against water. Even if it does stay alive after a dip inside the phone, I wouldn’t recommend doing it or else you will void the warranty on the device.
The camera bump isn’t that pronounced and thus, the wobbling effect is countered. On the front, you get one of the tiniest punch-holes on a smartphone along with considerably thin bezels around the edges that give you an uninterrupted view of the giant screen.
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About the I/O ports and buttons, you get a power button and volume rocker on the right side. The fingerprint scanner is embedded on the power button FYI. There’s a USB-C port, a SIM tray, a primary mic, and a bottom-firing loudspeaker at the bottom. Finally, there’s an IR Blaster and a secondary noise-cancelling mic on top and that should complete this section.
Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 4G packs in a 6.55” AMOLED panel with a 90Hz refresh rate and a resolution of 1080×2400 pixels. The display has a 20:9 aspect ratio, comes with 402 PPI density, and is 10-bit with HDR10 rated panel with an advertised 500 nits of typical and 800 nits of peak brightness.
Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite gets a versatile 10-bit OLED panel with FHD+ resolution and a 20:9 aspect ratio. It shares some traits with its 5G sibling such as HDR10 support, 10-bit display, and the same pixel density. Turns out Mi 11 Lite’s display is a bit inferior to the 5G sibling but let’s chuck it in for a moment.
It’s an OLED panel that promises inky blacks and the brightness is lit as well. I recorded a max typical brightness of 480 nits while the peak brightness reaches 826 nits. These numbers are almost identical to that of Xiaomi’s adverts i.e. 800 and 500 nits.
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The display has an aspect ratio of 20:9 which makes it huge and great for watching movies and playing games. With a 90Hz refresh rate, your experience will be further refined as scrolling and transitions are smooth. Videos and games are capped at 60Hz unless some title specifically upgrades to 90Hz mode. Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite uses a dynamic refresh rate which means set it on 60Hz and forget or set it at 90Hz and the system will dial back to 60Hz only if it is subject to videos, games, and if the user isn’t scrolling or interacting with the display, rest of the interfaces get 90Hz on-board.
I have been using Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 4G for a while now. It has great viewing angles indoors, however, it takes a toss when outdoors due to the display’s reflective nature.
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The display supports FHD HDR10 content on OTT platforms which means you can stream FHD videos on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video among others.
Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite is paired with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 732G SOC under the hood with an Adreno 618 GPU. The chipset has eight cores as usual, which includes two high-performance Kryo 470 Gold cores clocked at 2.3GHz plus six power-efficient Kryo 470 Silver cores clocked at 1.8GHz. The device arrives with 64/128GB of UFS 2.2 storage along with 4/6/8GB RAM.
Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 4G comes with a Snapdragon 732G chipset which is a small update over the S730G. Although it is old, the chipset is still pumping as it doesn’t bog down the system at all. In fact, I did all the regular tasks on the phone for a while including calling, texting, browsing the internet, watching videos, listening to music, and so on and it turns out everything runs as smoothly as possible.
The device comes paired with LPDDR4X RAM and UFS 2.2 storage that enable faster write and read speeds for the system to process everything quickly. When compared on GeekBench 5, the device returned scores of 1796 and 560 nits on multicore and single-core tests respectively. To put things into perspective, Mi 11 5G scored 2909 and 803 points respectively while Poco X3 Pro (an alternative) scored 2574 and 735 points respectively. The chipset did leave Realme 7, Samsung Galaxy A52, and Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro lagging, which is a good thing here.
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I played multiple games on the device to see its response. This includes games like BGMI (PUBG Mobile), Asphalt 9, Subway Surfer, Candy Crush, Alto’s Odyssey among others. Turns out it can handle everything from lightweight to high-graphics games with ease. In fact, I played BGMI at high graphics settings and it ran fine. However, if you indulge in prolonged sessions, the chipset will begin to deteriorate as is the case when any other chipsets.
Depending upon when you are reading this hands-on review, you must have received MIUI 12.5 with Android 11 on board. MIUI 12 itself is powerful and with a lot of features including AOD themes, apps are organized in categories, enhanced Control Center and Notification Center, Floating Windows, and more.
Since it is MIUI 12, it has both a bunch of bloatware and ads in the system apps. This is something everyone knows and to be honest if you are upgrading from a Xiaomi smartphone, you are well-informed and okay with it.
Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 4G is strapped with a single front selfie shooter with a 16MP sensor and f/2.5 aperture. The rear camera setup has three sensors i.e. a 64MP primary snapper with f/1.8 aperture, PDAF; a secondary 8MP ultrawide snapper with a field of view of 119-degree; and a tertiary 5MP macro sensor with f/2.4 aperture and autofocus
Let’s take the front camera first. It is a slightly smaller sensor at 16MP (than 20MP on the 5G model). It is a Quad-Bayer snapper and takes good-quality selfies in the daytime. All the photos appear natural-looking with a good amount of details on the subject and the colours came out great. Tag in Portrait Mode on the selfie shooter and you will be able to take decent portrait shots including detailed subject and pleasing background blur that looks convincing. There’s no hardware sensing depth data at the front which means the shots come out natural.
