The Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra is here to give all those other Ultras a run for their money

The Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra is here to give all those other Ultras a run for their money
Xiaomi sells a lot of impressive mobile devices at pretty much unrivaled prices... outside of the US, but even by the company's sky-high standards, the freshly unveiled Mi 10 Ultra is something special.

Officially announced on the 10th anniversary of the popular Android-based MIUI platform, this bad boy takes almost everything about the already great Xiaomi Mi 10 Pro to the next level, refining the premium design and beefing up many of the ultra-high-end specifications to give the likes of Samsung's Galaxy Note 20 Ultra a run for their money.

The world's most insane fast charging numbers

We don't typically start a product overview like this talking about battery size and charging capabilities, but Xiaomi really doesn't want you to worry about your "everyday charging" routine, claiming that the Mi Ultra can go from a completely empty to a full 4,500mAh tank in just 23 minutes.


That incredible feat is made possible by integrating 120W wired charging technology, up from a 50W standard on the Mi 10 Pro, 45W top speeds for Samsung's Galaxy S20 Ultra, and a modest 18W iPhone 11 Pro Max limit. 

In case you're wondering, Apple's most advanced smartphone still needs close to two hours to go from 0 to 100 percent battery capacity, and even the recently unveiled Lenovo Legion Duel was "only" advertised as capable of squeezing a full charge out of its 90W power brick in half an hour.

What might be even more mind-blowing than the 23 minutes purportedly needed to charge the Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra battery in its entirety are the measly 5 minutes needed to jump from 0 to a 41 percent energy level. The wireless charging numbers are almost equally impressive, with 50W technology guaranteeing a top-up in just 40 minutes.

In pure Xiaomi fashion, the company took the time during the Mi 10 Ultra announcement to compare that figure to what Apple's iPhone 11 Pro Max is capable of wirelessly. The gap is pretty shocking, but obviously, there's more to a good high-end handset than crazy fast charging.

More zoom, more impressive cameras, higher refresh rate, and more

While the Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra looks incredibly similar to the Mi 10 Pro from the front, the rear design is revised to accommodate possibly the most technologically advanced camera system in the world. This loses the underwhelming 108MP primary shooter, replacing it with a huge custom-manufactured 48MP "super sensor" equipped with a "super-resolution" algorithm that can produce 100MP images without losing detail (allegedly).

Meanwhile, a periscope lens sits at the very top of this state-of-the-art camera arrangement, taking the "ultra-zoom" wars to the next (absurd) level. The Galaxy S20 Ultra has nothing on the 120x zoom skills of the Mi 10 Ultra, which we'll naturally have to evaluate for ourselves out in the real world before getting too excited.

What you can definitely get excited about is the 8K video recording support on both these cameras, as well as the overall versatility of a quad shooter system also including a 12MP portrait snapper and a 20MP ultra-wide-angle lens.

Powered by the same Snapdragon 865 processor as its Pro "cousin" rather than the slightly faster 865+ SoC inside the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, the Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra adds 120Hz refresh rate technology to an already beautiful 6.67-inch Super AMOLED display while ticking all the other late 2020 flagship boxes, including screen-embedded fingerprint recognition, a 20MP hole punch-housed selfie camera, and up to an outrageous 16 gigs of memory and 512 gigs of internal storage space.

Pricing and availability

Xiaomi says that technology is its "foundation" and "honest prices" its mission, which is why we're not shocked to hear the Mi 10 Ultra will start at the rough equivalent of $760 in China. We're definitely impressed, as we assume even this entry-level configuration will come with 5G connectivity as standard in addition to a respectable 8GB RAM count and 128GB local digital hoarding room.

Naturally, the company's domestic customers will have to pay more to raise the memory and storage bars, with the aforementioned top-of-the-line variant set to cost a little over $1,000 in local currency. Unfortunately, there are no words on a European release date yet, let alone official US availability, the latter of which is probably out of the question.

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