Xiaomi brings the world's first phone with an insane 108MP camera to Europe

Xiaomi brings the world's first phone with an insane 108MP camera to Europe
For better or worse, the megapixel wars are back on, at least in certain parts of the world and as far as certain smartphone manufacturers are concerned. We've been expecting Android handsets equipped with mind-boggling 108MP image sensors to make their debut ever since spring, and as teased just a couple of months ago, the first such device comes from Xiaomi rather than Samsung.

Unlike the Galaxy S11, which could make the jump from its predecessor's primary 12MP rear-facing camera to a 108-megapixel shooter early next year, the Mi Note 10 is not technically a flagship model, packing an upper mid-range Snapdragon 730G processor instead of an ultra-high-end 855 or 855 Plus. But that's not necessarily bad news, meaning the world's first phone to use a 108MP camera (as well as four additional rear shooters) will not cost a fortune.

Unveiled just yesterday in China under the Mi CC9 Pro name alongside Xiaomi's shameless Apple Watch copycat, the Mi Note 10 is set to rapidly expand to Europe after an international launch event today in Madrid.

More than just an ultra-high-resolution camera

Those who've been following the mobile industry trends and innovations of the last few years probably know better than to get excited about meaningless or misleading numbers. After all, some of the best camera performers out there "only" come with 12MP main sensors on the back, as well as one or two extra lenses in charge of beautiful portrait shots and ultrawide photography.

The Mi Note 10, meanwhile, combines the world-first 108MP sensor with not one but two different telephoto cameras, as well as a 20MP ultra-wide-angle lens and a 2MP macro shooter. The first telephoto lens is a 12MP affair with large 1.4μm pixels, f/2.0 aperture, and 2x optical zoom, while the second one technically downgrades the megapixel count to 5 but at the same time supports impressive 5x optical zoom, 10x hybrid zoom, and 50x digital zoom capabilities.

The ultra-wide-angle camera supports a 117-degree field of view to capture pretty much everything surrounding you, while the reason why the 2MP macro camera might sound familiar is the aptly titled Motorola One Macro.

Of course, the 108MP shooter is still without a doubt the star of this penta lens show (which is another first for Xiaomi, by the way), strengthening the actual meaning of that number by adopting a 4-in-1 Super Pixel technology allowing you to essentially merge four megapixels into one and thus capture extra-clear, extra-bright 27MP photos. At the same time, you also have the choice to take snapshots in full 108MP glory, with resulting images sporting an insane resolution of 12032 x 9024 pixels to match the (theoretical) capabilities of high-end DSLR cameras. Oh, and the Mi Note 10 also has a more than decent 32MP selfie shooter.

A beautiful display, a powerful processor, a massive battery, and more

Believe it or not, the epic (at least on paper) five camera system of the Xiaomi Mi Note 10 is complemented by an equally remarkable list of other features... for a non-flagship device. While the Snapdragon 730G SoC is obviously no match for the 855, its octa-core Kryo 470 CPU setup is specifically optimized for top-notch gaming performance, while its 8nm architecture guarantees extreme power efficiency.

Coupled with an extra-large 5,260mAh battery, that means the Mi Note 10 should be capable of keeping the lights on for "more than two days" on a single charge (in certain usage scenarios), and although the 6.47-inch 3D curved AMOLED "edge-to-edge" screen (with a small notch) is both big and sharp, its 2340 x 1080 pixel resolution is yet another reason to be optimistic about battery endurance.

Made almost entirely from glass, this bad boy does sound a tad hefty, weighing in at 208 grams and measuring 9.67mm in thickness, but let's be honest, you weren't planning on buying the beast for its extreme portability or compact body anyway. Keep in mind that Xiaomi plans to sell the Mi Note 10 bundled with a 30W fast charger as standard, which is pretty rare even for high-end devices.

Other features include a trendy (and hopefully, secure) in-display fingerprint sensor, as well as a decent but not stellar combination of 6GB RAM and 128GB internal storage that was probably needed to keep the price point low.

Pricing and availability

Right off the bat, you probably know you shouldn't expect Xiaomi's smartphones to be officially released stateside. That being said, it's a little weird that the company took the time to unveil a handset in Madrid that already broke cover in China without announcing anything on its European availability. Based on the incredibly low domestic price of the Mi CC9 Pro, we can expect the Mi Note 10 to fetch around €400 when it eventually goes on sale in the Western Hemisphere. But it might be wise to wait and see before getting too excited.