Coming to the rear camera assembly, it has three sensors. The first is a massive 64MP sensor that uses pixel binning to save 16MP shots. All the details were outstanding and the shot came out crisp, colourful, and natural in the daytime. You won’t find much noise in these shots and the dynamic range is excellent as well. I did click HDR shots on Mi 11 Lite which came out good as it didn’t flatten the image.
The 5G variant has some edges over the 4G ones including perfect sharpening levels but the 4G model isn’t any bad either. Colours come out as accurate as one could get and there’s an AI toggle that boosts colours on images making their colours pop up. Yes, you can still click full 64MP shots. You can zoom at 2x using the primary sensor for shots but anything beyond that is not lossless thus, you are actually risking quality over zoom.
The 8MP shots from the ultrawide snapper are okay as it is something almost all mid-range smartphones have for now. The colours are accurate, good contrast, and the dynamic range with ultrawide shots was okay as well. Mi 11 Lite 4G does a good job with automatic distortion correction on ultrawide shots.
Finally, we have a 5MP macro sensor which is larger than most smartphones but similar to Mi 11 and Lite 5G. It captures images with a fixed focus at 3-4cm allowing you to take exceptional shots with abundant details of the subject. The hots came out pleasing with good contrast although a bit of sharpness would have made it outstanding.
There’s a dedicated Night Mode on-board Mi 11 Lite 4G as well which takes some time to click but it is far better than having a low-light photo. It makes a lot of difference as the shots now have mode details in the shadow and with clipped highlights.
The ultrawide snaps using the night mode are okay but not much. You can use it but it depends on the light conditions.
Talking about video recording, Mi 11 Lite supports 4K recording at 30fps while you can extend it to 60fps with 1080p. Both macro and ultrawide snappers max at 1080p@30fps. You get a bunch of camera modes to use including Super Steady Mode, Time Lapse among others.
Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite shares the same battery size and charging speed as that of Mi 11 Lite 5G. Its 4,250 mAh battery may not be large given the fact that almost all smartphones in this series have 4,000+ batteries, it is still an all-day one. It lasted 14 hours on an HD video loop test and lets you go throughout the day without any hassle. In fact, if you can squeeze it a bit, you can take it to the next day and charge in the morning itself.
About the charging speeds, 33W may not be much but it is way better than Samsung devices that are stuck at 25W at max. Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite battery pack charges from flat to full in just 64 minutes which is impressive. A 30 minutes charge gives you 54% of battery which is more than enough to get around a movie if you want to stream it and still have some juice left.
Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 4G arrives with a stereo speaker setup. It is a hybrid one where it uses the earpiece as a secondary channel plus the bottom-firing loudspeaker. It has scored a -24.2 LUFS on a loudness score which is slightly off compared to the Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 5G but comparable to Xiaomi Mi 11. Both the speakers are well-balanced and Mi 11 Lite 4G handles vocals pretty proactively although high tones aren’t its strongest suit.
The device is strapped with a bunch of connectivity features including IR Port, GPS, Bluetooth v5.1 (LE and A2DP), Wi-FI 802.11ac (dual-band), as well as a USB-C 2.0 port with USB On-The-GO. Unfortunately, there’s a 3.5mm headphone jack on Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 4G.
Strap in two 4G SIM cards and now, you can enjoy 4G LTE services from two different carriers. I used Vi 4G and Jio 4G for testing purposes and I had no issues on both the SIM cards whatsoever. Since I had two 4G SIM cards, if one went down, I was able to use the second one and vice versa. I didn’t have an issue while on call. However, I believe that it is perhaps the local network strength at your place that will decide which carrier you should go for. In addition, I was able to see the 4G+ sign almost every time I was outside so your Mi 11 Lite will support 4G+ carrier aggregation, not to worry about that even though it’s not a 5G phone.
There’s a 2D Face Unlock with the Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 4G that works fine. It lets you unlock the phone in a jiffy. On the contrary, there’s a side-mounted fingerprint scanner which is great, to be honest. Simply tap and it will unlock the phone right away. I have found a side-mounted fingerprint scanner to be more convenient than the rear or under-the-display FPS simply because you will technically hold the phone in an orientation where the side-mounted FPS is extremely reachable.
- 90Hz refresh rate display
- 33W fast charging
- Slim design with 157 grams weight
- Gorilla Glass 5 protection
- 64MP triple-rear camera
- No 5G connectivity
- A faster chipset should have been included
Xiaomi’s Mi 11 series is awesome in many ways, however, be it vanilla or the Pro variant, both are expensive. However, Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite is a budget-friendly mid-range device that offers a few pros including battery life, high refresh rate, 10-bit OLED panel, stereo speaker setup, and overall sturdy build. On the other hand, getting a slightly better performance chipset would have made a lot of difference. Also, there are a bunch of Xiaomi devices that are pretty much better than Mi 11 Lite.
If you want to know about some alternatives, do check out the Poco X3 Pro, Redmi Note 10 Pro, Realme 8 Pro, Samsung Galaxy A42 5G, or even the more powerful Xiaomi Mi 11 Lite 5G.