Xiaomi does not back down from strange designs. The company has launched over time several Mi MIX models, which were always based on the idea of a smartphone with a large screen and without cutouts. To achieve these goals, he sometimes compromised and moved the front camera to the bottom of the device or integrated a slider system. However, none of its phones so far has been stranger than the Mi MIX Alpha, introduced last year, but the next Mi MIX Alpha 2 concept could surpass it.
Mi Mix Alpha 2 could be closer to reality than the previous Alpha concept
The original Mi MIX Alpha proposed something never seen before: “dressing” the phone on the screen on all sides. The screen starts from the back, next to the camera and ends only on the opposite side of the camera, after covering the two sides and the front. Apart from a small space the width of the rooms, the whole phone is a continuous screen.
The company has not brought this model to market, but could launch a Mi MIX Alpha 2 in the future, which adopts a similar idea, but more anchored in reality. We have already seen the elements of this phone on other models of other companies, so a finished product of this kind would be completely achievable. The main screen could be cascading, covering the sides, and on the back, half of the phone could be covered with a secondary screen.
Why would Xiaomi do that? To escape first what the front camera. If you have a screen on the back, you can use the main camera for self-portraits. But the camera on the Mi MIX Alpha 2 concept is also unusual. We’ve seen the design of the phone in the past, but now we can see exactly what it might look like, as Concept Creator and LetsGoDigital have created a 3D model that presents it to us from all angles.
It seems that Xiaomi would like to develop a phone that works in a similar way to a compact camera. Thus, it would have a single sensor and a single lens. When the camera is not in use, it is flat, the thickness of the phone. When you use it, the lens can expand to zoom. Thus, you give up the need to have multiple cameras and offer a unit performance over the entire focal length of the lens, without differences between the quality of sensors and lenses.
The phone may not reach the market
Even if Xiaomi introduces Mi MIX Alpha 2 sometime in 2020, we probably won’t see it on the market too soon. The Mi MIX Alpha 1 concept was scheduled to cost somewhere around US $3,000, and its availability had to be limited. Given the advanced camera system and new technology that should be developed to integrate all these components into a single device, a Mi MIX Alpha 2 would probably cost about the same.
However, such a project may be replaced by folding screen devices, which are beginning to gain traction in the market. Samsung, Huawei and Motorola have already launched one or even two generations of such devices, and next year several companies, including Xiaomi, are expected to enter this new market segment.
Juana loves to cover the tech and gaming industry, she always stays on the first row of CES conference and reports live from there.