Related phones

Mi Note 10
  • Display 6.5" 1080 x 2340 pixels
  • Camera 108 MP / 32 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 730G, Octa-core, 2200 MHz
  • Storage 128 GB
  • Battery 5260 mAh



1. ZEUS.the.thunder.god

Posts: 1157; Member since: Oct 05, 2011

This is a beast of a phone especially for around $400. I wish they released it worldwide. Kudos to Xiaomi once again for pushing the boundaries. I know mega pixels aren't everything but this phone is clearly a lot more than that. It looks beautiful, 5260 mAh battery, 30W charger included and it costs a fraction of the "Flagship Price" these days.

2. JMartin22

Posts: 2378; Member since: Apr 30, 2013

With that much megapixels, the size of the individual pixels will be so small that photo quality will suffer, especially low light

3. ZEUS.the.thunder.god

Posts: 1157; Member since: Oct 05, 2011

That's a possibility, however we don't know the quality of the pictures yet so let's wait for the reviews. That being said, it's a steal for it's price. Also, Xiaomi developed this camera in collaboration with Samsung so I doubt it's gonna be bad. It may not be the best camera phone but I think it can be decent.

7. Loveneesh

Posts: 444; Member since: Jul 14, 2015

this phone toped dxomark ranking as mi cc9 pro.

4. L0n3n1nja

Posts: 1581; Member since: Jul 12, 2016

Also a significantly larger image sensor with pixel binning. I find it hard to predict how it will perform.

11. vincelongman

Posts: 5745; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

BTW it's not pixel binning, natively it's 27MP It uses re-mosaic Super Resolution algorithms to capture 108MP So it's doing essentially the opposite of pixel binning to capture 108MPhttps://www.samsung.com/semiconductor/insights/tech-leadership/how-tetracell-delivers-crystal-clear-photos-day-and-night/

6. Back_from_beyond

Posts: 1459; Member since: Sep 04, 2015

We've already seen 64MP smartphone cameras using pixel binning to deliver pretty good low light shots, I imagine this won't be much different. Maybe not up to par with Pixel 4, but better than the average phone at this €400 price at least.

9. Penny

Posts: 1869; Member since: Feb 04, 2011

It's a much larger sensor than current flagship phone cameras -- 1/1.33" vs roughly 1/2.5". Still, with 108MP, that equates to smaller pixels of 0.8 micrometers. It can also take advantage of pixel binning to produce 27MP photos. That, particularly for low light situations, could result in quite clean 27MP photos depending on how well manufacturer's take advantage of Samsung's ISOCELL sensor from a computational perspective.

10. vincelongman

Posts: 5745; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Its a 27MP 1/1.33" sensor with Tetracell, so natively the sensor has 1.6um pixels But the Tetracell CFA allows it to take 108MP photos with 0.8um pixel using re-mosaic Super Resolution algorithms (it's essentially the opposite of pixel binning)https://www.samsung.com/semiconductor/insights/tech-leadership/how-tetracell-delivers-crystal-clear-photos-day-and-night/

13. XP007

Posts: 9; Member since: Oct 21, 2019

Tetracell is just marketing name that Samsung uses for Quad Bayer CFA the sensor has native pixel size of 0.8 micron they just use pixel binning to get 1.6 micron.

5. ahmadkun

Posts: 649; Member since: May 02, 2016

Galaxy note 10 but Still wearing its Halloween costume

8. Guaire

Posts: 892; Member since: Oct 15, 2014

You are trying very hard to write "Apple" word in every article possible. Shame on you.

12. XP007

Posts: 9; Member since: Oct 21, 2019

Thanks to companies like Xiaomi we are no longer trapped into buying expensive phones with top of the line specifications or phones at affordable prices but with low specifications. Xiaomi is also quite good in terms of support for example they have just announced that they will give MIUI 11 updates for their mid range and entry level phones that are almost 3 years old.

14. Icent55

Posts: 81; Member since: Nov 02, 2017

P.A The 108mp sensor is made by SAMSUNG Put that up there

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