Xiaomi Black Shark Helo announced: Refined design with 10GB of RAM
Refined design with a focus on audio and visuals
While the core design remains pretty similar, the new Black Shark Helo introduces some big polishes. Up front, the smartphone is now adorned by a new 6-inch AMOLED display complete with a Full HD+ resolution (2160 x 1080p). This upgraded display is then coupled with front-firing stereo speakers which sit along the edge of the frame. Furthermore, the Chinese brand has reduced the size of both the top and bottom bezels and has also done away with the physical key that used to be included.
Moving over to the rear, the company has removed all bumps and edges in favor of a much sleeker design that fits more comfortably in the hand. The majority of the rear is now made out of patterned glass, although the aluminum frame does curve over slightly on either side in the hope of improving grip.
Looking at the rear layout from top to bottom, users will find a dual-tone LED flash just above two new rear cameras of 20 and 12-megapixel resolutions respectively. These are aligned with a rear-facing fingerprint scanner that replaces the previous front one. Also, as was the case with the last Black Shark smartphone, the brand’s large logo can be found in the center of the panel. However, in a move that rivals the Razer Phone 2 quite directly, Xiaomi has included LED lighting beneath it. This is combined with two more LED strips along the smartphone’s frame.
The world's first smartphone with 10GB of RAM
Just like most 2018 flagships, the Black Shark Helo comes equipped with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 845. Alongside this, customers will have the choice of 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, a slightly more expensive 8/128GB model, and a Sports Edition which is also a world first thanks to the presence of 10GB of RAM that is featured alongside 256GB of storage.
The gaming smartphone once again includes a dual pipe liquid-cooling system that is aimed at maintaining performance, even when playing intensive games. There is also a slider on the side of the phone that activates Shark Space. This limits background usage and boosts performance further.
As mentioned above, a dual-camera setup is included on the rear. These unsurprisingly support Portrait Mode, Beauty Mode, and quite a few other things, all of which are also present on the 20-megapixel selfie snapper.
Completing the smartphone’s setup is a larger 4,000mAh battery complete with fast charging support, 4G LTE, Bluetooth 5.0, and MIUI 10 straight out of the box.
Pricing and availability
When it comes to availability, the smartphone is right now only available to consumers in China. However, the global Black Shark website is still teasing a launch which means global consumers will likely receive access to this device in the near future.
Price-wise, the 6GB of RAM model starts at $461 in China, while those interested in 8GB of RAM will have to pay the equivalent of $504. The 10/256GB model, on the other hand, is set to cost $605. Those interested can pre-register for the first sale of the 6GB and 8GB models right now in China, although the 10GB version isn’t expected to arrive until December 12.
Lastly, the device is compatible with a number of new accessories, including two new gamepads for either side. The 6GB and 8GB models will include one attachment in the box, while the 10GB model will receive both.